Shire Hotels


01282 414 141


Shire Hotels is the owner and operator of a clutch of predominantly four-star hotels catering for both the leisure and the business markets. Its long-term aim is to operate a maximum of 20 hotels in the UK.

It is a division of independent family-owned brewer and pub operator Daniel Thwaites, which has been brewing beer since 1807. The Blackburn-based brewer already owned a number of small country hotels when it set up the separate hotel division in 1980, initially under the Shire Inns name.

Key People:

Managing director: Ian Harkness
Deputy managing director: Tony Spencer
Finance director: David Lowe
Marketing director: Jane Waterworth
Chairman: Ann Yerburgh


Shire Hotels initially set out to be a top three-star operator and then outperform its market niche.

Its continued investment in its portfolio and high standards of service and customer care have won it a number of awards. They include the AA Hotel Group of the Year 2003-4, the RAC Hotel Group of the Year 2004-5, and a Group Hotel of the Year Catey in 2004 for its French château-style Thorpe Park Hotel near Leeds.


"To operate four-star business and leisure hotels with easy access from the motorway network and business conurbations."

Source: company information

Operating Data:

In the year to March 2005, Shire Hotels increased net profit by £1.5m, or nearly 24% on the previous year. Food and beverage sales grew by £13m, or 5%.

Number of hotels: nine.

Most are four-star, except for the Stafford (five-star), Oaks hotel (three-star) and Millstone hotel (two-star).

Thorpe Park Hotel & Spa, Leeds, West Yorkshire
Kettering Park Hotel & Spa, Kettering, Northamptonshire
Aztec Hotel & Spa, Bristol, Avon
Solent Hotel & Spa, Fareham, Hampshire
North Lakes Hotel & Spa, Penrith, Cumbria
Oaks Hotel, Burnley, Lancashire
Cottons Hotel & Spa, Knutsford, Cheshire
Millstone Hotel, Blackburn, Lancashire
The Stafford, London

Number of employees: 1,115 (full- and part-time)


Colne Road