NEWS of the demise of the jewel in the crown of the former English Rose Hotels Scarborough has been met with shock.
Scarborough MP Robert Goodwill says it is a sad day for the Turner family and their staff.
He said: “I know that they’ve been battling debts for a couple of years and it appears they’ve not been able to trade themselves out of this difficult situation.
“We can now only hope that new operators come along and keep this premier hotel open. I would imagine that the administrators will keep it open and sell it as a going concern.”
Mr Goodwill added: “The Royal Hotel is one of the top hotels in Scarborough and would be the jewel in anyone’s crown.
“The public rooms downstairs are fantastic and the location couldn’t be better.
“I’m really sad for the family, who it seems have been fighting a losing battle. It’s also such a shame for their many loyal staff.”
Mr Goodwill is hoping that administrators will now give assurances that bookings will be honoured throughout the transition process.
Janet Deacon, North Yorkshire Area Director at Welcome to Yorkshire said: “We are shocked and saddened by the news not only for the staff but also for visitors to Scarborough.”
Former Royal Hotel manager Nick Taylor, who is now Scarborough Council’s investment manager, said: “It’s a great shame.
“Huge amounts of effort and money have been pumped into it and some lovely work has been done on the building.
“I managed it from 2000 to 2003 and it was an exciting time. It was challenging with building work going on, but it was wonderful to see it being restored to its former glory.
“It’s a lovely building, a lovely old girl, and I feel sorry for the family and staff.”
David Frank, a director of the Crown Spa Hotel and member of Scarborough Hospitality Association, said: “It’s a very tough industry and this isn’t a good thing for the town.
“We need large, strong hotels such as the Royal. It’s a really important landmark hotel for the town and I just hope its going to keep running.”
When asked about whether he would consider expanding and buying the Royal, Mr Frank said his focus at the moment is on his own family business.
He said: “We’re just focusing on what we’re doing at the moment because we want to do it well. The marketplace is becoming increasingly tougher and its a difficult time for us to think about doing anything like that.”
The hotel opened 190 years ago. In 1935 the building, now a three-star hotel with 118 beds, was bought by Tom Laughton.
l History of the Royal – tomorrow