North East Wales

Administrators cut 70 jobs at Stephanie Booth's hotels

Stephanie Booth
Image caption Hotelier Stephanie Booth took over the Wynnstay Arms in 2010

Landlords have stepped in to run some of the hotels run by businesswoman Stephanie Booth's firm, which has gone into administration.

She runs seven hotels in north east Wales Wales and Shropshire and all but one will continue to trade.

Four which are freehold will continue to operate until administrators, KPMG, can find a buyers.

Two of her leased hotels are now being run by the landlords and one has closed.

It was initially feared about 100 jobs were being lost at the company but that figure is now said to be about 70.

KPMG is acting as administrators for Llangollen Hotels Limited' and its parent company, Global Investments Group.

Llangollen Hotels comprises seven hotels in Wrexham, Denbighshire and Chester. The business employs 177 people.

Four freehold hotels will not be affected with no staff redundancies at Bodidris Hall in Llandegla, Wrexham; The Wild Pheasant, The Chainbridge and The Bryn Howel, in Llangollen, Denbighshire.

Any bookings and deposits "intend to be honoured until the hotels are sold", said joint administrators David Costley-Wood and Brian Green in a statement issued on Friday.

It was initially thought the remaining three hotels which are leased would have to close.

But the administrators confirmed on Monday that only The Wynnstay Arms Hotel, Wrexham, has shut - with bookings honoured by other hotels in the group, according to a spokesman for Ms Booth.

The other leased hotels remaining open are The Anchor Hotel in Ruthin, Denbighshire, and The Chester Bridge Hotel, Chester.

The administrators said the directors shut the Wynnstay Arms Hotel prior to the appointment of administrators.

'Substantial debt'

Image caption The Wynnstay Arms is a local landmark in Wrexham

Global Investments Group operates three children's soft play centres, Fantastic Fun Houses, in Mold, Flintshire; Wrexham; and Oswestry, Shropshire; as well as McLarens, a wine bar in Oswestry.

The Oswestry play centre and McLarens are now being operated by the premises' landlord but the other two play centres have closed.

Mr Costley-Wood, a joint administrator and restructuring partner at KPMG, said: "The Global Investment Group expanded rapidly into a range of leisure businesses and built up substantial debt in the process.

"The business is now no longer able to make payments as they fall due, necessitating the appointment of administrators.

"The four freehold hotels are trading well and we are confident of finding a buyer."

In 2009, Ms Booth appeared in BBC Wales fly-on-the-wall documentary series Hotel Stephanie showing her cope with the day-to-day problems of managing six hotels in north east Wales during the recession.

In recent months she has been linked with a takeover of Wrexham football club, before withdrawing from the process in May.

She took over the Wynnstay Arms, which is a well-known Wrexham landmark, in April 2010. The new proprietor "guaranteed" the workforce their jobs would be safe.

A spokesman for Ms Booth said on Thursday that she had been using her own money to ensure all staff were paid prior to the administrators being appointed.

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