Simon Rigby finishes changes to Preston Guild Hall operations

Posted on - 5th January, 2019 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Business, Food & Drink, Preston City Centre, Preston News, Restaurants in Preston
Preston Guild Hall in Lancaster Road Pic: Tony Worrall
Preston Guild Hall in Lancaster Road Pic: Tony Worrall

Simon Rigby has completed off-loading all his food and drink based units in the Guild Hall.


The local multi-millionaire, who took on the venue in 2014, has decided to let out the likes of Review, Bonds and Vittoria’s.

It’s a big change for Mr Rigby who says he wants to move into more of a landlord role, which he says is more of his background.

In the last few months he has let Review bar to the Switch Leisure group, who operate a number of nightclubs and venues across Preston and Lancashire.

Bonds ice cream is now let to Ross Wallis who already rents Bonds of Elswick and will now take on the Guild Hall cafe too.

Ross Wallis has taken on Bond's
Ross Wallis has taken on Bond’s

Mr Rigby announced last week that Vittorias, his Italian restaurant, was closing and a ‘national’ operator was signed up to reopen the unit as a steak-based restaurant.

And last year he moved Mundo Tapas into LeVel as Mundo Street Food and all food was prepared by Bonds as part of the deal.

Inside LeVel in the Guild Hall
Inside LeVel in the Guild Hall

Mr Rigby told Blog Preston: “The letting of Bonds Preston is a mile stone for Rigby Group as all catering units are now let. Allowing us to concentrate on our core skill as a landlord whilst giving Prestonians the chance operate iconic restaurants in there home town.

“We have had dozens of approaches in the last 6 months and hope to agree terms on further units.”

The Guild Hall’s entertainment venue continues to be operated directly by the Rigby group.

In November last year it was confirmed the general manager of the Guild Hall, Richard Simkin, was leaving to be replaced by Lisa Mathew – a long-time assistant of Mr Rigby.

Mr Rigby bought the Guild Hall from Preston City Council for £1 in 2014, as the council prepared to mothball the building.

He initially operated all entertainment units himself in the building as well as an extensive revamp of the former Morrisons supermarket to become the LeVel bowling alley and entertainment centre.

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What do you think of the job Simon Rigby is doing at the Guild Hall? Have you visited recently? Let us know your views in the comments below

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