TWO York hotels have gone into administration, after one of the city’s most well-known businessmen lost another wing of his empire.

Nationwide building society yesterday took control of the Guy Fawkes Inn and Marmadukes Hotel, two of David Hattersley’s prized possessions.

The two businesses employ 40 people in total.

Marmadukes, in St Peter’s Grove, remained open yesterday but Mr Hattersley said stock was running low.

The Guy Fawkes Inn, in High Petergate, was closed after the power was cut off due to an unpaid electricity bill, the entrepreneur said.

It is the second wing of Mr Hatterlsey’s portfolio to collapse in the recession. Last September, his building business, David Hattersley Ltd, ceased trading with debts of £120,000.

The Guy Fawkes and Marmadukes, which both act as hotels as well as a pub and restaurant respectively, are believed to have been trading well recently, but the Nationwide was unhappy about the size of loans Mr Hattersley’s de Bretton group had taken out on the two properties.

Mr Hattersley today accused Nationwide of causing confusion for his staff and customers, claiming it had not appointed an administrator following the transfer of ownership.

He said: “This has been a very difficult day.

“The Nationwide chose to take control of the Guy Fawkes and Marmadukes, then failed to put people in place to run them.

“I feel desperately sorry for the staff and guests who have been left in the lurch. I have done everything to cooperate with the administration order to enable a smooth transition of ownership. I hope both businesses will be properly up and running as soon as possible.”

He said he had been in talks with Nationwide for several months but claimed they pulled out last week “without warning or explanation”.

He said: “We thought we had secured their support. They have obviously changed their minds and this is most regrettable.”

Mr Hattersley said an administrator was due to be appointed last Friday, but was not. He thanked staff, customers and suppliers for their loyalty and support through “extraordinarily difficult economic times”.

Harvilles Restaurant in Fossgate and the Lamb & Lion Inn in High Petergate, both of which are also owned by Mr Hattersley, are unaffected by yesterday’s announcement and continue to trade.

Nationwide declined to comment.

Flagship ventures

THE Guy Fawkes Inn in High Petergate opened in April 2008, after Mr Hattersley bought and renovated the old Guy Fawkes Hotel.

It was popular with drinkers, winning the “pub of the season” award from York Campaign for Real Ale last winter.

However, it ran into trouble with conservationists and historians. Its claim to be the birthplace of Fawkes himself was disputed, and there was a lengthy planning wrangle over a handwritten sign on the building’s timber frontage, and also over large hanging lanterns.

Marmadukes, in St Peter’s Grove, off Bootham, opened in May 2006.

Mr Hattersley bought the empty Orchard Court Hotel the previous year, and reportedly spent £5 million converting the property into a 22-room boutique hotel.

As part of the revamp, he launched Monty’s Grill, an eatery dedicated to rare breed meat.

A life less ordinary

DAVID HATTERSLEY, 41, grew up in a council flat on a Derbyshire estate.

By the time he was 19 he was involved in ice cream sales, and he then got involved in a deep sea trawler, fishing off the coast of north Wales.

He began buying property in 1994 and by 2006 was operating in 11 countries. That year alone, he spent more than £15 million on projects.

He bought York’s Lendal Tower and tried to buy the Bonding Warehouse, before losing a bidding war.

In an interview with The Press in 2006, he said he most admired Margaret Thatcher, was most angered by “chavs and scumbags” who claimed rights but lacked a sense of responsibility, and said Fawlty Towers was what made him laugh.

In 2008, he courted controversy when he hit out at beggars and accused police and council staff of doing nothing to tackle the issue.