IT’S cheers to the beers at one West Fife pub after it was voted as Scotland’s second best by the Campaign for Real Ale.

The Hillend Tavern, which is run by Francesca and Mike Henderson, was named runner-up in the Scotland and Northern Ireland region by the beer and pub campaigning organisation after claiming the Fife Pub of the Year accolade for a second time in succession.

CAMRA is compiling its annual Good Beer Guide, which rates pubs from around the country to determine the best ones in each region, before they are narrowed down to the top four across the UK before the national award winner is determined.

The popular pub was chosen to represent Fife in the Scotland and Northern Ireland region and was only beaten by The Volunteer Arms – also known as Staggs – in Musselburgh, who won the Scottish accolade for a third time.

Mike, who took over the pub with Francesca in 2011, said: “We’re delighted to have come second; we were amazed that we got as far as we had.

“That’s two years in a row that we’ve won Fife Pub of the Year but the first time we’ve been nominated for this. It’s fantastic.

“Some of our customers enquired about getting real ale after we took over, so we knew there was a market for it.

"There aren’t many places nearby that sell it.

“We’ve got people in Rosyth, Inverkeithing, Dalgety Bay and Aberdour coming in, so it has taken over our business.”

He added: “When we started, we had one pump, and now we’ve got four.
“We are supplied by Belhaven, who support us really well, and more and more micro breweries are popping up. 

"There’s one in Inverkeithing who are putting a batch on for us.

“It’s generally an older clientele that we have; it’s a nice, social environment and a great atmosphere.”