Vandalism fears halt investment at Blackpool hotel

A Blackpool businessman has warned the deteriorating state of a neighbouring hotel has forced him to shelve a £500,000 investment in his property for now.

Thursday, 18th January 2018, 2:34 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th January 2018, 3:50 pm
The Ruskin Hotel (right) with the run down former Grosvenor Hotel on its left

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Tony Banks, of Blackpool Promotions, wants to build a new leisure spa at the back of The Ruskin Hotel on Albert Road, which he bought last year.

But the poor state of the adjoining former Grosvenor Hotel has forced him to cancel his plans for now.

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The front of the former Grosvenor Hotel

Mr Banks received planning permission last July to build a first floor bridge to link the back of the Ruskin with an accommodation block and garage which will be refurbished to create the spa.

But today he said: “I have a boarded up hotel next door to the Ruskin and it is very detrimental to the running of my business.

"It’s right in the middle of the holiday area.

“I want to extend the Ruskin but I won’t invest £500,000 into the spa project while there is this uncertainty around the building next door.”

The front of the former Grosvenor Hotel

Mr Banks also fears vandals could get into the former Grosvenor which has been closed down for a number of years.

His concerns follow a blaze at the boarded up Ambassador Hotel on the Promenade in North Shore last week.

The now demolished Palm Beach Hotel on South Promenade was another target for arsonists after it was left vacant for several years.

Mr Banks – who also owns The Royal Carlton, The Royal Seabank, The Boston and Southbank hotels in Blackpool – said: “My biggest concern is that if that building (the former Grosvenor) goes up in flames, my business will be threatened.”

He said he had tried to buy the hotel but had so far failed to strike a deal with the owners, who are believed to be out-of-town investors.

A spokesman for Blackpool Council said enforcement action had been taken against the owners of the Grosvenor but so far the order had not been complied with.

A community protection notice was served in July 2017, which demanded external maintenance of the property was carried out.

However the requested work was not completed, the council said, and it is now set to take further legal action against the owners of the building to address matters.

A Blackpool Council spokesman said: “We want the environment to look better for residents, visitors and businesses who are trading in the area.”