Poll: Former Hemsby Pontin’s site is back on sale - what would you like to see it used for?

PUBLISHED: 08:32 07 September 2012 | UPDATED: 09:56 07 September 2012

Pontins Hemsby - closed. Photo: Bill Darnell

Pontins Hemsby - closed. Photo: Bill Darnell

Archant © 2006

The former Pontin’s holiday camp at Hemsby is back on the market after plans for a 191-home housing estate and 60-bed care home were pulled eight months ago.

Weeds now flourish on the 2,440- capacity camp which has sat empty since 2008 when Pontin’s closed it “following a period of sustained operating losses”.

Landowner Northern Trust had pinned hope on developing the site for residential use, but following heated objections from residents the plans were withdrawn in January 2012 before they came before the development control committee.

Residents feared the development would place a strain on schools and doctors’ surgeries, put more cars on the road and take a valuable tourism asset away from Hemsby.

In a change of tack, the site has gone back on the market advertised for “tourism/ leisure uses”.

But Northern Trust bosses would not be drawn on whether housing development was still a future option if a buyer was not found.

A spokesman said: “We withdrew the application in January to consider the range of options for the future of the site and have decided to take the site forward to the market for sale through our agents, Savills.

“The site will not be going to auction, rather we are inviting offers from interested parties following the start of our marketing campaign.

“We look forward to securing a successful future for this important part of Hemsby.”

Mick Castle, chairman of the borough’s development control committee, said a strong marketing campaign would “flush out some kind of long-term plan for the site” one way or another.

“They will either find someone with some serious money or find there isn’t the stomach to redevelop it as a holiday site,” he added.

“I’m sure lots of people would like to see Pontin’s still there, but if there’s no money to bring it to 2012 standards it won’t happen.

“It’s good news for the borough – if it isn’t bought it will at least make it clear for the community that this place will lay derelict.”

Keith Kyriacou, vice-chairman of Hemsby Parish Council, said: “It’s got to stay as tourism as when you let that go for building all the other camp sites will go as building.”

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