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Tue 2nd Apr 2013 - Breaking News - Brakspear opens first managed pub
Brakspear opens first managed pub ‘with Geronimo Inns influence’ after £750,000 investment: Henley-based tenanted pub operator Brakspear has re-opened its Bull Inn in Bell Street, Henley, close to its offices, as its first and flagship managed pub. The pub, which was previously run as Ko-Kos, has re-opened after a three month refurbishment with top-quality staff recruited for key positions. Chief executive Tom Davies admitted the operating style has been influenced by the two years he spent working at Geronimo Inns earlier in his career. Eighteen new staff have been taken on, including general manager Tuesdee Dixon, who was general manager at Heston Blumenthal’s Hinds Head in Bray for two years. Assistant manager Sophie Kilgour also worked at the Hinds Head while chef Wayne Pegler worked with Marco-Pierre White at his Canteen restaurant in London. The new-look pub, which is described as “traditional meets modern brasserie”, can seat 190 people inside and out. It will serve food throughout the day. The project has been overseen by business development manager Matt Akat, who also previously worked at Geronimo Inns. Davies told Propel: “It’s a very large investment. We’ve not tried to make it overly smart - we just want a very good, well-run and slick operation and invested in the staff to do this.” Davies said Brakspear had three options going forward dependent on the success of the pub – to run the pub as a flagship managed pub close to its offices, to expand further into managed pubs or return the pub to its tenanted and leased estate as some point down the line. “Hopefully, we will do more (managed pubs),” said Davies. He told the local newspaper: “The Bull has been one of Henley’s best-known pubs for centuries and it has been a joy to restore it. We’re confident that it will quickly become a favourite among residents and visitors to the town, offering top-quality food and drink, a relaxed atmosphere and professional, attentive service. We’re excited about The Bull, which gives customers another quality option for drinking and dining in Henley.”

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