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Famous ‘Royal’ Opens Lichfield Restaurant

Chef Proprietor Nigel Dobson with ‘Kate’ AKA Kate Middleton’ from Staffordshire

Chef Proprietor Nigel Dobson with ‘Kate Middleton’ AKA Kate Bevan from Staffordshire

The eagerly awaited opening has taken place of the Midlands newest restaurant.

Manley’s Brasserie has been created by acclaimed Chef Nigel Dobson at the popular ‘The Old School House’ venue near Lichfield.

Following a £250,000 top to toe refit, the stylish new Brasserie opened its doors this week to regulars and invited guests who were amazed at the transformation. “It’s been a long process” comments Chef proprietor Nigel Dobson “you could say nearly 30 years in the planning, since my family bought what was the Old School House, which at the time was very run down – following a quarter a century of trading as the Old School House Restaurant and our popular Wyatt Pavilion weddings and functions suite we thought it time for a change – so we asked customers to help us with a new name, and were inundated with over 400 suggestions – ranging from the obvious to the oblivious, but we had fun choosing one, and finally landed on Manley’s Brasserie suggested by a local resident – The Manleys were an historical family of land owners from our village, one of the ancestors being a member of James Cook’s voyage of discovery which we thought quite apt, seeing as Wyatt of Wyatt Pavilion was also a local land owner.

We would like to thank everyone who entered for their contributions” Nigel added “ We also thought it time to drop the ‘Old’ and in with the new, so we refreshed the name of the business to The School House, which is more in keeping” Designer, Ellen Burton of Nanu Design in Yorkshire, worked closely local builders and refurbishment specialists Wedge-Wood Construction & Joinery UK & Int. Ltd. spent the past four weeks finalising the project and completely revamping the tired interior, creating the new look brasserie. Using natural materials including Oak for the floors and tables, stone for the walls and replacing many walls and solid doors with stylish glass “We have worked on many projects for pub companies and independents across the UK and around the World’ commented John Lay of builders Wedge-Wood Construction, based in Aldridge “We specialise in fast track refurbishment and I must admit, it is one of the most stylish transformations we have created in the region, the results speak for the themselves.

The new Manley’s Brasserie will be supporting regional producers, showcasing the best meats for their sharing platters, and fresh fish from Birmingham market “I have always been keen to source the best available produce, and delighted when that is local, such as our butchers Bob Lay of Lay Brothers in Sutton Coldfield which we have used for many years, and my regular trips to Birmingham Fish Market mean I can select the freshest fish available for our menus”

Hospitality Marketing Specialist James Day of Leisure Marketing Midlands LTD who has helped create the brand and advised on the marketing added “What Nigel and the team have created is extremely visionary – to invest in the current market is a very brave and ambitious approach, but as we know, fortune favours the brave, and the results speak for themselves – already bucking the trends being fully booked since opening”

Wyatt Pavilion Events – one of the region’s premier venues for events, weddings and parties remains unchanged. The semi-permanent premium marquee, with ‘star-light’ ceiling, dance floor and DJ booth, and views across the 11 acre estate is also hosting a series of tributes – starting on Mother’s Day with a Frank Sinatra Tribute, so you can be crooned with your family meal. What better place for a family get together or celebration.

More info

Rachel Rawles, Anne-Marie Freeman and Annie Eccleston

David Freeman, David Eccleston, Christopher Walsh

Sue and Mike Elms

Pat Messham, Amy Walters, Jan Ashley of The Journal Magazine

Lucy Wilcom, Rebecca Bennett, Matt Meakin, James Coyle, Sharon Coyle and Nicky Taylor

Manleys Proprietor Chef Nigel Dobson with Designer Ellen Burton of Nanu Design

John Lay of Wedgewood Construction, Proprietor Nigel Dobson & Designer Ellen Burton of Nanu Design in Yorkshire


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Andrew and Robert Hidderley

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