BRIDES-TO-BE are facing heartbreak after a York hotel cancelled their wedding ceremonies and receptions this summer.
The Grange Hotel in Bootham, which recently changed hands, says it has had to cancel all events booked for this year, given uncertainty over the relaxation of lockdown restrictions and following a risk assessment.
But couples planning to get married there, or hold their receptions there after ceremonies elsewhere, say the move has left them struggling to go ahead with their weddings.
Lisa Rose, 34, of Halifax, said she was due to get married to Scott Gardiner, 40, at the Grange on May 29, having already had to cancel the ceremony twice before last year because of lockdowns.
She said the new owners of the hotel had now cancelled the wedding and reception, less than two months before it was due to be held.
“I’m absolutely heartbroken,” she said. “We are now left with no wedding and no venue.”
She said the hotel was claiming the event was cancelled because of Covid safety issues, but it was due to take place after the Government had said weddings with up to 20 guests could take place, and she had already reduced numbers at her wedding to 15.
She said it was now too short notice to rearrange the wedding at another venue, and prices were skyrocketing because of demand, and so she would probably postpone the event to a later date.
A mother contacted The Press to say her daughter was one of numerous brides who had had their summer wedding/ reception bookings at the Grange cancelled, even though her reception was due to take place more than a month after all Covid restrictions were supposed to be lifted in June. She said: “The hotel is offering refunds but this does not help brides to rebook in a very tight market or compensate for the distress and price hikes they are facing.”
A bride, who did not wish to be named, said she felt “devastated” by the cancellation of her wedding.
A hotel spokesperson said that given current uncertainty over plans to remove Covid restrictions, and having undertaken a required risk assessment, it was “with a heavy heart” that it had had to cancel existing events bookings for 2021.
They said: “Over the summer, we will be working hard on renovations to ensure our venue meets operational standards and we will return to everyone their deposit should they wish to cancel rather than rearrange their wedding date to 2022.”
They said The Grange had very recently changed hands and was now owned by private buyers who would be re-branding and renovating it.
“However, the hotel’s decision has solely been based upon the safety of guests and staff, and upon the recommendation of the risk assessment. We wish to assure you that our decision has not been taken lightly, and has been taken in the interests of safety, and to give guests as much time as possible to make necessary re-arrangements.
“We are so sorry for the inconvenience caused and hope to be able to make it up to everyone impacted in future.”