The shock closure of a popular Wigan hotel and restaurant was today cloaked in mystery.
The Beeches at Standish unexpectedly shut up shop over the weekend with staff taking to social media saying that they had been told there was no longer work for them.
And it meant that a number of customers who had weddings and other functions booked suddenly found themselves in a desperate quest to find alternative venues as well as fearing they would lose their deposits of hundreds of pounds.
A number of those with bookings said they have had no contact from management, and have been unable to get in touch themselves.
One woman, who did not wish to be named, told the Wigan Evening Post that the hotel had been due to host her wedding reception next Saturday. She claimed she had not heard anything from the hotel about the closure, and it was only a friend that told her that her wedding plans might be in jeopardy.
“They’ve been really unprofessional,” she said. “I rang them last Tuesday about coming in to discuss things like table plans and changing the menu which they sent only the Thursday before.
“On Saturday morning, my friend rang to say that someone she knows works there, and that they’ve told the staff they’re closing. That’s how I know - they haven’t even rung me.”
The bride-to-be has been unable to reach anyone at The Beeches herself.
But there were no signs of imminent closure on previous visits, she said. “I thought it was doing well. It looks like it had had a bit of a refurbishment recently. We booked a meal for 60 people in December.”
They chose The Beeches because “it was short notice, and it had nice surroundings for photos. We went at the start of the year for a meal before the wedding. The food was good, but the place was empty, and by 8pm we were the only ones left.”
The bride-to-be has luckily since managed to book a new venue, but said the experience has left a bitter taste. “I’m quite relieved now, but disappointed they never rang.”
The Wigan Evening Post has made repeated attempts to contact hotel management to find out what the future holds but has so far been unsuccessful.