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Mark Lawton to leave the Leconfield ahead of re-brand

29 January 2018 by
Mark Lawton to leave the Leconfield ahead of re-brand

Chef Mark Lawton will leave the Leconfield restaurant in West Sussex at the end of February when the restaurant closes for a relaunch.

Chef Lawton joined the restaurant in Petworth last year as head chef, and retained the venue's two AA rosettes and won it a Michelin Plate rating - a new rating introduced in the 2018 guide representing what was previously described as a Michelin-rated restaurant.

However, the owners have decided to relaunch the business as the less formal New Street Bar and Grill, aiming at an April relaunch following refurbishment.

The Leconfield is owned by Nicola Jones's Market Town Developments, which also includes the Hungry Guest deli and the Angel Inn, both in Petworth.

Managing director Piero Sardano said: "I'm sorry to lose Mark, he's a very good chef, but the style of food we're doing currently tends to be for special occasions, and unfortunately when you're out in the country, the density of people for special occasions is not massive, so it is difficult to get the volumes through that we need.

"We were questioning whether the style of the Leconfield was still right for the current climate and for the location. Mark's resignation was an opportunity to change and prompted us to do it sooner rather than later."

Lawton, who was formerly head chef of the Mandolay hotel in Guildford, said he had loved worked at the Leconfield and now "keeping his ear out" for the right role in the future, while the recruitment process has begun to find a new head chef for the Leconfield.

Menuwatch: The Leconfield >>

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Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

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