Couple sell farm to take over top Cumbrian wedding venue
A couple have swapped wellies for weddings after deciding to sell their family farm to take over one of Cumbria's most prestigious venues.
Husband and wife duo Wayne and Kaye Jackson have bought the Greenhill Hotel, just outside of Wigton, and are planning a big renovation programme for the 213-year-old building.
They previously owned a milk processing dairy farm but decided to take on the hotel, which is a popular wedding venue, as a new challenge.
Over the next year they plan to revamp the grand ballroom, which can host groups of up to 320 people for weddings and functions, and modernise the building's 12 bedrooms.
Wayne, who is taking his first step into the hospitality sector, said: “After 32 years of working in agriculture it came time to sell the dairy and take on a new challenge.
"Greenhill was owned by a local investment firm and had been for sale for some time so the timing was perfect.
"Along with our daughters we intend on running Greenhill as a family business and continuing to grow the customer base by providing top class customer service and an unforgettable experience for guests."
Wayne and Kaye have retained all staff as part of their takeover, including the general manager Malcolm Scott who has helped run the hotel for more than 15 years.
The couple were helped to buy the Georgian mansion with the backing of Natwest.
Mark Ward, relationship manager at Natwest, said: “Greenhill Hotel is a beautiful property located in an impressive setting and it’s fantastic to see a local family taking on the running of the business.
"We wish Wayne and Kaye all they best as they embark on their new business, and look forward to seeing the hotel prosper as the renovations are completed.”
David Allen, of David Allen Accountants in Dalston, helped put the deal together.
He said: “This is a great opportunity for a local, well respected family, with a proven track record of success to take over the business.
"The Greenhill Hotel will shortly be a real success story and we are proud to support Wayne, Kaye and their family."