THE Carnarvon Arms near Highclere has been sold in a deal worth over £2m - with an end of June re-opening in sight.
Redcomb Pubs Ltd have today (Tues) revealed the pub chain has purchased the freehold of the Carnarvon Arms at Whitway, and also near Burghclere, and from RBS, in a deal worth over £2m.
Previously owned by celebrity chef, Marco Pierre White, as part of his Wheeler's of St James's group of pubs, the former coaching inn, including restaurant and letting rooms, is located near to Highclere Castle, the location of filming for ITV's award-winning Downton Abbey series.
Dan Shotton, Redcomb's managing director said the company was delighted to add the "fabulous property" he said, to its portfolio - with plans to invest a further £500,000, approximately, refurbishing the historic building to "former glory," he said.
"The pub has 21 letting rooms all of which are undergoing a transformation to create a hotel with some real character – and a bit of fun," he said.
"The pub and restaurant will also have a makeover to bring back the spirit of how the building used to be – a glorious coaching inn with three real fireplaces, stone and wooden floors and a cosy, slightly quirky feel, which will serve delicious freshly prepared food all day every day."
Refurbishment work was set to start on April 8, with an end of June re-opening planned.
The Downton Abbey cast have been said to stay at the pub's letting rooms during filming for the series at Highclere Castle, however this arrangement is likely to cease, after ITV confirmed the sixth series of the period drama, which has attracted record global audiences, would be the last, and after it was broadcast in the autumn, with a Christmas Day (2015) special planned.
The company, which is looking to grow its hotel portfolio from the 47 to in excess of 100 over the next 12 months, currently owns the 11-bedroom inn, Crown & Horns, East Ilsley.
Redcomb Pubs Ltd is a privately owned business which runs 12 businesses across London and the SE.
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