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Alan Holmes to be restaurant manager at Kings Head in Cirencester

24 September 2014 by

The Kings Head in Cirencester, a new venture operated by the Vineyard Group, has appointed Alan Holmes as its restaurant and cellar manager.

A former Sommelier of the Year, Holmes has previously held positions at Marcus Wareing's Petrus, the Berkeley hotel in London and Chewton Glen in Hampshire.

Holmes will be overseeing all the front of house offering at the Kings Head, which reopened last week, having close for redevelopment in 2007.

The 45-room hotel also boasts a restaurant with an extensive wine list, a subterranean sanctuary spa, extensive event space.

Speaking of his appointment, Holmes said: "I am delighted to be joining what is shaping up to be an exciting team here at the Kings Head. After a fantastic two years working at the Vineyard near Stockcross, I am really excited to be continuing my career with the Vineyard Group, but in a fresh, new direction. I will be bringing my experience of the Vineyard Group's outstanding level of service to Cirencester's first luxury bolthole."

Offered a scholarship at Hambleton Hall - one of Britain's finest Relais and Chateaux country house hotels - at an early age, Holmes's career has also seen him hold a position at Sharrow Bay, Cumbria, where he worked with Stephen Wilcock who inspired him to become of professional sommelier.

From here, Holmes took up a position with Paul Heathcote at his eponymous two Michelin starred Longridge Restaurant where he progressed to restaurant manager in four years and was awarded The Caterer‘s Acorn Award.

Following this, Holmes took up a position as head sommelier at Petrus, before moving to Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley hotel before going on to a managerial role at Chewton Glen where he stayed for eight years, before moving to his most recent position at the Vineyard in West Berkshire, the Vineyard Group's flagship hotel.

Kings Head general manager Stephen Mannock said: "I am thrilled to have Alan on board, joining our executive chef Wayne Sullivan. Together they will lead the restaurant to become a fantastic foodie destination.

"Joining us from the Vineyard Group, Alan will continue the exceptional level of service the group is known for. The pair of them have a fantastic vision for the food, beverage and dining offering and we look forward to showcasing it to the public when we open this summer."

The Grade II-listed Kings Head building has undergone an extensive multi-million pound restoration programme to address decades of disrepair to the historic fabric. As part of the renovations, a widespread archaeological excavation was carried out in the cellars, uncovering a Roman mosaic dating back to thousands of years. Final fit-outs are currently underway including the bedrooms, which will each be entirely unique in their design yet in keeping with the character of the historical building.

The Kings Head is currently in soft opening and will be fully operational by 1 October. Rates start from £135 per room per night including breakfast.

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