9th June 2021

A trip down memory lane...

The Imperial Hotel is rich in charm and history and we have taken a trip down memory lane to have a look at our history...

  •  July 1860 - December 1863 Thomas Hooper Law buys several houses and gardens in Litchdon Street, the Imperial Hotel is then inherited by his 6 children.
  •  The five brothers sold their share to their sister Anne Florence Law in December 1883.
  •  From there, A.F. Law sold the building to Charles Youngs of Barnstaple, Aerated Water Manufacturers. 
  •  By Spring 1898 Mr/s C A Youings adapted the old premises of Litchdon House for the purpose of a hotel. Within a year, an extension of a storey was added.
  •  By the end of October 1898, new building works had been started and the first extension was completed. 
  •  In 1902 a new block was built to the ever growing Litchdon House, the new block made it into the local newspaper, The North Devon Journal, boasting magnificent fireplaces, billiard room, smoke room and plans to fit electricity throughout. 
  • In the late 1950’s, the then owners, Trust House, bought the neighbouring carpet shop and extended further to add what is now the kitchen and river court rooms, which were originally built for staff quarters. 
  •  During severe floods in 1952 the hotel looked after many of the survivors, supplying tea, food and blankets. 
  • In 1987 we lost the hotel roof in a storm.
  • Regal acquired the hotel from the Trust House Forte and kept it for 2 years before selling it to Brend Hotels in1998.
  • Within a year of owning the hotel, the Brend's family invested heavily in all areas, building additional rooms and refurbishing all areas. This soon built up the hotel’s reputation and the award of 4 stars by the AA followed shortly in 1999.
  • Along with purchasing the property, the company inherited several fantastic members of staff, including our now Head Chef Shaun, who started at just 17 years old as a ‘bell boy’.
  • In 2016, Brend Hotels were delighted to receive the ‘Hotel Group of the Year 2015-2016’, a huge honour for the whole of Brend Hotels who have been a leader in West Country hospitality for over 50 years. 
  • In 2019 our Arlington Restaurant was awarded an AA Rosette of culinary excellence, an award the whole team were hugely proud of.