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East Devon gastropub changes hands

30 March 2006

East Devon gastropub the Puffing Billy has been bought by two local licensees and restaurateurs.

New owners Rob and Tina Palace have operated a number of pubs in Devon, most recently the Hungry Fox at Broadclyst.

They have kept on head chef Spencer Jones at the Puffing Billy but intend to rearrange its layout, décor and furnishings and re-establish a locals' bar.

The Puffing Billy sits in the upmarket commuter village of Exton. It is just five minutes from Exeter and the M5 motorway and enjoys good road and rail access.

The two-storey building comprises a 77-seat restaurant extension, up-to-date kitchens that were installed in 2004, and four first-floor bedrooms that can serve as letting rooms or owners' accommodation.

There are also outside seating areas, a patrons' car park and off-road parking sites.

The freehold was sold by Jackson Stops & Staff for previous owner Martin Humphries off an asking price of £700,000.

Stonesmith of Exeter negotiated the price on behalf of the Palaces.

By Angela Frewin

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