Community leaders are objecting to proposals to redevelop a major seafront hotel – and want the project redesigned.

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Felixstowe Town Council says it accepts changes put forward for the resort’s Marlborough Hotel in the light of the current economic circumstances facing the leisure industry, but is deeply concerned about a suggested extension.

Owner Sudeep Singh is asking Suffolk Coastal council for consent to turn the 49-bedroom Marlborough Hotel, on Sea Road, into a 14-bed boutique hotel with a restaurant and shop on the ground floor, with the frontage restored to its former glory.

The rest of the building – along with a new three-storey modern extension to the rear – would be used to create 26 one, two and three-bedroom apartments.
Lost timber balconies and verandahs on the Edwardian building would be reinstated.

Planning officers at Suffolk Coastal are currently analysing the scheme.

The town council said while it accepted redevelopment in principle for mixed uses, particularly retaining resort-orientated uses on the ground floor, the extension proposed on Beach Road West was “unacceptable overdevelopment of the site”. It said there would be inadequate car parking in a busy resort – an issue which was raised by several residents in letters to the district council, saying off-street parking is limited already – and not enough space for bin storage and deliveries.

Town councillors also expressed concern about overshadowing of neighbouring properties and loss of privacy in Beach Road West and Russell Road.

The council said: “The scale, appearance and presentation of the Beach Road West extension will have an unacceptable impact on the street scene in a conservation area contrary to guidance.”

Explaining the redevelopment project, CH Architects said: “Our client has invested heavily in the redevelopment of the Marlborough Hotel over the last five years and has brought the hotel up to a high standard.

“Despite this investment, 
occupancy in the hotel has continued to fall to the point where it is now considered to be financially unviable as a hotel.

“As a consequence our client is looking to redevelop the hotel to meet the demand for quality residential accommodation.”

Other hotels in Felixstowe are also facing similar problems – with low occupancy rates for rooms, most having just 35 to 40% for the year.

8 comments

  • Paul did you not read the article? The councillors are working with the owner to improve the design, you can't have 26 apartments with no parking facilities, beach rd west is full of vehicles at this time of year let alone in the summer.

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    Sweetie

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

  • Hello sweetie, thanks for the condescending riposte. Yes I did read the article - if the councillors are working so positively with the developer, why on earth were plans submitted that they would strongly object to? Does that means all dialogue broke down and the developer decided to try and get SCDC approval over their heads? Or that no proper dialogue occurred before plan submission? My key point is that a properly run process would see plans coming forward that could garner support from key stakeholders, especially local residents directly impacted by the scheme. I really don't see that process operating here, resulting in an inefficient and costly, disjointed approach.

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    paul

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

  • Any chance of these councillors pro actively helping business people willing to invest in the resort rather than just negatively blocking proposals? They should be falling over themselves to get investment in and working with the developers and their advisers to make sure proposals are workable and acceptable and above all fast tracked for implementation. Drive away investors and the town's problems will spiral out if control.

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    paul

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

  • A lot of issues here but overall I sympathise with here Paul is coming from. Yes, any development has to be considered especially in light of parking issues and existing residents etc etc., but I do wonder at the strategies of our so-called local representatives? How can a scheme get this far with such a large gap between the sides? Can we credit the council to act properly and sensibly bearing in mind the disaster they have made of Town developments in recent years. Over 20 years to sort out Martello Park, with all that lost revenue and credibility, not to mention the expense of the Shared Space scheme which still jeopardises local retailers. But the Spa Pavilion and the surrounding gardens shambles just finishes any faith off! As Paul said, how can these people be trusted to make sensible decisions and prosper the town?

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    Disbeliever

    Wednesday, January 8, 2014

  • Felixstowe is already dead cant see why any one wants to invest in it empty shops closed down theatre ,gardens half finished,as for apartments we all know who will get them

    Report this comment

    pandy

    Wednesday, January 8, 2014

  • Hi Paul, apologies for being condescending, like many felixstowe residents I'm fed up with large design companies and owners thinking that investment into the town is good in whatever guise, surely they should be responsible enough at inception that 26 new permenant residencies should have some form of parking rather than relying on already congested streets. Scdc had commented on the initial submission that this was overdeveloped and where is the parking, not a surprise after the same issue arising on the Martello housing site where the developers are only interested in maxing the fee earning side. I have plenty of criticism for SCDC inept management of felixstowe, however surely a quality well considered initial proposal would help everybody in the long run. Striving not to add to the negative views of Pandy felixstowe can improve!

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    Sweetie

    Wednesday, January 8, 2014

  • Sweetie don't know what planet your on just look at the town put it next to wood bridge I know where I would go, I've tried looking for the good points of the town it's a mess this is not being negative it's the truth even if it hurts

    Report this comment

    pandy

    Wednesday, January 8, 2014

  • When was the last time a week went past when there wasn't a story about something positive being planned for Felixstowe only for councillors or old residents complaining about it and getting it scrapped?

    Report this comment

    RC

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

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