Fleetwood’s prestigious North Euston Hotel celebrates its 175th anniversary next year and it’s hoped that residents can play a key role.
The Grade II listed seafront hotel, which opened with something of a fanfare in 1841, was designed by noted architect Decimus Burton and is arguably one of the North West’s most elegant hotels from the period.
North Euston manager Stephen Dale hopes Fleetwood residents can play their part in the celebrations by bringing in copies of old bills or photographs which can be used in the exhibition.
It is planned to stage the display in Easter 2016, during which other celebrations will be held at the 50-bed hotel to mark the milestone.
Although this may seem a long way ahead, organisers want to start early so they can collate the information in good time.
Stephen said: “It was a really big thing for Fleetwood when this hotel opened, they had a kind of gala opening.
“Although the hotel has not structurally changed on the outside, there have been a lot of changes inside over the years and we are interested in seeing how its appearance has altered over the years.
“In the 1960s and ’70s it looked very different to the way it does today.
“Any old photos of wedding receptions or nights out would be really interesting, although we would prefer copies rather than the original prints, to avoid people’s precious mementos getting lost. If they have an old bill, they can just bring it in to be photocopied.”
Stephen has been liaising with local historians and Fleetwood Civic Society to find out more about the hotel, bought in 2010 by experienced hoteliers Paul and Fiona Spearman.
It is well documented that in the 1840s, the hotel was a stopping off place for railway passengers heading up to Scotland from down south.
Victorian travellers would set off from London’s Euston Station by steam train, and disembark at Fleetwood, staying overnight at the North Euston – aptly named for its railway link to the capital.
From there, the passengers would travel on to Scotland by sea – a memorable journey all round.
Unfortunately, this handy arrangement came to an end when the rail link to Scotland was completed, something of a blow for Fleetwood’s tourism credentials.
However, less well known gems from the hotel’s past are being sought.
“We’ve discovered that William Wordsworth stayed here while visiting Rossall School,” said Stephen. “We’re hoping to pull up a few more surprises as well.
“We’re also looking at the possibility of charging people the original six shillings to stay, next Easter – providing they spend enough on meals!”