A top Birmingham restaurant has announced its immediate closure.
Turners at 69, in High Street, Harborne, made the shock announcement today.
Chef Richard Turner said in a statement: “I have made the decision to close Turners at 69 as of Monday 15th January 2018.
“The restaurant has enjoyed many wonderful years on the Birmingham dining scene.
“I would like to apologise to anyone who will be disappointed by the closure and extend a heartfelt thanks to everyone who has supported Turners at 69 over the years.”
In September 2017, the former Michelin starred chef said he was axing his fine dining menus because he thought it was alienating customers.
Mr Turner said he wanted to stop doing elaborate £80-£90 tasting menus at his three AA Rosette eatery, which had held a Michelin star since 2009.
He contacted Michelin inspectors to tell them he would instead be serving a more casual style of food.
He explained at the time: “The tasting menu-style of cooking can be a straitjacket and I think it will be liberating to offer a more casual style of food.
“I will never sacrifice my commitment to quality but I believe quality can be delivered on a more accessible basis.
“Birmingham is very well served with top-end Michelin star restaurants but there is a huge gap in the middle market for great quality food.
“The city has been a victim of its own success in attracting chain restaurants, many of them churning out food of dubious quality. I think my home city deserves better than that.
“I admire the dedication of Birmingham’s star chefs and wish them well. But after almost a decade of unrelenting, high-pressure cooking, I think the time is right for a change of direction – and, most importantly, I think the public is hungry for a change too.”
The restaurant subsequently lost its Michelin star in the Michelin Guide 2018, which was published on October 2 last year.
Mr Turner opened his restaurant in 2007.
But it was ordered to make major improvements by environmental officers in May 2013 and again in March 2017 when it was twice served a food hygiene rating of one out of five .
The scores led to one member of staff being sacked before a fresh inspection was made and the rating was upgraded to a four.
In August 2016, Mr Turner revealed he was then planning to open more Turners restaurants in the city.
He said: “This is Turners at 69, I want a Turners at 21 and a Turner’s at 65. That’s the plan.”