Jan and Arthur Watson, co-owners of The Riverside Restaurant, were surprised and thrilled to both be awarded the BEM in the 2015 Queen’s Birthday Honours list for services to the Hospitality Industry in the South West .
When they started running the restaurant together in 1964 it was a seaside cafe and post office. The trade was limited to local fishermen and in the summer people on camping holidays in the area along with the occasional coach trips. Although fish and shellfish on the menu, roast dinners and cream teas were the visitors’ favourites. It was in the early 70s, at the persuasion of Jan (the then cook), that they started making more of local seafood on the menu. In 1976, as the area became more popular as a holiday destination, they extended the restaurant and began offering a full seafood menu attracting visitors from far and wide. Now, over 50 years later with Arthur and Jan still at the helm, the restaurant is one of the most loved seafood restaurants in the area, and is the recipient of many accolades and awards.
“Being recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours is an award not only for ourselves but for all the wonderful staff who have worked at the Riverside over the years, in particular the present team led by the Managers Neil Chilcott, Nick Larcombe and Suzie Turner. We would like to thank all the many loyal customers who have supported us over the years and of course the unknown people who put our names forward for this very special award.”