York-based property developer secures £2m investment to turn a former railway building into holiday apartments

Dec Connolly Editor

Email business@thebusinessjournal.co.uk

Property developer, Neil Cook, has secured more than £2m funding and completed the acquisition of Holgate House on Holgate Road in York in a deal that will transform the building into eight luxury self-catering apartments. Planning has been approved to convert the commercial property into residential lettings with permission granted for basement leisure facilities that will include a sauna and steam room. 

The project is scheduled for completion by Easter 2023 and will form part of Neil’s luxury property portfolio, Chateau Anna, which includes three stunning holiday lets across the city of York, each designed with a touch of French style.

Almost £1m has been allocated for the redevelopment of the building and Neil has appointed Box Architects in Leeds and Collis Quantity Surveyors to oversee the project. Interior design will be headed up by Lucy Seddon of Helston Street Interiors who is creating apartments that bring together luxury with rustic charm, and elegant nods to York’s heritage. Featuring opulent bathrooms by Bert & May, and state of the art kitchens by The Main Company, the development will offer a sophisticated home away from home experience.

Neil Cook explained: “This is a really exciting step forward for us, and we’re delighted to be in a position to bring this empty building back to life. The property will be sympathetically restored, preserving the traditional period features whilst injecting a modern feel with the interior design. It will be a great addition to York’s hospitality scene, whilst honouring the heritage of the building and the beautiful setting of York.”

Holgate House, set in 0.7 acres, was built in the 1850’s and according to the 1891 and 1901 census returns, was home to Henry Tennant. At the age of 18, Henry joined the staff of the Brandling Junction Railway on Tyneside, where he soon became Chief Clark. In 1848 he was appointed General Manager of the Leeds and Thirsk Railway and in 1870 took on the role of General Manager for NER until his retirement in 1891. As part of the transformation of the building, Holgate House will be renamed Railway House as a fitting tribute to its heritage. 

The building remained a private house until 1933 when the York Educational Settlement – a Quaker adult education institution – took over and remained until 1976. 

Railway House will include two three-bed apartments, three two-bed apartments and three one-bed apartments each boasting their own living area, diner and kitchen. Prices will range from £250 – £1,000 per night, and guests will have the option to enjoy private dining in their own apartment or, even a private cocktail making workshop. For corporate clients, apartments can be hired for meetings or entertaining. 

The redevelopment of Holgate House forms part of Neil’s wider expansion plans for Chateau Anna, as he continues to gain investment for future growth.

Currently, the brand features three impressive holiday lets – The Bishy, The Courtyard and Victoria Bar – all a short stroll from the city centre, and all recently renovated with design by Helston Street. Guests are welcomed with fresh flowers, a bottle of wine, and a hamper of local produce before relaxing into an idyllic getaway.