A hotel in West Sussex that was destroyed by fire a week ago is to be rebuilt, says its owner.
Cottesmore Hotel, Golf and Country Club, owned by Johnny Porter and his wife Louisa, saw a blaze spread through 50% of the building last Monday evening.
The fire started in the clubhouse and quickly escalated throughout the 19th century building, destroying the health club, kitchen, function rooms and bar, before being put out by fire crews after seven hours.
The bedrooms also suffered partial damage.
Now Porter has vowed to rebuild the property to ensure its ‘bright future’ as its golf course and self-catering lodges continue to trade as normal.
Weddings booked for the next year the Cottesmore have had to be cancelled and refunded following the blaze.
Porter said: “The family and I are devastated but we feel so relieved that no one was hurt.
“We have had overwhelming support from members, guests, friends and family and received hundreds of emails and messages on Facebook. We can’t thank you all enough for this incredible support.
“We feel desperately sad for all of the weddings booked in this year. They are all being contacted to arrange a full refund.
“Our heartfelt thanks and appreciation goes out to our staff, who rose to challenging conditions with great courage, and to both the West Sussex and Surrey Fire and Rescue services, whose professionalism and dedication is exemplary.
“The golf course is in superb condition and we want to get members and visitors out there as soon as possible. And we have guests in the self-catering lodges right now, that’s business as usual.
“We are committed to rebuilding a bright new future at Cottesmore.”
Cottesmore was transformed from a farm into a golf course in 1973 by Matthew Rogerson and his father Michael. Over the years, the hotel, country club and function rooms were added, followed by the self-catering lodges in 2006.
Rogerson’s daughter Louisa, together with husband Johnny Porter, took on the business in 2013.
Over the past five years, they have been working to develop the business and were months away from completing a total refurbishment of the hotel, health club and function rooms.