Quirky boutique coaching inn named best freehouse in region

The team at the Bull Inn at Barton Mills: Submitted

The team at the Bull Inn at Barton Mills: Submitted - Credit: Archant

A north Suffolk coaching inn has been named the best freehouse in East Anglia, and its owners will find out next week whether it has also picked up the national award.

The Bull Inn at Barton Mills: Submitted

The Bull Inn at Barton Mills: Submitted - Credit: Archant

The Bull at Barton Mills, near Mildenhall, is one of just six regional winners from around the UK to have successfully completed the rigorous early rounds of assessment in the Great British Pub Awards. The final result will be announced at a glitzy awards bash in London on September 11.

The Great British Pub Awards are a prestigious accolade in the licensed trade and recognise the pubs that are outstanding in their local areas as well as nationally.

Owners Cheryl Hickman and Wayne Starling bought the pub in May 2007 and immediately set about transforming it from a sleepy old inn into a modern Great British coaching inn.

Ms Hickman said: 'The Bull is our life, we live and breathe it and so do our team. We have an amazingly strong team behind us, and we all work really hard.

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'We have created a dynamic, fast- moving business that is the leader of the pack; we've never been followers. It's a 500-year-old Great British pub to be proud of.'

The quirky boutique coaching inn is no stranger to awards, having recently scooped the prestigious title of Funkiest B&B in the UK at the annual AA awards.

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All of the 15 rooms at the Bull Inn are individually designed in a unique and funky way with designer wallpaper, bespoke glass walls and handmade soft furnishings.

Whether it is an image of a licking cow in the shower, a silver leaf Versailles curved end bed, a cow print headboard, zebra print tiles or a king-size gold bed, each room has something special to offer.

It was also named best freehouse in East Anglia in the Morning Advertiser 2012, and the owners were named best newcomers in East Anglia in the Morning Advertiser Awards in September 2008.

Has your local pub recently won a top award or have an achievement to celebrate? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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