Fleece Hotel in Richmond set to reopen

The Fleece. Photo: Guy Carpenter.

The Fleece Hotel in Richmond is set to reopen after the previous company which ran the venue collapsed with debts of more than £230,000.

A date of May 5 has been set for the reopening with the hotel’s social media and website describing the premises as the ‘New Fleece Yorkshire’.

According to the hotel’s new website, a new food menu and drink menu is promised. Work has also been done on the interior.

A statement on the site says: “The NEW Fleece Yorkshire is to open its doors on Sunday 5th May.

“It’s the first time you will have the chance to check out our new food and drink offering – as well as new interior. Lunch will be served from midday with our NEW Evening Platters to be served alongside Live Music.”

The hotel closed in December last year after the company which ran the venue Best Friend Limited, was placed in a creditors’ voluntary liquidation.

Papers revealed there were 71 creditors, including members of staff, suppliers, directors and others, who were owed a total of £239,812.

The documents showed the company made a loss from September 1 2017 to December 20 2018 of almost £50,000.

According to the documents, the directors believed there were several reasons why the business failed, including the uncertainty in the property market caused by Brexit, and the company being set up with higher debts through loan agreements and long term contracts with suppliers than was appropriate.

The other two reasons were the change in senior staff due to the change in direction of the food offering which resulted in a reliance on kitchen staff at a higher cost and a serious illness suffered by one of the directors which reduced their ability to support the business.

The business was put up for sale in November last year for £1.25m and the directors looked for investors, however uncertainty over Brexit meant investors wanted to wait until the New Year to see the direction of the country and property prices before committing.

The construction company, Within Reach Developments Ltd, which carried out the building’s restoration is currently in administration.

A new company has been formed, The Fleece Hotel (Richmond) Ltd. The sole director, Christopher Miles, is also a director of Delcon Construction Limited, who it is understood were investors in the original redevelopment of the hotel.