She helped to evolve the wine bar business during her time at the company, starting out as a manager and working her way up to become managing director over eight years ago. She is leaving “to pursue a career elsewhere in marketing”.
From May 1, her role will be taken over by Ed Gardner (pictured), group business development director for Corney & Barrow Group, the wine merchant that dates back to 1780. He has many years’ experience in the drinks industry and has been with Corney & Barrow since 2001. He was previously national sales manager at Bedford brewer and pub operator Charles Wells.
Two years ago, Knowles led the strategy to drop “wine” from the company name to become Corney & Barrow Bars, or C&B Bars. At the same time, the company launched Devonshire Terrace, an unbranded bar and restaurant in the City (pictured below).
Corney & Barrow opened its first bar in 1983 and now has 13 across the City and Canary Wharf.
Chairman Percy Weatherall said: “We wish Lucy well. However, we are lucky to have an ideal internal candidate to step into this key role.
“The board are confident that Ed can provide the necessary strength of leadership and direction to enable Corney & Barrow Bars to remain the premium bar offering of choice within London’s financial district.”
Updated April 10, 2013: Lucy Knowles is to join SSP UK, which operates restaurants and cafés at stations and airports across the country, as chief marketing officer. In her new role, she will be responsible for the development of SSP’s brands which include Upper Crust, Caffè Ritazza and Millie’s Cookies as well as franchised operations for M&S Simply Food, Starbucks and Burger King. She starts on May 20.