New Oddfellows Hotel appoints GM ahead of 2016 launch


Oddfellows Hotels has announced the appointment of Paul Cookson as general manager of its Chester boutique, until he officially takes up the GM role at the newest Oddfellows development in Manchester when it opens in spring 2016.

Cookson will manage the Chester design-led boutique, replacing Sarah Doughterty who has been GM since 2012, while assisting on the development of the new site in Cheadle.

Cookson moves from his role as general manager at The Chester Grosvenor, where he worked for 11 years as both director of events and director of operations prior to becoming GM in 2014.

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He has over 20 years experience in the hotel industry holding positions with Forte, Moat House Hotels and The Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington.

Cookson said of his appointment: “This is a new direction for me and a very welcome one. I will be leaving the five-star sector to join one of the new breed of hotels; those that aren’t defined by stars or corporations. Oddfellows is a truly independent hotel group, both in spirit and ownership, and celebrates personality and individuality. I’m working with a fantastic, enthusiastic and talented team and I can’t wait for the adventure to begin.”

Sarah Doughterty is leaving Oddfellows Chester to join Dougherty & Allen, an outside catering business, working alongside her husband Phil Dougherty.

She said: “Oddfellows has been a wonderful journey. I started as GM when Jonathan Slater was masterminding the refurbishment and addition of 14 new bedrooms. I’ve never worked with a more dedicated team and I’ll miss the people hugely.”

Jonathan Slater, MD of Oddfellows said: “Sarah has accomplished a great deal over the past three years and she has done an outstanding job. We have worked together, alongside our owner, to take the hotel where it deserves to be – running at a high occupancy with happy guests.”

He added: “I’m thrilled Paul Cookson has come aboard. I’m looking forward to continuing an extremely successful working relationship as the Oddfellows family of hotels grows.”