Sheringham mayor: Hotel redevelopment plan will fail unless you do this one thing...
'Everyone I have spoken to has said whatever is proposed has got to be better than what is there at the moment.'
Controversial plans to compulsory purchase a derelict hotel in Sheringham in a bid to tidy up the seafront will fail unless enough people turn out to show their support.
Mayor David Gooch made the statement at this month's meeting of the town council after it emerged that North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) is preparing to submit a full planning application to redevelop the tourist resort's former Shannocks Hotel and neighbouring pay and display car park.
It follows concerns that the High Street hotel has become a blight on the local landscape and the owner's failure to comply with a notice to improve the run down building.
Sheringham Town Council heard that NNDC had to consult the public before submitting its plans for a mixed use development of apartments and commercial floorspace on the former Shannocks site - and needed their support to continue.
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They are being given the opportunity to comment on the plans at an exhibition in the town's Oddfellows Hall on Thursday, December 8, between 1pm and 4pm and between 5pm and 7pm.
Addressing Sheringham Town Council on Tuesday night, Mr Gooch said: 'I would encourage as many members as possible to go along to support it.
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'Everyone I have spoken to has said whatever is proposed has got to be better than what is there at the moment. The only concern I have heard is the potential loss of parking at Chequers car park.'
But he added: 'If too many people go along and don't like it the Compulsory Purchase Order is out the window.'
Earlier this year, the hotel's owners, Huddies Ltd, submitted a planning application to North Norfolk District Council to demolish the former Shannocks Hotel, which has stood empty for several years. And director Andrew Roper insisted they were fully committed to developing the site.
Speaking at the time, a spokesperson for Huddies Ltd said: 'We have appointed a team of architects and surveyors to formulate our own development proposals whilst the existing structure is demolished, and we will continue to work closely with North Norfolk District Council to realise these proposals and to achieve the best result for the site and the town. We are fully committed to developing the site.'