Charles Wells Pub Company has completed the purchase of the pub, which dates back to the 17th century and had a reputation as one of the premier restaurants in the county. The Bedford-based company has now begun its search for new licensees.
Commercial and property director Richard Burt said: “The Knife and Cleaver is a fantastic addition to our estate. We hope that a redevelopment we have planned will help restore it to its rightful position as a dining pub of choice.”
The purchase had been planned to capitalise on the growth in the Central Bedfordshire economy, headed by the Wixams development at Elstow and leisure developments planned by Center Parcs at Warren Wood near Woburn and NIRAH’s plans to build an aquatic research development and tourist attraction at Stewartby.
Charles Wells plans include the refurbishment of both the dining and living areas at the pub.
Mr Burt said: “The final piece of our jigsaw will be finding the right licensee to run The Knife and Cleaver as their own pub business. We are looking for experienced operators to come on board as early as possible so that we can work together on the redevelopment.“
The purchase of The Knife and Cleaver is the first by Charles Wells since it acquired 31 pubs in 2009.