Insolvent pub closes twice in two years

PUBLISHED: 08:00 16 January 2015

The Imperial.

The Imperial.

Archant

A TOWN centre pub is in the process of being liquidated after closing over the festive period - despite people booking tables over Christmas and New Year.

The Imperial.The Imperial.

The Imperial Brasserie in South Parade, Weston, ceased trading on December 22, and owner Claudio De Carlo said it is in a lot of debt due to high business rates.

A band had been scheduled to perform at the venue on New Year’s Eve, but had the booking cancelled via text message at the eleventh hour.

Other guests also received emails to inform them of the change of plans.

The Imperial was taken over by Mr De Carlo only last March, after standing closed for just over a year.

Mr De Carlo said: “All pre-booked and in-advance-paid deposit parties were informed and we are trying our best to repay all deposits as soon as possible.

“The company is in a lot of debt especially due to very high business rates in Weston. The company is insolvent and is trying to be liquidated.

“We are deeply sorry for the circumstances but it is very difficult for a young business to survive in the current market in Weston.”

Guests had booked meals during the festive period, with deposits costing up to £20 a head.

One woman, who asked not to be named, said: “I just feel they weren’t fair. I’m annoyed more than anything. They could have advised they were not going to be open.

“I only found out because I went to do some detective work myself when I saw it on Facebook, but I could have turned up there. I know people struggle but there is a way of doing things.”

The Imperial was bought by Butcombe Brewery in March 2012, but closed in January 2013.

It was also previously owned by brothers Chris and Mike Sanders, who relaunched it as The Imperial Brasserie in 2010.

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