Originally called the Buxton Hydro Hotel, it became known as the Spa Hotel on 1st January 1931. This would change the nature of its clientele and position itself as a conference hotel to move with the decline of the hydropathic movement. The change was devised by the Spa Hotel’s manager H. R. P. Lomas who was considered an astute publicist.
With 260 rooms and a dining room to accommodate 230 people, the Buxton Hydro Hotel was one of the largest hotels in the town.
Despite its already impressive size, H. R. P. Lomas purchased the Milton House on Broad Walk to use as additional overflow accommodation for the Spa Hotel, giving us some idea of the demand for accommodation in the town. Built in 1864 the Milton House was always used as accommodation.
The Buxton Hydropathic Hotel served as the Granville Military Hospital during the First World War with other hotels acting as annexes. It had a 700 bed capacity.
Refugees from the Hungarian Revolution were housed at the Spa Hotel in 1956 for six months. The hotel was closed for business and also took in ex-patriots who had been dislodged by the Suez Crisis.
The Spa Hotel was demolished in 1973 after guest numbers started to dwindle and the hotel fell into decline.
Peter Lomas, The Buxton Hydro (Country Books, Bakewell) www.buxtonhydro.info
John Leach, The Book of Buxton, (Barracuda Books, Birmingham, 1987)
Mike Bentley, Mike Langham and Colin Wells, Buxton and the High Peak from the Board Collection, (Tempus Publishing, Stroud, 2006)
Keith Taylor, Buxton, Burbage, Chelmorton, Harpur Hill, Peak Dale, King Sterndale and Wormhill: Remembered, (Country Books, Bakewell, 2014)