- There was an outpouring of support from across the industry after chef Andrew Fairlie announced he will be stepping back from the kitchen at Gleneagles due to suffering from a terminal brain tumour. Fairlie, 54, will hand over the reins at his two-starred restaurant to head chef Stevie McLaughlin, general manager Dale Dewsbury and his business partner Gregor Mathieson on 1 February.
- Living Ventures has launched a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) process for its five-strong Blackhouse steakhouse concept, closing its London site and one in Manchester. Last month the group put its Artisan and Manchester House restaurants in to administration after a "period of difficult trading".
- Casual Dining Group has called in a restructuring adviser in a bid to reduce its rent bill amid tough times on the high street. The company, which owns brands including Cafe Rouge, Bella Italia and Las Iguanas, said a "small number" of sites were lossmaking due to "high rents and rates".
- Restaurant closures in London have hit a 28-year high, according to new data from restaurant guide Harden's. The guide reports that 117 independent sites have shut over the last 12 months, though 167 launched over the same time frame - a net increase of 50.
- Scott Macdonald is believed to have left his role as managing director of Polpo after less than a year and a half in the role. The former Bill's managing director joined the seven-strong Venetian group last summer and oversaw a consolidation of its estate, including closures of sites in Bristol, Exeter and its Ape & Bird site in London. Polpo declined to comment.
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