We would like to start by wishing all of our customers a Happy New Year. As we say goodbye to 2016, a year full of up’s and down’s for both the country and the world as a whole. We thought we’d give a little potted summary of 2016 at the Sweeney.
On the working front it has been another amazingly busy year with over 40 weddings….may we wish our Bride & Grooms all the very best for the future and thank you for choosing the Sweeney for your special day. Birthday parties galore, from Sweet Sixteenths to people celebrating their 90th birthdays, our function room has been the meeting point for them all. People popping in for an Early Bird to black tie events – thank you all for making this yet another great year.
In August we held our very first ‘Gin-Fest‘ this was attended by over 1,000 people over the two days, with a tasting marquee with guest gin distillers talking about their gins and fabulous hand-made bars serving a myriad of gins with various with various accompaniments, live music, BBQ and Hog roasts, it was a fantastic event that we will be repeating again this year, so follow us on Facebook and twitter for updates.
Christmas arrived and with over 3,000 festive meals served during the month of December, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Christmas Day, Boxing Day and the Bank Holiday might be time for the staff to have a rest, but as they say, no rest for the wicked (joking, the staff here are a wonderful bunch!) Christmas Day was for being with the family but back to it bright and early on Boxing Day to serve 130 for lunch, then two weddings in-between and an Exclusive Use Wedding on New Years Eve – wow, what a wonderful day for the happy couple. The hotel grounds were closed to anyone who was not attending the wedding and the weather was crisp and cold, perfectly magical, the perfect day and date for a wedding, a Happy New Year certainly for that family .
On the staff front, in June we said a fond farewell to Bernie Warburton, Head Chef at the hotel for over 30 years and his wife Olwen, the Queen of homemade puddings, together they made a formidable team in the kitchen and we wish them all the best for their retirement. Tom Roberts formally took over as Head Chef and has had a great year putting his own stamp on the kitchen and our food.
Kristian our Front of House Manager and Sean’s son was nominated for the Boutique Hotelier Front of House Manager of the year and out of 280 nominees, made it to the final five and was narrowly pipped to the post by the entrant from Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons, Raymond Blanc’s Oxfordshire Hotel. Freddie, another of Sean’s sons graduated from Loughborough and has joined the team for the next few months and Archie (yes another of Sean’s boys who works here part time) turns 18 on Sunday 8th January, so the start of a big year for him. Noah the last but definitely not the least of Sean’s sons has started to work the odd shift to earn extra pocket money now he is 14 and is enjoying being part of the Sweeney family, we are not sure that Lola, the baby of Sean’s tribe will be quite so keen once its her turn, but being the youngest and the only girl, we are sure she will twist Daddy around her little finger and be off the rota for an extra few years!
May we take this opportunity once again to say a huge thank you to all of our wonderful customers old and new and hope to serve you many times over in 2017 and a huge thank you to all of the staff that make it possible.
Happy New Year one and all x