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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Thu 8th Dec 2022 - Propel Thursday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Urban – train strikes set to cost us between £4m and £5m, we moved both food and drink pricing by about 5% this year: Phil Urban, chief executive of Mitchells & Butlers, has said the train strikes scheduled to take place next week are likely to “cost us between £1m and £2m of sales we would have had” but he’s “cautiously optimistic” London will still be busy. He estimated each strike day was costing the company's city centre pubs £300,000 with an overall cost to the business of between £4m and £5m. He told Propel: “Don’t forget everyone optically will have a great Christmas whatever, because it's up against the Omicron period. You're going to see some very big numbers from everybody in terms of growth. I think what everybody's working out is what it would have been if there weren't strikes and having strikes in what arguably is going to be the busiest week in London is very disappointing. It’s very ill-timed given what the sector has been through over the last couple of years, and it's going to cost a lot of sales. On the previous strikes we've seen to date, our City division has probably lost £300,000 to £400,000 every time there's a strike in terms of sales. We pick a little bit of that up in the suburbs, and being nationally spread we are a little bit hedged but you never pick up all what you would have got. But obviously next week will be one of the busiest weeks of the year, so it might alone cost us between £1m and £2m of sales we would have had. That said, I'm still cautiously optimistic that with the tubes still running and people not having had a Christmas party for years, London will still be busy.” Urban said the company’s supply chain was holding up “superbly well at the moment”. He said: “We've got more than 99% fulfilment, which is back to normal. Compared with where we were last year it is light years better.” On pricing, he said the business would take stock in the spring. He said: “Most of our brands change menus twice a year, once in the autumn and once in the spring. We've just had that round. At the same time, we do a liquor price survey and move liquor prices. So, we've moved both food and drink by about 5% this year, which is a couple of percent higher than normal, obviously nowhere near headline inflation, and so far, absolutely it has had no negative impact on our consumers at all. We will go again in the spring and have the opportunity to take stock then to see what we need to move by.” Urban said he was “cautiously optimistic about the start of next year”. He said: “If you take Christmas out, which is always going to be a headline strong performance because of Omicron, October and November we're probably stronger than we thought they would be, which is really encouraging. And I don't necessarily see once Christmas is out the way, why we shouldn't return to that. So, I'm hopeful we will come through January and February reasonably unscathed really. We sell gift cards, particularly in Miller & Carter, and every year we sell more and more. We’ve sold more this year and they tend to get redeemed in January. There's no denying that come January when Christmas has got to be paid for and energy costs are at the highest and food bills are high, it's going to impact on our guests. But I would say in October and November, some of those things were supposed to be the case and we haven't seen that impact.” Nicholson’s is our strongest performer at the moment – see Company News

Industry News:

Venture Group Tenerife to speak at Restaurant Marketer & Innovator European Summit 2023, full speaker schedule to be revealed today, open for bookings: Jodi Beard, innovation director at Venture Group Tenerife, will speak at the Restaurant Marketer & Innovator European Summit 2023. The event is a partnership between Propel and Think Hospitality, aiming to build a community, promote the sharing of ideas, recognise talent and define the future of eating out. Bookings are now open for the two-day conference as the centrepiece of the January event series, taking place on 24 and 25 January at One Moorgate Place in London. Beard explains how the business is balancing efficiencies with customer experience in delivering effective technologies. More than 50 industry and agency leaders will take to the stage over two days representing brands including Cornish Bakery, Hawksmoor, Burger King UK, The Alchemist, Gail’s Bakery, Searcy’s, Press Up Hospitality Group, Vapiano, Popeyes UK, Inception Group, Oakman Group, New World Trading Company, Peggy Porschen Cakes, Krispy Kreme, KellyDeli, Tattu Restaurants, Red Engine, East Coast Concepts, Coco di Mama, The Cocktail Club, Hilton, Elior, Flat Earth Pizzas, MJMK, Lollipop, Chotto Matte, Ping Pong, Nobu, Gusto Italian, BrewDog, Kaleido, Darjeeling Express and Six by Nico. The full speaker schedule will be revealed today (Thursday, 8 December), at 9am. Day one themes will be consumer and sector trends, start-ups, concepts and creativity and digital evolution, while day two focuses on purpose and responsible business, strategies for growth and communication and culture. Tickets for operators for the two days are £600 plus VAT and £350 plus VAT for one day. Tickets for suppliers are £950 plus VAT for the two days and £525 plus VAT for one day. Tickets can be purchased by contacting Jo Charity at Propel on
Hospitality workers set to lose £15m in tips due to rail strikes: UK hospitality workers are set to lose out on £15m in tips due to rail strikes scheduled in December, according to cashless tipping platform Tipjar. An average loss of 17% in tips for sector staff was reported by Tipjar during the rail strikes in October and November, and it believes this loss will be equivalent to roughly £15m lost in tips in December alone, as the national tipping market is worth £3bn a year. Ben Thomas, Tipjar chief executive and co-founder, said: “The impact that extra £35-£40 has on those that are more vulnerable in our industry is huge. It could be the difference in someone being able to feed their families or giving their kids presents at Christmas. While we align with workers speaking to improve pay and conditions, our job is to represent some of the lowest-paid workers whose income is directly related to footfall in their pubs and restaurants. This strike action could have a devastating effect on hospitality workers.”
UKHospitality launches guide to recruiting ‘untapped potential’ of over-50s: UKHospitality has launched a guide to help businesses adapt their recruitment practices and engage with the over-50’s in the job market. The guide has been developed in partnership with the government’s over-50s ministerial taskforce. It highlights job adverts should ensure imagery is age diverse and includes older workers, use language that doesn’t deter older workers, and emphasise employer benefits that may appeal to an older worker, such as flexible working. The guide suggests recruitment efforts should also be targeted where older workers are more likely to see them. This includes job boards targeted at older workers, using social media platforms like Facebook and physical advertising, such as on bus stops. The guide also advises adaptions to the workplace to ensure over-50s feel “valued and comfortable”. This could include adapting uniform policies, offering the opportunity to advance their skills and highlighting opportunities to progress. UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “With hospitality continuing to deal with staffing challenges, it’s essential businesses do all they can to appeal to everyone in the job markets. For far too long, the over-50s have been under-represented in our workforce but there is real untapped potential there to fix our workforce challenges. There is so much hospitality can offer, with its flexible working hours and the social element to our sector, and we need to get this message out there. These are simple steps that businesses can take but it has the potential to deliver many times over.” An additional one million workers over the age of 50 are expected in the UK workforce by 2025.
PM confirms registration scheme to tackle short-term lets: Prime minister Rishi Sunak has committed to delivering a new “tourist accommodation scheme” that will ensure short-term lets have to register with local authorities. In response to a question by Conservative MP Nickie Aiken, Sunak also confirmed the government will consult on planning permissions for new short-term holiday lets in tourist hotspots. UKHospitality has campaigned for years for the introduction of a registration scheme in England to cover short-term lets that brings them in line with the rest of the industry, in particular on tax and health and safety standards. Chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “The astronomical rise of short-term lets, through home-sharing platforms, meant legislation and regulation was not able to catch-up quickly enough and these sites have been operating without the oversight or tax obligations as the wider accommodation sector. It’s essential this registration scheme can be properly enforced and can help bring short-term lets up to the high standards of our hotels, which abide by strict fire safety, health and safety, and accessibility rules. It’s crucial the entire sector is operating to the same standards, for the good of business, the economy and the customer.”
Job of the day: COREcruitment is working with a food manufacture that provides across the UK and Ireland that is seeking an account director. A COREcruitment spokesman said: “You will join a highly collaborative business and forge strong relationships across both internal and external stakeholder teams for a portfolio of corporate client accounts. You will be responsible for both the tactical and strategic development of these accounts and other key initiatives. You will be specifically accountable for ensuring the delivery model remains in line with the customers’ needs, managing resource, compliance and risk, and developing the communication and relationship strategy.” The salary is up to £90,000 and the position is based in London with some national travel. For more information, email

Company News:

Urban – Nicholson’s is our strongest performer at the moment, it’s a good time to have brands: Phil Urban, chief executive of Mitchells & Butlers, has said the group’s drink-led, city centre-based brand Nicholson’s was the company’s best performer at the moment, whereas previous star performer Miller & Carter is showing the lowest growth. He told Propel: “As always, our wet-led businesses and sports pubs are doing incredibly well from the World Cup to the detriment of some of the restaurants. If we take Nicholson’s, a year ago that was doing really poorly, but it’s our strongest performing brand at the moment. If you look at London, then the West End is doing better than the City, but London in general is doing well. Friday nights were the poorest because of work from home but they have been gradually improving. We are annualised against that work from home message, suddenly Fridays are looking really good again. They're not back to where they were but total year-on-year they are looking good. Ironically, a brand with the lowest growth right now is Miller & Carter, which has led the way for the seven years that I have been with the business. It’s only lagging because it's compared against 12.5% VAT. If you normalise VAT, it is still in good growth. Once it gets through the anniversary of the VAT going back to 20% then it'll be fine.” Urban said he thinks there is an element of people wanting brands they “know and rely on right now”. He said: “So, something like Toby Carvery, which is flying, you can sort of see why because it's great value, it's fresh and all those sorts of things. It’s a good time to have brands because you can dial up people's knowledge of and love for your brands and I think people are buying into them.” In terms of converting sites to new brands, Urban said his focus at the moment is on Browns. The company has recently converted two suburban sites in Beaconsfield and Ruislip to the brasserie and bar brand. Urban said: “We see the potential to grow that business quite considerably, which will therefore buy down some of the other bigger brands. I think we'll have more to say about that at the half year and will know where Browns is and what our plans are. We've got two or three sites we are looking at, but I think we will be clearer on where the potential pipeline is and therefore what it means for the other businesses. As I hoped and expected, the first two got off very well. So, I suspect we'll probably assess this at the end of February and I suspect our conclusion will be they've worked and then we'll move into how do we start to move this on.”
Rockfish founder focusing on ‘seeing out the storm’, current trading good despite region suffering from reduced footfall: Rockfish founder Mitch Tonks has told Propel he is focusing on “seeing out the storm” and the next three openings for his 11-strong sustainable seafood restaurant concept. “Our focus is on the next three sites while waiting for the world to get back to normality, but I think at some point we might move east, and I can see a time when we have Rockfish dotted in different places,” Tonks told Propel. “But at the moment it’s about caution and running world class seafood restaurants while letting the storm around us we can do nothing about die down, then reset our business plans from there.” Of next year’s openings, Topsham is set to come first in the early part of 2023, followed by Sidmouth and then Salcombe later in the year. Tonks was speaking following the release of Rockfish’s results for the year ending 30 April 2022, which saw the company, ranked as one of the UK’s top 100, return to profit, with a pre-tax profit of £155,989 compared with a loss of £1,017,962 in 2021. This was off turnover of £13,362,319, which was more than double the £5,224,390 reported in 2021. Group Ebitda also recovered from a £223,000 loss in 2021 to a £993,000 profit. “Coming out of a recovery year from covid with a strong set of results was good – it was challenging, but still positive trading conditions,” said Tonks. “Current trading has been good, and while the south west has experienced less footfall than last year as you’d imagine, our restaurants have been very busy.” One of the main reasons for the uptick, said Tonks, was taking control of his supply chain by acquiring two of its main suppliers, Brixham Seafish and Hillside Foods. “For a seafood restaurant, we rely on a great supply of quality seafood, so being able to buy it first hand at the quayside and get it straight into restaurants means we can work with seasonal produce at its best and secure the best pricing,” he added. “If we were buying from a third party and absorbing everyone’s price rises into our business, I think it would be very difficult. We’ve spent the last year integrating those business into our restaurants and they’re building good momentum – the supply is second to none. Inflation has been the challenge, as with most business, but because we own and control our own supply chain, we’ve been able to very quickly mitigate a lot of the inflation that came our way.” 
London Pakistan-inspired cafe concept opens first franchise site, 20-plus more stores and territories secured: London Pakistan-inspired cafe concept Naan Staap has opened its first franchise site, with 20-plus more stores and territories signed for and set to open over the next three to five years. Founded in 2018 by Zohaib Shahnawaz, the concept – which offers freshly baked stuffed naan, cakes, cookies and chai – has expanded to five sites in the capital. It has now launched to the UK franchise market and opened its first franchise site, in Gants Hill. Shahnawaz said: “Since our inception in December 2018 when we opened our first branch, we knew potentially that we had a great new concept business model in the UK. It is based on one very important staple food that was being ignored – naan bread – along with our karak chai. Coupled with the flavours of the west, a unique idea was born. While opening our own stores, our first franchisee has opened in Gants Hill, meaning the dream we have is now coming into fruition, with more to follow.” The franchise model can be rolled out in kiosk or cafe format, with a trading area of 800-1,500 square feet, and multi-unit investors welcomed. The company’s move into franchising is being led by Andy Hulbert, who has been named vice-president of international restaurant development for Arizona-based Summa Franchise Consultancy. The newly created role will see Hulbert focus specifically on helping food and beverage brands move out of the US and into new international markets. Hulbert most recently served as managing director at Bee Smart, securing the international expansion of UK bubble tea concept Cupp among others.
Andrea – returns on Two for One conversion work has been ‘quite eye-watering’, to invest a further £4m on outside areas: Andrew Andrea, chief executive of Marston’s, has told Propel that some of the returns from its work on converting its Two for One estate have been “quite eye-watering”. He also said a key learning from the process for the business was “how do we ensure we don't permit something to become a bit of a sacred cow and not deal with it”. The removal of the company’s 75-strong Two for One estate from its portfolio was completed in September. Andrea said: “What's fascinating is having just simply taken the signage down and removed the offer, you're getting positive customer and team feedback. and ultimately the teams have got to be happy with what they are delivering. So, we've seen the narrowing of the sales growth there. What we've also identified is about a third of those 75 pubs looked too much like a restaurant. So where we've put some money in – less than £100,000 – just to say here is a drinking area, here is an eating area, the returns on that have been quite eye-watering. The learning for us is how do we ensure we don't permit something to become a bit of a sacred cow and not deal with it, when actually, the insight and the data was probably telling you what you needed to do. What's brilliant is just going out to the pubs and seeing the teams love what we have done, and that tells you a lot.” In its full-year update, the company said it had invested in outside space with circa 85% of its pubs having gardens and circa 50 pubs having outdoor screens to show sport, which would enhance trading performance throughout the seasons. Andrea said: “Order and pay at table systems are key to driving garden sales and we invested in technology during the year to improve both the guest and operational journey.  Encouraged by the 2022 performance, we believe our outdoor spaces can be enhanced further by investing £4m across the estate in 2023 on garden projects to deliver an even better guest experience.” At the end of 2020, SA Brain announced contracts had been exchanged with Marston’s to operate its portfolio of 145 pubs in Wales on a combination of leased and management contract arrangements. Andrea said the business remained open to similar deals. He said: “Clearly what I'm not trying to wish for is business failures because a lot of great businesses are struggling for reasons outside their control, but if opportunities do present themselves, then we're open and they can be single sites or up to a Brains-style transaction.

Ennismore adds 144 hotels to pipeline as it launches expanded interior and graphic design team: Gleneagles and Hoxton hotels owner Ennismore has added 144 hotels to its openings pipeline, as it launches an expanded team of interior and graphic designers. The business, which already operates 14 brands over 103 hotels and 190 restaurants and bars, has introduced a specialist 30-strong design team called Aime Studios. It will be one of four specialised in-house studios in the Ennismore estate, sitting alongside food and beverage studio Carte Blanched, digital product and tech innovation studio Staymore and global brand building studio Partnership Studio. Formerly known as Ennismore Design Studio, it has expanded to include graphic design. Since 2017, the studio has worked across 12 brands and 22 properties, designing 2,865 hotel rooms, 30 restaurants and bars and 17 meeting and events spaces. Its projects have included Gleneagles, Gleneagles Townhouse, The Hoxton, Working From_, Tribe Identity and Tribe Canary Wharf. Sharan Pasricha, founder and co-chief executive of Ennismore, said: “I’ve had the privilege of having an in-house design and creative team ever since I started Ennismore over ten years ago, and it’s fantastic to see Aime Studios today playing a vital part in what sets us apart, creating authentic and inspiring hotels for both locals and international guests. Our designers have been integral to building our brands, ensuring each hotel remains true to the original brand vision.”
Gail’s starts to build north west openings pipeline: Fast-growing bakery brand Gail’s, which earlier this week announced it would open its first site in the north west early next year, has begun building its openings pipeline in the region. The Bain Capital-backed business, which opened its 100th site at the end of October, in East Sheen, will make its north west debut in the Cheshire town of Wilmslow, early next year. Propel understands Gail’s has also submitted a planning application to convert the former La Boutique d'Or site in King Street, Knutsford. The brand also submitted plans in September to fit the former White Stuff unit in Manchester’s King Street to transform it into a café, but the application is still pending a decision. Gail’s sister-brand and wholesale bakery, The Bread Factory,  opened its Manchester bakery in Openshaw in 2017. The company has recently opened new sites in London’s Holborn and East Dulwich, with a further opening planned in Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire.
The Inn Collection Group acquires Morecambe hotel to take estate to 35 sites: The Inn Collection Group has strengthened its presence in Lancashire with the acquisition of the Midland Hotel in Morecambe. The company has bought the property for an undisclosed sum from the Clitheroe-based charity, Lancaster Foundation. The Midland is The Inn Collection Group’s third acquisition in Lancashire and joins The Lindum and The Carlton in Lytham St Annes, which are currently undergoing renovations and conversion into a 99-room single site. It is also the group’s fourth acquisition since the start of October, having completed a pair of deals to take over properties in North Wales – The Bull in Beaumaris and the St Kilda Hotel in Llandudno – and expanded its presence in Cumbria with the purchase of The Wordsworth Hotel in Grasmere. Sean Donkin, managing director of The Inn Collection Group, said: “We are delighted to bring The Midland into the group and bring in an establishment that is held in such high regard. Overlooking the bay and the sunsets with the Lakeland fells as the backdrop are something that I love and I’m looking forward to seeing many more people enjoy them too.” The acquisition brings The Inn Collection Group’s estate to 35 sites across the north of England and North Wales, while the sale allows the Lancaster Foundation to reinvest into increasing its assets and in turn grow its funding to support the needs of the hundreds of charitable projects it supports across the UK and Africa. 
Restaurateur Sam Harrison signs for double Brentford opening: Restaurateur Sam Harrison is to open two sites at The Brentford Project, a 1.2 million square-foot mixed-use development in west London. Harrison has agreed a deal with property developer Ballymore to launch all-day brasserie Sam’s Waterside alongside a third site for his Sam’s Larder concept. Harrison, alongside his business partner Fanny Stocker, is adding to his portfolio of Sam’s Riverside in Hammersmith, and Sam’s Larder concepts in Hammersmith and Chiswick. Harrison has already launched a smaller cafe version at The Brentford Project, located in the temporary concierge office, serving coffee and pastries. The site will develop further in February when the road to the High Street opens. Sam’s Larder will then officially launch in July 2023. In the same month, Sam’s Waterside will open on the River Brent. The 4,000 square-foot space will emphasise informal dining, with a 70-cover restaurant, 30-seat bar, and a waterside outdoor terrace for up to 40 guests. Sam’s Larder, the gourmet deli-cum-grocer, will cover 850 square foot and will be located opposite the new brasserie space. Harrison, director of Genuine Restaurants, said: “West London is what we know best, and Sam’s Waterside will have a similar DNA to Sam’s Riverside, with a terrific river location, a buzzy atmosphere, great food and drink offerings, and a huge emphasis on service and hospitality. We plan to offer our usual varied menu, but at a slightly more accessible price point, and most importantly, still retain all the quality from our amazing suppliers and partners.” Shackleton Property acted on behalf of Ballymore, and Genuine Restaurants dealt directly for Sam’s Waterside and Sam’s Larder.
Dough&Co closes four sites: Dough&Co, the wood-fired pizza concept from former Marco Pierre White chef Chris Sharman, closed four of its sites over the weekend. The business, which was founded by Sharman in 2018, had grown to a 16-strong business, but suddenly closed its sites in Swindon, Sheffield, Milton Keynes and Hanley. All four sites were launched in the past 12 months. All are now listed as permanently closed. The business recently launched a site in Daventry, alongside sister brand Burger Armour. Sharman previously said his aim was to grow the pizza business to 50 sites. Dough&Co declined to comment.
K10 secures Paternoster Square site: K10, the London-based sushi concept, has further added to its presence in the City, with an opening in Paternoster Square. The company, which returned to the expansion trail earlier this summer, has taken on the former Poncho 8 site in Queens Head Passage. Earlier this summer the business took on the former Wasabi site in Old Broad Street on a short-term lease. It is thought the company is looking to grow steadily after undergoing a restructure in the summer of 2020. K10, which was founded in 1999 and at one time operated five sites in the City, also operates sites in Fetter Lane and Queen Street.
Utopia Leisure reports ‘strong recovery’ from pandemic as it returns to profit: Utopia Leisure, which owns and operates luxury hotels across the south east of England, has reported a “strong recovery” from the pandemic as it saw turnover increase to £27,176,814 for the year ending 27 March 2022 versus £18,171,104 in the 18 months prior. It made a pre-tax profit of £6,420,584 compared with a loss of £1,865,223 in the previous 18 months. Occupancy rates in the year were 52.7% compared with 33% in the 18 months prior and 68% in 2019. Meanwhile 39,963 rooms were sold in the year compared with 37,007 in the 18 months prior and 43,318 in 2019. The business received government grants of £480,389 (2021: £3,401,768). No dividend was paid (2021: nil). In their report accompanying the accounts, the directors stated: “Throughout the challenges of the pandemic the company remained committed to actions to drive demand to its hotels. The increase in turnover is also driven by consumers' inherent desire to travel and a pent-up demand for events. The directors anticipate continued growth in their hotel and hospitality operations and expect to achieve this through the development of existing sites.”
The Real Greek to make Scottish debut next week with Edinburgh launch: The Real Greek, the Fulham Shore-owned brand, will make its Scottish debut on Monday (12 December) with more set to follow in the country. The restaurant in the St James Quarter in Edinburgh will be the brand’s fifth opening of 2022 following on from Manchester, Newcastle, Solihull, and Gloucester. The 140-cover Edinburgh site will offers indoor seating and a click and collect service. Nabil Mankarious, managing director at The Real Greek, said: “2022 has been a landmark year for The Real Greek, with a particular focus on openings in the north of England. Now we are expanding into Scotland, with ambitious growth plans to roll out more restaurants in this fantastic country. We’re very excited about the future of The Real Greek in Scotland.” The Edinburgh restaurant is The Real Greek’s 26th site and its 14th outlet outside of London. A further opening under the brand is scheduled before the end of the first quarter next year.
Yorkshire multi-unit franchisees open eighth Papa John’s site and eye further expansion: Yorkshire multi-unit franchisees Mandy Kaur and Chan Singh have opened their eighth Papa John’s site. The husband-and-wife team, who run their portfolio with the help of son Jashan, who works as acting regional manager, have opened in Horbury Road, Wakefield. The duo, who joined Papa John’s as franchisees in 2008, also opened new stores in Timperley, Manchester and Castleford earlier this year and are eyeing further expansion. “Now our own children have grown up, the opportunity for us to expand our Papa John’s franchise was too good to refuse,” said Kaur. “We are proud to have been able to promote three of our long-standing team members to area managers and we have another area manager currently in training. Our goal is to open more Papa John’s over the next two years, so there will be plenty more chances for promotion. We live within 30 minutes of Wakefield and have been planning to open here for about five years, but just couldn’t find the perfect location.” Amit Pancholi, UK director of business development at Papa John’s, added: “Mandy and Chan’s energy and enthusiasm to grow their portfolio of Papa John’s is inspiring. It proves with the right business mindset and training from Papa John’s, multi-unit franchisees can succeed without direct quick service restaurant experience. We now look forward to supporting them as they open further stores in the region over the next couple of years.”
London’s oldest Italian deli set to close for good after almost a century: London’s oldest Italian deli will close after almost 100 years as it struggles to cope with soaring energy costs. Founded in Soho in 1929, Camisa & Son will close after Christmas unless a buyer is found, reports The Daily Mail. Gianni Segatta, one of the directors at owners Alivini, said: “We cannot run the business now, it’s very sad. It’s a historical brand and we love it, but everything is so difficult. Energy prices, rates, VAT and salaries are all too high now and we cannot raise prices because people would not come. We have explained the situation, turnover is too low. We looked into selling the brand but we must also focus on other things. Soho has changed too much – things were good before the pandemic, but now it is not what it used to be. The families who used to live here have gone – we used to have queues to get in, but not anymore.” Camisa & Son was first opened by brothers Ennio and Isidoro Camisa, but during the Second World War the brothers were among thousands of Italians detained by the British government, forcing their original deli at 66 Old Compton Street to close. The brothers returned to Soho in 1948, running their new shop in Berwick Street, and when they parted ways in 1961, Isidoro moved the deli back to Old Compton Street, where it has stood since. Still named Camisa & Son, the family sold the deli to Italian food company Alivini in 2014. An online petition started to save the deli has already been signed by more than 3,000 people.
Cornish beachfront hotel sees turnover and profit exceed pre-pandemic levels: Watergate Bay Hotel, an 80-room property on the north Cornwall coastline, has reported turnover was up to £13,645,182 for the year ending 28 February 2022 from £7,602,241 the year before. The business said this reflected fewer enforced closure periods and the addition of its Beach Loft project, a collection of seven luxury units with wide-angle views across the beach. Turnover also exceeded the £13,014,845 reported for the year ending 28 February 2020 – the last full year before the pandemic. The hotel – which features three restaurants, a surf school, self-catering accommodation and a letting service for privately-owned properties – saw Ebitda up to £3,856,166 from £1,545,586 the previous year. The business made a pre-tax profit of £2,465,102 compared with a profit of £358,156 the year before (2020: profit of £1,327,105). The company received £437,216 through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (2021: £1,607,439), £98,449 in business support grants (2021: £128,077) and £10,409 in other grants (2021: £10,409). A dividend of £132,582 was paid (2021: £15,306). At the year end, the business had £5m of undrawn committed loan facilities.
Shipping container food village proposed for Leeds market: A new food village built from shipping containers has been proposed for an open-air market in Leeds. The city council’s executive board is being asked to approve the launch of a consultation on proposals for Leeds Kirkgate Market's outdoor trading area, designed to safeguard its long-term future. The outdoor market has space for a total of 185 stalls, with about 85 of them being filled on a typical day. Provisional plans have been drawn up to reduce the number of outdoor stalls, with the remaining pitches to be positioned adjacent to the indoor market. Should the scheme get the go-ahead, the newly created space would then become home to a “container-style” food village. The council said it had been approached by a number of potential operators who have expressed an interest in running an attraction of this kind at the market. It is also expected to complement previously approved regeneration plans for a new hotel and ground-floor commercial units on the George Street side of the market. Cllr Jonathan Pryor, Leeds City Council's executive member for economy, culture and education, said: “Leeds Kirkgate Market is a historic part of the fabric of life in our city and, as such, we are committed to doing everything we can to ensure it remains a modern, exciting and inclusive shopping destination. The consultation on the plans would involve traders, customers and businesses that are based near the market. The findings would then be considered at an executive board meeting in February.
Israeli chef Oded Oren to double up with delicatessen at London’s Broadway Market: Israeli chef Oded Oren is to open a Tel Aviv-inspired delicatessen in London for his second site. Oren will launch Oren Delicatessen at Broadway Market in January. Taking over the space left by the recently closed Isle of Olive, the deli will offer its signature hummus and house-cured fish as well as freshly baked challahs and pitas. Meals to take away will also be available such as chicken kofte with turmeric and seasonal fish with traditional Libyan chraime sauce. Alongside those will be a range of natural and low-intervention wine. It's something of a continuation of Oren’s lockdown offering in shop form, and he told Hot Dinners: “Cooking family-style food is my passion and I’m looking forward to bringing a taste of Tel Aviv to Broadway Market.” Oren launched his eponymous restaurant in Clapton, east London, in 2019. 

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