The warning comes from Colliers International hotels director Peter Brunt – who says for the first time he has little left on his books to offer people looking to move into one of the most vibrant regions in the UK hospitality sector.

He said: “I have offers on the table for just about every hotel and pub we have on our books in the area. For the first time in years I have almost nothing to sell!”

“People who thought they could take their time and wait for bargains are missing out as properties are being snapped up  under their noses.”    

A flurry of activity across the region has resulted in several sales and additional offers on a number of premises.

Among a number of pubs changing hands is the Plough Inn at Finstock, which has been snapped up by   hospitality sector veteran Guy Wallis while hotels and pubs on Colliers books in Stow, Burford, the Stroud valleys, close to Oxford and other Cotswold locations are under offer to capable buyers.

Two businesses are under offer to families funding their purchase largely with cash from the sale of property in London. The Hotel, one of Cheltenham’s  best known hostelries  has also been sold at the asking price after going into administration earlier this year.

Peter Brunt said: “The Cotswolds proved very resilient through the downturn and we continued to sell properties despite the prevailing doom and gloom. Now we have emerged from the downturn the number of premises remaining on our books has shrunk to almost nothing.

“With relatively few hotels coming to the market we always see a great deal of activity around the ones that do and anybody expecting to hang on hoping for a bargain is likely to go away empty handed. Buyers need to remember that the Cotswold trade is strong and that it is great place to do business as well as being a fantastic place in which to live.”

He concluded: My message to owners is that if they are thinking of moving on this is no longer the buyers’ market that they might fear and that prices are firming.”