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Got £750,000 spare? You could buy town centre bar

One of Maidstone’s most long-established bars is on the market for £750,000.

Banks bar and restaurant in Bank Street has been put up for sale after the current owners decided to retire.

Julie Lucas and Ainslie Vine, her partner and business associate, have run the nightspot for 12 years.

Miss Lucas plans to retire from the county town's social scene and hopefully enjoy a quieter life.

She said: “It has been the most amazing 12 years, but it is hard work and there are a lot of regulations. And you see things change – these days there are much less business lunches.

"But I have had the most loyal customers. You see people that started clubbing with us when they were young return with their children for lunch years down the line.”

Advertised through Christie and Co for £749,950, the new owner will get a Grade 2 listed building, split-level bar, large rear garden that can hold around 150 people, and two flats on the top floor.

As one of Maidstone's independent venues, the bar has withstood competition from larger operators such as Beluga Bar which opened in Bank Street in February 2009.

Banks is best known for hosting nights featuring famous DJs such as Sasha, Mark Knight and Robbie Vincent.

It employs 20 staff mainly in part-time roles.

Miss Lucas added: “At the moment we open two nights a week, Friday and Saturday, and over six lunchtimes. There is the opportunity here for someone younger to extend that and do different things with the business.”

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