Nick Darnbrough has stepped down as operations director at Boston Tea Party, the Bristol-based 15-strong cafe chain, M&C Report has learnt.

Darnbrough, the former head of hospitality at the Eden Project and head of catering at Mecca Bingo, joined the company as its first operations director back in 2012.

He leaves as the group, which saw like-for-like sales grow 11.5% in the year to 22 October, gears up to open its largest site to date in Plymouth.

The group plans to open three sites this year.

The Plymouth is due to open in May and will feature more than 100 covers spread over 4,500sq ft.

It will be in line with the company’s vision for all-day dining format rather than a café with grab and go options.

In August the group will open a site in Birmingham which will be the third site in the city where it has existing sites at Harborne and in the city centre.

The third site for 2015 is under consideration but will be within the group’s existing heartland and it is considering cites including Cardiff, Bristol, and Bournemouth.