Welcome to Rise & Shine
If you have any news about your business you’d like to see here please contact our News Editor, Carolyn Moss, at email@example.com or call her on 01305 575155. Follow us on Twitter @BreadButterNews for updates.
Pubs, bars and restaurants start 2020 on positive note
Britain’s managed pub, bar and restaurant sector have started the year on the up with January like-for-like sales 1.9% higher than in 2019, according to the latest figures from the Coffer Peach Business Tracker.
“Reasonably good weather, in particular the lack of snow, will have helped sales, but nonetheless it is encouraging to see that the public is continuing to go out to eat and drink,” said Karl Chessell, director of CGA, the business insight consultancy that produces the Tracker, in partnership with The Coffer Group and RSM.
Restaurants outside London had the strongest trading with like-for-likes ahead 2.3% outside the M25 compared to 0.7% inside.
January’s positive results come on the back of strong trading over the festive period, which saw collective like-for-likes up 2.5% against the previous year.
Trevor Watson, executive director at Davis Coffer Lyons, said: “To put these figures in context, last January the market saw a 1.8% drop in like-for-likes against 2018, so essentially we are back to where we were two years ago. But it does show an underlying stability in the market, despite the political climate and what has been going on in the wider economy. The eating and drinking out market is showing resilience and people’s appetite for going out remains intact.
There is a universal feeling of improved investor confidence, however this has not yet translated into deal flow. The stabilised consumer confidence combined with a stronger investor mentality is likely to result in steady improvement as the year progresses. We are off to a decent start.”
Paul Newman, head of leisure and hospitality at RSM, said, “A year-over-year sales boost is a welcome reward for the many pubs, bars and restaurants who refined their New Year offering to capitalise on the trends for Veganuary and alcohol alternative drinks. Any sales increase will be welcomed by a sector that still faces tremendous cost pressures, particularly around people, business rates and food prices. Operators will eagerly await any news on the easing of such costs from Sajid Javid’s upcoming budget announcement.”
St Austell Brewery acquire two Devon hotels
St Austell Brewery has announced the acquisition of two hotels in Devon – Dartmouth’s Royal Castle Hotel and The Royal Seven Stars, in Totnes – to add to its 182-strong estate based in South West England.
Kevin Georgel, who succeeded James Staughton as St Austell Brewery’s chief executive last month, said: “We are delighted to be announcing that the Royal Castle Hotel and the Royal Seven Stars Hotel are now part of our managed estate. Both hotels fit perfectly with our existing portfolio – family-friendly venues, in popular locations, with unrivalled views and quality bedrooms. The acquisition of these two iconic sites supports our plans to strengthen and grow our estate across the south west region.
“This is certainly an exciting period for the company as we will shortly open two more managed sites, which have undergone extensive and sensitive restoration work since we acquired them last year. The Rock Point Inn in Lyme Regis – our first pub in Dorset – and the Harbour Light restaurant, on Paignton’s North Quay, will both reopen for business in the next two months.
Nigel and Anne Way, former proprietors of the Royal Seven Stars Hotel and the Royal Castle Hotel said: “After 37 years we – and our daughter, Becca – have decided to spend more time together as a family and focus on our two West Somerset hotels, the Porlock Weir and Luttrell Arms.
“We’re confident that St Austell Brewery, an independent, West Country business – that shares our family values – will be the most suitable guardian for our two Devon hotels going forward.
South West Tourism Excellence Awards winners
The South West Tourism Excellence Awards were announced on the 6th February at Exeter Cathedral. There were 107 winners from a record 773 entries.
A special Outstanding Contribution award was given to Martin Cox, director of West Dorset Leisure Holidays, in “recognition of his decades of support and innovation for the holiday park sector, Dorset and the wider South West region.”
Other Gold winners on the night included The Roman Baths & Pump Room, Bath (Accessible and Inclusive Tourism Award, Large Visitor Attraction of the Year, and International Tourism Award), Wild Wookey, Somerset (Active and Sporting Experience Award), The 25 Boutique B&B, Devon (B&B and Guesthouse of the Year), Yellow Bicycle Café, Dorset (Café/Tearoom of the Year), Mill on the Brue Outdoor Activity Centre, Somerset (Ethical, Responsible & Sustainable Tourism Award), The Park Cornwall (Holiday Park of the Year), Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Wiltshire (Large Hotel of the Year), Three Horseshoes Pub & Kitchen, Dorset (Pub of the Year), Salcombe Distilling Co, Devon (Small Visitor Attraction of the Year), and Dartmouth Steam Railway & River Boat Company (Tourism Innovation Award).
Awards organiser, Robin Barker of Services for Tourism, said: “I never cease to be amazed by the innovation, dedication and imagination of our tourism businesses – not to mention their sheer hard work. It’s humbling to be part of this and I’d like to add my congratulations to all the winners.”
The full list of finalists and commended entrants is at www.southwesttourismawards.org.uk.
FOOD AND DRINK NEWS
Salcombe Dairy launch luxury easter eggs
Independent chocolatiers, Salcombe Dairy, have launched a luxury range of bean-to-bar Easter eggs. Made from single-origin Peruvian chocolate they come packaged in fully-compostable packaging.
The hand-crafted Easter eggs are available in milk, white or dark chocolate with a choice of two flavours of The Bar. All have an RRP of £19 for 160g with two 80g The Bar chocolates.
For further information visit www.salcombedairy.co.uk.
Reduced sugar sorbets and more from Purbeck
Purbeck Ice Cream, based in Dorset, has reformulated their sorbet range to be 15% lower in sugar.
They have also introduced two new sorbet flavours. Pink Grapefruit Sorbet is “sharp yet satisfying, tickling the taste buds, delightful served alone or as an accompaniment to add balance to a truly indulgent dessert.” Coconut Sorbet is a “truly tropical treat made with coconut milk, smooth and full of flavour”. Additionally, they have reintroduced Bucks Fizz Sorbet “a gorgeous balance of champagne and orange and an ideal indulgence for every celebration” and Coconut Ice Cream which has been “revitalised and is now totally smooth, satisfying and bursting with flavour – perfect served with a squeeze of fresh lime!”
Purbeck are also launching a vegan variety – Vegan Rhubarb & Rosehip Ripple which they describe as a “classical British flavour…made with English rhubarb and an uplifting rosehip infusion with extra rhubarb rippled through to enhance the experience and punch the palate.”
For more information, visit www.purbeckicecream.co.uk.
Salcombe Brewery’s new cider
Salcombe Brewery Co. has announced the launch of Ocean Cider, a new premium cider that was made available from the 1st February on draught and from 1st March in 500ml bottles.
Ocean Cider (ABV 4.5%) is a “full-bodied traditional cider with a medium-dry taste and a light sparkle” and will be produced for Salcombe Brewery by Sheppy’s, one of the oldest cider-making families in the world.
John Tiner, owner of Salcombe Brewery comments: “We are so excited to be launching our very first cider. We have created a range of outstanding ales since we started the business in 2016 and we are thrilled that we are now in a position to add a new dimension to our offering with the launch of Ocean Cider.”
“We pride ourselves on using the finest ingredients and Ocean Cider has been created from the highest quality British cider apples grown right here in the South West. The result is a delectable drink that is the ideal accompaniment for pork, lamb and pasta dishes and equally enjoyable on its own.”
For further information visit www.salcombebrewery.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01548 854888.
New head chef for Cornwall Hotel
The Cornwall Hotel & Spa has announced the appointment of Kai Taylor as their new head chef.
He joins the luxury hotel, located at Tregorrick near St Austell in Cornwall, from the Stables Restaurant in Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire. Kai earned his first head chef position at 21 and achieved five AA rosettes in his first two years. He went on to hold the title of executive chef at hotels including The Bristol and Stanton Manor.
On his appointment, he said: “I would describe my cooking style as honest, simple and natural… I love working with smaller, artisan food producers and the mutual-respect with these food heroes is what motivates me in the kitchen. My family and I decided to move down to Cornwall after falling in love with the approach to life here and I’m really excited to be translating this laid-back lifestyle, coupled with the finest local Cornish produce, to the menus at The Cornwall Hotel.”
“We’re delighted to have Kai on board,” says General Manager Rebecca Coonan. “Having honed his skills abroad and with some fantastic establishments and experience under his belt he’s a great addition to the team. His style of cooking is a perfect match for the hotel’s dining ethos, which is first and foremost relaxed, inviting and sociable.”
New senior appointment at St Austell Brewery
St Austell Brewery has announced the appointment of Andrew Turner to the role of managing director, Beer and Brands.
He will join the Cornish brewer and pub company from Heineken UK, where he is trading director, and lead St Austell’s own beer and wholesale drinks business.
Kevin Georgel, chief executive said: “I am delighted that Andy will be joining St Austell Brewery. With almost 20 years’ experience and success gained within Heineken UK, he brings the ideal experience, talents and personality to complement the skills of the existing team, and to lead our beer and brands division into its next exciting chapter.”
Andrew Turner, Managing Director, Beer and Brands commented: “I am absolutely thrilled to be joining St Austell Brewery – a wonderful family business which brews fantastic beers and runs great pubs, both of which are very close to my heart.
“It’s a really exciting time to join the business. I believe St Austell Brewery is very well placed to benefit from the resurgence in consumer interest in beer, coupled with the increasing importance of authenticity and community.
Rockfish appoints new executive director of comms
Seafood restaurant group Rockfish has appointed head of communications Laura Cowan to the executive Board.
Laura has worked for Rockfish founder Mitch Tonks for 20 years at Rockfish and previously at FishWorks. Before this, she worked for financial services giant, Zurich and founded her own communications company specialising in food and drink, RedHeadLines.
Mitch, said: “As part of our growth plans I am delighted to let you know that we have appointed Laura Cowan to the board as Director of Marketing and Communications. Laura has worked with me for 20 years and has been largely responsible for building our relationship with the press and more recently developing our marketing strategy and overseeing its execution which to date
has been very successful.”
Board member, Henry Dimbleby (ex-Leon & London Union), said: “I’ve loved working with Laura. She has an irresistible energy of spirit and her strategic insights are always shrewd and succinctly put. It is fantastic that she is now joining the board. We want every Rockfish to become embedded in its local seaside community – a place where locals and visitors alike experience the world’s best seafood, right next to the waters from which it came. We will need to intensify our culture and strengthen the branding as we grow. Laura’s communications nouse – both internally and externally – will be critical to success.”
Large riverboat hotel for sale
The largest cruising riverboat hotel in England is on the market for £1.45 million with Colliers International.
Based in Gloucester docks, the 88ft Edward Elgar has three decks, can sleep 22 guests and has an established cruise programme along the River Severn and Gloucester to Sharpness Canal. The vessel is owned and operated by the English Holiday Cruises company which is part of the sale.
Peter Brunt, director of hotels agency, said: “The Edward Elgar is a truly unique hotel boat which is 4* rated by Visit England and the company enjoys Tour Operator/Principal membership of ABTA. They offer a range of complete holiday packages and receive superb reviews from guests, with high levels of repeat bookings.
“The reason an opportunity has arisen for a new owner to take the helm, so to speak, is because the present owners now wish to retire after creating the successful business that operates today.
“They bought the business in 2004, having recognised the huge potential, and have identified scope for further expansion by a new owner of what has become a robust and reliable holiday business.”
Richard Clements, director of English Holiday Cruises, said: “It’s going to be a wrench to sell the Edward Elgar after spending the past 15 years turning her and the business around her into such a memorable and viable cruise holiday operation.
“However, my wife Judith and I have decided it’s time to retire, and we believe that there is huge potential for a new owner to build on the solid foundations we have laid and further develop this already flourishing business.”
He added: “When we became owners in 2004, I had considerable experience of working in hospitality, my wife had experience of setting up businesses, and our son Jay had been working in tourism.
“None of us had any maritime experience but that did not prevent us from transforming the business and consistently growing revenue and profits ever since. A new owner will also benefit from the expertise of our loyal staff and a comprehensive suite of operating systems.”
Peter Brunt added that “the price of £1.45m reflected the strong cash flow generated by the business, the excellent condition of the vessel asset and extensive goodwill, with a very high level of forward bookings.
“Our clients’ strong preference is for a sale of the shares of English Holiday Cruises Limited including the benefit of deposits paid for 2020 bookings currently worth over £500,000.”
Devon country hotel on the market
Highbullen Hotel Golf & Country Club has been brought to the market by Christie & Co and Savills. Set on a Victorian estate of circa 116.5 acres, the hotel and wider estate includes 39 en suite bedrooms, four self-catering cottages, two restaurants, a tearoom, billiard room and guest lounges.
Highbullen’s leisure facilities include an 18-hole golf course, outdoor tennis courts, indoor and outdoor swimming pool, spa, sauna, gym and fishing on the River Mole.
Outline planning permission has been granted for 58 holiday home lodges in the grounds and an extension of 16 bedroom suites to the existing hotel. Reserved matters applications have also been submitted for four guest accommodation tree houses and 15 holiday lodges.
David Tearle, resort director at Highbullen comments, “We are extremely proud of Highbullen’s achievements during the Chapman family’s tenure, from the incredible feedback we continue to receive from our many guests to our numerous accolades and awards…
“With a planning application for treehouses and lodges in the final stages, the sale offers a fantastic opportunity for the full development of this exceptional resort. In the meantime, there will be no significant changes in the day-to-day running of our much-loved hotel as it is important we continue to maintain our extremely high standards and, as always, take pride in the hospitality and care of our guests.”
Stephen Champion, director at Christie & Co is handling the sale and comments, “Highbullen presents extensive upside to any prospective purchasers whether it be through the numerous planning permissions in place to further develop the hotel and grounds or the opportunity to expand the current business with the facilities already in place.
“Hotels with this scope and potential rarely come to the market and we expect to see high levels of interest from a range of buyers including hotel groups, high net worth individuals, foreign buyers or developers looking at the planning permission in place.”
Devon town centre inn for sale
The Coaching Inn, based in South Molton, Devon has 11 en suite letting bedrooms and is on the market for £750,000 freehold with Stonesmith.
The business also includes an open-plan main bar and games room area, a restaurant and carvery, function room with bar, commercial catering kitchen, family-sized three double bedroom owner’s apartment and customer car park for 30 vehicles.
According to the agents, the inn has been owned by their clients for 13 years and “benefits from a strong year round local trade and excellent levels of regular repeat custom.”
Full property details are available at www.stonesmith.co.uk.
Expowest Cornwall 2020 is celebrating!
Celebrating its 40th birthday this year, Expowest Cornwall is the event that the whole Cornish business community makes a point of attending. Taking place between Tuesday 3rd and Thursday 5th March at The Royal Cornwall Showground, Wadebridge, the show draws hospitality & catering exhibitors and buyers from the whole region. It’s where suppliers and buyers get to see and sample what trends and tastes will be on the menu for the coming year, with exhibitors that span the whole of the hospitality and catering market.
For more information about the show or register to attend, please call 01934 733433, visit expowestcornwall.co.uk. or follow @Expowest_UK.
Industry EVENTS 2020
Food Drink Devon: Food Labelling Breakfast Workshop
20th February 2020, 9.00-13.00
Exeter Golf and Country Club
“Food Drink Devon invites you to join this informative food labelling workshop. You will learn about UK label requirements, changes to food labelling post-Brexit and legal requirements of food labelling, including Natasha’s Law.”
For more information & to book tickets, please visit https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/food-labelling-breakfast-workshop-tickets-90619183417
3rd – 5th March 2020
The Royal Cornwall Showground, Wadebridge. Cornwall
“Perfectly timed and showcasing products that cover the whole of the hospitality and catering market; from tableware to furniture, catering equipment to business services, coffee to speciality food, this show really does have Cornwall covered!”
Register today at https://expowestcornwall.co.uk/
Hotel, Restaurant & Catering Show
3rd – 5th March 2020
“The UK’s largest event for the hospitality & foodservice industry split into four shows: The Foodservice Show, The Professional Kitchen Show, Interiors and Tabletop Show and Hospitality Tech Show. Meet with a range of leading suppliers, to taste, test and source new products.”
Scaling Up Successfully: Growing your own food business
25th March 2020, 9:30 – 13:00
The Hartnoll Hotel, Tiverton, EX16 7RA
“A business workshop targeted specifically at Food & Beverage producers who are working on scaling up their business in 2020. New sales opportunities are what every business looks for, but when sales are booming how do you keep up with demand, build a team you can rely on and how do you pay for it all? Join four successful entrepreneurs to discuss all this and plenty more.”
Tickets and more details available at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/scaling-up-successfully-growing-your-own-food-business-tickets-92718602837
The Casual Dining Trade Show
25th – 26th March 2020
“Casual Dining gives senior decision makers from restaurants, pubs & bars, hotels and contract caterers the unique opportunity to discover new products and trends for their business.”
Food & Drink Expo 2020 30th
March – 1st April 2020
“One of the UK’s largest and most well-respected food and drink focused trade exhibitions. The event unites five co-located shows, Food & Drink Expo, Foodex, The Ingredients Show, National Convenience Show and Farm Shop & Deli Show”