Northcote Acquired by Owner of The Stafford London

Main Photo: Northcote (Hotel, with Michelin Star restaurant)

Date: February 2019

Location: Langho, Blackburn, Lancashire, UK

Name: Northcote – four red stars

No. of Keys: 26

Seller: Northcote is part of the Northcote Leisure Group, with 75% of the business owned by Nigel Hall, according to Companies House, chairman of the Jersey-based FCM Trust.

The four-star property is run by managing director Craig Bancroft, winner of the 2016 UK Cateys Wine and Spirit Ambassador Award and Hotelier of the Year, and general manager Craig Jackson.

Former chef patron and shareholder Nigel Haworth resigned as director in late 2017 but remains as chef ambassador to the business. Lisa Goodwin-Allen is Northcote’s executive chef. Both Nigel and Lisa are well-known chefs on UK TV.

Colliers acted for Northcote.

Buyer: Britannia Hospitality, which owns the Stafford London hotel, has acquired Northcote.

The Stafford is owned by the Egyptian El Sharkawy family, and it is looking to expand its presence in the UK. The Stafford is managed by MD Stuart Proctor, who started his hospitality career as part-time waiter at Northcote.

Britannia said: “We look forward to working with the team at Northcote to continue to drive the performance of the hotel and deliver the exceptional experiences for which the hotel is known.”

Northcote is a member of Pride of Britain and Relais & Chateaux and was named the AA Hotel of the Year for England 2016-17. The restaurant was awarded a Michelin star in 1996 under then chef-patron Nigel Haworth, which it has retained ever since, now with executive chef Lisa Goodwin-Allen at the helm.

Triple Catey award winner Haworth joined the property in 1984, one year after Bancroft arrived at the hotel as general manager, with both going on to oversee the property as joint managing directors. Bancroft and Haworth acquired a stake in the business in 1986, buying the hotel outright three years later.

In 2012, investors Richard and Lynda Matthewman became majority shareholders which brought about the restructuring of Northcote Leisure Group and resulted in a £7m redevelopment and refurbishment, completed in 2014, however the Matthewmans resigned their directorship in 2017.

Haworth changed his role from director to ambassador of Northcote in October 2017 but continues to work with Northcote as an ambassador and oversees its Obsession festival.

Price: Undisclosed

THPT Comment: Delighted that this iconic, gourmet hotel and restaurant is going to a “safe pair of hands”. The end of an era…and the start of a new one we hope!

First Seen: The Caterer

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