East Devon District Council Cabinet give green light for negotiations with top restaurant group

Top regional restaurant group Rockfish has been selected as the preferred bidder to take over the Drill Hall site at Sidmouth.

East Devon District Council’s Cabinet has given the green light for negotiations with the Rockfish team who plan to invest significantly in this prime seafront site with the aim of bringing the building back into use as a high quality seafood restaurant.

This is an exciting opportunity that will bring new jobs and a new attraction for visitors and Sidmouth people alike.

The news was welcomed by Cllr Geoff Pook, portfolio holder for asset management, who said:

I am delighted that Rockfish has been selected as the preferred bidder for the Sidmouth Drill Hall site and that they are keen to make the most of its special location.   

East Devon and Sidmouth councils have worked closely together to bring life back to Port Royal and this is a big step forward.

The Drill Hall site, which is owned by the district council, has been marketed by the council’s property advisors JLL for six months, to allow for both community-based and commercial bids.

Of the three bids that were received, the council is delighted that it has such quality interest as Rockfish among them and the council looks forward to the detailed negotiation to follow. Negotiations will begin in earnest and the detail remains commercially confidential.

Sidmouth Town councillor Jeff Turner, who has been involved in this project from the start, said:

This is great news that the people of Sidmouth can get behind. Rockfish is a great fit for the Port Royal site. Its restaurants provide a lively and welcoming atmosphere, using fresh produce from local sources in the South West.

I am sure it will be a great asset to Sidmouth, both to residents and visitors alike and I wish Rockfish and the district council every success in their negotiations.