A Gwent pharmacy group has been voted the best in the UK after picking up the Independent Pharmacy of the Year award at the Chemist and Druggist Awards.

The Mayberry Pharmacy Group, which has branches throughout Gwent including Newport and Pontypool, was recognised for its dedication to patient care and innovation in pharmacy technologies to help people on long-term medicines.

The annual Chemist and Druggist Awards are recognised as one of the industry’s highest accolades. This year’s ceremony was held at the Celtic Manor Resort in Newport where more than 500 of the industry’s leading figureheads joined together to celebrate the achievements of independent pharmacies throughout the UK.

Judges said Mayberry Pharmacy was a 'step ahead of the rest' in its work with patients and leading innovative pharmacy health campaigns. They highlighted how the pharmacy group had used social media to generate a 400 per cent increase in its smoking cessation programme and developed new supportive tools such as MediPack, which helps patients take their medicines more easily.

The judges said: “The Mayberry Pharmacy Group has shown what can be achieved by strong local collaboration. The benefits to patients, GPs and the pharmacy because of their efforts are there to be seen.”

The pharmacy group also won the award for Pre-registration Graduate of the Year. Susannah Probert, who works at Mayberry Pharmacy’s branch in Trevethin in Pontypool, was recognised for her work in reducing medicine wastage by building partnerships with GP practices.

Her work with the Trevethin pharmacy team reduced medicine wastage at a local GP surgery serving more than 15,000 patients by 80 per cent.

Paul Mayberry, managing director of the Mayberry Pharmacy Group, said: “We are so proud to have won these awards. They are a real testament to the efforts of all our pharmacies and the teams that work in them. Since I opened my first pharmacy more than 20-years-ago in Pontypool, my ethos has always been for a pharmacy to help improve patients’ lives. Our teams work tirelessly to achieve this and our investments in new technologies to help support their work and our patients is why we are helping transform the lives of tens of thousands of people every year.”