Tributes to ‘much loved’ hotel owner

Stephen Addis
Stephen Addis

A POPULAR Scarborough hotelier who provided happy holidays for Scarborough visitors for more than 37 years has died at the age of 63.

Stephen Addis, who owned and ran the Duke of York guest house in Merchants Row, died on January 12 at Scarborough Hospital after contracting a chest infection leading to septicaemia.

Tributes have been pouring in for the “hard working” hotelier who “made everyone welcome”.

His daughters Janet, Victoria and Joey have described their father as a “traditional man who loved Scarborough and was at the heart of the family”.

They said: “He was so loved by all his customers who returned year after year, to see him as much as visit the town”.

“He was such a big part of the Scarborough community, especially in the Old Town. Few people knew more about Scarborough than he did. He really loved this town, and though he was born in Norfolk, his heart belonged to Scarborough”.

Mr Addis started his working life at an insurance company in Norwich before being transferred to York where he took over the branch and set up his own company S T Addis Insurance Services. He and former wife Enid, still in their early 20s, then decided to move to Scarborough and buy a guest house.

They first took over Beverley House in Crown Crescent, before moving to Brock Dene in Grosvenor Road, and finally taking over the Duke of York, which Mr Addis ran for more than three decades.

Enid said: “He was so dedicated to that place. He had it open seven days a week, 51 weeks of the year for 30 years, only closing for one week over Christmas. He never had a holiday but he didn’t mind, he loved what he did.”

Other businesses included the House of Little Jo’s on Westborough, and The Snooty Fox, in Heslerton, which Mr and Mrs Addis were responsible for naming.

Under the ownership of Mr Addis, the Duke of York also appeared in a number of films and TV programmes including A Chorus of Disapproval, Brides in the Bath and Dancing Queen, giving him the chance to meet such famous faces as Anthony Hopkins, Jeremy Irons, Prunella Scales and Helena Bonham Carter.

Hundreds of guests have been in touch with the family to leaves tributes and messages of condolence. Mike Otter, who is a Lancashire county councillor, and his wife Carol said: “It is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we write about the loss of Steve who we loved and respected.

“We could call Steve Mr Scarborough; when we came for a holiday it was as much to see Steve as to have a break. We didn’t just go to the Duke of York, we went to stay with Steve and were made to feel part of his extended family.

“Steve was a caring, gentle man and we will continue to holiday at the Duke of York, but it will never be quite the same without being greeted at the door by a tousle-haired man in a striped pinny. He will be missed but not forgotten.”

Cllr Janet Jefferson, who was a neighbour and a member of the Eastborough Traders with Mr Addis, said: “We have known Steve since we came to Scarborough 30 years ago. He was very much part of Scarborough and a very active member of our community. His hotel was synonymous with our area and he was a great neighbour to us all. We will all miss him very much.”

Family friend and Scarborough businessman James Corrigan said: “I have known him a long time and my condolences go out to his family.

“Steve was one of the long-standing members of the tourism industry and will be known by thousands of his customers and friends as being very committed to Scarborough. He will be missed by all.”

Mr Addis’s family said the Duke of York will be staying in the family and will be continued to be run as a guest house. They added they would do their best to live up to their father’s reputation, and continue to provide a welcoming home from home for his visitors.

A service will be held for Mr Addis at Scarborough Crematorium on Friday at 12.40pm, followed by a gathering of his friends and family at the Duke of York. s family has asked for any donations to be made to the RNLI.