Subsidiary Companies

Wimpy Bars



Pleasure Foods Ltd

(Golden Egg Franchise Limited)

Pleasure Foods Limited was incorporated on 3 May 1957 to handle the franchise operations of its Wimpy Bars. Its Memorandum of Association stated: 'to carry on the business of providing advice and technical assistance and other services in connection with the production of foodstuffs and the operation of hotels, restaurants and snack bars and the exploitation of any of the patents, trade marks or other rights held by the Company whether relating to the production of foodstuffs or any other goods or processes whatsoever'.

Pleasure Foods Ltd was a wholly owned subsidiary of Wimpy International Ltd who in turn were owned by J. Lyons & Co. Hence the company did not have to make their accounts available since officially its services were provided without remuneration in connection with its business of franchising Wimpy Bars. The directors appointed at incorporation were three J. Lyons & Co company secretaries, Dennis Byron (Assistant Company Secretary), Maurice Cook (Chartered Secretary) and Philip Dyer (Chartered Secretary). In 1958 Neil Salmon and John Worthington (Sales Manager) were appointed Directors and in December 1964 Pleasure Foods Ltd opened a new head office at 214 Chiswick High Road. In July 1977 this office was closed and the company's head office reverted to Cadby Hall. In August 1977 they occupied premises in Syon Lane, Isleworth, Middlesex. At about this time Zippy Franchises Ltd became an Allottee of Pleasure Foods Ltd but nothing is known of this association.

Whereas Wimpy International Ltd was the holding company for Pleasure Foods Ltd the later were responsible for the day-to-day running of the Wimpy businesses in the United Kingdom. They granted franchise licences, provided advice on restaurant siting, marketing, operating ideas and all products; these were largely supplied by the subsidiary companies of Lyons namely, Bakery for buns and Henry Telfer for hamburgers. By 1969 over 460 Wimpy restaurants had been opened in the United Kingdom.

Pleasure Foods Ltd, who had been associated with Philip and Reginald Kaye since 1958 as franchisors of Wimpy Bars, had learned in 1965 that the brothers intended to expand their Golden Egg restaurants (which they ran alongside their Wimpy Bars) into the provinces. They (Philip and Reginald Kaye) opened restaurants close to the Wimpy Bars they ran and originally called them Bacon & Egg Restaurants but changed their name to Golden Egg Restaurants Ltd when their business became a limited company. The Golden Eggs, as they were known, were run on similar lines to those of Pleasure Food Wimpy's but their décor and menu were quite different and the two different styles of operation appeared to complement each other. Learning of the Kaye's business expansion, Pleasure Foods Ltd suggested that they run these restaurants on a franchise basis through Pleasure Foods Ltd and in 1965 a new company - Golden Egg Franchises Ltd - was formed with the original Golden Egg Company and Pleasure Foods Ltd each taking 50% of the equity. The company expanded fast taking franchise outlets in Aberdeen, Bath, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Brighton, Colchester, Coventry, Great Yarmouth, Norwich and Liverpool. The target consumer market was the medium spending-niche with meals costing five to six shillings per head.

Eric Cadwgan took over as Sales Director of Golden Egg in April 1968 after 11 years with Pleasure Foods Ltd and several years before that with the Ice Cream Department. The site selection of the Golden Eggs was the responsibility of Pleasure Food's Estates Department under the guidance of Alan Green. The provincial Golden Eggs had a more subdued décor than the original restaurants in London. They were designed by Golden Egg Franchises' Operation Manager, Tony Collins, and his assistant John Hill in conjunction with the Kaye brothers. The cost of conversion varied between £14,000 to £20,000 with shop-fitting taking about eight weeks.

With the success of the Golden Egg Franchises, Pleasure Foods started another operation which they called, Bake n' Take Ltd. Little is known of this operation but it was sold in December 1976 to United Biscuits (Holdings) Ltd with the Wimpy and Golden Egg restaurants.


© Peter Bird 2002