A hospitality veteran with more than 20 years of industry experience has taken the top job at a south Cumbrian bar and restaurant.

James Gomes has joined the team at Oscar’s , at the Abbey House Hotel, as manager.

He said: “I have 22 years of service in the hospitality sector and my passion for great service and making sure people have a wonderful experience has not changed. It is what excites me and there is a great team working with me to help make that happen.”

James grew up in Bangladesh, before moving to Cyprus where he settled with his family.

He completed a degree in hospitality management while gaining experience in the sector and moved to south Cumbria in 2007 where he worked at a number of hospitality businesses before joining the Abbey House Hotel and Gardens team for the first time in 2012.

He left the business in 2017 but returned when he was approached by general manager John Horton.

James added: “Oscar’s exists as a standalone bar and restaurant. Yes, we are part of the Abbey House Hotel, but we are open to everyone.

“This is a very special place with an exceptionally talented chef – and I’m very proud to be a part of it.”

The Abbey House Hotel and Gardens underwent a near £4million revamp, starting in late 2013 and completed in February 2017.

Bosses at the hotel now have plans to invest £2.5 million in an extension of its Cavendish function suite so it can host up to 250 people.