Company behind famous Sheffield restaurant goes into liquidation

The future of one of Sheffield’s best-known restaurants remains unclear after the company running it went into liquidation.

By Robert Cumber
Friday, 20th September 2019, 2:05 pm
Updated Friday, 27th September 2019, 9:10 pm
Silversmiths Restaurant, on Arundel Street, in Sheffield city centre
Silversmiths Restaurant, on Arundel Street, in Sheffield city centre

Silversmiths, or The Runaway Girl as it was then known, famously featured on Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares in 2009 in what was one of the show’s most expletive-ridden episodes.

The celebrity chef helped rebrand and transform the fortunes of what had been a struggling venue on Arundel Street in the city centre, which went on to win a clutch of awards under its new guise.

But the restaurant closed suddenly at the end of July, when a message on its Facebook page stated it had been flooded and would remain shut ‘until further notice’, and it has yet to reopen.

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Silversmiths Restaurant, on Arundel Street, in Sheffield city centre

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A notice placed in The Gazette this week revealed the licence-holder, Gallaghers of Yorkshire Limited, was being voluntarily wound up, with Graywoods appointed as the liquidator.

The announcement followed a meeting of creditors which was held on August 29.

A voluntary liquidation can be proposed, according to The Insolvency Service, when a company can’t pay its debts and enough shareholders agree to the move.

It is not known at this stage how much was owed by the business and to whom, or what will happen to employees.

Angry diners had reported turning up to meals they had booked weeks in advance only to find the doors locked and the place in darkness, having received no notice it had been closed.

The landlady of a nearby pub claimed staff had been given no notice of the restaurant’s closure either.

There is nothing on the restaurant’s website or Facebook page explaining what has happened, and a spokesman for Graywoods said he could say no more than the very limited information provided on the winding-up notice.

Gallaghers of Yorkshire, whose directors Companies House lists as John Gallagher, Mark Beighton and Thomas Straw, took over the premises licence in October last year.

The venue was previously run by a company called Silversmiths Restaurant Limited, which owed creditors more than £300,000 and had failed to pay staff when the restaurant closed suddenly in August last year before reopening soon after under new ownership.

It was owned until 2017 by Justin Rowntree, who was in charge when it featured on Kitchen Nightmares.

The restaurant had been crowned Yorkshire’s best restaurant in 2010, in the Taste of Yorkshire awards, and 2015, in the Deliciously Yorkshire Awards; was a runner up in the Observer Food Monthly’s 2013 Restaurant of the Year award; and in 2012 came fourth in a list of the UK’s sexiest places to eat, published in The Times.