Pub bosses reach semi-final of 'industry Oscars'

The Lodge in North Tuddenham.

The Lodge pub in North Tuddenham - Credit: Stuart Anderson

The husband and wife team who run a popular pub have reached the semi-final of a prestigious industry contest.

Victoria and Gavin Hunt, of Tuddenham Lodge, near Dereham, are through to the penultimate stage of the Licensee of the Year Award (LOYA).

Gavin and Victoria Hunt, who run Tuddenham Lodge

Gavin and Victoria Hunt, who run Tuddenham Lodge, are through to the semi-final of the Licensee of the Year Award - Credit: Matt Sturman Photography

Hosted by the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII), the annual competition sees nominees put through a rigorous judging process which includes a secret customer visit. 

At each stage, licensees are interviewed and their pubs visited by judges before potentially being put through to the next round. 

The BII itself entered Mr and Mrs Hunt into the awards this year after Tuddenham Lodge was recognised for its efforts to serve the community during the pandemic. 

"This really is a big boost for the whole team, especially given we were scored 98pc after the secret customer visit," said Mrs Hunt. 

"To us it is like the Oscars of the industry."

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Mr and Mrs Hunt also run The Fox in Lyng, for which they reached the LOYA final in 2019.