Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Plans for Historic Hall Are on Hold Yet Again; Priority Goes to Hotel Scheme

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Plans for Historic Hall Are on Hold Yet Again; Priority Goes to Hotel Scheme

Article excerpt

Byline: Rob Pattinson

MILLIONAIRE tycoon Sir John Hall has put plans for a major redevelopment of historic Woolsington Hall on hold - yet again.

The project, which has already overcome a series of setbacks, has been sidelined while the former Newcastle United owner concentrates on other developments.

Further work on the 17th-Century hall is unlikely to take place until at least the spring next year.

Sir John told The Journal the success of his Wynyard Hall hotel project and demand for an extension there needed to be finalised before his attention could be turned back to the proposed boutique hotel at Woolsington.

The 76-year-old entrepreneur and his son Douglas have also settled on a site they believe could be developed into a successful hotel in Gibraltar.

But despite the delay Sir John has said he is committed to breathing new life into the Grade II listed building, on Newcastle's outskirts, and could turn his full attention back to the site by February or March. Sir John said: "We've put the plans on hold because we are so busy at the moment. The money is still there do it, but it's a case of priorities. We haven't stopped, we're just on hold.

"Wynyard has been very busy and we need more bedrooms there. That has to be done first. The success we've had has been fantastic, but we need to build on it. The problem is how are we going to cater to everyone unless we expand.

"There are other projects to consider as well. I have been out to Gibraltar with my son where we think there's a good site for a hotel. We're also looking at how we can incorporate renewable energy into our hotels. It's just pressure of work."

The run-down 340-acre Woolsington Hall estate was bought in 1994 by Cameron Hall Developments, Sir John's company, with the intention of investing between pounds 8m-pounds 10m to turn it into a luxury hotel and golf course. …

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