Punch targets growth in East Anglia

Pubs operator Punch Taverns has pledged to spend £3.4 million on upgrading its estate in East Anglia. Punch, which currently ranks as the UK's largest pub company, just ahead of Enterprise Inns, plans to invest in up to 25 pubs in the region during its current financial year.

Pubs operator Punch Taverns has pledged to spend £3.4 million on upgrading its estate in East Anglia.

Punch, which currently ranks as the UK's largest pub company, just ahead of Enterprise Inns, plans to invest in up to 25 pubs in the region during its current financial year.

During the first quarter of the year alone 11 schemes were completed, including a £330,000 refurbishment at the Bull in Brantham, which how has a new interior including a restaurant area and a locals bar, and £130,000 of work at the Shiplaunch in Ipswich.

Besides improving general facilities, the investment is focusing on extending the food offer of pubs as a growing number of consumers are seeking a meal as well as a drink.

Regional operations director Russell Cawtheray said: “We are committed to ensuring our estate is second to none when it comes to the quality of amenities for customers - and increasingly this includes providing a first class food offer.

“Working closely with our retailers in the area, East Anglia will continue to be an important focal point for investment in our pubs.”

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Punch Taverns currently operates around 500 pubs in the region out of a total of 9,600 nationwide.