Maidstone’s hospitality sector opens doors once again
Restaurants in England welcomed the latest phase of the lockdown being lifted when indoor dining was once again allowed from 17th May. For one independent restaurant in Maidstone this will also signal the end to an uncertain and frustrating first year and the start of a much brighter future.
Madisons’ Restaurant, Bar and Cocktail Lounge on Gabriels Hill only opened in February 2020 following a £1 million investment. The stylish new restaurant offers guests a menu of modern British and Asian cuisine with a trendy bar and roof terrace for guests to chill out in.
It was with a heavy heart that the 200-cover restaurant which was fully booked for Mother’s Day 2020 had to close its doors for the first lockdown. Not being geared up for take-away it remained closed until 4 July 2020 and despite the rule of six and 10pm curfew, a successful summer and autumn followed, with the October Halloween weekend being its busiest.
Feedback from guests over this four-month period has been excellent and with this in mind the team at Madisons were delighted to welcome them back once again. The Government’s furlough scheme has allowed most of the workforce to be retained and additional kitchen staff are being hired in anticipation of a busy summer and beyond.
Ade Rowswell comments: “It’s been tough but we are very much looking ahead to the future. We have some exciting plans including a new boutique bar opening on the middle floor of the building in 2022. Maidstone is a great place to be located and over the last 10-15 years it has become much more of a destination to visit from further afield. We are grateful of the support of our guests who briefly got to see what Madisons has to offer and we look forward to seeing them all again soon.”
Madisons is run by a similar local, independent team who run The Brenchley, the successful freehouse on the High Street in Maidstone. The Brenchley was able to reopen for outdoor dining on 12th April thanks to its large garden with covered areas and it is popular in the town with its all-day menu.
Leroy Bradley Partner at Gullands Solicitors works with The Brenchley and Madisons providing legal advice and support on a range of issues including licencing and comments. “This has undoubtedly been a really tough year for the hospitality sector, but it is very encouraging that people are keen to support their local pubs and restaurants, especially those which are independently owned. The plans that the team have for Madisons are really exciting and it is important that all businesses in the sector now look ahead to the potential to grow their business and customer base. People will be looking for a range of dining and drinking experiences and Maidstone has a full range as well as a late-night offering. We have been delighted to provide legal support to the team and wish them every success for 2021 and beyond.”