TWO local entrepreneurs have taken on their third hospitality venue in Kendal.
Joshua Macaulay and Chris Moss, who own Ye Olde Fleece Inn at Highgate and run The Duke of Cumberland at Appleby Road, have now added The Gateway Inn to their expanding portfolio.
And the duo say they are keen to grow and expand still further if the demand is there and people continue to want to come to their pubs.
Mr Macaulay said they had bought The Gateway Inn, which overlooks Plumgarths roundabout at the northern end of Kendal, from Thwaites.
The takeover has created four new jobs, with a total of twelve staff employed at the site.
“The Gateway stood out as a site with fantastic potential and we thought we could make something really special there,” said Mr Macaulay.
He said their three venues were able to offer customers different experiences. “The Duke of Cumberland is a mighty, traditional, local brewhouse-style pub. The Fleece Inn is our gastro pub and town centre bar. The Gateway Inn is our most premium offer and is a fine dining, special occasion-type of place.
“It is the perfect site for that kind of establishment. It is in a really iconic location and is a lovely, old, imposing building.”
The Gateway Inn includes a bar area, a restaurant with about 70 covers, a conservatory area where drinks and meals are served, nine letting rooms and landscaped grounds.
The businessmen have already begun upgrading and adding new life to the inn, including the addition of a second lower terrace outdoors and a brand new menu.
“The letting rooms have all been upgraded and other areas have been given some TLC because they were looking a little worn and tired,” said Mr Macaulay.
“We have brought in a new menu put together by our executive chef Meg Davenport, who has extensive experience at Michelin-starred establishments like The Sharrow Bay and The Pearl in Melbourne and who ran her own highly-acclaimed restaurant in Ambleside.
“We are using the best local produce and really showcasing what Cumbria has to offer.”
He added: “We have a great staff team, who want to ensure all customers get the best possible experience. Four of the staff have worked at The Gateway Inn for some time.”
Mr Macaulay said he and Mr Moss wanted to support the local area and community. “We want to operate the type of venues that make people who visit, or live here, say that Kendal is a great place with some amazing pubs.
“Any money generated is being put back into improving the sites and making them the best venues we can for the local community.”
After acquiring Ye Olde Fleece Inn, the duo carried out a nearly one million pounds’ renovation project, with The Duke of Cumberland having a total of £100,000 spent on it over a 12-months period.
“People in the community are keen for us to take on more sites and are suggesting potential places to us,” said Mr Macaulay. “We are keen to grow and expand while people still want to come to our pubs and enjoy them and have a good experience.”