An historic Fence hostelry has announced the significant purchase of an 18th Century former pub in the village as part of a multi-million pound plan to convert it into a hotel.
The Fence Gate has acquired the Grade II listed Bay Horse to transform the former pub into a 25 bedroom boutique hotel with bridal suite accommodation and private dining rooms.
Planning permission has been granted by Pendle Council and significant plans will see an extension built from natural stone to house 20 of the bedrooms with major conversion of the existing building in Wheatley Lane Road for the remaining rooms and dining facilities.
Owner of the Fence Gate, Kevin Berkins, hopes for the hotel to be open by this time next year, and is excited to be able to expand its offerings and benefit the local economy too.
Mr Berkins said: “We have been short of rooms for a little while. The Bay Horse has been closed for around three years and the expansion will mean we can offer more rooms for weddings, functions, tourists and day travellers.
“The place itself is going to be 25 bedrooms with bridal suites. There will be no public bar but breakfast facilities and private dining rooms.
“This is a multi-million pound investment for us. I’m hoping that we will be open this time next year, we’re working to a 12 month plan and ready by mid summer.
“It will provide jobs in the area and there will be the boost to the building trades and maintenance trades. It also further puts the village of Fence on the map.”
Old Laund Booth ward representative Coun. Brian Newman, said: “It will give the Bay Horse another 100 years lease of life when it’s open.
“Mr Berkins always does a good job so we wish him well with it. I personally think it’s an excellent idea and we have not had one complaint with the proposal. It will provide jobs which is important and somewhere to stay for tourists when visiting Pendle.”