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Fri 10th Apr 2015 - Update: Wetherspoon, Stonegate, Prezzo and Punch
Wetherspoon applies a second time for Edinburgh Southside ‘super-pub’: JD Wetherspoon has submitted a new application to build a £1.5m "super pub" in Edinburgh Southside after an initial attempt was blocked by council planners. The plans submitted have no changes to the external footprint of the building and the company still hopes to achieve a 4,000 sq ft trading area split over the ground floor and mezzanines at 50 Nicolson Street. It is estimated that the opening would create 50 new jobs. The capacity for the pub is yet to be confirmed. Edinburgh's Old Town Community Council, after objecting to the initial proposal, has submitted another objection to the latest plans this week, with chairman Bill Cowan saying: “There is no substantial difference in this application. A huge new pub is a huge new pub, and unwanted.”

Stonegate hires M&B executive as managing director for its traditional pubs: After the recent appointment of Tim Cullum as managing director for Stonegate Pub Company's branded bars and venues business, Stonegate has appointed Nick Andrews as managing director for the traditional pubs business. Andrews joins the business on 3 June from Mitchells & Butlers, where he is currently brand operations director. Graham Jones, having completed 42 years in the industry, has taken the decision to step back from his chief operations officer role and takes up the new position of divisional operations support director. Stonegate has also appointed Kevin Allcock to the role of operations director for Yates, reporting to Cullum. Allcock joins the business on Monday, 13 April, from Mecca, where he was most recently national director of operations. Paul Wright, operations director, remains responsible for the late night bars and venues division. These changes come after the recent appointment of Kate Wilton to the role of operations director for Slug and Lettuce. Wilton joined Stonegate from Spirit, where she had been operations director of Chef and Brewer. Simon Longbottom, Stonegate’s chief executive, said: "These changes reflect a significant strengthening in the senior operational capability of our business. The fact that such talented operators have chosen to join Stonegate reflects on the strong progress we have made, and our ambitious plans for the future. We are also delighted that Graham Jones will continue to work with our teams, imparting his extensive knowledge having been pivotal to the success of Stonegate to date.”
Olim buys eight Prezzo freehold restaurants for £10m: Olim Property has bought eight restaurants in a sale and leaseback transaction with Prezzo for a price in excess of £10m. The properties, six in East Anglia and two in Dorset, are for Olim Property’s discretionary pension fund and investment trust portfolios. Seven of the restaurants are freehold, trading as Prezzo, with one Chimichanga on a long leasehold. Rent reviews are indexed throughout the 30-year term. The purchase completed ten days after it was agreed. CBRE and Glovers acted for the vendor, with Coffer Corporate Leisure and Shepherd and Wedderburn for the purchasers.

Plans unveiled for Marco Pierre White restaurant in Cardiff hotel development: Plans have been revealed for a Marco Pierre White Steakhouse Bar & Grill restaurant on top of a 100-bedroom four-star boutique hotel to be built at Dominions House on Queen Street, Cardiff. The development will be run as part of the Hotel Indigo chain, making it the latest opening for Marco Pierre White-branded restaurants in Hotel Indigo venues, including in Manchester, Glasgow and Birmingham. The Cardiff development will be carried out over the next 15 months with a view to opening in the autumn of 2016. Hotel Indigo is the boutique brand of InterContinental Hotels Group, and currently has 60 hotels worldwide operating under its name. The latest development in Cardiff has been driven by Glasgow-based private equity group Maven Capital Partners which has bought the building in Cardiff in a deal worth £13.75m. The idea of Marco Pierre White opening a restaurant on Queen Street in Cardiff was first suggested back in 2011. At the time it was reported that Bristol-based Sanguine Hospitality wanted to convert Dominions House into a 92-bedroom three star hotel with a roof terrace restaurant on the sixth floor.
Punch to sell Surrey freehold: Punch Taverns has instructed agent Savills to sell the Winterton Arms in Chiddingfold, Surrey. Offers are invited for the freehold interest in the public house, which is in an attractive village, 11 miles south of Guildford. The property, which sits on a 0.5-hectare (1.2-acre) site, is a two-storey building with three interconnecting trading areas on the ground floor and owners' accommodation above. There is parking for 36 cars and an enclosed pub garden. Richard Acton, associate of licensed leisure at Savills Southampton, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to purchase a local pub in the affluent village of Chiddingfold, which benefits from an extensive trading space re-furbished three years ago and large external areas. The property also has potential to be converted to a number of alternative uses, subject to planning.”

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