Lockdown Hero of Heroes award

Readers will recall that a number of CAMRA branches in Greater London have been awarding Lockdown Hero awards to pubs, clubs and breweries that have gone out of their way to support their communities during the dark days of the various lockdowns. CAMRA Greater London Region believes that it is important to acknowledge the efforts of these hard working, altruistic and imaginative people.

The Presentation (L to R): Martin Burrows, Adam Jogee (Mayor of Haringey), Geoff Strawbridge and Colin Coyne

To replace the John Young Memorial Award for 2021, we decided to have a ‘Hero of Heroes’ award, chosen from the pubs that had received Lockdown Hero awards from their CAMRA branch. The winner of the Hero of Heroes award is North London branch’s nomination, the Antwerp Arms in Tottenham. The Antwerp Arms has featured frequently in these pages and deservedly so.

Geoff Strawbridge, CAMRA’s Regional Director for Greater London, said, “The people running pubs, clubs and breweries have been doing some amazing stuff locally to support their communities during the pandemic. CAMRA’s London branches have been handing out ‘Lockdown Hero’ awards to reflect and acknowledge their work. The objective was to give these heroes an even greater profile. The Hero of Heroes was chosen from all of these worthy award winners.” The chair of CAMRA’s North London branch, Colin Coyne, added, “A community association run pub, the Antwerp Arms became part of the Tottenham Foodbank and Felix Project initiatives, helping the most needy during lockdown and the pandemic. Although the pub was itself closed to the public during lockdown, they gathered together as a collective and using their own committee, volunteers, kitchens and resources became a vital part of the community providing food packages during these very difficult times. Since the pandemic started, they have cooked over 10,000 meals, and over the Christmas period alone, their volunteers had created and delivered over 400 Xmas hampers to the most vulnerable in the local community.” Martin Burrows, chair of the Antwerp Arms Association, was delighted at the news, commenting, “Everyone I have spoken to is very chuffed. We intend to try and turn the evening into a thank you to everyone and a real celebration of real ale as well!

The Antwerp Arms is also CAMRA North London’s current branch Pub of the Year and participates in CAMRA’s LocAle scheme, which promotes pubs stocking local beers. Beers from Tottenham’s own Redemption Brewery are usually available on handpump. To contribute to the celebration, they produced a special beer, Lockdown Hero’s Best Ale. Redemption’s founder, Andy Moffat, was also present.

The award was presented on Tuesday 14 September and all involved were delighted that the Mayor of Harringey, Councillor Adam Jogee, was able to attend.

The full address of the Antwerp Arms is 168-170 Church Road, Tottenham N17 8AS. You can find more details about the pub at www.antwerparms.co.uk.

The runner up was the Angel & Crown, 5 Church Street, Richmond TW9 1JL. During lockdown they provided, on average, 70 meals a day, seven days a week, for the homeless and most vulnerable people in their community.

THE LAMB’S A LOCKDOWN HERO AS WELL

CAMRA’s North London branch had one more presentation to make, this time, on 11 September, to Ade Clark and his team (Sam and Rox) at the Lamb on Holloway Road (N7 8JL). In his presentation speech, branch chairman Colin Coyne extolled their virtues of being a community asset and an outlet and showcase for local artists, especially musicians. As well as also praising them for serving cask ale from LocAle breweries, Colin commented on the success of their crowd funding campaign and how the community had gathered together to support them. Happily they had reached their target, enabling them to stay solvent. Colin closed by presenting the Lockdown Hero award to Ade and the team, thanked them for their great efforts and warm welcome and wished them continued success.

The pub has a beautiful locally listed interior with handsome wood panelling and skylights and the frontage, which dates from early in the 20th century, has had its original tiling carefully restored.