A POPULAR hotel, restaurant, bar and venue has been closed and will be sold at auction next month.
The Limes Hotel, in Needham Market, closed last month making 25 members of full and part-time staff redundant.
KPMG, joint administrators for the Elizabeth Hotels group which went into administration in December 2009, have confirmed that the hotel will be sold at auction by Strettons, in London, on April 4.
KPMG continued to trade the business for more than a year before announcing its closure in February.
The Limes, which stands in High Street, was one of 26 hotels and pubs formerly owned by the Elizabeth group.
Needham-born business man and town councillor Phil Wright rallied the support of more than 100 local people in a bid to save the hotel last month.
Mr Wright said: “It would have been nice to keep it as it was but there is no guarantee of that now. It’s now in the hands of whoever makes the biggest bid, which is a shame.
“Everybody I speak to wants The Limes to re-open as a hotel, restaurant and bar. I know very few things stay the same forever but that was the long term aim for most people.”
The 11-bedroom grade II listed building is described on Strettons’ website as suitable to re-open as a hotel or ‘may be suitable for alternative uses’. A guide price is not listed.
Mr Wright said: “Closing it before the auction gave a signal that the sellers were selling it as a building as opposed to as a business and that could possibly give the wrong message.”