New start for Weston-super-Mare’s oldest building

23 Apr 2019


New start for Weston-super-Mare’s oldest building
 
old.jpgThe oldest building in Weston-super-Mare is now home to the resort’s newest dining experience after being closed for several weeks.
 
A team of tradesmen have been carefully redecorating the charming Old Thatched Cottage in Knightstone Road to create a welcoming venue which mixes the old with the new.
 
The landmark cottage, with its iconic thatched roof, dates back to 1774 and was originally built as a holiday home on the beach, before the sea wall was constructed in 1885, for William Leeves, who returned every summer to stay there.
 
It was bought in 1960 by one of the resort’s best-known businessmen, Axentis Michael, and has remained in the same family ever since.
 
It was being run as a tearoom when he bought it, but he saw its potential for being much more. For that past 40 years, it has been run by his daughter, Maria.
 
She said it was time to freshen the venue up but at the same time restore some old features.
 
She said: “We have introduced some subtle modern lighting which creates a warm atmosphere, accentuated
 
“We’ve also brought in some very experienced tradesmen who are skilled in techniques simply not used very often anymore, to created rounded edges in the walls, rather than the more common ninety-degree corners.”
 
In keeping with the theme of perfectly blending the old with the new, the restaurant will be serving a new menu – but still featuring some old favourites – which will be created under the expert eye of a familiar ‘old face’ in the kitchen.
 
Maria explained: “After a four-year absence, Natasha Sweeting is returning to the Old Thatched Cottage as Head Chef. She was here for eight years before moving on, and we are delighted to welcome her back.
 
“The menu will have a big focus on steak and fish but a key feature will be the specials board. We will be speaking to all our local suppliers, asking what seasonal produce is available at any given time, and then creating dishes around that.”
 
Another development which maintains the old and new theme is the restoration and return of the private dining room for the first time in more than 30 years.
 
Maria added: “I don’t think there are very many restaurants that have been run by the same family for nearly sixty years, and I think my father would have been delighted with what we have done over the past few weeks to ensure this restaurant will continue to serve the town for many, many years to come.”
 
With the internal work complete the Old Thatched Cottage re-opened its doors and welcomed its first diners back last week.
 
Maria said work will now start on making some improvements to the outside seating area which will hopefully be completed by the middle of May.

New start for Weston-super-Mare’s oldest building
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