Continuing its expansion programme for its Pizza, Pots & Pints managed pub concept, Charles Wells has announced the acquisition of four sites from independent pub group The Orange Tree.

The pubs are The Orange Trees in Leicester, Loughborough and Nottingham, as well as Kelso’s in Loughborough. The deal will enable Charles Wells to extend its reach into new areas of the UK, marking its first sites in Leicester, Nottingham and Loughborough.

As part of the acquisition, Charles Wells will continue to trade the Orange Tree pubs, retaining all 82 employees across the sites ahead of making the investment to introduce its Pizza, Pots & Pints format in spring.  Kelso’s will continue to operate in its current form.

The sale — which included a combination of lease assignments and freehold disposals, together with the associated business at the properties — was brokered by leisure property specialists Davis Coffer Lyons for an undisclosed figure.

Chief executive of Charles Wells, Justin Phillimore, said: “We are delighted to acquire these four excellent pubs and welcome their teams to the Charles Wells family. It is an exciting time for Charles Wells as we accelerate the growth of our managed house estate in both the UK and France.

“Our ambition for the Pizza, Pots & Pints format is to grow it by another 15 sites in the next two to three years, so acquisitions such as this, with like-minded regionally-based multiples, are crucial for accelerating our expansion.”


Culture and philosophy


Gareth Smith, managing director of The Orange Tree group, said: “In Charles Wells all the important boxes were ticked, not least their culture and philosophy, which coincides with our own. The plans we know Charles Wells have for these sites provide opportunities for our staff that we could not match.

“In thanking our staff for their loyalty and support over the years, we wish them and Charles Wells all the best in what we know will be an exciting future.”

Including the new purchases, Charles Wells now has nine Pizza, Pots & Pints sites in the UK and has plans to increase these to 25 over the next two to three years.

All locations offer a community-style pub for local residents and businesses, within easy walking distance, and have a menu of freshly-made pizzas and terracotta one-pot meals. They also serve a selection of Charles Wells’ beers, including Charlie Wells, and its monthly artisanal beer from The Wandering Brewer Project.


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