“You only get out what you put in”
After 15 years in the insurance industry including a 2-year break for National Service Frank Thorley started business in 1967 in retail with a small newsagents shop. With his drive and enthusiasm he quickly quadrupled takings in the shop and started wholesaling in cigarettes and tobacco in addition to setting up a cigarette vending machine business in pubs.
“Always remember you have a choice”
Thorley Taverns was conceived in 1971 when Frank acquired his first pub, The Angel, in Crosswall in the City of London. He later acquired four further pubs in London before purchasing his first freehouse in Broadstairs, Kent in 1975 called The Charles Dickens. Following a massive investment the premises was completely redesigned and refurbished and at that time it was fair to say the pub was indeed ahead of its time. When for health reasons Frank sold the freehouse in 1980 it was one of the busiest pubs in Kent, trading at over 1400 beer barrels a year! At this time Frank was ordered by his doctors to take it easy, however this proved to not be the case as throughout the 1980’s he continued to purchase pubs in and around Thanet.
“Simply The Best”
In 1990 Thorley Taverns bought a derelict pub on Ramsgate seafront that had been closed and boarded up for a number of years due to two majors fires. There were many of the opinion that the opening of The Royal following a major redesign, refurbishment and another massive investment was the catalyst of the regeneration of Ramsgate. In that same year because of increased turnover a limited company was formed and in the following decade Thorley Taverns continued to expand and acquire a variety of freehold and free of tie leases.
When the company purchased the Fayreness in 1995 it was the first acquisition with the facility for hotel accommodation. It wasn’t until the major investment in 2000 that the potential of the Fayreness was realised with yet again massive alterations, extensions and refurbishment, which created 29 superb new ensuite bedrooms in addition to providing greatly improved bar, restaurant and banqueting facilities.
“We lead…others follow”
Following the purchase of the Oak Hotel in 1998 again many of the rooms were upgraded. Once more there was massive investment in 2004 and 2005 that provided 34 ensuite bedrooms, 8 of which overlook the picturesque Ramsgate Royal Marina. The final piece of the jigsaw at the Oak was the opening of the fantastic Atlantis seafood restaurant, which enjoys full air-conditioning and is decorated to a very high and unusual standard and provides a la carte dining for up to 60 customers. This is supplemented by the superb Atlantis ground floor non-smoking bar open to both non-residence and non-diners.
Thorley Taverns expansion continues with the extension to the Hotel De Ville, Ramsgate, which has provided a further bar with function facilities together with the complete refurbishment of the original bar and the whole of the premises. Four additional top class ensuite rooms have been provided and the original rooms have been completely refurbished so that 10 twin or double rooms are now available for letting.
Work started in January on the Pegwell Bay Hotel and more information on the new hotel will be available on our website in the future.
“Nobody works for us…they work with us”
We are thoroughly dedicated to offering our staff all available training including nationally recognised qualifications such as NVQ’s and NCPLH’s as well as basic food hygiene, first aid and a number of other part time courses. Thorley Taverns are the second largest employers in the whole of Thanet when including both full and part time staff and continue to lead the pace in the ongoing investment and commitment to the area. The company has always tried wherever possible to source all of our resources from other local business in order to keep the community economy as strong as possible and so help support the ongoing regeneration of the area.
Frank and his son Philip work together in the operation of the business and are supported by a strong team at Head Office and some excellent unit management teams. Many of our team members have been with the company for a good number of years, which gives Thorley Taverns a strong family ethic. We believe that this spirit has been passed down into our venues giving them a warm and friendly atmosphere.
We continue to bring the finest style, the highest standards and most outstanding service to our operation, and will always endeavour to give our customers the most pleasurable experience possible to meet their aspirations.