Pints mean prizes for pub puzzlers

THE landlord of a pub on the Essex-Suffolk border has won �10,000 to help put his business development ideas in practice – thanks to the brain-power of his customers.

The Thatcher’s Arms in Mount Bures, between Colchester and Sudbury, has been named winner of the “Smartest Pub” award launched by Czech lager Pilsner Urquell last May.

Drinkers of the lager at pubs across the country were invited to solve puzzle cards designed for the brand by Mensa, the society for people with a high IQ.

Each correct score counted towards the pub’s score, with a leader board being published every three months.

At the end of the contest, licensees from the 10 pubs with the most correct entries were flown to the home of Pilsner Urquell, Pilsen in the Czech Republic, to pitch their business ideas to a panel of judges.

Mitchel Adams from the Thatcher’s Arms claimed the prize with a plan to transform the pub’s existing function room into a “pop-up” cinema and a venue to host selected plays, live music and local arts exhibitions, so acting as a valuable amenity for the rural community in the surrounding area.

“We already host a number of successful events including beer and food matching, quiz and open mic nights,” said Mr Adams.

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“With the investment from Pilsner Urquell we can install a BOSE system and projector screen ensuring that our cinema events will be just as good as the local multiplex 10 miles away.

“We’ll also be offering cabaret theatre-style seating with full table service including meals specially created to compliment the flavour of Pilsner Urquell.”

He added: “I was up against some great business men and women, so for Pilsner Urquell to recognise my idea is fantastic.

“We are already putting our plans into action and look forward to welcoming customers new and existing to see how we’ve brought the investment and support from Pilsner Urquell to life.”

Darren Tendler, sales director for Miller Brands, whose portfolio includes the Czech lager, said: “We’re delighted to support Mitchel and the team at The Thatchers Arms with what was a brilliant idea, bringing people together from the community and creating some really exciting activity.”