CAMRA competition award presented to people who saved The Railway Arms

Group outside The Railway Arms pub in Saffron Walden receiving an award certificate

Andrea Briers of CAMRA presented the award to regulars, management committee members, staff and Campaign for Real Ale members for their efforts to save The Railway Arms in Saffron Walden - Credit: Saffron Photo

A national competition award has been presented to regulars, management committee members, staff and Campaign for Real Ale members for their work to save The Railway Arms in Saffron Walden.

Andrea Briers, CAMRA’s regional director for East Anglia, who presented the Runners-up Award in the National Pub Saving Awards competition, said: "Save The Railway Arms Pub (STRAP) has had a long journey, and is an example of superb campaigning to save a beloved local pub - only made more difficult due to the coronavirus restrictions throughout 2020 and 2021.

"It just goes to show what can be achieved when a community bands together to make a difference."

STRAP began the campaign to have the pub designated as an Asset of Community Value in 2013. 

During their campaign to keep the pub they formed Saffron Walden Community Pub Ltd and raised grants, loans, and share capital to enable its purchase in 2020.

Dave Kenny, chairman of STRAP and SWCP Ltd, said: “Purchasing the Railway Arms after a long campaign during the course of the Covid-19 pandemic was a huge challenge in itself, but it re-focussed an incredible community effort in saving the pub towards its refurbishment and preparation for opening in April 2021.

"The pub was run brilliantly by a passionate group of volunteers until the professional team took over in May.

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"After 10 months of trading the pub is on a sound footing and we hope that The Railway is set for many years of successful operation back at the heart of Saffron Walden’s thriving pub scene."

The overall winner of the CAMRA award was for the ‘Ring the Blue Bell Again’ campaign in Stoke Ferry, Norfolk to save the Blue Bell.

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