#ThrowbackThursday: Blast from the past for talented Harrogate bartender

An ecstatic Geoff Meston lets out a cry for joy as he is announced winner.
An ecstatic Geoff Meston lets out a cry for joy as he is announced winner.
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They say a picture tells a thousand words but this picture, taken nearly 20 years ago to the day, shows a cry for joy.

It was the moment a former Harrogate man, Geoff Meston, had been crowned as the best bartender in the world in Dallas.

Mr Meston, who was 25 at the time, had lived in Bilton but moved down south to work at TGI Friday’s in Haymarket, London.

His experience in the capital had served him well as Mr Meston beat off talent from as far as South America, Europe and Asia to win the competition.

Mr Meston won a trophy, $2,000, a holiday to Ireland with the competition finalists, and upon his return to TGI Friday’s, he was made Employee of the Year.

Today Geoff still lives down south but works in a very different industry and despite his Harrogate roots, has not been back to the town for ‘quite a few years’.

He said: “I am no longer bartending. About a year after winning the world championships I went into management for TGI Fridays and years later left to run an All Bar One in Bath, then later a Bar Ha Ha and Canteen.

“I then taught myself to do programming and web design and changed my career path, so now I am a digital director for a creative agency in Bath. I am married and have adopted two beautiful little girls.”