The company plans to make 10 major investments (between around £200,000 and £400,000) this year, together with about 15 smaller ‘sparkles’.
Sales and marketing director Paul Sullivan said: “The majority of the conversations we’re having about schemes include the opportunity to add accommodation. It’s a primary focus of our discussions.”
He highlighted three Wadworth pubs that have recently received investment for rooms, or will do soon: the George Hotel in Frome, Somerset; the Crown at Tolldown and the Fleet at Twyning, both in Gloucestershire.
“We feel that pubs with rooms is a real opportunity at the moment,” said Sullivan. He added that every pub in the 240-strong managed and tenanted estate has now been segmented into a distinct trading style: Great Pub, Great Food; Family Dining; or either Ale or Beer House.
“That allows us to start from the bottom up with recruitment, to make sure we’re recruiting the right people for the right pubs based on their segment, and then getting the right products and the right food offering into the right segments.”
He said there was a “question mark” over how Wadworth would accommodate the distinct trading styles under the segmentation plan using its traditional tenancies.
But he said: “Franchising is a very specialist area that we’re not looking at.
“We’re skirting around some of the retail agreement concepts that have been out there in the trade, but at the moment it’s just food for thought.”