CUSTOMERS of Knutsford Wine Bar will soon wave owner, Vanessa Hatton, an emotional goodbye as she hands over the keys after more than a decade at the helm.

Vanessa who bought the bar on King Street in 2005 told the Guardian that the time is right to her and the town to move on.

The New World Trading Company, a branch of Living Ventures Group based on Church Hill, are set to take charge of the property in early January and re-open with ‘The Botanist’ on March 7, 2016.

Vanessa said that she wanted a company who had the experience of running a successful restaurant which would look after its future.

“After 12 months of pondering whether to sell or not, my husband and I decided it was for the best,” she said.

“We had asked ourselves some pretty challenging questions, such as had we got up at 4am on too many occasions to remember, to come out to the alarm going off when a large spider had decided to crawl over the sensor? We decided in union, yes we had.

“I then approached the New World Trading Company directly about whether they would be interested in acquiring the wine bar.

“I wasn’t interested in any other brand. I know what it needs to be and I know it will be a success. I have to take the Knutsford Wine Bar with me.

“I’m a control freak and I can’t risk someone else taking it on and making a mess of things. New World Trading Company will do a stunning job on both the refit and the running of this amazing site.”

The development of the site is to be managed by Matt Bamber, operations director for the New World Trading Company, who was born and grew up in Knutsford.

He said: “We want to keep the features of the wine bar as it is and put our brand’s style onto it, adding the Botanist theme and very quaint décor.”

The New World Trading Company already owns two Botanist bars, one on Deansgate in Manchester and the other in Alderley Edge, as well as ‘The Oast House’ in Spinningfields.

“It’s just time to move on,” said Vanessa.

“Nothing sinister, nothing to do with money, nothing to do with us opening up another venue or retiring to a tropical island.

“To all our customers, thank you so much for your support over the years. My staff have been unbelievable, thanks for standing by me.

“My husband has been amazingly patient and supportive with his always tired and most grumpy wife and my children have been so gorgeous, trying to understand why mummy goes to work lots and lots and why she is tired and grumpy when she’s not at work.

“It is just time.”