Staff and guests at the Wynnstay Hotel in Wrexham were asked to leave the premises early this morning as news broke that some of local hotelier Stephanie Booth’s businesses were set to shut.
A letter from KPMG LLP transactions and restructuring department informed staff that due to ‘financial difficulty’ the Wynnstay Hotel and ‘Funhouse’ in Wrexham would be closed ‘with immediate effect’.
Around twenty staff members from the Wynnstay Hotel in Wrexham gathered at the Nags Head Public House this afternoon to discuss events and their future, many who had discovered they had lost their jobs via Facebook and Twitter.
One former employee who was at the hotel this morning told of how an angry bride-to-be confronted David Booth as he left the premises. It is believed she was due to have her wedding in around a months time and was upset at the prospect of losing money.
Staff explained to members of the press how wages had not been paid recently, and that P60′s (end of year certificate) had been delayed and were only finally issued in the last two weeks. One staff member said he was owed £1100 still, and another was upset as some of his personal belongings remained inside the hotel which is currently locked.
When asked if there were any indication that the hotel was in trouble, we were told that there was a wages issue in January which was attributed to a ‘bank swap’ at the time. In recent weeks there was a noticable change in the quality of fittings, with one staff member indicating that mattresses had recently been swapped for older ones.
A part time bar staff member at the Wynnstay described the situation as ‘pathetic’, as she only discovered the situation via a friends status update at 6am this morning despite working normally last night until around 11.15pm.
At the end of her shift last night she described how company employees arrived at the hotel under the guise of conducting computer system upgrades, but saw people starting to collect together items and leave with boxes. Earlier that day the staff members were instructed not to send money to head office as was usual, however to retain it as Mr Booth would be arriving later. This, accompanied with overflowing bins, did raise eyebrows from some. The bar staff member who did not wish to be named, explained she is owed three weeks wages and has a holiday booked shortly and has been left in the lurch. When we looked through the windows today there are no longer any drinks in the optics on the bar, likewise the usual tables and chairs were not on view.
Staff recounted how this morning a large group of American’s who were involved with the Eisteddfod came down for their breakfast, but were told there was no food and they would have to leave.
Wrexham.com understand Christmas Dinner bookings were still being taken at the Wynnstay even yesterday, with Wrexham Motor Club’s planning to hold their event there and paying a deposit.
This morning various Facebook pages and twitter accounts disappeared from the internet with the @lloydshotels @wynnstayhotel @Hotel_Stephanie Twitter accounts displaying ‘user not found. Searches for the names still showed results, which would indicate this is a very recent move. The Facebook page for Dee Valley Events, a related venture, was showing ‘The page you requested was not found‘ this afternoon.
It has not been possible to get in touch with the ‘Funhouse’ in Wrexham or Mold, however there are reports that it was not open today.
The situation regarding Mrs Booth’s other hotels such as The Wild Pheasant and Bryn Howel hotels in Llangollen and Bodidris Hall in Llandegla also remains unclear.
Following the closure The Lion Quays near Oswestry has offered to help guests and anyone who had a wedding planned at properties affected by the closure. For more information contact @LionQuays on Twitter.
This afternoon Wrexham Council issued a statement regarding the closure of the Wynnstay, it reads:
“Wrexham Council is saddened at the news that the Wynnstay Arms Hotel in the town centre has called in the administrators KPMG. We shall continue to work with both the hotel staff and with the administrators to try and get the best result for both the staff and for visitors to Wrexham.”
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