HILLEND Tavern will be throwing "the best opening day ever" with award-winning pints on tap when it's business as usual again.

The Main Street pub was recently voted the best pub in the Kingdom for the third time in the last four years.

They have been named CAMRA's (The Campaign for Real Ale) Pub of the Year once again after previously lifting the honour in 2017 and 2018.

Husband-and-wife team Mike and Francesca Henderson have run the business since 2011, and they were delighted to toast their success.

Francesca told the Press: "We were elated and very chuffed to win again.

"We have a very high standard here and Mike looks after all the beers well, and our locals love them.

"They were just as delighted as us about the award because it's them that help to make the pub what it is.

"We have people coming here from Dunfermline, Aberdour, Inverkeithing, Rosyth and Burntisland who all consider the Hillend Tavern as their local pub.

"It's a real community pub that attracts people from well beyond our own doorstep.

"A lot of clubs use this place as well and it's a great place for people to socialise.

"It was quite emotional for us and locals on the day we closed, not just because they couldn't get a beer anymore, but because of the community that it has created.

"Everyone looks after each other and that's fantastic."

That community spirit will have to survive until the tavern is able to re-open following the Government announcement that all cafes, pubs and restaurants had to close from Friday midnight.

The unprecedented move meant that the Hillend Tavern was unable to welcome customers on a Saturday for the first time in Mike and Francesca's eight-year ownership.

She said: "Our dog, Stella, doesn't know why no-one is at the pub any more.

"It's going to be very difficult for not just ourselves but for other pubs and businesses nationwide.

"It's really kicked us in the guts, to be honest.

"We're already feeling the impact of no income coming in. We're reducing all of our outgoings and we'll do our best to bounce back relatively unscathed.

"Hopefully with government grants we will be okay, and our two key staff members (Chris Evenden and Helen Lynas) who are both integral parts of the business. We couldn't do it without them.

"Once we're allowed to open, it's going to be the best opening day ever!"