The Hall's History
A Family Tradition
The oldest part of the main house dates back to the early 16th century. In 1577 Adam Leathes bought Dale Head Hall for £477 and brought his bride to live here.
Successive generations of the Leathes family lived at Dale Head. During this period various extensions were added to the original building, the most important of which was the part that is now the entrance to the hotel, with lounge and dining room overlooking the lake.
A new beginning
Providing Manchester with drinking water
In 1877, on the death of Thomas Stranger-Leathes, the then Lord of the Manor of Legburthwaite and Wythburn, the entire estate, which included the valley and large parts of the fells on either side of the two small lakes, was purchased by the Manchester Corporation.
Their interest in the valley was to change the two lakes into one large reservoir, to provide the growing city of Manchester with clean drinking water.
In 1879 the Corporation was granted Royal permission by Queen Victoria and work started on the building of the dam on the north side of the lake.
Simultaneously the construction of an underground pipeline began.
In 1894 the first water started its 100 mile journey to Manchester. There is now a plaque on the dam commemorating the centenary celebrations. Today the lake still provides the city of Manchester with approximately 50 million gallons of drinking water each day.
A Return to it's roots
Dale Head Hall is reborn
In the meantime, the Hall was transformed into the summer resident for the Lord Mayor of Manchester and served this purpose until 1985. By this time the Hall was severely run down and it was decided by the City Council to sell the property.
In June 1990 the hotel transferred into private ownership and the long process was started to restore the property to its former glory. In 1992 a start was made with the conversion of the stable block at the back of the hotel, into self-catering accommodation.
This resulted in five luxury suites. In September 1999 the old drying room and boiler house were demolished, to make way for the next stage in the development. On 1st July 2000 a new extension was opened adding four Superior Lakeside hotel rooms and two lakeside suites.