“ Nationwide. „
I have worked for two Greene King pubs now. The first one my managers were forced out even though they ran a tight ship, made an absolute killing for GK, had turned the pub around and were loved by all locals.
Then they were replaced by maybe the worst couple Greene King could have chosen (the area manager was completely inept - I forget her name) She was always late for meetings and clearly had no idea about the pub trade other than following protocol and making money. The new couple didn't last very long and I heard rumours of money going missing.
I was then the longest surviving member of staff and often worked 70 + hours a week, trained new staff and dealt with abuse from elements of society who were allowed back in by Greene King after being banned under previous ownership. For all this I got minimum wage and maximum tax thanks to GK not sorting my tax code out correctly.
The current pub I work in, a tenancy not a managed house is in my opinion the best pub in town. The management have, in recent years turned it into a great community pub attracting all sodrts of people yound and old creating a brilliant atmosphere. The pub is regularly pact on weekends and week days alike and does brilliant lunch/evening meal. But guess what? The couple might have to leave because despite their hard work GREEDY King will not give any leway for them to make a profit to comfortably LIVE on.
This unfortunatly is my experience with GK so far. The good honest people who run their pubs are completly seperate from those who are profiting from them. GK is removed and don't understand what makes a good pub they are only interested in 100% profit and get this through mis-treatment and use of staff.
Being an employee of Greene King, I believe I can give my insider review. The company as a whole are fantastic, a little slow on the employment side as it took me a year as a temp to secure a full time job. The pubs are fantastic and some of the developments are looking great. In the years, Greene King has been known for its Greediness and become Greedy King when our results come out. Long live the Greene King
"Greene King's Westgate brewery is in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, UK. It was established in 1799 by Benjamin Greene, the great-grandfather of the writer Graham Greene and his brothers Hugh (television executive) and Raymond (Everest mountaineer and physician). There is a visitor centre next to the brewery, and tours can be arranged. The company also owns pubs and hotels including the Hungry Horse pub chain. Greene King dominates the pub scene in many parts of East Anglia, with a large number of both urban and rural establishments. It also has a stand named after it at Ipswich Town's football ground, Portman Road. The company has won awards for its pubs in recent years and Greene King IPA won the Gold award at the 2004 Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) Great British Beer Festival in the Bitter category and runner-up in the Champion Beer Of Britain category."
Greene King is one of the South's oldest and best established breweries, with over 1600 public houses and pub restaurants it is one of the features of many a town down in the South and heading steadilly northwards. What's it all about? -------------------- Well, Greeke King began life in 1799, brewing its ales down in Bury St. Edmunds, you'll probably know the nmame from the front of some football team's blue shirts (I can never remember which one - do tell) and thought nothing of it. They're a traditional pub company with great ales available and pubs all over the place. The pubs are broken up into categories (I used to work for GK in my student days but not much has changed from what I hear) Categories: ----------- Community Pubs: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Local - the place you go on a weeknight for a couple of pints on the way home from the office. It's usually one of the "where everybody knows your name" places, activities such as a pool league and darts team and a manager and staff who get to knnow just about all the drinkers who come in. This is the type of pub I used to work in, a natty shirt was given to me and I was let loose behind the bar, within minutes of starting I'd been talked to, at and about all round the bar, people would introduce themselves to me and after a week I knew just about every name and the drink associated to them. Lovely stuff. Now I'm on the other (proper) side of the bar it is an absoulte pleasure to go into this pub and see all the customers who became friends, have the barstaff know my drink and know full well that I'kll be served quickly and with the correct drink every time. This is the style of community pubs - you'll egt to know everyone and get involved with the atmopsphere, a cross-section of the community drinks there and there are events on a regular basis. Expect to see the footy and the d
arts shown along with Horse racing on a weekend. Friendly, usually full of people from all walks of life and a cheap and varied range of beers on offer. Not a great deal of trouble as most people know all the others and the only fights I've seen break out have come from local feuds going on too long. Circuit Bars: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The places you go once in a while on your route through the town. Usually busy, loud music and flashing lights, found in town centres and genmerally with a bouncer on the door. The boozer with no pool table, a couple of fruit machines and a load of pricey beers - mainly lagers on offer. These pubs are not meant to make an impression, just one of the stops on your pub crawl, you won't find many people out of groups and expecting to go in for a chat and a quiet pint would be folly incarnate. The lager drinkers paradise and worth stopping in on your travels. Town Centre Locals: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Similar in style to the Cir5cuit bar, expect a bit more class though. These are the pubs that expect to fill 50 meal covers for the office workers on their lunch breaks. Nicer than the Circuit pubs and with a bit of a "suit" atmosphere. Expect to find these, as you'd expect, in the town centre. The local that is not quite local to everyone, a place to pop in to on your way to the Community Pub on the way home.....if you see what I mean. Hungry Horse: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Blatant atempt at taking off the Harvester experience, the pub restaurant - expect a wide range of meals and a family atmosphere, kids are allowed (unlike the other 3) and the beeri is aimed at the older, family man type drinker. Nice enough but not a patch on Harvester. Beers: ------ The cornerstone of the pub, without beer there's not a lot of point in having a pub, just go to the local cafe and get a coke! Abbot Ale
- Brilliant. Think "Strong" "Robust" "Tasty" "Full Bodied" there are many ways to describe Abbot's. It's strong and dark, you can really taste the traditional in this. Wonderful and it'll get you VERY drunk. ABV 5% What they say: "Greene King's flagship brand is Abbot Ale, described by top beer writer Michael Jackson as "one of the true characters of the beer world". It's strong, robust and full of flavour - a wonderful ambassador for real ale. Greene King first brewed Abbot Ale during the 1950's and its popularity has never waned. Indeed, it was recently named as one of the top 10 cask ales that licensees would most like to stock. As well as gracing the bar of thousands of pubs up and down the country, Abbot Ale is also available from supermarkets and off licences in cans and bottles to drink at home." Source - http://www.greenekingbeers.co.uk/ IPA (Or India Pale Ale) - Good but not as good as Abbott's. Abbot Ale's weaker cousin, loved by the older drinkers and frowned upon by lovers of the stronger ale. ABV 3.9% What they say: "Greene King IPA is the mainstay of Greene King's cask ale portfolio. It embodies all that is best about British beer, with its clean, fresh, hoppy taste and distinctive tawny colour. No surprise, then, that Greene King IPA is now the fastest-selling cask ale in the UK and the second best-selling ale in the country. Time spent with a pint of Greene King IPA is certainly time well spent. And that's the theme of five humorous television commercials now being shown on Anglia and Meridian television and on Sky TV." Not the best but OK in a Light and Bitter (Half pint of bitter topped up with a bottle of light ale - for the northerners). Greene King also produce Ruddles beers and sell Old Speckled Hen in just about all of their pubs. O
verall: -------- Greene King have something for everyone, a pub to suit all tastes. For the lad about town there's a type and for the older gent, watching his pension go on the horses there's somewhere suitable too. Friendly or bustling you're sure to find a pub to suit you. As a rule the staff are well trained and friendly, depending on the type of pub you frequent they'll usually get to know you and be friendly to you for all time. The community pubs often have promotions (I must have about 10 Guinness T-Shirts from these) and special offers on the bar - house spitits (double for £1.95), cheap ales and lagers - range of lagers is the usual - Carlsberg, Stella, Kronenburg, Hoffmeister (at least where I drink) and then all the bottles - Becks, Bud, Miller Genuine Draft etc. You get the whole lot in a Greene King pub, a nice welcome and a good selectionj of beer. Fruit machines (trying to give them up!), dart board and a pool table. All the essential ingredients of a great pub night out and one to make you want to return. Check them out if you've got the opportunity, it's always worth a visit - you could even bump into me if you happen to be in Camden's Finest.....