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Tuesday, March 11, 2014
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HONITON: Premier Inn could ‘move town forward’
Friday, 21 February 2014
A new 66-bedroom Premier Inn hotel, which could be built at the site of the Turk’s Head Lodge, would “move Honiton forward”, according to the company behind the development.
Andrew Davis, Developments Director at Yelverton Properties, who have already agreed a deal with Premier Inn to redevelop the site, addressed members of Honiton’s Chamber of Commerce at their monthly breakfast meeting last week, and said the project “needed to happen”.
Mr Davis said: “There has been a lot of interest and there is now a really strong case for this development.
“Change will often provoke concern but there has been a great deal of support for this project, and I get the impression that the community can see the benefits of what we are trying to do.
“Honiton is a great town with a strong community spirit and there are excellent prospects here. It has superb transport links and access to the countryside and coastline.
“The hotel will tidy up and regenerate the site on the gateway to Honiton and we have an opportunity to create something to welcome people to the town.
“Business people will understand that no town can stand still – projects like this need to happen so you can continue to move forward.”
Premier Inn would provide 25 new jobs for the town and the hotel chain’s company target is to reserve 50 per cent of jobs for those not in education or training, a policy which, according to Mr Davis, could provide “huge career development possibilities” for young people.
Mr Davis also confirmed revisions to the plans following concerns raised by local residents over their privacy. Designs for the hotel have been altered slightly to move the hotel further from neighbouring gardens and additional privacy screens and planting will be put in place to ensure hotel guests cannot see into the gardens.
Colin Wright, chairman of the Chamber of Commerce, wished Yelverton every success with the project and said the plans had “100 per cent support” from the chamber’s executive committee.
The planning application, which also includes plans to redevelop the nearby Honiton Garage, is under assessment by East Devon District Council and, if approved, the Premier Inn could open by February 2015.
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