The architect of M&B's food business joined the Frankie & Benny's operator today after 12 years with the pub giant.
He stepped down as managing director of restaurants on 1 October 2007 and was succeeded by Adam Fowle but continued as a board member until the end of the calendar year.
Alan Jackson, chairman of the Restaurant Group, said: "I am delighted to welcome Tony Hughes to the board. Tony has a wealth of experience in the restaurant industry with a strong background of developing and growing branded restaurants."
Hughes, who won a Pub Industry Catey in 2001, joined Bass Taverns in 1995 as managing director of the restaurant division.
In 2003 Bass, now Six Continents, de-merged to become InterContinental Hotels and M&B, where Hughes joined the board.
Prior to joining Bass, Hughes held senior management roles at B&Q, J.A. Devenish and Whitbread, where he was operations director of Beefeater and managing director of TGI Friday's.
By Christopher Walton