Countryside hotel operator the Maypole Group has bought its fourth property, the Wayford Bridge hotel in Norfolk, for £1.95m.
It has also arranged new bank facilities of £7.87m with Clydesdale Bank to finance £1.7m of the acquisition, with the outstanding amount deferred for two years.
The 15-bedroom Wayford Bridge hotel in the Norfolk Broads National Park achieved a pre-tax profit of £186,000 on turnover of £800,000 in the year to 30 September 2006.
Maypole was set up in November 2003 (initially as AJ Leisure) by industry veteran Alastair McEwen to buy countryside hotels with restaurants or pubs.
The group bought its first property - the 32-bedroom Wroxton House hotel in Banbury, Oxfordshire - for £2.15m in early 2004. It spent a further £5m on two hotels in Thornham, Norfolk (the 14-bedroom Lifeboat Inn and 12-bedroom Old Coach House) in April 2005.
In the six months to 30 June 2006, Maypole boosted group operating profits by 172% to £94,000 (from £34,000) on turnover that rose by 53% from £843,000 to £1.287m.
By Angela Frewin
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