Three of the Carlauren Group's Heritage hotels are to close following the appointment of administrators.
Both Auckland House hotel in Shanklin on the Isle of Wight and the Headway hotel in Morecambe, Lancashire, will fully close; with Cumbria’s Lambert Manor (pictured) in Grange-over-Sands closing its main hotel, although its lodges and pool facilities will continue to operate.
In total, 64 staff have been made redundant across the business: 20 at Auckland House, 29 at the Headway and 15 at Lambert Manor, where four staff will be retained to run the lodges and the pool facility at this location. A small number of redundancies at head office have also been made.
This follows the appointment of Quantuma and Duff and Phelps as joint administrators over the Carlauren Group of companies with a remit to investigate the disappearance of more than £50m of investors’ money last month.
Carl Jackson, managing partner at Quantuma, said: “We were appointed joint administrators on 28 November and have been working tirelessly in this time to stabilise the position of the group.
“With regret it has been necessary to make the difficult decision to close three of the Heritage Hotels properties. The seasonal nature of these properties means heavy trading losses are forecast for the first quarter of the year meaning that that any profits made elsewhere in the group would be negated.
“Our immediate priority is to ensure that those affected receive the appropriate support required to enable them to make the necessary claims from the Redundancy Payments Service. We will be closely managing the group's trading position and will possibly seek to take steps to reopen some or all of these properties as appropriate in due course.
“In the meantime the remaining properties in the group will continue to trade, securing the ongoing employment of the remaining 200 staff.”
In November The Caterer reported that dozens of the group's hotel staff had not been paid their wages in full for October due to “cash flow problems” blamed on the Carlauren Group’s court appearance. At the time, chief executive Sean Murray said all money owed would be paid by the end of November, when the group was expected to be “back on track”.
However, staff spoke of having to seek other lines of credit in order to pay rent, mortgages and bills in the meantime, and it is understood that some staff have still not been paid in full just a week before Christmas.
Heritage Hotels’ nine properties include: Eton House in Yeovil, South Somerset; Auckland House on the Isle of Wight; Dean Valley Manor in Lydney, Gloucestershire; the Coppice hotel in Torquay, Devon; Langdon Court in Plymouth; Lambert Manor in Grange-over-Sands, Cumbria; the Headway hotel in Morecambe, Lancashire; Tyndale House in Yeovil, Somerset; and Arbour hotel in Barmouth, Gwynedd.
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