A high profile Wigan businessman has bought a local landmark with plans to “put it back on the map.”
Bill Kenyon has acquired the historic Holland Hall Hotel in Up Holland and is embarking on a more-than £1m development plan.
The original parts of the building date from 1654 but much of it has been obscured by 20th-century hotel additions. It also underwent re-modelling in the 18th
A man who built his success in travel, property and football, Mr Kenyon has already started on phase one of an extensive makeover which will see significant investment in wedding facilities, as well as an upmarket restaurant and other improvements.
“It’s a shame that Holland Hall hasn’t had the investment in recent years: there are some elements of real quality and beauty about the hall, plus it has history going back around five centuries,” said the former Wigan Athletic owner.
“You don’t have to scratch far beneath the surface - literally - to find sections of the building which are constructed from wattle and daub, and the front door many people walk by without noticing - the original front door - is estimated to be around 400 years old. Much of the building is Grade ll listed.
“But, by contrast, some of the rooms and suites are extremely modern and comfortable, and we’ve already made progress in updating the wedding facilities for services, receptions and parties.
“Overall, it is going to be a fine blend of the modern, the characterful and sections of great potential.
“We’re also about to start on a revamp of the outside areas.
“This is a place that deserves to be on the map; we already have more than 50 weddings booked this year, which tells us the foundations - and reputation - are there as a great and convenient venue.
“Other parts of the hotel - bars, restaurant and so on - will be rationalised, modernised and re-configured, and we will also develop an office complex from where my other businesses will operate, primarily Ultimate Purveyors, an upmarket food business.
“We will be circulating updates to neighbouring residents and thank them for their understanding while work is going on, and hope that they appreciate it will result in a hopefully significantly positive impact locally, with more jobs created both directly and indirectly.”
The hotel, which Mr Kenyon bought from local firm K1 Properties, will be open and operating almost as normal throughout the redevelopment, with phases opening progressively through the year.