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Antony Penny leaving North Lakes after 30 years service.

After 30 years of working in hospitality, General Manager Antony Penny will be leaving North Lakes Hotel & Spa, Penrith, this week.

Antony joined the hotel as Bars Manager in 1989, when it was part of Shire Inns. He has travelled across the country as he developed his career with the company and after heading up the teams at The Crown Hotel, Wetherall and Solent Hotel & Spa in Fareham, he returned to North Lakes as General Manager in 2008.

He has overseen a transformation of the four-star hotel since then, which has seen over £3m invested, adding more guest rooms, meeting facilities and spa treatments. Among the biggest changes has been an £800k investment in the restaurant, which relaunched in 2018 as FYR, Cumbria’s only open fire grill restaurant where chefs expertly prepare the mouth-watering dishes in the centre of the restaurant.

Antony, who will be taking up a new role with the Lakes Distillery in Bassenthwaite, said: “North Lakes Hotel & Spa is completely different to how it was when I first stepped through the doors back in 1989 - it’s been quite a journey and even during the last few years the change and investment in the hotel has been significant."

“But the one thing that has remained constant has been the part the hotel has played in the community – not just being a great place to stay, eat or relax but also as a supporter of the local area, giving a helping hand and raising thousands of pounds for good causes - and that is down to the team."

“I’m incredibly proud of what we have achieved together over the years and it’s nice to know I have played such a part in its development and success.”

The hotel, which won Cumbria Tourism’s Large Hotel of the Year Award last year, is still part of the same company, one of 21 properties that form the House of Daniel Thwaites.

Chris Hill, Director of Hotels, said: “Antony has been a key part of not only North Lakes Hotel & Spa, but of our company over the last 30 years. As our longest serving general manager, he has overseen some significant projects in several of our hotels, not least in Penrith."

“I would like to thank Antony for all that he has done and wish him every success for the future.”

Taking over the helm at North Lakes Hotel & Spa will be Mike Vincent, who is currently General Manager at another property within the House of Daniel Thwaites collective, Langdale Chase.

Since arriving at Langdale two years ago, Mike has taken the hotel from strength to strength, including gaining AA 4 stars and 2 rosettes.