£12m hotel plan revealed

TOURISM and council bosses have welcomed news of a £12.8 million investment in Clacton with the building of a 57-room hotel in the town centre.

TOURISM and council bosses have welcomed news of a £12.8 million investment in Clacton with the building of a 57-room hotel in the town centre.

The Ascott Group is buying the former Woolwich call centre in Jackson Road to create a Travelodge, residential apartments and a restaurant and bar, as well as an additional commercial unit.

It is estimated 50 new jobs will be created by the project which has been submitted to Tendring District Council for planning officials to make a decision on.

Buying the property involved a £2.8million investment and the conversion will cost a further £10million.

Les Double, portfolio holder for regeneration at the council, said its regeneration team had been working with both Travelodge and the Ascott Group for months.

He said: “It's excellent news that these companies are prepared to make such a considerable investment in the Clacton area.

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“In the last 20 years the district has lost more than 700 bed spaces in hotels and guesthouses and this will be step towards restoring a few of these.”

He added that an additional benefit would be that conference organisers had found it difficult to find enough bed spaces in Clacton so the development would help attract both business and leisure tourism to the town.

Mr Double said it had been hoped that another call centre could be attracted to the building in Jackson Road and added: “We have been working with Barclays to see if it would be possible to bring in another call centre.

“Unfortunately that has not been possible.”

He said: “The project will add vitality to this section of the town centre and we are confident it will undoubtedly lead to other developer interest in the future which has to be good news for Clacton and Tendring.”

Pierre Oxley, chairman of Clacton Chamber of Trade and Tourism, said: “It is an over £10 million investment and I welcome it.

“We do need more hotel accommodation in the town although obviously we are working with existing providers to help them too.

“This shows Clacton is on the up with more with more people wanting to come to the town.”

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