One of Wales's six Michelin star restaurants forced to close

Restaurant James Sommerin in Penarth has announced that it will not reopen post-Coronavirus

Updated on 29 July 2020 • Written By Henry Coldstream

One of Wales's six Michelin star restaurants forced to close

Welsh Chef James Sommerin has confirmed the closure of his eponymous one Michelin star restaurant in the coastal town of Penarth, following the Coronavirus lockdown.

This comes after the restaurant's signs were taken down last week as Richard Hayward, the building's landlord told Wales Online that the business wouldn't be continuing at that location due to increasing debt.

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Restaurant James Sommerin was one of only six restaurants in Wales awarded a Michelin star in the 2020 guide, but had been shut to the public since March 21 due to lockdown restrictions. Sommerin, who appeared in the most recent series of BBC's Great British Menu, took to twitter the voice his upset about the restaurant's closure, saying that he is "completely devastated".

He added: "We never intended for this to happen and with 6 years of us building something we were so proud of, to have it taken away, through no fault of our own it’s really hard to put into words."

A statement on the restaurant's website has confirmed that anyone with vouchers for the restaurant will be contacted in the coming weeks.

Sommerin had been planning to open a second, more casual restaurant in Barry before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, but has told The Caterer that he still hopes the new restaurant will be able to open later in the summer.

This follows a number of other high profile restaurant closures across the UK due to Coronavirus. Brett Graham's two Michelin-starred The Ledbury in London's Notting Hill announced its permanent closure in June, while The Greenhouse in Mayfair will also not be reopening post lockdown.

In a move which is hoped to help the struggling hospitality industry, the government has announced the 'Eat Out to Help Out' scheme which will see diners able to receive up to £10 off per head when eating out on Mondays-Wednesdays throughout August.

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