Royal Pier Hotel plans approved

AN HISTORIC Clevedon building could finally be brought back to its former glory after plans to redevelop it were given the go ahead.

The Royal Pier Hotel, which stands next to the town’s Victorian pier, will be transformed into 17 luxury apartments to be created in both the existing Grade II-listed building and a new, modern extension.

The Marine Parade building has stood empty for 10 years, leaving it to fall into a state of disrepair, but on Friday the proposals put forward by its owner, Bristol-based firm Freemantle Developments, were unanimously approved by North Somerset Council’s north area planning committee.

At the meeting, Councillor Colin Hall said: “I am delighted to support this planning application.

“They are exciting plans and of a complementary design. They will not only benefit the pier, but the whole seafront.”

The proposals, drawn up by O’Leary Goss Architects, will see the main body of the hotel refurbished, the southern end, damaged by fire in 2003, repaired and extended, the seaward facing extensions removed and redeveloped and a new five-storey contemporary building created on the north side.

A glazed structure will link the two buildings and will house a car lift down to an undercroft car park with 14 spaces. There will also be four external parking spaces.

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The apartments will be made up of one one-bed, 13 two-beds and three three-beds and the project could be completed by mid-2012.

The approval will come as a relief for many people in Clevedon who have called for the building to be put back to good use after many years of neglect.

Seven people objected to the plans, raising concerns about a loss of views from Marine Parade, a loss of natural light and insufficient parking.

However, Clevedon Town Council raised no objections and Clevedon Civic Society and English Heritage supported the plans.

Proposals for new visitor facilities on Clevedon Pier, including toilets and education, exhibition and refreshment areas, have also been submitted to North Somerset Council but have not yet been decided on.