A PRICE tag of £1.7million has been placed on a well-known East Lancashire hotel ­— in a bid to sell it as a going concern.

Administrators for Mytton Fold Farm Hotel Ltd are attempting to sell off the Langho venue, which started out as a bed and breakfast in the early 1980s.

The three-star hotel was owned by a quartet - original owner Lilian Hargreaves with David Hargreaves, Carole Maher and Barbara Bryan - until it ran into difficulties last October.

Before the company went under, the directors pumped more than £120,000 into the venture, which has 43 rooms and a 65-covers restaurant, bar and lounge. NatWest was owed £1.16million.

Property agents Avison Young are now marketing Mytton Fold, which stands in six acres and is part of the Best Western chain.

Administrator Kerry Bailey said: “The hotel has experienced a downturn in trading performance in recent years. The directors attributed this to a decline in wedding and function bookings, as well as an increase in local competition.”

Even though the directors pumped extra funds into the firm, the troubles mounted and a £130,000 loan was secured from Reward Capital.

This was repaid in October but it saw the directors loan accounts increase from £121,000 to £281,000.

HM Revenue and Customs also issued a final enforcement warning letter, over a £45,000 VAT bill from the previous quarter.

Cash flow estimates, for the next four months and more, showed the hotel could not operate within its agreed overdraft and meet its liabilities so it went into administration.

Miss Bailey said a third-party operator, Assured Hotels, was brought in to keep the hotel running, until a buyer could be sourced.

Additional funds were also provided by NatWest to ensure wage bills were met for October, according to the administrators. Five redundancies were made, it has been confirmed in a report, but one additional job has been created, to drive wedding and function bookings, leaving the workforce at 65.

It comes at a time of significant upheaval for the hotels industry in East Lancashire, with Stanley House having new owners, Crow Wood opening at Burnley and the Hampton by Hilton hotel still under construction near Blackburn.