Harvey’s Fish Market & Oyster Bar on Ramsgate’s Royal Harbour, is due to open in June 2009. This former pub will now reopen under its new guise following extensive improvements and a complete refit. Overlooking the sea, with 70 covers on the ground floor and up to private dining for up to 30 on the first floor,Harvey’s will be Ramsgate’s first dedicated seafood restaurant, displaying its locally landed fish on a traditional wet fish slab.

Celebrity chef John Burton-Race, of the New Angel Michelin starred restaurant in Dartmouth is the development director of owners Kent Inns of Distinction. With his contagious enthusiasm, he said, ‘A top quality seafood restaurant is essential to attracting well-heeled gastro tourists to a coast resort like Thanet,” adding, ‘What we’re doing at Harvey’s should have major spin-off benefits to other businesses and attractions in the area – it’s going to be very exciting for Ramsgate”

Harvey’s will become the latest addition to the Kent Inns of Distinction portfolio, owned and operated by the husband and wife team of Richard and Sherry Martin, from Sandwich in Kent.

The company was formed in 2004, when it acquired and redeveloped the award-winning Dog Inn at Wingham near Canterbury. In 2007 the couple purchased The Blazing Donkey Country Hotel in Ham, near Sandwich, one of Kent’s most popular civil wedding venues.

The latest addition is the 15th century Ivy House Dining Room & Bar, acquired in March 2009. The Ivy House opened in Tonbridge on 12th May following a £150,000 refit, having been closed for nearly a year. The smart pub/restaurant, the only one of its kind in the town centre, is managed by Richards and Sherry’s son, Daniel.

Commenting on the new ventures and ability to the buck the economic climate, which is seeing pub and hotel closures on a weekly basis, Richard Martin said, “Our business is all about food and despite the downturn and doom mongering in some corners of the press, our customers are still coming out to eat.

“Our new restaurants are in fantastic locations and with John’s involvement in our business, we will be able to improve our offering and introduce some really exciting new styles of food at all our restaurants”, added Martin.