Preston hotel to be named after PNE legend Bill Shankly
A multi-million pound city centre hotel will be named The Shankly Hotel Preston, developers have announced.
Signature Living, the firm behind the conversion of the former post office on the Flag Market, says the move is a "fitting tribute" to PNE legend Bill Shankly.
The boutique hotel, formerly known under the working title of the Harris Hotel, will open in September.
It will follow the template of the The Shankly Hotel in Liverpool featuring memorabilia and photographs from his playing and coaching career.
Bill Shankly’s grandson and Shankly Hotel co-owner and director, Chris Carline said: “It is a fitting tribute and legacy to my grandfather for a hotel to be named in his honour in Liverpool, but it is also important for his legacy to be honoured in Preston where he spent much of his playing career.
"He had some amazing footballing highlights and achievements at Preston and made some incredible friends including Tom Finney who my grandfather said was 'the greatest player he ever saw'.
"I am absolutely delighted that we will be able to bring some of the Shankly magic to this incredible building and share some of the amazing memories with the people of Preston.
"I cannot think of two better places for Bill Shankly’s name to be remembered, honoured and celebrated.
"The city is fast becoming a vibrant place for nightlife and entertainment and we are extremely excited at being able to contribute to Preston’s hospitality offer.”
The iconic figure in the football world won the FA Cup as a player at Deepdale during a tenure either side of the Second World War.
And his likeness is etched onto the seats on the Bill Shankly Kop at PNE's home ground.
After his playing career, having represented Scotland at international level, he later went on to gain legend status as the manager of Liverpool.
He received an OBE in 1974 and died aged 68 in 1981.
Signature Living boss Lawrence Kenwright said: “The Shankly Hotel is to not only celebrate his iconic footballing career and achievements but to honour the very special relationship he had with the city and people of Preston, having signed for Preston North End in 1933.
"It is a great honour to be working with Chris and the Shankly family on this exciting project for Preston.”
Roger Jonas, head of stakeholder relations for Signature Living, said: “These are extremely exciting times ahead for Signature Living to be coming to Preston, there is a new era of excitement and confidence about the city.
"Preston has some exciting developments and projects at the moment including the re development of the Guild Hall by local entrepreneur Simon Rigby, the investment by Swedish furniture giant IKEA and the Â£430m pound investment of The City Deal.
"Not only will this bring huge economic investment into the region but it will also see the creation of 20,000 new jobs and 17,000 new homes being built.”