Development is ‘exactly what Bideford needs’

The companies behind plans for a major development in Bideford claim new hotel and restaurants will create 120 local jobs.

TWO companies behind major plans to redevelop land in Bideford will be holding two exhibitions in the town this week.

Parent company Whitbread is hoping to build a 70-bed Premier Inn hotel and 190-cover Brewers Fayre restaurant, while McDonald’s is planning an 85-seat restaurant and drive-thru.

“Bideford is a great location for our second Premier Inn hotel in North Devon,” said Richard Pearson, acquisition manager for Whitbread.

“Our investment can only be good news for the town, creating jobs and helping to support local businesses by attracting additional visitors.

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“That is exactly what any town needs in this difficult economic climate and I look forward to working with the council to get the hotel delivered and taking a leading role in promoting the area in the future.”

The development is planned for land opposite Atlantic Village, and those behind the plans claim it will create 120 local jobs.

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A spokesman for McDonald’s said: “The proposed drive-thru restaurant will create 65 new jobs immediately, with more hopefully to follow as the business grows.”

But since The Gazette first reported the plans last week, some readers have been in touch to say the development would be unwelcome.

Sandra Adams, from Woolsery said: “This will drive people away from the restaurants and hotels in the town centre.

“We need the trade in the town, not in this out-of-town development.”

An exhibition with full details will be held in the vacant store next to Gap in Atlantic Village from 12pm – 8pm tomorrow (Thursday) and at the Burton Art Gallery on Friday from 10am – 1pm

Detailed planning applications are expected to be submitted in the next few weeks.

If permission is granted, developers hope the facilities would be open towards the end of 2013.

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