"They are letting the town down" - Talks stall over future of 'tatty' Blackpool Ibis hotel

The Ibis Hotel - formerly the Clifton
The Ibis Hotel - formerly the Clifton
Share this article
Have your say

Town hall chiefs say they are in a 'Mexican standoff' with the owner of a historic Blackpool hotel dubbed an eyesore.

Concerns have been raised since 2016 over the condition of the Grade II-listed former Clifton Hotel in Talbot Square which currently operates as an Ibis.

Ornate features are rundown

Ornate features are rundown

Independent councillor Maxine Callow told a full meeting of Blackpool Council: "I'm appalled about the old Clifton Hotel that is getting tattier and tattier by the day.

"They are letting the town down."

Council leader Coun Simon Blackburn said officers had met with the owners of the building who blamed the lack of investment on the failure to re-let the ground floor which previously housed a nightclub.

Coun Blackburn said: "We are in a bit of a Mexican standoff. They don't want to spend the money that needs to be spent and there are certain consequences for the council if we look to enforce with that company."

He added: "The issue apparently is they can't let the ground floor which used to be a nightclub.

"But to my mind you're not going to be able to let the ground floor in the state it is in at the moment, but if you do it up you've got half a chance of letting it.

"I do hope once the development on the former Yates's site is complete, that plonking 150 bedrooms there and all of the people and footfall that will provide will make the ground floor of that space somewhat more palatable to a developer.

"But it's going to be a long road and we rely very heavily, and the legislation relies very heavily, on developers co-operating with the local authority and at the moment we're not getting much in the way of co-operation.

"But we will keep pursuing it doggedly."

Blackpool Civic Trust first raised concerns about the state of the former Clifton Hotel in November 2016 when cracks had appeared in the frontage.

The building is owned by Yorkshire-based Brook Leisure.

Two bars which operated in the ground floor of the premises - Che Bar and Coco Club - have been closed for a number of years.

The Clifton dates back to 1865 and was granted listed status in 1974.

A Premier Inn hotel is currently being built on the site of the former Yates's pub in Talbot Square.