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UPDATE: Jobs fear as hotel firm goes into administration
10:55am Wednesday 23rd October 2013 in News
A FIRM which owns two large Weymouth seafront hotels has gone into administration, putting dozens of jobs at risk.
Hollybush Hotels Limited, which owns the Hotel Prince Regent and the Russell Hotel in Weymouth, has appointed administrators.
The company, which trades as Martyn Leisure Breaks, has 300 staff working across five hotels which are spread across Dorset, Somerset and Surrey.
Dozens of workers are employed at the adjoining Weymouth hotels, which have 163 bedrooms between them.
Many local clubs and organisations meet at the Hotel Prince Regent’s function rooms and the facilities are also used for weddings.
Both hotels were put up for sale for £6.5million in June following the death of former owner Martyn Harrison, pictured, ex-chairman of Weymouth FC.
Expressions of interest in the hotels are being welcomed by joint administrators Zolfo Cooper LLP.
Zolfo Cooper said it would continue to trade the business while ‘exploring a range of options including the sale of all or part of the business as a going concern’.
Partner Nick Cropper said: "We believe the company’s hotels are attractive to a range of potential buyers and welcome expressions of interest from third parties to acquire any or all of the hotels and the leisure park.
“We would also like to thank the staff for their continued support and professionalism during this process.
“Further information will be provided once we have conducted our initial appraisal of the situation.”
Mark Blunden, president of the Weymouth and Portland Chamber of Commerce, said he hoped staff members’ jobs will be safeguarded.
“If there are any jobs at stake that would be bad news.
“Sometimes with change there is positive news and if a big hotel group comes and buys them and spruces them up and modernises them it could be good news,” he said.
Councillor Ian Bruce, spokesman for tourism and culture at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said he was ‘concerned’ to hear the news.
“I’m very concerned for the jobs and the facilities that we have there in those two hotels.
“I very much hope that someone will come forward and buy them.
“I would very much encourage anyone in the hotel business to look at these wonderful assets.”
All bookings and deposits made by customers before the administrators’ appointment will be |honoured.
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