Peter Tat­low, owner of The Golden Fleece in Braugh­ing

Hertfordshire Life - - BUSINESS LIFE -

How did you get started in busi­ness?

Af­ter the pub had been closed for 10 years we were pre­sented with an op­por­tu­nity to re­store The Golden Fleece to its for­mer glory and took pos­ses­sion of it in 2010. We re­tained and en­hanced many of the build­ing’s orig­i­nal fea­tures and aimed to breathe new life into the busi­ness and en­sure it re­gained its place at the heart of the com­mu­nity as a de­light­ful vil­lage pub and din­ing rooms.

What’s your mo­ti­va­tion?

Hav­ing been in a ten­anted pub pre­vi­ously we were frus­trated by the brew­ery tak­ing too long to re­act to sit­u­a­tions and their con­stantly in­flated rents and pur­chase pric­ing. Through buy­ing a free­hold prop­erty we were able to make bet­ter pur­chas­ing de­ci­sions and to fash­ion the busi­ness in a way we wanted, al­low­ing us to pro­vide a qual­ity of­fer.

The big­gest chal­lenges?

Busi­ness rates keep go­ing up, al­co­hol duty is the high­est in Europe and the govern­ment seems to see pubs as a bit of a so­cial pariah, al­though we pro­vide much in­come to them through rates, VAT, duty, cor­po­ra­tion tax and PAYE. Many say find­ing good staff is hard, but we are lucky to have a fantastic team around us.

Most valu­able lessons?

Plan ahead but don’t panic if things don’t go as planned. Treat staff well, train them well and look af­ter them as they are the face of your busi­ness. Al­ways look to learn from oth­ers and never be com­pla­cent.

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