hotels and guesthouses
This article was first published in the parish magazine Grouville Gazette
Old Bank House Hotel
At one time there were many hotels and guesthouses in Gorey Village. After the Occupation some of the residents began to take a renewed interest in tourism. With Mont Orgueil Castle in view and the picturesque view of the harbour from the long sandy beach of Grouville Bay, the village was the perfect spot for a holiday.
Jersey Archive has records of 17 establishments of various sizes within the confines of the village. The majority have now closed, with the subsequent decline in the industry, and now only two of the larger hotels are still open: Old Bank House and the Maison Gorey.Occupation, the hotel is still open today.
Trafalgar Bay Hotel
Just around the corner from Maison Gorey was the Trafalgar Bay Hotel, which was demolished in 2002 to make way for the development of houses called the Hamlet. Memories of this hotel include the attached putting green and local character Mickey Brennan and his petrol pumps!
In 1919 Reginald Charles Pallot purchased cottages and buildings commonly known as Ripa, or Ripar Buildings, from Lilian Jane Germain. The Germain family had owned this land for many years and in the 1861 census, properties on the site were called Germain’s Buildings. This was the site of the Candour Tavern; George Germain was recorded as the tavern keeper in the 1887 Almanac.
The Pallot family lived in the houses which were renamed Trafalgar, but the name Ripar was still associated with at least one cottage until well after the Occupation. From the early 1930s a Morris Garage was also listed on this site.
Opposite the Trafalgar Bay Hotel was the Old Court House Hotel, which has recently been demolished to make way for a new development. Despite the legend that the original house was known as the Old Court House because a Court was once held there, no documents remain to confirm this. Before the hotel was built, the house was known as ‘old court house’ or La Cohue, as can be seen in the 1881 census.
The fireplace contained corbels of Caen Stone, which dated from the 15th Century and which are thought to have come from Mont Orgueil Castle. These were retained when the hotel was built. Winifred Enid Lewis French bought the house in 1946 and the house next door called Brooklet in 1953, and together they formed the Old Court House Hotel. Winifred ran it as a small 3rd Register hotel with a capacity for 11 guests. In 1961 she sold the business to Farley Hotels Limited who, over the many years they owned it, extended and modernised the building to a 4th Register hotel which accommodated more than 100 guests
The Royal Bay Apartments at the western end of the village were originally two large terrace houses, 1 and 2 Royal Bay Terrace, built by Charles Le Vesconte in the 1860s. The 1871 census records a school for ladies at 2 Royal Bay Terrace, with Rachel Le Vesconte the schoolmistress. The school was housed there until at least 1897 but by 1901 had reverted back to being a private residence.
The original hotel was opened in 1 Royal Bay Terrace when the building was purchased by Mr and Mrs P J Hutchings in 1963. When they purchased number 2 in 1971 they extended the hotel from accommodating nine guests to 37. In 1995 the Hutchings sold the hotel to Fief House Holdings and permission was subsequently granted for the hotel to be demolished and converted to apartments.
Records show that the Kalamunda Hotel was opened in 1957, with Mrs Joyce Anderson recorded as the proprietor. The hotel was purchased by George De La Haye, of Mont a L’Abbe Manor, for his daughter Joyce. Her husband Bruce Anderson was an Australian artist and originated from Kalamunda, near Perth. The mural was painted on the main wall in the dining room by Mr Anderson, depicting Australian flora, fauna and wildlife.
The building, originally a private residence called Cambrai House, was purchased by Lamey Hotels in 1965. The house and the cottages adjacent to it in Union Road all belonged to Matthew John Cantell in the mid-19th century. It is unclear exactly why the name Cambrai was used for the house and cottages, however it is thought that one of the families who married into the Cantell family held land in this northern area of France. Extensions to the hotel took place during the 1960s and 1980s with the hotel being able to accommodate more than 50 guests. In 1992 it was purchased by Cariboner Hotels, who redeveloped the site into flats and terraced houses now called Cambrai Mews.
The Village Apartments next door to the supermarket were at one time two houses called Oakleigh and Fairview. Both were owned by John Francis Picot, a ship builder at Gorey who lived in Fairview for many years with his family. The first mention of the conversion of Fairview to a hotel is in a 1962 property contract, when John Hornby was recorded selling the Hotel des Iles to Cecil and Margaret Vince. The property continued as a hotel until the late 1980s when Roderick Investments bought Oakview and the hotel and converted them both into the Village Apartments.
There were a number of other smaller guesthouses, including Cyprus House, Fernleigh, Rosedale and Old Station House, as well as many houses providing bed and breakfast. One property in the village that will not be found in any tourism brochure, yet had one of the most famous visitors to Gorey in 1857, was Villa Rosa. Author Mary Anne Evans, better known as George Eliot, arrived in Jersey on 15 May with her partner George Lewes. According to an article by Philip Stevens they lodged with the Amy family of Rosa Cottage, which cost 13 shillings a week, with services, but no bath!
Eliot described Gorey as a ‘very retired spot – a fishing spot…with plenty of rich people’s houses’ and was taken with the beauty of the numerous orchards, which were all in bloom. The 1861 census shows Helier and Jane Amy living at Rosa Cottage, which was on the site where Les Houmets Care and Residential Home was built.
Links Court Apartments  were built in 1976, following the demolition of the Links Hotel and associated buildings, including the house that was previously home to Jersey’s world famous golfer Harry Vardon. The Links Hotel had been open for over 40 years on this prime site, from the early 1930s until approximately 1973. For many of these years it was owned by John Mowbray Stewart, who inherited the hotel from his father Harold Crisp Stewart, with the family employing various managers over the years to run the business.
Contracts reveal that in 1954 Basden Hotels leased, from John Mowbray Stewart, Links Hotel, previously called Maison Amitie, with an annexe, buildings, courts and land bordering on the Commune de Gorey, for 15 years. Maison Amitie and the small house called Cottage Vardon were sold to H C Stewart in 1920 by Charles Ilderton Barnes, who had inherited the property from his aunt, Elizabeth Marie Le Vavasseur dit Durell in 1872. Contracts for the house go back to the 1840s showing that a house had been on this site near the 12th tee many years before the golf course was created in 1878.
The hotel was owned by a number of different companies, including Jersey Golf Hotels, when it was known as Grouville Hall Hotel. They bought the business in 1926 from Albert Parker, who bought the property six months earlier from Charles Nicolle. Nicolle had purchased the building in 1921 from Isabella Taylor, who was the proprietor when it was called Cranbourne Hall, and she appears to have been the person who first opened a hotel in the building. Cranbourne Hall is documented in the census records, dating from 1871 to 1911, as being run as a private ‘lunatic asylum’, with Isaac Pothecary, a notorious proprietor of such establishments in Jersey, being listed as such in the 1871 census. At this time the record lists over 20 inmates.
When Pothecary was declared bankrupt in 1881 Dr John James Jackson took over the running of the asylum. Dr Jackson was well qualified for the position, as he had been the medical superintendent of the public asylum at St Saviour since it opened in 1868. He resigned his position after 15 years in charge at St Saviour to take over the running of Cranbourne Hall from Dr George Moore, who then took over the running of the public asylum. Dr Jackson died at Cranbourne Hall in 1889 from cirrhosis of the liver, aged just 44, and his wife Elizabeth took over the running of the small institution, along with her sister, Isabel Taylor, who ran the business until she sold it in 1921.
Notes and references
- ↑ Jerripedia editor Mike Bisson said: 'I had the pleasure of living for a short time in an apartment previously owned by my parents at Links Court for a short time in the 1990s. The views were superb.