Bradford's historic Midland Hotel built in the golden age of the railways is for sale for £3million

Bradford’s foremost Victorian hotel has gone on the market with an asking price of £3million.

The Midland Hotel on Forster Square is Grade II-listed and was built in 1885 by the Midland Railway Company as a showpiece for their presence in the north. It includes some of the city’s finest Victorian interiors and has welcomed famous guests over the years. Until 1960, it was directly linked to the station platforms by an ornate passageway, which still survives, that passengers and luggage porters would have used.

It has 90 bedrooms, a number of function and banqueting suites, a civil weddings licence and two period ballrooms.

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Its bars, The Foyer and The Spirit of Bradford, have 110 covers between them and the restaurant can seat 60. There is also The Victoria Rooms, which is let to a tenant.

The Midland Hotel, BradfordThe Midland Hotel, Bradford
The Midland Hotel, Bradford

The hotel currently has three stars and is owned by Peel Hotels, who bought it from local businessman John Pennington in 1998. Pennington owned the Midland for six years and restored many of its original features.

The end of the steam age saw the Midland fall into decay and it was derelict by the 1960s and through the 1970s and 80s. Pennington’s renovations opened up the ballrooms for the first time in nearly 30 years.

The stage actor Sir Henry Irving famously collapsed and died on the staircase in 1905 after performing at the Theatre Royal, accompanied by his manager Bram Stoker, who later created Dracula; and the writer JB Priestley, who was raised in Bradford, stayed in the Midland when he returned in the 1950s to film the documentary Lost City. A poignant scene where he telephones old childhood friends only to hear that many have died, some in World War One while serving with the Bradford Pals, was filmed in his suite at the hotel.

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Other guests include George Formby, every prime minister from Lord Salisbury up to Harold Wilson, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Laurel and Hardy. It was a popular choice for actors who came to perform in the local theatres, and the local Conservative Association would entertain politicians there. The local newspapers even published the hotel’s daily menus.

The Midland Hotel is for sale with London agents Christie & Co.