Search

Thetford’s Dolphin Inn to re-open as up-market steak house

09:48 25 October 2012

Clive and Samantha Vooght (L to R) Karen Smith and Sean Licence of Hoggods who are taking over The Dolphin Inn in Thetford. Photograph Simon Parker

Clive and Samantha Vooght (L to R) Karen Smith and Sean Licence of Hoggods who are taking over The Dolphin Inn in Thetford. Photograph Simon Parker

Archant

A Thetford pub which closed its doors earlier this year will be re-opened as an up-market steak restaurant by a local company.

HogGod’s will refurbish the The Dolphin Inn, on Market Street, with the aim of selling high-class wines, real ales and good-quality food.

The work, partly-funded by owners of the building, Enterprise Inns, should be completed in six weeks and it is hoped the restaurant, which will create four jobs, will open by mid-December.

HogGod’s was set up as a catering company, based on Roman Way, four years ago by two couples – Clive and Sam Vooght, and Karen Smith and Sean Licence.

Miss Smith said she hoped local people as well as those from further afield would visit the new-look, 50-seater, Dolphin Inn.

“It’s going to be a restaurant, not a pub,” she said. “It’s 318-years-old, it’s the oldest in Thetford, and it’s got so much character. I don’t think there’s anywhere else like it in Thetford. We want to get it up and running and get people through the door.”

Head chef, Darren Goodley, added: “The Dolphin used to be really busy and you used to have to book to eat here but when we stepped in they still had the old units and lights and even plates that I remember from being a kid.

“Now it will have a new kitchen, new bar top, new wines – we want to be at the top-end of the market and we’re going to do it properly. We want it to be a nice restaurant.”

HogGod’s, which also set up the Pantry Fayre Café a year ago on the site of the outside catering unit, and employs two chefs, one part-time and two weekend staff, was set-up with the couples’ own funds and profits are used in invest in new ventures.

“The outside catering is seasonal and it drops off around October to March and we couldn’t do a lot for the staff we had in the winter so we opened the café to give them regular employment,”

Miss Smith said. “We’re using it as a blueprint really and once it’s making a good profit we can take it elsewhere – if the pub goes well we’ll open another one.

“At the moment we take nothing from the company because we’re building it up – We step back and take on employees and we carry on. It’s push, push, push.

“If we can establish ourselves in a recession then by the time everyone else catches up, we’ll already be there.”

0 comments

Other news

Tue, 11:20
Thetford Academy have set up programme for past students to come forward and inspire current pupils with talks and mentoring.
Sue Scott is with some of the students from the school who will benefit from the programme.

A school is calling on its former pupils to step up and help inspire its current crop of students.

Tue, 10:54
Eric, who bolted after being attacked by another dog at Browns in Mundford

A holidaying family whose pet dog bolted after a savage attack by another dog have thanked a “fantastic community” after an outpouring of help to find him.

Tue, 08:35
Maciej Kuzma is pictured at Bury Magistrates Court.

A persistent “pest” who became jealous when his friend started talking to other men launched a bizarre campaign of harassment against her, a court heard.

Sunday, February 7, 2016
A car that has collided with the front of Tesco in Thetford

A man has been arrested after the police helicopter had to be called into action when a car crashed into the front of a superstore.

Most Read

Tue, 11:20
Thetford Academy have set up programme for past students to come forward and inspire current pupils with talks and mentoring.
Sue Scott is with some of the students from the school who will benefit from the programme.

A school is calling on its former pupils to step up and help inspire its current crop of students.

Read more
Thetford
Tue, 08:35
Maciej Kuzma is pictured at Bury Magistrates Court.

A persistent “pest” who became jealous when his friend started talking to other men launched a bizarre campaign of harassment against her, a court heard.

Read more
Thetford
Yesterday, 17:02
Thetford Dolphins made the short trip to Mildenhall for the West Row Coaches Trophy Gala.

Thetford Dolphins made the short trip to Mildenhall for the West Row Coaches Trophy Gala.

Read more
Sunday, February 7, 2016
A car that has collided with the front of Tesco in Thetford

A man has been arrested after the police helicopter had to be called into action when a car crashed into the front of a superstore.

Read more
Thetford
Tue, 10:54
Eric, who bolted after being attacked by another dog at Browns in Mundford

A holidaying family whose pet dog bolted after a savage attack by another dog have thanked a “fantastic community” after an outpouring of help to find him.

Read more
Thetford

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 5°C

min temp: 1°C

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Thetford and Brandon e-edition today E-edition