Brighton Pier Group has reported continued progress in stabilising its 13-strong bars division, with EBITDA for the 26 weeks to 24 December growing 9% to £1.2m.

The Luke Johnson-chaired group said that the division continues to perform well on key calendar dates, such as Halloween and Christmas, both of which traded ahead of last year on a like-for-like basis during the period.

The group updated on property developments within the former Eclectic Bars estate, saying the freehold of its Derby site, which has already been leased out. It has also assigned the lease of the Manchester Sakura site on 12-month rent-free agreement.

During the periods the group continued to invest in Brighton’s Palace Pier and acquired Lethington Leisure Limited, owner of Paradise Island Adventure Golf, which operates six indoor mini golf site.

Total revenue for the period fell from £17.74m to £16m, which the company said was down to a combination of bad weather, disruption due to refurbishments of parts of the pier and the disposals of several bars since the comparative period in 2016.

On the outlook, the group said: “Trading for the first half is in line with market expectations and this trend is expected to continue through the seasonally quieter second half as management execute the group’s strategy.

“The long-term strategy of the enlarged group is to create a growth company that operates across a diverse portfolio of leisure and entertainment assets in the UK. The group will achieve this objective by way of organic revenue growth across the whole estate, together with the active pursuit of future potential strategic acquisitions of experiential leisure businesses, thus enhancing its portfolio and ability to realise synergies by leveraging scale.”