Historic Hartlepool hotel has a grand past – and a bright future

The 'Grand Hotel in the 1980s.
The 'Grand Hotel in the 1980s.
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The changing face of Hartlepool’s Grand Hotel is the focus of today’s Memory Lane.

Hertfordshire-based firm Shepherd Cox has just purchased the Swainson Street building and a revamp is on the cards.

Grand Hotel in November 1982.

Grand Hotel in November 1982.

“The sale prompted me to look out some old photos from bygone days,” said Mail archivist Susan Swinney.

Construction of the Grand began in 1899, under the keen eye of owner George Hedley Ducksbury, and it opened in 1901.

Sadly, it failed to prove financially viable and, in 1912, George sold it on to North Eastern Railway.

“Visitors would arrive at Church Street station and be ferried via carriage to the Grand,” said Susan.

Visitors would arrive at Church Street station and be ferried via carriage to the Grand. It must have been quite a sight.

Susan Swinney, photographic archivist for the Mail.

“Although the outside of this wonderful building remains pretty much unchanged, the interior has been refurbished several times.”

Pipers Restaurant at the Grand Hotel in June 1986.

Pipers Restaurant at the Grand Hotel in June 1986.

The ballroom of the Grand Hotel in March 1981.

The ballroom of the Grand Hotel in March 1981.