New Travelodge and Starbucks development in Bury St Edmunds will boost tourism and economy
PUBLISHED: 06:00 23 February 2018 | UPDATED: 07:26 23 February 2018
A new Travelodge and 'drive-thru' Starbucks on a key gateway into Bury St Edmunds will give the town's economy and tourist trade a major boost, according to business leaders.
Work got underway on the 80-bedroom hotel and coffee shop development on land off Etna Road, near Tesco on Compiegne Way, on Wednesday, with developer Mike Spenser-Morris and St Edmundsbury mayor Terry Clements turning the sod.
Mr Spenser-Morris, who is a Bury St Edmunds resident, said as well as the economic and tourism benefits, the development will also create an attractive approach into town.
He said: “I think the project is very exciting for a number of reasons.
“We have worked very hard to create a development that is worthy of an entrance into Bury St Edmunds and have worked closely alongside St Edmundsbury Borough Council and OurBuryStEdmunds, particularly Mark Cordell.
“It is a really important project for Bury St Edmunds that will benefit the town by providing quality accommodation in an ideal location, and in turn boosting the town’s economy.”
More: Travelodge developer speaks of vision for Etna Road site
Independent research conducted by St Edmundsbury Borough Council revealed that visitors staying overnight in Bury St Edmunds spend an average of £212 during their trip, while day visitors spend an average of £29.
Mark Cordell, chief executive of OurBuryStEdmunds BID, welcomed the news.
He said: “I’m delighted to see a new hotel coming to within walking distance of the town centre.
“With the creation of the official tourism site Bury St Edmunds and Beyond, our aim is to increase the number of people staying overnight in Bury.
“This ultra-modern hotel will be a great asset for the town in achieving that aim.”
Nearby residents voiced some concerns over the project during the planning application process, including increased noise and volume of traffic.
But borough councillor Julia Wakelam, for the town’s Risbygate ward, who was at the ceremony, said: “I really welcome it.
“I do understand the concerns of residents but anything which increases tourism in Bury can only be good.
“This was a quite a scruffy area of town and it’s going to look so much better.”
Work is expected to be completed by January 2019.