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Owners of family run William and Victoria buy premises after 30 Years

When David Straker joined his family’s restaurant business in Harrogate 1992 he always intended to take over the business but now he has gone one better and bought the premises, securing the future of one of Harrogate’s best known eateries.

The Victorian townhouse on Cold Bath Road has been home to the family run restaurant and wine bar William and Victoria for almost 30 years and is now owned and run by David and his wife Johanna.

The couple began negotiations to buy the freehold in January and the transaction finally completed at the end of October. The purchase was handled by Claire Armer of Harrogate law firm Berwins on behalf of the Strakers.

David said: 

We were presented with a once in a lifetime opportunity and we knew we had to do everything we could to buy it to secure the future of the business.

Consistency and continuity are vital in the hospitality sector but the decision to buy was personal as well as practical. Having worked in London where restaurants see new faces every day, I appreciate the difference here where we know our customers and as a family with three young sons we’re very much part of the community.


pic shows Claire Armer of Berwins (left) toasts the purchase of Will and Vics with David and Johanna Straker
Claire Armer of Berwins (left) toasts the purchase of Will and Vics with David and Johanna Straker


The Strakers are grateful that loyal local trade has protected the restaurant from the impact of a drop in conference footfall across town.

 David added:

There are definitely fewer customers associated with conference centre events but the vast majority of our trade comes from regular diners from Harrogate and the surrounding area, some of whom visit us several times a week. The conference trade is a nice top up when it’s there but thankfully it isn’t crucial to our survival.

Johanna handles all our marketing and the growth of social media means she can keep in touch with customers and other local businesses in a way that was never possible in the past.

David added that social media was also playing an increasing role in the restaurant’s marketing strategy.

Claire Armer of Berwins Solicitors said the deal marked a significant landmark in the history of a successful local business.

Claire said:

It has been very exciting to be a part of the development of such an iconic business in Harrogate and one for which David and Johanna have a great deal of passion.

Deals like this follow Berwins’ commercial team’s ethos to work with and support the local business community in Harrogate and the surrounding areas.


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