Gerry Carroll to step down as Hawthorn Leisure chief executive: Gerry Carroll has announced he will step down as chief executive of Hawthorn Leisure, NewRiver REIT’s community pub-operating platform, with effect from Tuesday, 1 October. Carroll will continue to serve as a non-executive director on the board of NewRiver Pub REIT, a subsidiary of NewRiver REIT. Mark Davies, executive chairman of Hawthorn Leisure, will replace Carroll as Hawthorn Leisure chief executive. Davies already has main board executive responsibilities for the company’s pub portfolio, which represented 21% of total assets by valuation as at 31 March. He will continue in his role as chief financial officer of NewRiver REIT. Davies said: “Gerry has achieved significant success in establishing Hawthorn Leisure as a market-leading pub platform and adeptly oversaw the sale of the business from Avenue Capital to NewRiver. I would like to thank Gerry for his expert contribution to the business thus far and we are delighted the company will continue to benefit from Gerry’s expertise and sector knowledge in his new role as a non-executive director.” Carroll said: “Having successfully grown Hawthorn Leisure and overseen the operational integration of the pub portfolios over the past 18 months, I have decided the time is appropriate for me to step down as chief executive. The business is in excellent shape with a first-class team, including key members from the original management team, and I look forward to supporting the business in a non-executive capacity.” NewRiver acquired Hawthorn Leisure for £106.8m in May 2018 and the company’s pub portfolio now includes more than 650 community pubs, positioning the business as one of the largest owners of UK community pubs, with ambitions to grow in a sector that “continues to present opportunities”.