Rebirth plans for fire-hit resort hotel

The New Sunset Hotel on Albert Road
The New Sunset Hotel on Albert Road
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A vandal-hit hotel in Blackpool’s holiday heartland could be partially converted to residential use in a bid to give it a new lease of life.

Councillors are being asked to approve plans to convert the New Sunset Hotel on Albert Road into a 20-bed hotel with a restaurant and function room and six permanent flats.

However, objections have been received from existing hoteliers in Albert Road and Charnley Road who fear the flats could attract ‘undesirable’ tenants to the holiday area.

In submissions to the council they say while they welcome a 20-bed hotel, the proposal for flats goes against planning policy for the area and could result in anti-social behaviour.

But a report by council planning officers says the proposed scheme is a viable way of bringing the boarded up property back into use.

It adds: “The flats would be two-bedroomed and would be generous in size, with roof gardens at the rear, and would be aimed towards the higher end of the market.

“It would not make good business sense for the applicant to rent out the flats to people who would put off potential hotel guests and adversely affect his hotel business if they felt threatened by the residents above.”

Planners admit the loss of holiday accommodation is contrary to policy but would ensure the upgrade of the property.

Firefighters were called to the New Sunset Hotel in May after flames broke out in the early hours of the morning and spread to the Gleneagles Hotel next door where people were sleeping.

It was believed the fire was started deliberately.

The plans are due to go before the planning committee when it meets on Tuesday at 6pm at the town hall.