Teachers at free school to strike

Man dies after armed raid on home

A 64-year-old man died after he and his wife were tied up with tape and threatened with a gun during a burglary at their bungalow.

Leading article: Pubs and the cut-price penalty

Given the overall state of the economy, pub chains generally are so far reporting reasonable results, and that includes JD Wetherspoon, which said yesterday that sales rose by almost 10 per cent last year, with a rise of 3.6 per cent in the three months to 15 January. But that does not mean that Wetherspoon's chairman, Tim Martin, does not have a point when he complains about the disparity between prices in supermarkets and prices in pubs.

The Business On... Tim Martin, Chairman, JD Wetherspoon

The man with the mullet?

Wetherspoon in £20m expansion

The pub chain JD Wetherspoon is creating 650 jobs in a £20m expansion involving 14 new pubs. The additional outlets, which are due to open in the next month, will take the chain to 822 pubs.

Wetherspoon profits drop 11 per cent as costs and taxes rise

JD Wetherspoon's profits dropped by 11 per cent in the first half and the company is warning of imminent price rises as Britain's pubs struggle with rising commodity costs and "a pernicious combination" of increasing taxes and regulations.

Investment Column: Land Securities needs recovery to motor

JD Wetherspoon; Jupiter

Business diary: Hunger striker disdains pub grub

Good to see Tim Martin, the chairman of Wetherspoon, sticking to his guns in the latest issue of Wetherspoon News (we're big fans of the pub group's magazine here). Mr Martin answers readers' letters personally and is delighted with the support he is receiving from Mrs Maggs, a Hampshire resident, who complains about opposition to a new Wetherspoon pub in genteel Lymington. "People are often afraid of change," he says. "For example, in Royal Tunbridge Wells, a hunger striker set up stall outside our prospective pub." That particular hostelry won design awards and is still going strong, but sadly Mr Martin offers no news of the hunger striker's fate.

Boardroom shake-up at JD Wetherspoon shocks investors

A surprise management shake-up at JD Wetherspoon triggered speculation about a boardroom split over the pub group's strategy last night.

Leading article: Chain reaction

There is a fine line between good taste and snobbery. To possess the former is to invite general admiration while to be accused of the latter is social death. As we report today, the people of Lymington in Hampshire are aware of this dilemma. After seeing off attempts, first by Argos and then by Wetherspoon, to gain footholds in their village, they fear their motives for doing so could be misinterpreted as snobbish nimbyism.

Lymington: The town that's 'too posh for Argos' turns against JD Wetherspoon's pubs

It is not often you are greeted by a man in a top hat and waistcoat when alighting from a train. But perhaps it should be no surprise that the station master at Lymington is dressed as grandly as the Fat Controller. After all, this is the place with the reputation of being "too posh for Argos".

Breakfast boost for Wetherspoon

Opening its pubs at 7am in order to sell more breakfasts helped JD Wetherspoon post a 4 per cent increase in sales for the year to the end of July, it said yesterday. The pubs group said it had managed to buck the downwards trend in the sector with an aggressive programme of new openings and an expansion of its traditional services.

Business Diary: Heartbreak hotel at the banks

More proof, as if it were really needed, of the difficulty that businesses are having getting finance from the banks. One of the London branches of the Money Shop, a chain of pawnbrokers, has just taken delivery of a life-size bronze statue of Elvis Presley. The gentleman parting with his much-loved tribute to the King apparently needs the money to fund the next stage of his entertainment business.

Pub group recruits school leavers

JD Wetherspoon unveiled plans to create 1,000 jobs for school leavers aged 16 and 17 yesterday.

Investment Column: Pubs toast food, value and flexible finances

Pub operators raised a glass to the football World Cup and early summer sunshine, toasting a much-needed boost after a torrid two years.

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