Calls made to withdraw Bury St Edmunds Suffolk Hotel restoration plans after concerns over conservation and traffic issues
Traffic, noise and conservation concerns have been raised over plans to restore a former hotel in Bury St Edmunds town centre - with calls made to withdraw the proposals until more details are provided.
Gatsby Retail Ltd has sought planning and listed building consent to return the old Suffolk Hotel, in Buttermarket, which closed 25 years ago, to its former glory
The proposals for the 30 bedroom hotel would see a new entrance created off High Baxter Street at the back of the Grade II listed building, an atrium built on the first floor and two shops – Waterstones and the former Edinburgh Woollen Mill – ‘retained and remodelled’ for the restoration.
However, while there is some agreement among residents in High Baxter Street that the former hotel site needs to be renovated, concerns have been raised to West Suffolk Council about the ‘adverse’ impact on the area with increased traffic and noise.
With no parking on site and a bus service to transport guests to the hotel from council car parks, one resident noted there was already congestion in the ‘narrow’ street from delivery lorries, vans and waste collection vehicles.
They said: “Consideration could be given to creating a hotel entrance in the old Edinburgh Woollen Mill store with a dedicated drop off point in the Buttermarket which is wider.”
Another resident said that while dropping off, guests would either ‘cause an obstruction in the road or park in the surrounding area causing residents access problems by obstructing entrances and garages’.
Conservation concerns were highlighted with The Georgian Group noting that while it welcomed moves to reuse the ‘important complex’, the proposal had ‘the potential to cause a degree of harm to the significance of the listed buildings and also to the conservation area’.
It said the impact of demolition works had ‘been neither adequately explained or justified’.
The group and The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings called for the applicant to provide more detail about the ‘age and significance’ of the fabric of the building affected and to withdraw the plans until the information was provided.
The applicant’s agent was approached for comment.