Premier Inn developers are a step closer to getting plans for a hotel in Skegness approved by gaining the support of the town council – by just one vote.
In spite of the controversy surrounding the plans for the hotel, only three members of the public turned up at the meeting to hear the debate and plans were supported by five votes to four.
The application, submitted by Helen Binns, planning consultant for Walsingham Planning, was for part single storey and part five storey hotel with ground floor restaurant/bar, single storey drive-thru restaurant and sub-station, together with means of vehicular access, car parking and ancillary works.
Coun Darrell Blackburn proposed the recommendation for approval and said: “It’s time Skegness was brought into the 21st century and out of the doldrums. We need to show the town is open for business.”
However, other councillors still has reservations. Coun Malcolm Gabbitas said: “I voted against it not because I object to Premier Inn coming, it’s just that the plan is for a five-storey hotel.
“I can understand there being no bedrooms on the ground floor because of the flood risk but there isn’t another five storey building in the town. It’s just wrong.”
KCS Developments is aware of the council’s vote but declined to comment. A spokesman said now the application has been submitted they preferred not to do anything that may be seen to prejudice an independent decision.
Consultation is continuing until Tuesday, July 5, after which, according to East Lindsey District Council, a date will be set for the plans to be heard by the authority’s planning committee.
The plan is available to view on the ELDC website along with 65 documents, one of which is to confirm Skegness Town Council’s support.
Another is from a neighbour Lee Dymond, of Albert Road, who said: “I wish to show my support for this project and feel it will be a valuable asset to the Skegness Foreshore and be the catalyst that is needed to regenerate the sea front. I feel that KCS have listened to and took on board concerns raised by locals (and myself) and have orientated the hotel restaurant so as to cause little disturbance to existing businesses on North Parade. I also feel that the design of the hotel has taken influence from properties along the seafront, in particular The County hotel. Also from looking at the plans the height of the hotel appears to be the same height as The Grosvenor Hotel (including the lift shaft) opposite.
“The jobs will be welcome to the area and it is good that they are aiming to employ a majority of people within the local area.”