New woman in charge at Wigton pub and restaurant
Last updated at 15:00, Friday, 15 March 2013
A former school cook is keeping the name of one of Wigton’s best-known institutions alive.
Lisa Dockray has taken charge of the “new” Stocksman pub, restaurant and functions venue.
There had been speculation in the town that the venue was to be lost completely after Hopes Auction Mart, of which it is a part, moved to a multi-million pound new home.
While the old Stocksman building in the town centre is standing empty, its name is being retained within part of the showpiece Syke Road site.
The venue has long been a favourite of the farming community.
Lisa, 31, from Wigton, is a former cook at the town’s Nelson Thomlinson School and has signed a three-year lease on the new Stocksman – a business challenge she’s looking forward to.
“It’s encouraging that a lot of regulars are finding their way here,” she said.
Mart director Bruce Walton said the auction wouldn’t be the same without a Stocksman Restaurant.
“The old one was very popular with the farmers’ and they do have to be fed throughout the day when the marts are on,” he added.
“It is trial and error at the moment. We need to see how it works out, but so far it is going well.”
The new mart held its first sale of livestock last week and Lisa said the restaurant was packed.
“I know it’s a big commitment, but I did work at the old one, so I know what needs to be done,” said Lisa.
The new restaurant and function room will seat up to about 170 people.
“It is slightly bigger than the old one, with a big wide open space which will be ideal for functions,” said Lisa.
Already the restaurant’s order book is filling up. “We are getting inquiries for birthday parties, luncheons and christenings,” added Lisa.
The original Stocksman Restaurant was built in 1972 by Hopes for the benefit of the farming community.
An application by supermarket giant Tesco for a store to be built on the old town centre mart site is still with planners.
In 2011, a court quashed planning permission for a store because a screening opinion had not been completed.
Mr Walton said Hopes would sell off assets in the town to pay for the new mart even if the Tesco development did not go ahead.
First published at 14:54, Friday, 15 March 2013
Published by http://www.cumberlandnews.co.uk
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