Former Cornwallis hotel at Brome bought by local businessman

Pictured is Alan Crowest on the left, handing over the keys to Fraser Duffin.
Pictured is Alan Crowest on the left, handing over the keys to Fraser Duffin.

The £1 million Cornwallis Country House Hotel at Brome has been sold to a local businessman.

A familiar name will return to The Grade II-listed property, off the A140, with new owner Fraser Duffin intent on renaming it The Oaksmere when it reopens.

It was put up for sale by its investment company owners, and run by management company Bespoke Hotels.

Fourteen staff had to find other jobs.

Mr Duffin told the Diss Express about his ambitions for The Oaksmere: “I’ve been talking to so many people, including original owner, Mike Hasted, who have such happy memories of the old Oaksmere days and its that atmosphere that I want to bring back.

“At the same time I’m planning a complete renovation and modernisation of the bedrooms and am bringing in a superb catering team that will offer first class cuisine in a new restaraunt as well as quality pub dining in the bar.

“This is such a magnificent place and we want to get it back to its glory days with people back in, enjoying both the building and gardens.

“We want a facility that my family, our staff, our suppliers, and our customers are very proud of. We plan to open the bar soon after Easter, with the restaurant and rooms in time for the summer.”

The 16th Century dower house also has 17.5 acres of grounds and was on the market with TW Gaze with offers sought in the region of £995,000.

Alan Crowest, licensed trade specialist at Diss’ TW Gaze, who handled the sale, said: “My initial thoughts that the 16 bedroom hotel was not of a large enough scale to appeal to companies, proved correct. In total, we conducted 17 viewings of the property, all from private individuals, and culminated in seeking best and final offers. As a result, a number of offers were received in excess of the asking price.”