Bill’s Produce renews Horsham bid: Four more sites in pipeline

By Emma Eversham

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: West sussex, South east england

Bill's Produce is hoping to open in Horsham again after being revealed as the preferred bidder for the Town Hall. The operator also has four new sites - in Chichester, Guildford, Wimbledon and Cardiff in the pipeline
Bill's Produce is hoping to open in Horsham again after being revealed as the preferred bidder for the Town Hall. The operator also has four new sites - in Chichester, Guildford, Wimbledon and Cardiff in the pipeline
Bill’s Produce Store, the Richard Caring-backed restaurant, café and fresh produce business has renewed its bid to open a restaurant in Horsham Town Hall as part of major expansion plans this year. 

The business, founded by Bill Collison, opened its seventh site in Exeter on 7 May and is currently recruiting for staff to open new sites in Chichester, Guildford, Cardiff and Wimbledon. 

Horsham site​ 

The West Sussex town of Horsham was initially set to be the location of Bill’s third restaurant in 2009, but opposition to Horsham District Council’s (HDC) plans to sell off the public building led the operator to focus its attention elsewhere​. 

However, it was revealed last week that Bill’s had come out as the preferred bidder of four options for the building after the council decided to move ahead with marketing it for sale or lease at a meeting last December. 

A meeting tomorrow night, where the council’s deputy leader Roger Arthur will recommend Bill’s bid to lease the building for 20 years at a cost of £1.2m, will determine the operator’s success.   

Arthur said: “The bids we received were subjected to detailed evaluation processes looking at financial and qualitative aspects such as the suitability of use for this location.

"Two strong bids emerged and I have concluded that Bill’s Produce Store Ltd. had the edge.

"But in case for any reason the proposed agreement with them does not proceed, I will also be recommending to the Council to agree that the runner up - WJ King Brewers Ltd. - should be offered the lease.”

Expansion

Bill’s Produce, which first opened in Lewes, East Sussex in 2001, has expanded rapidly since it was acquired by Côte in 2008.

The proposed restaurant in Hartfield Road, Wimbledon will be its fourth London site. Last month it announced it would be opening its third in the capital, in Soho​, on the former Zilli Fish and Zilli Cafe site. 

Following Lewes and Brighton, Bill's were opened in Reading, Covent Garden, Islington, Cambridge and Exeter. 

Related topics: Business, Venues, Restaurants

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