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

Feature on Onion growing on the Elveden Estate as they prepare for their Big Onion Festival later this month. Senior Farm Manager Andrew Francis.

Visitors to an annual festival are being given the chance to go to one of its new events for free by showing how well they know their onions.

Inspector Terry Lordan, Thetford Police.

Thetford’s police chief has insisted the town is safe after two incidents on Saturday, one of which left a man with serious facial injuries.

The scene of the collision on the A1088 at Honington.

Suffolk’s police and crime commissioner Tim Passmore has insisted a new roads policing unit “will happen”, as a fatal road accident in Honington yesterday saw the death toll on Suffolk’s roads increase to 24 this year – the same number as the whole of 2012.

Norwich Crown Court. Photo: Adrian Judd.

A man, who glassed another guest at a wedding party leaving him with a facial scar and nerve damage, has been jailed for 20 months.

Most Read

Yesterday, 17:04
Police were called after a woman was assaulted in Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

Robbers tried to grab a man’s bag and dragged him along a street in Thetford while driving, according to police.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:15
A man has been attacked in Bridge Street, Thetford

A man has suffered serious facial injuries including multiple fractures and had his wallet stolen after a robbery in Thetford town centre.

Read more
Inspector Terry Lordan, Thetford Police.

Thetford’s police chief has insisted the town is safe after two incidents on Saturday, one of which left a man with serious facial injuries.

Read more
Thetford
Yesterday, 15:53
The scene of the collision on the A1088 at Honington.

Dr Ronak Patel, aged 33 of Ixworth, died following a collision between a lorry and the Volkswagen Golf he was driving this morning.

Read more
Suffolk Police
The scene of the collision on the A1088 at Honington.

Suffolk’s police and crime commissioner Tim Passmore has insisted a new roads policing unit “will happen”, as a fatal road accident in Honington yesterday saw the death toll on Suffolk’s roads increase to 24 this year – the same number as the whole of 2012.

Read more
Tim Passmore

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 21°C

min temp: 15°C

Digital Edition

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