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40 jobs to be created after £1.8m hotel refurbishment
2:00pm Wednesday 18th September 2013 in News
AN HISTORIC pub in Abingdon will re-open in November after a £1.8m refit.
The new look Crown and Thistle hotel and inn will bring up to 40 new jobs to the area.
New owners Oakman Inns have announced they will be holding a recruitment day at the Abingdon Guildhall this Tuesday to find hotel receptionists, baristas, bar staff and chefs.
General manager Cian McMonagle will also be looking for waiters and housekeepers to work with other staff.
Mr McMonagle said: “We are lucky to have the foundation of a good team in place already and are starting our search for the rest of the team so they are all trained in their roles from day one.
“Every person you see working in a restaurant, bar or hotel plays a vital role in ensuring the smooth delivery of services.
“Some of the biggest TV chefs and celebrity foodies have worked as waiters, trainee chefs, bar staff or kitchen porters.
“The reason for their success is that they were taught well and were passionate about what they did.”
Oakman Inns bought the 17th century coaching Inn last year for £1.4m.
The pub chain has already revamped two county pubs – the Blue Boar in Witney and Wallingford’s Old Post Office.
Work on the Crown and Thistle almost ground to a halt at one point over a dispute with Abingdon Town Council about rent on a back access road.
Town councillor Iain Littlejohn, who fought to ensure the work went ahead, said: “It is encouraging to see Oakman Inns’ investment plans for The Crown and Thistle progress so well.
“The additional new jobs being created are welcome, both from an employment perspective and in terms of bringing more people into the town centre.
“It's nice to see a number of good quality businesses clustering on Bridge Street, which is such an important area for the local economy as it links the town’s twin centres – the riverside and market place.”
The major restoration of The Crown and Thistle is the largest investment Oakman has made to date on any of its eight properties.
When it re-opens, the pub will have 19 en-suite bedrooms, an 80-seat restaurant and a new function room for up to 60 guests.
Oakman Inns founder and chief executive Peter Borg-Neal, who started his career as a trainee chef, said: “We are looking for those people who understand the difference that great service will make to each of our customer’s days.”
The recruitment day in the Guildhall is from 9.30am to 7pm on Tuesday.
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