A major plan to build a 30-bed hotel and 130-cover restaurant and bar in Amble have been described as a boost, a catalyst for further commercial opportunities and just what the town needs.
Last week, the Gazette revealed that Northumberland development company Arch has been in discussion with an established regional hotelier – yet to be disclosed – with the aim of delivering a bespoke, high-quality visitor and leisure facility.
A design team has been appointed and is progressing with the potential development of the three-star-plus boutique hotel, including a food-led offer, on land at Coquet Enterprise Park.
Arch will look to submit a planning application in the autumn, with the aim of appointing a contractor to deliver the scheme in spring 2017. Public consultation events will be held in due course.
The announcement has received positive comments from leading figures in the town. Amble Mayor Jane Dargue said: “This is something that has been on our wish list for a long time. The hotel will be a real boost for the town and hopefully a catalyst both for tourism and for the future development of other retail outlets.”
Ann Burke, chairman of Amble Business Club, described it as ‘excellent news’.She added: “The town needs more accommodation and it will bring employment. It really is just want Amble needs.”
Julia Aston, director of Amble Development Trust, was equally as pleased. She said: “I am thrilled to bits with this news. The idea for a hotel in the town was something that was identified within our Amble 2020 strategy document.
“Together with the county council, we’ve been trying to attract a hotel to Amble. So this is really good news. Hopefully this will attract even more investment in the town and create more jobs.”
Meanwhile, Coun Scott Dickinson, who is the county council’s business chairman and ward member for the nearby Druridge Bay ward, said: “A development like this will be great for Amble and surrounding areas like Hadston and Widdrington – helping to attract many more tourists and visitors to the town and creating more jobs for local people.
“Once established, it can also provide a catalyst for further commercial opportunities in the area and in particular the Coquet Enterprise Park.”
The news received a mixed response on our Facebook page. Some readers were in favour of the plans, while others questioned the decision to build it on an industrial estate and said that it would be close to a seafood factory.