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24th June 2022

The Frogmill near Cheltenham named UK’s best pub

Brakspear takes top award with Honeycomb Houses site

Cotswolds pub The Frogmill, part of Brakspear’s Honeycomb Houses managed estate, has scooped the top title in the National Pub & Bar awards 2022.

The pub, set in extensive grounds in the village of Shipton Oliffe outside Cheltenham, dates back to the 16th century. It has a traditional bar, restaurant, boutique bedrooms and wedding/function spaces. Brakspear acquired the site in 2016, reopening it in 2016 after significant investment and it has since traded successfully by appealing to local residents, diners, weekenders and wedding parties.

Despite The Frogmill’s enviable location and stylish décor, it was their operational standards and customer service that won them the National Pub & Bar of the Year title.  Judges praised the flawless operation, attention to detail and genuine hospitality, which stem from the Honeycomb Houses ethos of ‘Our House, Your Home’: the team host guests in the way they would treat friends visiting their home, creating a relaxed yet attentive atmosphere for their visit.

Simon Stanbrook, general manager at The Frogmill, said: “I’m completely overwhelmed. This award is for the team — from our housekeeping to kitchen, events and front of house teams, they all work exceptionally hard day in, day out.

“We work together like a family and take pride in having an eye for detail and looking out for opportunities to add touches that make our guests’ experience at The Frogmill memorable rather than just good!”

Tom Davies, chief executive at Brakspear, said: “Everyone at Honeycomb Houses and Brakspear is delighted to have won this award and proud of the sterling work from Simon and his team at the pub, supported by Sophie Johnson, our senior operations manager.  It speaks volumes to their talent and dedication that they have maintained the highest standards despite the challenges created by Covid, supply chain issues and staff shortages.

“When we reopened The Frogmill in 2016, we said we wanted it to win awards, and it’s wonderful to see that ambition realised. It’s also good to have recognition that the Honeycomb Houses ethos, which is in place at all nine pubs, is delivering award-winning standards and service.”

On the way to collecting the top award, The Frogmill was named the Best Pub in Gloucestershire, as one of 94 County Winners in the National Pub & Bar Awards. It then won the Best Pub in the South West title, as one of 15 regional winners, announced at an awards event in London.

Brakspear rebranded its managed division as Honeycomb Houses in November 2021, bringing the pubs together with a strong overall identify while retaining each pub’s individual character. The estate includes 10 pubs in the Cotswolds and in locations around Brakspear’s Henley heartland, as well as The Ghyll Manor near Horsham, West Sussex, purchased in February this year, which is currently closed.

For further information on The National Pub & Bar Awards 2022 including County and Regional winners, visit:



Honeycomb Houses

Brakspear’s managed pub division was established in 2013 with the opening of The Bull on Bell Street in the centre of Henley-on-Thames, just yards from the site of the original Brakspear brewery founded in 1711, and next to the company’s current head office.

In November 2021, Brakspear rebranded its managed estate as Honeycomb Houses, underpinned with an ethos of ‘Our House, Your Home’, offering relaxed, attentive service to guests and creating a ‘home from home’ atmosphere.

The estate comprises:

In Henley-on-Thames

  • Bull on Bell Street, Henley-on-Thames: Brakspear’s first managed pub, opened in April 2013, just yards from the site of the original Brakspear brewery founded in 1711.

In the Cotswolds

  • Frogmill, Shipton Oliffe near Cheltenham: reopened with major investment in 2018. Wedding and events venue as well as offering accommodation, dining and a pub.
  • Sheep on Sheep Street, Stow-on-the-Wold: opened in July 2016, contemporary bar and restaurant with 22 bedrooms promising to bring a ‘slice of London to the Cotswolds’,
  • Porch House, Stow-on-the-Wold: believed to be the oldest pub in the country, with parts dating back to 947AD.  Grade 2* listed building with 13 bedrooms.
  • George Townhouse, Shipston-on-Stour: a Grade II listed building with 15 bedrooms.
  • Egypt Mill, Nailsworth, near Stroud: acquired in March 2020. The converted mill offers riverside dining, bedrooms and a wedding and functions business.

Other locations

  • Nag’s Head, Abingdon: purchased in June 2019. Iconic Oxfordshire pub, set on its own island halfway across Abingdon Bridge, with extensive gardens seating 200 people and a barge bar.
  • The Lion, Wendlebury, Bicester: food-led pub with 190 cover restaurant and 13 bedrooms.
  • The Chequers, Marlow: busy High Street pub and restaurant with nine bedrooms.
  • Ghyll Manor, near Horsham, West Sussex: a historic hotel with a wedding and functions in extensive grounds, acquired by Brakspear in February 2022. Currently closed.

Press release from Brakspear

Further information: / 07841 694137