Hope for the future of one of Scarborough’s top hotels

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Negotiations are taking place regarding the sale of the Wrea Head Hotel.

However, the deal could be hampered by plans to build a 34-metre wind turbine in a neighbouring field.

The Wrea Head Hotel was placed into administration in August last year alongside the Royal Hotel, the Clifton Hotel and the Hackness Grange, following the collapse of the English Rose Hotels chain.

Administrators have been running the businesses for almost six months, while seeking buyers for the properties.

Now two business partners have come forward to buy the 20-bedroomed Wrea Head Hotel in Scalby.

Their plans came to light when the pair submitted a letter of objection to Scarborough Council, speaking out against an application to build a 50kw wind turbine at Scalby Hayes.

In the letter Gerald Aburrow and Dr Mark Giles, of Maida Vale in London, state: “We are in the process of purchasing the Wrea Head country house hotel, a property we are sure you know well as it is a local landmark building.

“We are planning to relocate from London to Scalby to continue the business and safeguard the jobs of the hotel staff.

“It is our intention to invest in the business and return it to being a hotel that services and supports its local community as well as the many tourists that come to enjoy the beautiful landscapes of the North York Moors and coast line.”

Administrators have confirmed negotiations are taking place.

Speaking on behalf of Pricewaterhouse Coopers, spokesperson Jill Peacock said: “They are in discussions about the sale of the property. We cannot divulge any names because they are still in the discussion phase.”

It is not known when the deal will be completed, or what effect the planning decision regarding the proposed turbine will have on the sale.

The application, which has attracted more than 150 letters of objection, has been resubmitted after being refused by the planning committee last year. A decision on the application is due by February 15.

Speaking about the proposed turbine, the Wrea Head’s prospective buyers Mr Aburrow and Dr Giles said: “We are also looking at reducing the impact the hotel has on its CO2 emissions and energy consumption.

“We ruled out a large wind turbine at the start as it would detract from the beauty of the local area and lead to noise pollution, and have a negative visual impact for both our guests and neighbours. We felt this option was unacceptable.

“The monotonous droning noise potentially for 24 hours a day, every day, without respite is not an attractive scenario for guests paying to stay in a country house retreat.

“If the business is impacted by the wind turbine then the loss of jobs is inevitable as we will not be in a position to employ the current 20-plus staff, and this will have an impact on the amount of tourist money spent in the local economy.”

Rumours also recirculated linking the owners of Scarborough’s Crown Spa Hotel, in the Esplanade, to the Royal Hotel.

Directors of the Crown Spa were seen having a tour of the Royal in September last year, and described the possibility of a purchase as an “opportunity”.

However, speaking to the Evening News on Saturday, Richard Frank, joint managing director of the Crown Spa, said: “No, we have not bought the Royal. People keep asking me if we have or if we are going to, but the time isn’t right for us at the moment.”