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Fri 11th Sep 2015 - Propel Friday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Wagamama founder – Duck & Rice could expand to 100 sites: Wagamama founder Alan Yau has claimed his new Duck & Rice gastro-pub concept, occupying an Enterprise Inns site on Berwick Street, could expand to 100 sites, Property Week has reported. He plans to employ a pub sector chief executive eventually to oversee the roll-out. He has the funding in place to begin a significant roll-out of Duck & Rice. He hopes to open two more outlets next year, initially in central London, and by 2017 to have three to five further sites in central London, plus one in Dubai. Once those are up and running, he would like to appoint a pub industry chief executive and go to a second round of fund-raising, at which point he would focus on a larger UK roll-out. He told the magazine: “The internal market is so strong, I don’t need to go anywhere else. I would be happy for this to go to 100 units.” Duck & Rice is a three-floor venue covering 4,600 sq ft. What Yau would ideally like is either 5,000 sq ft or 3,000 sq ft sites on a single floor, but he is not the only one looking for that sort of space. “There is a lot of competition with the pubs themselves,” he said. “Everyone has a price and space tends to be very expensive.” Yau dismissed the suggestion that Duck & Rice is a gastro-pub. He added: “A gastro-pub is really almost the kitchen taking over the pub, so the majority of the place becomes a sit-down venue. To maintain the independence and integrity of the pub, we created a separate dining room so the pub area remains a pub. Journalists said Duck & Rice was the next evolution of the gastro-pub. But what you’ve got is a pub and a dining room. The essence of a pub is about humour and I was quite sure that if I put an old chop suey house into the mix with the pint it would work, because in their own way they have become their own British institution: a chinky and a pint.”

Industry News:

Kris Gumbrell and Simon Bunn to present at Propel Multi Club Conference: Kris Gumbrell and Simon Bunn, co-founders of Brewhouse & Kitchen, are to present at the Propel Multi Club Conference on Thursday, 5 November at the Lancaster Hotel, London. They will talk about how they have developed the UK’s largest brewpub chain, food quality, recruiting brewers, brewing experiences, EIS funding and the market potential for the company. Multi-site pub, restaurant and foodservice operators can book two free places per company. Anyone who would like to book places should email Adam Dickinson on

McDonald’s plans to phase out eggs from hens in cages: McDonald’s is to begin phasing out eggs from hens housed in cages in the US. The company uses some two billion shell and liquid eggs annually, or a little more than 4% of the 43.56 billion eggs produced in the United States last year. With the national announcement last week of plans to sell some breakfast items all day long, the company expects to buy even more eggs. For example, the Egg McMuffin, which uses one egg per sandwich, is among the company’s most popular menu items. With less than 10% of the nation’s laying hens housed as “cage free”, it could take McDonald’s as long as ten years to reach its goal of having 100% of eggs come from hens in what are known as “aviary systems”.

Sports tourists provide £680m boost: Sports tourists drawn to Britain for football matches spent more than £680m last year, new figures from VisitBritain have revealed. The organisation’s latest research report showed 800,000 tourists attended football matched in 2014, generating £684m for the economy. The figure is a 15% rise on the last time the research was conducted in 2010. The north west of England attracted the high proportion of visits from football fans, with one in ten tourists in the area going to a match. This is followed by one in 20 in the north east and one in 40 in Wales. The most visited grounds are Manchester United’s Old Trafford and Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium, which both attracted 109,000 tourists during the year. The Emirates has boosted visitor numbers by almost a quarter since 2012, overtaking Anfield as one of the most popular grounds. VisitBritain chief executive Sally Balcombe said: “Our ambition is to convert the global interest in football and the Barclays Premier League into even more international visits to all regions across Britain.”

£400m leisure scheme for Southampton waterfront is submitted: Plans to revamp Southampton’s waterfront with a major mixed-use scheme have taken a leap forward with a planning application for the £400m development being submitted. The Royal Pier Waterfront development will include more than 700 new apartments, a 500,000 sq ft office development, up to 50 new shops, and waterside restaurants, cafes and bars. It will also incorporate a 250-bed hotel and a large casino with leisure and entertainment facilities. The vision for the development promises “to deliver the most atmospheric urban waterfront experience on the south coast” and will give “unprecedented access to the city’s water-side” and celebrate its “unique heritage links with land, sea and sky”.

Birmingham nightclub keep licence after promising to search own door staff for weapons: Birmingham’s Rainbow nightclub has managed to hold on to its licence – after pledging to search its own security staff for weapons. The venue had its licence suspended last month after police produced CCTV footage of an attack that left a customer with a fractured skull. Licensing chiefs heard the victim was left lying in the street for 15 minutes after the attack, allegedly carried out by two members of security staff and a steward on 9 August. The committee was told two other customers were also injured and that one staff member had used a police-style extendable baton. The club had its licence suspended on 14 August in an expedited review, but was allowed to reopen for three events since 30 August after meeting interim steps demanded by police.

Russ Ward crowned TGI Friday’s UK Bartender Champion: Russ Ward has been crowned the UK Bartender Champion for the fourth year running, after winning the grand final of the 2015 TGI Friday’s UK Bartender Championship. He will now represent the UK and challenge the world’s best bartenders in the TGI Friday’s World Bartender Championships, taking place in the US early next year – an event entered by 8,000 bartenders from 60 countries across the globe.

Company launches tea campaign to reverse coffee’s two-to-one dominance: Rosy Lee Tea (London) has launched the Great Tea Revolution with a Tea Manifesto that is looking to encourage foodservice operators in the UK to improve the quality of tea in the sector by using top quality ingredients. The company is campaigning to increase awareness in foodservice of the need to make tea properly, educate peoples’ tea palettes and give them choices. Foodservice industry figures from global information provider The NPD Group show that for the year ending March 2015, 887 million cups of tea were consumed in Britain’s foodservice market. This compares to 2.035 billion cups of coffee. That’s over two cups of coffee for every cup of tea. Tea is included in only 8% of all visits in Britain’s foodservice market (all day-parts and channels included), compared to 17.6% for coffee. That is once again a more than two-to-one ratio in favour of coffee. Clare Fuller, director, Rosy Lea Tea, said: “If tea is the UK’s national drink, the foodservice industry figures just don’t support the claim. That’s why we are calling on the foodservice industry to work together to start the Great Tea Revolution, just like we have seen the ‘coffee revolution’. It’s time for tea to catch up. Coffee has somehow sidelined tea in the image battle. The way things are, tea just can’t compete. The British market has long experience of tea but the standard product offering today is disappointing. People have not gone off tea; they have gone off the way the foodservice industry often serves it. Surely that’s a big market opportunity? The tea challenge is bigger than one teashop or even one chain. To be successful, the foodservice sector needs to pull together.”

Royal Vauxhall Tavern becomes first LGBT venue in UK to get listed status: The Royal Vauxhall Tavern (RVT) in south London has become the first LGBT venue in the UK to be given listed status. The iconic tavern has been threatened with closure after being sold last year to a developer. However, the RVT, one of the UK’s oldest and best-known gay venues, has been given grade II-listed status after a campaign whose supporters included Sir Ian McKellen, Paul O’Grady and Graham Norton. The listing gives the RVT, built in 1860-62 on the historic site of the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens in Lambeth, considerable protection against any changes to use or look. Heritage minister Tracey Crouch said: “The iconic cultural hub in the heart of London is of huge significance to the community. Not only of architectural interest, the venue has a longstanding historic role as a symbol of tolerance and alternative entertainment.” Amy Lamé, the co-founder and host of the pub’s long-running avant garde club night, Duckie, and chair of campaign group RVT future, added: “The listing is a fantastic milestone for our community and victory against the odds for our beloved pub.” A number of well-known gay venues in London have closed in recent years, including Madame Jojo’s and the Candy Bar, both in Soho, the Black Cap in Camden, and the Joiners Arms and the George & Dragon in Hackney Road, east London.

Company News:

Pret A Manger made more profit than KFC UK last year: Companies House documents filed by Pret A Manger show a pre-tax profit of £49,526,999 in the year to 1 January 2015, more than KFC made in the UK last year – pre-tax profit in the previous year was £41,157,000. Turnover rose 16.4% to £470,393,000 with like-for-like sales up 10.2%, double the like-for-like rise of 4.9% the year before. A total of 23 sites opened, bringing its UK estate to 288. A weekly sales record of £10m was hit, which suggests average weekly sales of circa £35,000 per site. Ebitda increased 17% to £73.2m. Gross profit margin was 66%, up from 65.8%. Its mystery shopper score across the estate was 95.4%, compared to 94.5% the year before. The average tenure of its general mangers was 20 months, compare to 21 months the year before.

Marston’s and Hall & Woodhouse to buy remainder of Greene King ‘competition’ package: Marston’s is buying two pubs from the 16 sites that Greene King is selling to meet competition concerns in the wake of its acquisition of Spirit Pub Company – Hall & Woodhouse is also buying a site. It has already been reported that Star Pubs & Bars is buying 13 of the sites. Marston’s is buying the Sunnyside, Northampton and Ladygrove, Didcot whilst Hall & Woodhouse is buying the Plough, Burlesdon, Southampton. Of the 16-site disposal, Rooney Anand, Greene King chief executive, said a fortnight ago: “The fact that we only had to dispose of 16 pubs, out of a combined total of 3,100, highlights the compelling strategic rationale for the deal, thus avoiding unwanted business distraction and minimising the lost profit from any disposals. We are moving ahead with the integration of our two businesses and will update on progress in December at our interim results.”

Pizza Rossa to open at two Roadchef sites: Pizza Rosa, the by-the-square pizza concept led by Corrado Accardi that successfully achieved two rounds of Crowdcube funding, is to open at Roadchef's Watford Gap site on the M1, with plans to open a second offering at Norton Canes on the M6 toll in the coming weeks. The Pizza Rossa offering will sit within the Fresh Food Café at Roadchef’s Watford Gap site. Simon Turl, chief executive of Roadchef, said: “We’re delighted to be introducing Pizza Rossa to our Watford Gap and Norton Canes sites. We have analysed the wants and needs of our customers and this new outlet will be a fantastic fit in our Fresh Food Café. Good quality food on-the-go, served at speed, is a key focus for us at Roadchef. Our aim is to ensure customers have a pleasant trip to all our service areas and it’s great to now offer even more healthy options to our visitors.” Accardi added: “Serving high quality, gourmet pizza is our passion and we’re able to provide this with minimal wait time, making this offering ideal for a service station environment.”

Deltic Group makes Hereford nightclub acquisition: The UK’s largest club and bar operator, the Deltic Group, has acquired Play in Hereford for an undisclosed sum. The 1,000 capacity club, on Blue School Street, was previously owned by local operator Billy Reynolds. Deltic Group’s chief financial officer Russell Margerrison said: “Tactical acquisitions have always been a key part of our strategy and Play fits well with our existing portfolio. Hereford is a thriving county town and we’re looking forward to working with the team to further develop the business.” The company plans to continue trading Play in its current format.

Purple Pig to rebrand flagship Yarm site and launch New York-style pizza concept: Gourmet burger restaurant Purple Pig is to rebrand its flagship site in Yarm, North Yorkshire, and launch a New York-style pizza concept it aims to roll out. The company, owned by Som Emadi, will close its restaurant in Yarm high street on Sunday for a ten-day refurbishment before reopening as The Dough Box. It will specialise in New York-style pizzas and Emadi hopes it will be “the first of many” Dough Box restaurants. He told Gazette Live: “Following a successful two years in business I have decided that it is time to change the original Purple Pig in Yarm into a new exciting concept that will once again be a first for Teesside. With the imminent opening of a Purple Pig in Darlington in spring next year and the continued popularity of the site in Middlesbrough it’s time for the Yarm site to host our newest concept.” The company launched its first restaurant in Yarm in 2013 and as well as the Middlesbrough outlet, it also has a site in Hull.

Gordon Ramsay to open second restaurant in France this month: Gordon Ramsay Group’s Le Pressoir d’Argent, the new fine dining restaurant at the five-star Grand Hôtel de Bordeaux & Spa in Bordeaux, will open its doors on 25 September. In the kitchen is executive chef Gilad Peled, who has a wealth of fine dining experience. In 2007, he worked alongside Ramsay and three Michelin-starred chef Clare Smyth at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay Royal Hospital Road. Most recently, he was executive chef at Relais & Châteaux property, Hotel Les Sources des Alpes in Switzerland. Le Pressoir d’Argent is Gordon Ramsay’s second restaurant in France and the first in Bordeaux. The new venture is part of the group’s exclusive French partnership with the FIB Group (Financière Immobilière Bordelaise). FIB Group also owns The Waldorf Astoria Trianon Palace in Versailles where Gordon Ramsay Group has, for the last seven years, operated a two Michelin-starred restaurant.

JW Lees to reopen TCG Group acquisition after £900,000 investment: North west brewer and retailer JW Lees is to reopen The Parrswood in East Didsbury today (Friday 11 September) following a £900,000 refurbishment. The company bought The Parrswood from TCG Group at the beginning of the year. A spokesman said: “We have completely transformed the pub into a modern iconic JW Lees pub serving the local community with a great food and drink offering. This follows our strategy of buying existing un-invested pubs in great areas and restoring them to become beacons of their local community. This is our second big opening of the year following the opening of The Greyhound in Ashley in June. JW Lees remains committed to growing its business through the acquisition of both managed and tenanted pubs.”

Chef Omar Allibhoy set to open fifth Tapas Revolution restaurant in Newcastle: Spanish-born chef Omar Allibhoy is set to open his fifth contemporary tapas bar concept Tapas Revolution in Newcastle. Allibhoy, nicknamed the “Antonio Banderas of cooking” by Gordon Ramsay, has signed up to bring the brand to Intu Eldon Square, where it will form part of the centre’s new £25m dining quarter. The restaurant, which specialises in traditional Spanish tapas, wines and beers, will create about 50 jobs when it opens next year. A premises licence application has been submitted to Newcastle City Council, which seeks opening hours of 7am to 12.30am. Alibhoy told Chronicle Live: “After spending time in Newcastle I feel we will be a welcome addition to the great food scene in the city centre.” Tapas Revolution opened its first restaurant at Westfield London in 2011 and has sites at Bluewater shopping centre in Kent and Shoreditch. It is due to open a venue in the Grand Central shopping centre in Birmingham on 24 September.

Saltaire-based cafe owner to start expanding portfolio with 1920s-style bar concept: Saltaire-based cafe owner Eric Poli is to start expanding his portfolio with a new 1920s-style bar concept in the West Yorkshire village. Poli is launching Tallulah’s tonight (Friday, 11 September) in a former post office in Bingley Road, next door to his Terrace cafe. Poli has invested £100,000 refurbishing the two-storey venue that features a 1920-style bar, white and black floor tiles, chandeliers, a wooden bar, mirrors on the ceiling and French art on the walls. Black and white movies from the 1920s, including some of Charlie Chaplain’s work, will be screened through a projector at the bar. The venue, named after a character from the 1970s British gangster musical movie, will have capacity for between 80 to 100 people and create five full-time jobs. The bar will feature 30 white and red wines, champagne, cocktails, and 30 beers from around the world. Poli, who opened the Terrace cafe in 2008, told the Bradford Telegraph & Argus: “We are quite unique with this project in this area. It will be like stepping back in time for people when they come through the door. Art Deco and 1920s-themed things are popular at the moment. It will have the wow factor.”

Leasehold of Michelin-star restaurant Casamia goes on the market: The leasehold of the site of the soon to be relocated Michelin-star restaurant Casamia, in the north Bristol suburb of Westbury-on-Trym, has gone on the market for £55,000. The restaurant, owned by brothers Jonray and Peter Sanchez-Iglesias, is being moved to the new harbour side development, The General, in the centre of the city. As a result the site, which includes a 32-seat dining area downstairs and three-bedroom flat with a separate lounge and an open plan kitchen dining area on the first floor, is being marketed through agent Christie + Co. Sophia Sangchi of Christie + Co’s Bristol office, who is co-ordinating the sale, said: “With ample accommodation upstairs and a beautifully presented restaurant on the ground floor, the site at Westbury-on-Trym offers a great opportunity for an independent restaurateur looking to open a good quality restaurant serving the local and wider Bristol community.”

Our Bakeries to open fifth site in Exeter: Our Bakeries, the south west cafe bakery brand, is to open its fifth site in the St Leonard’s area of Exeter. The company, owned by Clive Cobb, is launching the Magdalen Road Bakery in Magdalen Road on the site of a former greengrocer next month. The cafe doubles as a rustic country-kitchen style eatery alongside the traditional offering of bread and cakes. Everything it sells is made on site. Cobb told the Exeter Express & Echo: “If we wanted constant customer after customer we would have moved into the city centre – but it’s not about that. It’s about creating relationships with people and for it to become a go-to place to unwind and hang out. I see most coffee chains as being a bit like ‘clones’. They’ve become uniform, and they are very much striving for the same thing. Instead, I’d describe each of our separate outlets as a different ‘species’. A real entity which adapts their style and approach for each different community it has become a part of.” The company has four other sites in Devon and Dorset in Plymouth, Lyme Regis, Poundbury and Rousdon.

Eight restaurant brands confirmed for new East Kilbride Shopping Centre leisure hub: Eight restaurant brands have been confirmed for the new multi-million pound leisure hub at East Kilbride Shopping Centre in Scotland. Orion Capital Managers, advised by Savills, has secured the deals, meaning the leisure quarter is now 80% let. The Restaurant Group brands Frankie & Benny’s and Chiquito will take up places in the 70,000 sq ft development along with Nando’s, PizzaExpress, Homemade Burger, Cook & Indi, Bella Italia, owned by Casual Dining Group, and Filling Station. The units range from 3,500 sq ft to 5,000 sq ft. Carlene Hughes, associate director in Savills leisure team, said: “This new leisure quarter at East Kilbride has created excellent space for strong national brands to be able complement the retail offer at the centre. It is a testament to the strength of the scheme that it’s now 80% let and we expect to continue to receive significant interest for the remaining units.” The leisure hub at the centre’s Olympia Mall is due to open in September 2016. The two-storey development will include 11 new restaurants and cafes alongside the existing nine-screen Odeon Cinema and ice rink, which is scheduled for a major refurbishment over the coming year.

Nando’s set to open new restaurant in Dover: Nando’s is set to open a new site in Dover, Kent. The company has signed up to be the third and final restaurant brand at the St James development that is being anchored by a six-screen Cineworld cinema. A spokesman told the Dover Express: “We’re excited to be opening Dover’s first Nando’s restaurant in the near future.” Nando’s will be joined at the complex by Casual Dining Group brand Bella Italia and Frankie & Benny’s, owned by The Restaurant Group.

Four-star Torquay hotel on the market with £10m price tag: A four-star hotel in Torquay has been put up for sale with a guide price of £10m. The Torquay Palace, represented by agent Savills, has brought The Palace Hotel in Torquay to market. The 141-bedroom property, Torquay’s largest four-star hotel, sits within 17.6 acres of grounds and offers conference and event space catering for up to 1,000 delegates. It also features a restaurant, three lounges and indoor and outdoor leisure facilities including tennis and squash courts, swimming pools, a fitness suite and a nine-hole golf course.

Cote set to open new site in Cirencester: French brasserie Cote is set to open a new site in Cirencester, Gloucestershire. The company is converting the former Hares Antiques shop in Black Jack Street into a restaurant, which is expected to open in spring 2016, reports the Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard. Cote, led by Harald Samúelsson and Alex Scrimgeour, has more than 60 restaurants across the UK.

Wadworth restructures pub presence in Somerset village to ‘serve whole community’: Devizes-based brewer and retailer Wadworth has restructured its pub presence in the Somerset village of Norton St Philip, near Bath, to “serve the whole community”. The company has incorporated its tenanted pub The Fleur de Lys into its managed estate to sit alongside The George pub, which are now both being managed by Jenny Searle. “This new arrangement in Norton St Philip means that we can offer residents and visitors to the village the best of both worlds,” said Wadworth sales and marketing director Paul Sullivan. “Community is important to Wadworth pubs, and visitors are important to the local economy, so by supporting these two pubs we hope to meet the needs of the whole village. The George is a grade I-listed building and has served travellers and merchants across seven centuries. It is one of our flagship pubs and as part of our Great Food Great Pubs segment offers excellent food, great ambience and very comfortable accommodation. As a contrast to its rather grand neighbour, The Fleur de Lys is more of a locals local, serving simple food and great beer, and is a place for the community to congregate. There is no village shop or post office in Norton St Philip so we are hoping that the Fleur de Lys will become the village hub.”

North west pub and bar operator reports profit dip: North west pub and bar operator Inns & Leisure, which has circa ten managed pubs and 22 tenanted pubs, has reported turnover of £4,094,004 in the year to 28 February 2015. Pre-tax profit was £410,000, down from £545,029 the year before. Gross profit margin increased to 67.5% from 67%. The company stated: “This is pleasing as it appears that the diversification away from standard offerings to higher margin products has paid off, and the offerings provided are continued to be demanded by the company’s customer base.”

Chimichanga to open on site of former Tampopo restaurant in Bristol this month: Tex-Mex restaurant Chimichanga, the brand owned by Prezzo, will open in Bristol on Sunday, 20 September. The company is opening in Cabot Circus on the site of the former Tampopo restaurant, creating 15 jobs. The restaurant, which has cost £600,000 to develop, will have seating for 110 guests – 74 inside and a further 36 outside. It will offer an extensive menu including burritos, tostadas, enchiladas, quesadilias and fajitas, as well as a grill section, featuring barbecue baby back ribs, flame grilled piri piri chicken and sirloin steak. Manager Beatriz Lopez Alvarez said: “My staff and I are looking forward to opening in Bristol and believe the restaurant will appeal to a wide range of people and be a great addition to the city’s social scene.”

Plans unveiled for £25m revamp of Preston shopping centre with new leisure and restaurant offer: Plans have been unveiled for a £25m revamp of the Fishergate Shopping Centre in Preston featuring a new Vue cinema and space for five restaurants. Centre owner Benson Elliot is proposing to replace the redundant TJ Hughes store with the leisure offering, six shop units and a new mall linking to a feature entrance from the car park. It will shortly submit a planning application to Preston Council with work expected to start “as soon as permission is granted”. Cinema operator Vue is supporting the development and is set to leave its site at Walton le Dale’s Capitol Centre. Fishergate Shopping Centre manager Keith Mitchell told the Lancashire Evening Post: “It’s important we provide our shoppers with places to eat, drink and relax to meet friends and family as part of their shopping trip, to enhance their overall social experience and present them with an engaging alternative to the convenience of internet shopping. Reinforcing the city’s vitality and viability is crucial and building its early evening and mid-market leisure economy is a key part of that.”

TCG plans upmarket roast roll-out after 20% sales uplift at trial sites: Managed pub and bar operator TCG is rolling out a Sunday roast offer to six more of its pubs after a trial in five sites earlier this summer generated an average uplift in food sales of 20%. Most of the meal is brought to table in sharing size platters and bowls, including a whole roast chicken to serve two diners. Gravy and other accompanying sauces are also presented separately, to enhance the meal’s quality credentials. TCG chief operating offer Nigel Wright said: “We’re delighted with the results from this trial, especially as they relate to sales during July and August, which isn’t the prime season for roast lunches. We’ll hope to achieve even better uplifts as we move into the autumn and winter. Key to the success has been our focus on quality, freshly-cooked food, backed with intensive training to ensure that we exceed customers’ expectations. The teams in all trial sites have quickly adapted to the new cooking and presentation styles required and are now serving Sunday roasts that look and taste great, while still delivering excellent value to our customers.”

Cambridge hotel sells for £62.5m: A 198-bedroom upscale hotel in Cambridge has been sold in a deal worth £62.5m, months after completing a multimillion-pound refurbishment. CDL Hospitality Trust has marked its maiden entry into Europe with the takeover of Cambridge City Hotel, located 1.6 kilometres from Cambridge railway station. The sale price includes £61.5m for the hotel and £1m for the estimated net working capital and cash of LR (Cambridge), which owns and operates the hotel. Post-acquisition, the company will be renamed as CDL HBT Cambridge City Hotel (UK) and continue to hold and operate the hotel. Vincent Yeo, chief executive of the trust managers, said the acquisition is “in line with our strategy to invest in markets with good growth potential”. He added: “Cambridge has been one of the strongest performing hospitality markets in the UK and the burgeoning life science cluster will support the growth trajectory of the market. This acquisition of Cambridge City Hotel is a rare opportunity for us to acquire a prime asset in a tightly held investment market.”

Norfolk multi-site operator opens fourth pub: Norfolk multi-site operator Barry Tunmore has opened his fourth pub in New Buckenham. Tunmore, who has nearly 45 years’ experience in the trade, has opened The King’s Head, which he bought two years ago, reports the Diss Express. He has spent £370,000 restoring the pub, which had been closed for seven years, and is set to offer a five-room bed and breakfast service. It also has a 62-seat dining area as well as a separate bar. Tunmore also owns the Fighting Cocks in Winfarthing, Garden House in Banham, and the Jolly Farmers in Forncett St Peter.

North east-based Danieli Holdings opens second bar-restaurant: North east-based Danieli Holdings has opened its second bar-restaurant in Ponteland. The company, led by Neill Winch, has launched YOLO, which stands for You Only Live Once, on the site of a former off-licence at Bell Villas, creating 22 jobs. The vaulted barn-style venue has 78 covers, an upper mezzanine level that can be hired by parties of up to 35, as well as a bar. It has a mix of traditional features including beams, stripped wood and exposed red brick walls plus cream leather Chesterfield-style seating and chandeliers. Winch told Chronicle Live: “There are very traditional pubs in the village and this is something totally different to what others are offering.” Danieli Holdings also runs Bar B, formerly Bannatyne, in The Gate, Newcastle.

Speaker programme confirmed for The Bar and Nightclub Conference: The full speaker programme has been confirmed for The Bar and Nightclub Conference, which is being held on Tuesday, 27 October at Bafta Piccadilly. Speakers are: Kate Nicholls, chief executive of the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR), Phil Tate, chief executive of CGA Strategy, Simon Chaplin, director and head of leisure and development at Christie + Co, Trevor Watson, executive director of Davis Coffer Lyons, Graeme Bunn, director of Fleurets, Glendola Leisure managing director Alex Salussolia, Riz Shaikh, co-founder of the Columbo Group, Dave Henkes, vice-president of Technomic, Peter Marks, chief executive of Deltic Group, Exeat Leisure founder Stephen Thomas, Tokyo Industries founder Aaron Mellor, Reuben Harley, chief executive of Eclectic, Alex Hazzard, co-founder of the Burning Night Group, leading licensing barrister Philip Kolvin QC, Luke Johnson, of Risk Capital Partners and Adam Marshall, founder of Grand Union Group. The conference, the first stand-alone event for this part of the market, examines the key issues affecting the market with contributions from key figures within the sector. Tickets are free for operators and cost £145 for ALMR supplier members and £195 for ALMR non-suppliers. Tickets can be booked by emailing Jo Charity on

Technomic and Propel partner for UK and US foodservice trends and direction conference: Insights and research firm Technomic is partnering Propel for a full-day conference looking at UK and US foodservice trends and perspectives. The event is on Friday, 18 September at One Moorgate Place in London and attendees will also get a free copy of Technomic’s Top 500 US Chain Restaurant Report and the UK’s leading 100 foodservice brands worth a combined £800. Technomic’s vice-president Dave Henkes will give an industry update on UK foodservice and compare it with the US as well as providing forecasts and beverage trends in both markets. Fellow vice-president Darren Tristano will examine best practice in menu, concept and service among growth concepts as well as looking at consumer demands. Technomic’s Patrick Noone will provide insights on current UK trending menu flavours and preparations and consumer priorities and attitudes. Paul Damico, group president of Focus Brands – which operates several fast-food concepts in the US including Schlotzsky’s Bakery & Café and Moe’s Southwest Grill – will share best practices around creating a unique positioning, culture and growth strategy. Propel managing director Paul Charity will also lead a discussion of senior executives about current consumer trends, menu and beverage trends. Those taking part are: Jon Yantin, commercial director of the ONE Group, Chris Gerard, founder of Innventure, James Nye, managing director of Anglian Country Inns and Ben Levick, director of operations, TCG Group. Tickets are priced £295 plus VAT for operators and £495 plus VAT for suppliers and are available by emailing

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