An entrepreneurial couple have realised their dream of running a bed and breakfast by the sea after taking ownership of the Bay Lodge Guest House in Eastbourne, with the support of NatWest.
Former council worker Hayley Spratt and freelance journalist Jon Phipps, have used a six-figure funding package from the bank to purchase the six-bedroom guest house on Eastbourne’s Royal Parade.
Hayley, 41, and Jon, 37, had always talked about the idea of running a bed and breakfast, but thought it was no more than a pipe dream. Now, thanks in part to funding from NatWest, they have been able to make their first venture into the hospitality sector, moving from Kent to take over ownership and management of the business.
Ideally located on the seafront and opposite The Pavilion Café, Bay Lodge offers guests a choice of six newly decorated en-suite rooms with a full English breakfast included in all room prices. Bookings are already being taken well into 2019.
Jon Phipps said: “When we first spoke to NatWest, we really weren’t sure if it was going to be possible to purchase our own bed and breakfast, but our Relationship Manager, Ian Woodward, not only worked hard to help us get to a situation where we could do it, he also liaised with our solicitor and accountant to simplify the process.”
Hayley Spratt added: “We wanted to change our way of life and that is just what we’ve done. December was busier than expected and we absolutely love it. The reviews have been great so far and we’re looking forward to meeting lots of customers, new and old, over the coming months. We’ve always loved Eastbourne and we’re so happy to be living here.”
Eastbourne Solicitors, McCarthy Webb, oversaw the sale of the couple’s house in Kent and purchase of Bay Lodge, while Yiotis Diomedou of Advanta Accountants provided valuable advice and support on the purchase.
NatWest relationship manager, Ian Woodward, said: “With the funding we provided and the support from McCarthy Webb and Advanta, we have been able to help Jon and Hayley realise their ambition of owning and running a guest house. It is great to see a young and extremely passionate couple entering the Eastbourne hospitality sector and we wish them every success in the future.”