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Brixham restaurant is final stage of £22m harbour regeneration

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: August 02, 2012

Brixham’s Fish Market will officially mark the opening of its  restaurant, Crab Quay House, on Friday, which enjoys views over the town and is partly accommodated within the building’s stunning glass tower

Brixham’s Fish Market will officially mark the opening of its restaurant, Crab Quay House, on Friday, which enjoys views over the town and is partly accommodated within the building’s stunning glass tower

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A £22 million investment in Brixham's Fish Market and commercial harbour facilities will be completed tomorrow with the opening of a £500,000 seafood restaurant and deli.

Crab Quay House will launch tomorrow within Brixham's landmark fish market building.

The 90-cover restaurant which can cater for an additional 50 diners seated on a balcony overlooking the harbour, is a sister business to the Glass Blowing House on Plymouth's Barbican, both owned by rugby player-turned-entrepreneur Ed Steven.

The deli will include a cheese counter, local produce, baked goods, olive and meat selection, and a wet fish counter.

Acting on behalf of the Harbour Authority, the Torbay Development Agency put the fishmonger and restaurant units out to tender via Exeter-based property agents Alder King. Mr Steven's company secured the lease 18 months ago, following a selection process which lasted around six months.

The regeneration of Brixham Fish Market was completed in November 2010. The facility provides fish processing and industry support facilities for the port, where the highest value catches in England are landed.

On the completion of the Fish Market, the restaurant site was "just below" shell and core standard, with the Torbay Development Agency paying for works to bring the unit up to the pre-fit out and flooring stage, which was undertaken by the restaurant, which hired its own contractors.

The restaurant was designed by Torquay architects Kay Elliott, with interiors by Cathryn Bishop of St Kew based Cornish Interiors, who was also behind the Glass Blowing House.

The new venture has created 32 new full-time equivalent jobs and is set to increase Brixham's profile as a tourist destination and foodie hot-spot.

The St Austell Brewery has already generated new footfall to the harbourside, with its September 2011 opening of a restaurant in the town's Old Market House, following a £1.5 million redevelopment project.

Mr Steven said: "Brixham is a town that is on the up. The opportunities are great and the site is terrific, in terms of its views. The town itself is so beautiful and is bound to become more of a tourist hub – I'm really excited about what is going on here – there are a lot of signs of growth. The other thing is has going for it, is a real community spirit."

Meanwhile, his company is looking ahead to the launch of another new venture, a 60-cover "Italian themed" food-led pub, the Pickwick Inn, at Bigbury.

The centuries-old listed building's fit-out is currently ongoing, after wet weather held up works to its exterior earlier this year, which left the £300,000 project about a month behind schedule.

"It's now all systems go," said Mr Steven, who added that the venture would create around 22 new jobs, when it opens later this month. He is currently in the early stages of another two Westcountry restaurant propositions; one in Devon and one in Cornwall, which are anticipated to open next year.

Crab Quay House aims to generate a £1.2 million annual turnover and will source virtually all of its fish from the fish market, plus up to 90 per cent of all other produce locally.

It anticipates that it will draw in 80 per cent of its diners from outside the local area, helping to generate a "significant" secondary spend within other local businesses.

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