The quality of the cider on sale at an Epping Forest pub was recognised five years ago this week.

A pub has been rated as the best place to grab a pint of cider in East Anglia by drink experts.

The Woodbine, in Honey Lane, Waltham Abbey, has been handed the regional title of East Anglia Cider Pub of the Year by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA).

The pub, which was awarded the Essex and Hertfordshire title as part of the competition in April, will now advance to the “super region” stage, before cider fans eventually pick their favourite boozer in the UK.

Landlord Rob Chapman, who has run the Woodbine for the past five years, said: “I never thought in a million years we would get this far in the competition.

“There are a huge amount of pubs in Essex, let alone East Anglia, so to be chosen as the cider pub of the year is pretty special.”

Not content with just pulling pints of cider, the Woodbine has also recently bought Woodford-based cider producer London Glider.

The pub will collect apples and pears donated from local gardens and turn them into cider and perry, repaying those who lend a hand with free bottles made with the fruits.

Mr Chapman said the pub is looking to expand its current offering of around 35 ciders to represent producers across the whole of East Anglia for the next round of the competition.

He added: “Since we have won the Essex competition we have already noticed more and more people coming to the pub.

“Now we have won this competition, we expecting more people from further afield as well, coming out from London on the weekends to try it out.

“Nearly all of our ciders at the moment are produced in Essex and now we are into the next round we will try and get a cider in from all of the different counties.”