Ulster Pub Week to recognise country's best bars
Industry body Pubs of Ulster has launched a new initiative to promote the pubs of the province.
Pubs of Ulster said The Great Ulster Pub Week from May 1 to May 9 would recognise the value of pubs around Northern Ireland and their contribution to the economy.
Over 140 public houses have signed up to the programme, which will include events showing off the food and entertainment on offer.
The week of celebration of pub culture comes after an eventful 2013, in which one of the province's best-known pub groups, Botanic Inns, went into administration.
Pubs of Ulster chief executive Colin Neill said: "The licensed trade is a vital part of Northern Ireland's economy employing 35,000 people and contributing £1bn annually to the local economy.
"Pubs of Ulster has committed significant resources to create this forward-thinking consumer focused campaign that will help to equip publicans across Northern Ireland with the inspiration, ideas and resources they require to create great events that drive footfall into their premises."
The role of pubs in society has moved away from just providing a place to drink alcohol, Mr Neill said.
"Trade in licensed premises is increasingly focused around great quality food, entertainment and events," he added.
"The Great Ulster Pub Week will showcase all of this and more, giving people a reason to return to their local pub and, we hope, inspiring publicans to think differently about their businesses."
For further information visit www.greatulsterpubweek.com or find The Great Ulster Pub Week on Facebook, Twitter, You Tube and Instagram using the hashtag, #UlsterPubWeek.