NRB 2015: 90 per cent of top Northern operators planning expansion

By Sophie Witts

- Last updated on GMT

Reports indicate areas of the Northern hospitality sector are growing faster than London
Reports indicate areas of the Northern hospitality sector are growing faster than London

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Nine out of ten of the Top 50 most influential members of the Northern hospitality sector are planning expansion.

The list was announced today (17 March) at the Northern Restaurant and Bar (NRB) trade show in Manchester.

Ninety per cent of the operators confirmed they are planning further launches and expansion within the region, reinforcing reports that the eating out market in areas of the North is growing faster than London​.

Thom Hetherington, CEO of organisers Holden Media, said: “The North seems to be flavour of the month amongst national and international operators at the moment.

"We feel it is fundamentally important that we recognise those home-grown operators who are achieving huge levels of critical acclaim and commercial success and driving employment, training and investment in the region.”

Special Awards

Three special achievement awards were presented for outstanding success in the hospitality industry.                      

Nigel Haworth and Craig Bancroft were recognised for their long term success at Northcote hotel, which has included developing a growing pub estate and the Obsessions chef festival.

William Lees Jones was picked for his work re-shaping established brewers JW Lees for the 21st​ century, with an emphasis on food and contemporary brands. 

Jonathan Slater of the Chester Grosvenor was recognised for over thirty years of high standards as general manager and managing director of the hotel, ahead of his retirement at the end of March.

Northern boom

The NRB trade show, which takes place at Manchester Central on 17 and 19 March, is the largest hospitality exhibition outside of London.

The event forms part of Northern Hospitality Week, five days of industry debates and special one-off business events, including charity dinners such as Action Against Hunger’s Too Many Critics Manchester.

The show has seen a 15 per cent rise in the number of companies exhibiting this year, reflecting the growing Northern sector.

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