The leading players and founders behind Amber Taverns, Bundobust and Mowgli Street Food were among the new entrants in the NRB Top Fifty power list 2018.

The full list, which recognises the most influential operators in the North of England, was announced at the Northern Restaurant & Bar show in Manchester yesterday (20 March).

Also among the new entries were casual dining group East Coast Concepts (which runs Neighbourhood in Manchester’s Spinningfields and Victor’s in Hale, Cheshire), and Camerons Brewery

Special achievement awards were awarded to Jobe Ferguson, Ross Mackenzie, and Lyndon Higginson from Black Dog and Liars Club, The Alchemist’s CEO Simon Potts, and Chris Ure and Martin Wolstencroft from bar and restaurant operator Arc Inspirations.

Thom Hetherington, CEO of organiser Holden Media, said: “Despite tremors in the casual dining market, our NRB Top 50 entrants have shown no shortage of ambition. Almost every one of the fifty has grand plans for expansion and new sites, and I am sure that 2018/19 will see a ‘rise of the indies’ which will play to the strengths of our great northern operators.”

Potts, was praised for a “pioneering approach” for everything from marketing to CSR “which has the others playing catch-up”.

Ure and Wolstencroft of Arc Inspirations, were recognised for building a hospitality empire “steadily and organically, without the need for significant outside funding”.

Ferguson and Mackenzie, of Black Dog and Liars Club - which runs nine bars, pubs and restaurants in Manchester and Liverpool – received an award for their “unique impact” on the region’s food and drink landscape.

The NRB Top Fifty 2018 list in full:

Sax Arshad, Director, Zanna Group

Haz Arshad, Director, Zanna Group

Adele, Ashley, Owner / Head Chef, Filmore & Union

Paul Askew, Chef Patron, The Art School

Rob Bacon, Executive Chef Director, Hickory’s Smokehouse

Jason Bligh, Director, Hickory’s Smokehouse

Neil McDonnell, Managing Director, Hickory’s Smokehouse

John Welsh, Operations Director, Hickory’s Smokehouse

James Baer, Managing Director, Amber Taverns

Gary Roberts, Operations Director, Amber Taverns

Craig Bancroft, Managing Director, Northcote

Nigel Haworth, Chef Patron, Northcote

Tim Bird, Owner, Cheshire Cat Pub & Bars

Mary Mclaughlin, Owner, Cheshire Cat Pub & Bars

Ken Buckley, Managing Director, Bravo Inns

Phil Dearden, Finance Director, Bravo Inns

Maurice Camm, James’ Places

Helen Warburton, James’ Places

James Warburton, James’s Places

Marie Carter, Director, Beautiful Drinks

Beau Myers, Director, Beautiful Drinks

Paul Cogan, Group Finance & Resources Director, Betty & Taylors Group

Rachel Fellow, Group Communications Director, Betty & Taylors Group

Philip Hanson, Non Exec Director, Betty & Taylors Group

Clare Morrow, Non Exec Director, Betty & Taylors Group

Berenice Smith, Non Exec Director, Betty & Taylors Group

Lesley Wild, Chair of the Board, Betty & Taylors Group

Sarah Cook, Director, Vaulkhard Group

Harry Vaulkhard, Director, Vaulkhard Group

Oliver Vaulkhard, Director, Vaulkhard Group

Morgan Davies, Founder / CEO, Barburrito

Stewart Davies, Group Operations Director, GG Hospitality

Ryan Giggs, Director, GG Hospitality

Gary Neville, Director, GG Hospitality

Michael O’Hare, Creative Director, GG Hospitality and Chef Patron, The Man Behind the Curtain

Carlo Distefano, Chairman, San Carlo Group

Marcello Distefano, Managing Director, San Carlo Group

James Douglas, Co Owner / Director, Reds True BBQ

Scott Munro, Co Owner / Director, Reds True BBQ

Roy Ellis, Director, Mission Mars

Neil Macleod, Director, Mission Mars

Dan Mullen, Director, Mission Mars

Joel Wilkinson, Director, Mission Mars

Adelaide Winter, Director, Mission Mars

John Ennis, Owner, Graffiti Spirit

Matthew, Farrell, Owner, Graffiti Spirit

Nick, Thomas, Owner, Graffiti Spirit

Jobe Ferguson, Director, Blackdog Ballroom & The Liars Club

Lyndon Higginson, Director, Blackdog Ballroom & The Liars Club

Ross Mackenzie, Director, Blackdog Ballroom & The Liars Club

Kit Graves, Director, Lake District Hotels

Charles Graves, Director, Lake District Hotels

Dani Hope, Sales & Marketing Director, Lake District Hotels

John Gyngell, Director, North Bar / North Brewing Company

Christian Townsley, Director, North Bar / North Brewing Company

Jamie Hawksworth, Owner, Pivovar / The Tapped Brew Co

Jonathon Holdsworth, Founder, Pivovar / The Tapped Brew Co

Chris Hill, Managing Director, New World Trading Company

James Hitchen, Founder, East Coast Concepts

Guy Hitchen, Founder, East Concepts

Chris Hopkins, MD, Hydes Brewery

Marko Husak, Founder, Bundobust

Mayur Patel, Founder, Bundobust

Matthew Jones, Managing Director, Jones Bar Group

Ben Jones, Operations & Finance Director, Jones Bar Group

Ban Kaewkraikhot, Owner / head Chef, Sukhothai

Kim Kaewkraikhot, Chairwoman, Thai Leisure Group

Martin Stead, Owner, Thai Leisure Group

Ashley Kollakowski, Rose Four Group

Simon Stevens, Rose Four Group

Barry Ladhar, Crafted Projects

Michael Ladhar, Crafted Projects

Terry Laybourne, Owner, 21 Hospitality Group

William Lees Jones, Managing Director, JW Lees

Nisha Katona, Founder, Mowgli Street Food

Tomas Maunier, Director, Fazenda Rodizio Bar & Grill

Robert Melman, Director, Fazenda Rodizio Bar & Grill

Paul Moran, Managing Director, Living Ventures

Jeremy Roberts, CEO, Living Ventures

Lucy Nelson, Sales & Marketing Director, Nelson Hotels

Andrew Nelson, Operations Director, Nelson Hotels

Joycelyn Neve, Managing Director, Seafood Pub Company

Andrew Pern, Owner / Executive Chef, The Star at Harome/Star Inn The City

Steve Pilling, Co Owner, Damson Group

Simon Stanley, Co Owner, Damson Group

Jonathan Poole, Director, Red and Blue

Paddy Smith, Director, Red and Blue

Simon Potts, Managing Director, The Alchemist Bar & Restaurant

Oliver Robinson, Managing Director, Frederic Robinson

Simon Rogan, Co Owner, Umbel Restaurant Group

Chris Soley, Chief Executive, Camerons Brewery

David Soley, Chairman, Camerons Brewery

Franco Sotgiu, Co Owner, Solita

Chris Ure, Owner, Arc Inspirations

Martin Wolstencroft, Managing Director / Owner, Arc Inspiration

Gary Usher, Owner, Sticky Walnut

Steven Walker, CEO, Individual Restaurants

Andrew Wildsmith, Founder, Wildsmith Hotels.