Bowden Hall is an 18th century mansion that was converted into a hotel in 1971. It now trades as the Mercure Gloucester Bowden Hall Hotel
The Citizen: 7th April, 1971 – Bowden Hall may become an hotel – Gloucestershire County Council has lost about £20,000 because of the delay over the sale of Bowden Hall, the 18th century mansion at Upton St. Leonards. The council confirmed yesterday that it has accepted a tender from Longhope hotel owner Mr. Gerry Brobyn, who plans to turn the 24-bedroomed hall into a hotel with a private golf course. The council refused to reveal the figure, but it is thought to be in the region of £35,000. Mr Brobyn said today that if all goes well he could open as a hotel in about nine months. The house would be left unchanged. He agreed that £35,000 was ‘a good guess’ at the price he offered to pay for it.
Six months ago Gloucester businessman Mr David Wickens offered the council £55,000 for the Hall and its 60 acres of grounds, which he wished to buy as a private residence. He said today: “Because of the delay over the abortive sale of the Hall to Gloucester RDC I have had time to look around the property market and I am now negotiating to buy a 140-acre estate in the Cotswolds near Cheltenham, which includes a 40-bedroomed house – one of the finest in the county. Had the council accepted my original offer they would have been something like £20,000 better off now, I would guess. I am pleased that the house is not going to be knocked down,” said Mr Wickens who has just sold the Tara Hotel at Upton Hill for £70,000.
Mr Brobyn, aged 45, is a former car salesman in Gloucester and took over the Longhope Manor Hotel about three years ago. He was well known in the Forest of Dean as leader and vocalist of the Gerry Collins Orchestra. He lives at Longhope Manor with his wife Maud, and two daughters Jane (21) and Lynne (17).
Mr C.H. Moore, County Land Agent, said that the county were “very satisfied” with the price, but it could not be revealed until it was reported to the Estates Committee and Finance and Policy Committee. The council had received “several” tenders for the Hall.