Harry Murray to become chairman of Lucknam Park

24 May 2010 by
Harry Murray to become chairman of Lucknam Park

Harry Murray is relinquishing the role of managing director of Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa in Colerne, Wiltshire, to become chairman of the hotel's board.

He will be replaced by Claire Randall, who has been the general manager at the five-AA-red-star, 42-bedroom hotel for 10 years.

Murray, who was named Hotelier of the Year in 1986 and appointed an MBE in 2006, has no intentions of retiring from the hotel or the industry.

"I will continue to keep my finger on the pulse and be responsible for taking Lucknam Park forward, as well as represent the hotel on various industry bodies such as the British Hospitality Association, Master Innholders, the Academy of Culinary Arts, and as a link to Relais & Châteaux," he said.

Now 70 years old, Murray has been in the hotel industry for more than 50 years. Following his first appointment as general manager at the North Stafford Hotel in Stoke-on-Trent in 1967, he went on to run the Majestic Hotel in Harrogate before going to South Africa to head the President, and then the Landdrost hotels in Johannesburg. He returned to the UK as general manager at the Imperial Hotel, Torquay, before returning to South Africa, this time to open the InterContinental in Cape Town.

On arriving at Lucknam Park, which is owned by a Greek shipping magnate, in 1997, he said he intended to create the best country house hotel in the UK.

"I certainly believe that with the help of a wonderful team, we've gone a long way towards achieving that aim."

Over the past 13 years, around £20m has been spent at Lucknam Park on refurbishing all bedrooms and public areas and building what Murray describes as "the best hotel spa in the country".

Murray won the Lifetime Achievement Catey award in 2008.

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By Janet Harmer

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