Guesthouse finance case study – Ouse Bridge

With a stunning position by the shores of Bassenthwaite Lake Bassenthwaite, Ouse Bridge House is an elegant Edwardian house built in the traditional Lakeland style. The residence, built originally as a private house, has been taking in guests for many years during which time its reputation as a charming, establishment full of character has been truly sealed. A superbly tranquil location for the serious walker, or the tourist, makes Ouse Bridge House an ideal place to stay for the many thousands of visitors who come to enjoy the Lake District over an ever widening tourist season.

The Objective

Both the purchasers wanted to secure a true lifestyle business away from the hustle and bustle of London and the Home Counties. To pursue that aim, they researched the market for small hotels and guest houses and bed and breakfast businesses which, by the virtue of the trade, would also allow them time to engage in their passion for outdoor pursuits.

Despite successful careers in their respective occupations and capital for a deposit they were turned down by all the major lenders due to their inexperience in the hospitality sector. The challenge was to secure a bank who had an appetite to lend to new-to-trade operators in a depressed market, where banking sentiment was at an all time low.

The Solution

After several phone calls discussing the merits of the properties that could service debt, an initial meeting with the Stewart Hindley team ensured a real understanding of their financing requirements and analysed the advantages and disadvantages of the different guesthouse mortgage options that would be available to them, given their circumstances.

Stewart Hindley & Partners’ track record in guesthouse finance, were able to provide un-paralleled access to prime lenders specialising in Lake District properties. This ensured that the new owners of the Ouse Bridge House Hotel identified a funding solution that was to meet their immediate and future requirements.

The Results

A decision in-principle credit line, subject to offer and valuation, was secured in advance of our clients offering on a particular property. Armed with the knowledge that the finance was in place at the appropriate level to conclude the deal, our clients were able to secure their purchase. The Stewart Hindley team compiled:

  • a business and marketing plan
  • revenue and cash flow projections
  • along with all the other supporting documentation required for this debt-raising exercise

The result was that the application was approved by the bank’s credit team.


We selected Stewart Hindley & Partners to advise us after being rejected by several banks because we were new-to-trade operators and had previously unrelated career experience.

We were more than pleased with the results because from the outset. We received a precise and concise assessment of the level of borrowing we could secure and service, against a number of properties, before placing an offer on Ouse Bridge House. Because the debt was already approved and in place, we were in a position to negotiate with the vendors to achieve the best guesthouse mortgage deal.

Claire & Stephan Shepherd

External links
Ouse Bridge Hotel & Guesthouse

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