Peter Nicholas Hall, Olds 1963-67 (November 2017)

Peter Hall

Peter Nicholas Hall (Olds 1963-67) was born in Ealing on 24th. December, 1949.  The son of JE Hall (3642) and brother of JW Hall (6296).  After Prep Schools – Gate House in Kingston and Sutton Place in Seaford, Peter arrive at Lancing in September 1963.  As Nigel Wheeler exclaimed at his Memorial Service, Lancing was, to Peter, an expensive holiday camp on the South Coast.  Peter loved to swim, play tennis and football but he did also manage to squeeze in a few GCEs. 

From Lancing he was sent to Germany on work experience and to learn the language.  He quickly mastered the language and even studied at the Goethe Institute while managing to learn something useful from his work experience with ICI in Frankfurt. 

On his return to England, he decided upon a career in hotel management and was despatched the Imperial Hotel in Torquay for five years.  Yet another South Coast holiday camp but at least at the end of it he came out very suitably qualified and competent to manage an hotel. 

His first position was as assistant General Manager at the Goring Hotel in London, which at the time was regarded as the late Queen Mother’s favourite hotel and one that the Queen still uses.  From the Goring, he tried a different level of hotel management and took over running the Esso Crest Hotel in Maidenhead. 

Having gained experience and the opposite ends of the industry, he was invited to take over the management of the Spa Hotel in Tunbridge Wells, also owned by the Goring family.  At the time, the hotel was nothing more than a rest home for the elderly, yet within a few years, Peter turned it in to a vibrant commercial centre.  Using his German, he was able to attract business from Austria, Germany and elsewhere across the Continent. 

From the Spa, some ten years later, he moved to the US and took over the running of Windermere Island, a resort complex in the Bahamas frequented by members of the Royal Family.  The resort was managed by Sea Containers, also the operators of the Venice-Simplon-Orient Express, which was particularly convenient for his family and friends.  Still with VSO, he moved briefly to the Lodge at Vail and then away from VSO to Little Palm Island off the Florida Keys where one of his first guests was Al Gore, the serving Vice President of the US at the time. 

The next position took him to Deep Water Quay a fishing resort again off the Keys and from there he moved to Jamaica Inn on Jamaica where his last guest as John Major who wanted to discuss cricket in to the early hours.  With the destruction of the twin towers in New York -  9/11, the leisure industry in the US shut down for a while and at this point Peter decided to seek a new career with slightly less onerous hours. 

He chose Real Estate.  Once qualified and with his Broker’s Licence in place, he set about selling the new units that were being developed around the Fort Lauderdale seafront and only working eight to ten hours each day.  All very exciting and going well until the financial crash in 2008-09.  He held on and was preparing for the upturn in 2012 when the diagnosis was given. 

He decided it was time to retire and returned to the UK shortly afterwards.  From that point on he was determined to beat the disease, but sadly it was not to be and he died on 9th. November, 2017.  His Memorial Service in Tunbridge Wells was attended by many OLs, mainly from Olds, and the service ended with an amazing rendition of Triumphales.  He is survived by his brother John and niece Sophie.

John Hall