Ultimate Leisure, the Newcastle-based late-night operator, has reported that like-for-like sales dropped by 3% for the 22 weeks to 3 December compared to the same period in 2005. However, group sales increased by 4% over the period. The company said trading remained in line with expectations. In an AGM statement, the group said it had acquired three new businesses during the period, two bars from Life Inns, the Belfast-based company, for £1.4m, and a freehold bar in Newcastle. It also opened its first Prohibition bar in the City of London, in Bishopsgate this week. Mark Jones, chairman, said: “Our refurbishment programme is on track for completion by Easter next year and so far 22 bars have received investment and the performance post refurbishment, supported by enhanced market spend, has been encouraging.”