18:54 Thursday 26 December 2013

Pub takes over reins at marina's development

Written byHELEN KREFT

A FORMER Bass and Marston’s employee is to open his new independent pub at Mercia Marina’s famous Boardwalk – marking the end of a search for a tenant.

Mercia Marina has signed up Hillary & Scott Limited to operate the bar-restaurant at its forthcoming retail, office and leisure development The Boardwalk.

Hillary & Scott Limited will be opening what it describes as a “high quality, cosmopolitan” bar and restaurant at the 74-acre South Derbyshire marina.

Daryl Cockerill, who founded Hillary & Scott two years ago with business partner Shane Holland, said: “It’s a big and exciting project for us. It’s our first new-build operation, which gives us the advantage of creating a venue with exactly the look and feel we are after. We’re definitely looking forward to offering visitors something very stylish, with quite a cosmopolitan feel, and maybe different to what they are currently used to.”

Mr Cockerill has extensive experience in the brewery and pub industry, having worked for Marston’s and Bass, as well as roles for Leicestershire-based Everards Brewery, and Greene King in Suffolk.

Hillary & Scott currently operates four other pub and restaurant establishments across the Midlands.

The construction project for The Boardwalk at Mercia Marina began last month and is scheduled to open to the public in late summer 2014.

It will comprise the central bar and restaurant, built over two floors with additional outdoor seating overlooking the 24-acre lake. The restaurant will be flanked by three retail units on each side and the remaining upper floor space will include four office units, all with views over the water.

Mercia Marina has already attracted two flagship retailers; The Butcher, The Baker, The Ice Cream Maker to operate a farm shop, and the clothing retailer Bluewater. The bar-restaurant will have seating for approximately 150 people in addition to the large bar area for drinkers. Mr Cockerill will be appointing a manager and chef in the near future.

John Thornton, partner of Mercia Marina, said: “We’re delighted to have agreed this new partnership with Hillary & Scott. We were committed to finding a small, independent operator to run the bar-restaurant at The Boardwalk, as the larger chains tend not to have the individual character we were looking for.

“We were also impressed by the high quality of the company’s existing establishments, which perfectly mirrors the offer we had envisaged for our drinkers and diners.”

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