New owners for Wayford Bridge Inn near Stalham
PUBLISHED: 08:38 21 October 2015 | UPDATED: 14:05 21 October 2015
A riverside inn and hotel being run by administrators has been bought by a Norfolk family with more than 40 years experience in the hospitality business.
New owners of the Wayford Bridge Hotel near Stalham are Norwich man Kris Heavens and his parents Karen and Barry.
The waterside watering hole and eatery has been run by administrators since January this year after owners Horatio Inns - where celebrity chef Marco Pierre White is among the directors - reported cash flow problems.
Mr Heavens said he had been scouring the nation for a hotel to buy - and was pleased to find one in his home county.
“We looked all over the country. I am from Norwich and this is a beautiful place that pulls you in when you drive past.”
His family has been involved with the hotel industry for three generations, and his brother Jacyn is boss of growing office technology company Epos Now in Norwich.
“We are planning to invest in the hotel over the coming months and bring it back to its glory days as a Norfolk Broads institution.
“It will be family-orientated and not in a chain any more,” he added.
The family, running under the name of Aura Inns, is keeping on the 15-strong staff at the hotel which has 15 en-suite rooms.
Administrators Alix Partners confirmed the other venues owned by Horatio Inns - The Lifeboat and Chequers, both at Thornham in north Norfolk, and The Bridge at Acle - had also been sold.
The Thornham venues are now owned by Agellus Hotels, and the lease of the Bridge, has been bought by Charles Coker.