Goole Civic Society unveil second blue plaque at England’s Oldest Hotel

A Goole hotel recently announced as the oldest in England has been awarded with the town’s second blue plaque.

The Lowther Hotel – co-owned by Howard and Julie Duckworth – was built in 1824 by Sir Edward Banks, and was the first building to be constructed in the port of Goole.

It now follows renowned Goole Town Cricketer Percy Jeeves as being home to a prestigious blue plaque.

A special unveiling ceremony was held on Saturday May 6th to mark the occasion. Howard Duckworth, joint owner of the hotel said: “We were thrilled to have the Lowther confirmed as the country’s oldest hotel, and delighted that the Civic Society is honouring it with a blue plaque. “The hotel has exactly the same footprint as it has when it was built – so if your great-great grandmother or father came to see it today, they would still recognise it.”

News that Goole was home to the country’s oldest hotel came last December. The Hotel was built to accommodate the engineers and architects who came to Goole to build the town’s docks.

National tourism body VisitEngland verified the accolade, after a fire at the Royal Clarence Hotel in Exeter – formerly the countries oldest – destroying the building.

Blue plaques fall under the responsibility of the Goole Civic Society. They unveiled the first plaque in April last year, in celebration of the life of a cricketer who inspired the characters of P.G. Wodehouse’s Butler Jeees.

Percy Jeeves – who after Goole Town Cricket Club went on to represent Warwickshire at county level – has his blue plaque on the corner of Manuel Street and Boothferry Road, attached to the Oddfellow Society building.

The honour of unveiling the Lowther’s blue plaque was given to Goole’s mayor and councillor Terence Smith. Speak about Goole’s latest blue plaque, Civic Society chair Margaret Hicks-Clarke said: “We thought it fitting that the country’s youngest mayor should unveil a blue plaque at England’s oldest Hotel. This is our second blue plaque….we hope to unveil more in the future to recognise the special people and places that contributed to Goole’s unique heritage.”

Cllr Smith also presented the Lowther with a Mayor’s Award Plaque, to recognise their work on regenerating the Coach House.

The surprise announcement was made at the mayor’s final function, which followed on from the blue plaque presentation. The nineteenth-century former coaching house was transformed into a rustic bar offering a selection of speciality gins. Cllr Smith will officially end his year-long stint as mayor on Thursday, May 11, when he will hand over the chains to his successor.