The Foundry on Holburn Street in Aberdeen, has been recognised for the essential role it plays in the community. The Foundry is owned by Stonegate Pub Company, which won the title of ‘Best Community Pub Operator’ in the Publican Awards, a national awards ceremony that celebrates everything that’s great about the world of pubs and bars.
The pub is very much at the heart of the community it serves and General Manager, Mark Joseph, and the teamwork tirelessly to fundraise for local charities. The Foundry is particularly closely tied to Aberdeen FC Community Trust, an independent organisation that works alongside Aberdeen Football Club to provide support and opportunity to change lives for the better. The trust helps people of all ages, from pre-school to pensioners, organising activities and support for those with learning difficulties or people suffering with dementia.
The Foundry has done many different things to raise money for the Community Trust, as well as other causes close to the team’s hearts. Deputy Manager Kieran has done over 100 hours of voluntary work, dressing up as the charity’s mascot ‘Donny the Sheep’ for a number of school fairs and events. Five members of staff took part in the Aberdeen Kilt walk, raising just under £3,000. The pub has also partnered with the local Cancer Research shop to run an event for Stand Up to Cancer.
Mark’s plans for the pub don’t stop there. This year he is working with Alzheimer’s UK to get all his staff trained to be ‘dementia-friendly’, so that they can host special coffee mornings and lunches for people with dementia.
He said: “I am so lucky to have such an enthusiastic and generous team, they all throw themselves into everything we do. It might seem like we do a lot but when you’re surrounded by people with the same attitude and who share your vision, it makes it easy!
“It was always my plan to make the pub a social hub or community centre and it works brilliantly! During the day we have families and pensioners in making the most of our fantastic food offers, and the staff take time out to have a chat with them. Twice a month we host a walking group and provide them with free tea, coffee and cake. Then the after-work crowd come in for drinks and to watch the sport or to grab a bite to eat. At the weekend we become a party venue with our much-loved local DJ, Smiley Jim, playing until 2am.
“I love seeing the pub busy and full of people having a good time. For me, the Foundry is everything a British pub should be and I’m really proud of what we have achieved so far.”
The Foundry, 41-43 Holburn Street, Aberdeen, AB10 6BR