GRATEFUL staff at “a unique, traditional pub” are raising a glass to their loyal customers after being voted Mid Cheshire’s Best Pub or Bar 2023.

The Cheshire Cheese only reopened a few weeks following a six-week refurbishment plan and it is officially the best pub in the area.

Each week, we will be searching for the best Mid Cheshire has to offer in different categories and we’ve given out 22 awards for 2023.

The winners so far:

Best for Hair – Oliver Gibney Hairdressing

Best for Pies – Ka Pie

Best for Nails – Samantha Dean Nails and Makeup

Best for Roast Dinner – The Red Lion in Little Budworth

Best for Cocktails – Grape and Bean

Best for Breakfast – Kanya Bistro and Bar

Best for Fitness – Simon Daniels

Best for Fish and Chips – The Corner Fish and Chip Shop

Best for Tattoos – Ink FX Tattoo

Best for Pizza – Oakwood Smoke and Dough

Best for Pets – Willowsway Cat Rescue

Best Independent Shop or Business – The Style Hut

Best for Dessert – Layers Treats

Best for Beauty – The Beauty Spot

Best for Kids – Popcat’s Music Time

Best Gym – Namix Performance Centre

Best Beer Garden – The Carriers Inn

Best for Afternoon Tea – Goostrey Home and Leisure

Best for Burgers – Smokehouse and Cellar

Best Café or Coffee Shop – Board Beans Café

Best for Curry – Bombay Lounge

Voting in our final Best of 2023 category Mid Cheshire’s Best Restaurant is currently taking place – vote here

Next on the menu was the search for Mid Cheshire’s Best Pub or Bar and The Cheshire Cheese took the latest Best of 2023 title – what a way to mark their reopening!

The Cheshire Cheese on Lewin Street

The Cheshire Cheese on Lewin Street

Janice Oxley has been the manager at the award-winning pub on Lewin Street since March 2020 – just two weeks before the Covid-19 pandemic plunged the country and the rest of the world into lockdown.

The Cheshire Cheese is owned by Admiral Taverns and was a pub with a cottage adjacent to the main building.

The brewery bought the cottage and knocked through making the once small pub into a spacious place with a beer garden and stage for performers.

It reopened five weeks ago after extensive refurbishments which took six weeks.

Janice, who is 61, said: “We serve a range of beers and lagers, wines and spirits, including gins and vodkas, as well as cask ales and shots.

“We have all the sports channels, darts and dominoes, and there’s a karaoke and disco every Friday and Saturday night with live music each month.”

The pub reopened in mid August

The pub reopened in mid August

Janice is a Winsford girl born and bred but used to work at Skellon’s Shoe Shop in Middlewich many years ago so she had a strong connection with the area.

Janice had been working at Manchester Airport for 11 years when she decided she wanted a career change and helped a friend at The White Horse in Middlewich.

She said: “I always wanted a bed breakfast or small café by the sea but loved working in the bar.

“Unfortunately, that closed and I registered an interest in The Cheshire Cheese.

“It wasn’t up for tenancy so I took on the Turnpike Middlewich, and when, after 12 months, it changed to a pub selling food, I decided it wasn’t for me.

“I wanted an entertainment pub and then The Cheshire Cheese came up for tenancy – I was thrilled to get it!

“The best thing about my job is being around people - watching them laugh, enjoying a pint in comfortable surroundings, winding down after a stressful day.

“I never class it as a job - it’s more my way of socialising.”

The beer garden is popular with customers wanting a drink in the sunshine

The beer garden is popular with customers wanting a drink in the sunshine

So what do customers of The Cheshire Cheese think about the venue? Why did they want the business to win Mid Cheshire’s Best Pub or Bar 2023?

One nomination said: “This is a unique, proper local pub with a long tradition to serve customers.

“It has lots of history!”

When Janice heard the pub had made the shortlist for our latest award, she was shocked but pleased.

Theres always a warm welcome at The Cheshire Cheese

There's always a warm welcome at The Cheshire Cheese

She said: “A huge thank you to Sally, who nominated The Cheshire Cheese, and to everyone who took time out of their day to vote for us.

“I was completely overwhelmed when I heard we’d won the award.

“I have such wonderful staff and amazing customers and I’m so grateful for all their support.

“The pub industry is not an easy place to work, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic, and so many people are losing their businesses.

“This award is in recognition of all the hard work we’ve all put in over the past few years to make The Cheshire Cheese such a success.”

For more details go to

The beer garden has a stage for live music performers

The beer garden has a stage for live music performers