Pub and restaurant closes unexpectedly with money owed to staff and suppliers

A well-known Richmondshire pub and restaurant has closed unexpectedly.

The Friars Head at Akebar shut around two weeks ago.

The restaurant and pub is owned by the owners of Akebar Park Country Park.

However, the business was leased out to a tenant, who left unexpectedly, with money owed to staff, suppliers and owners.

Akebar Park has issued a statement clarifying the situation after being contacted by Richmondshire Today.

They said: “Eighteen months ago Akebar Park Leisure Ltd leased the then thriving Friar’s Head at Akebar to ‘My Staff Direct Limited’, a private operator, operating The Friar’s Head as a business completely independent to Akebar Park Leisure Ltd.

“We did this to enable us to spend more time on the core business of the holiday park.

“On Thursday the 8th of September 2022, the tenants of the Friar’s Head left without notice or warning, abandoning the property and we understand they have left their staff, their suppliers and Akebar Park unpaid. As yet, we have not been able to clarify the intention of the tenants.

“We very much empathise with the difficulties caused by the actions of the tenants, however these actions are completely out of our control –  we are also seeking recompense.

“As we attempt to communicate with the tenants,  if we are able to offer any update, we will do so here.”

The statement said Akebar park’s owners were looking at options available to get the Friar’s Head back up and running.

One woman said on social media that her daughter who worked at the Friars Head was owed a month’s pay by the tenants.

Others said their bookings for meals had been cancelled.

One woman said: “We went a few weeks and we have never ever experienced anything like it.

“We love Akebar and always have but it was like Faulty Towers.”

Richmondshire Today has attempted to contact the tenants however we have not received a reply.