The first phase of a new development in the town will be open on Friday.

Developers Alan Smith and Kathy Murdoch of Westward Living, Westward Ho! councillor Roger Tisdale and 2-year-old Robbie Tisdale.Developers Alan Smith and Kathy Murdoch of Westward Living, Westward Ho! councillor Roger Tisdale and 2-year-old Robbie Tisdale.

THE first phase of a new development in Westward Ho! will be complete this week, with a brand new restaurant opening in the town.

‘Latitude 51’, built on the Old Buccaneer’s site, will see a two-storey, 160-cover restaurant called the Westward Arms open its doors on Friday.

The development also houses ‘Everything Westward’, a shop selling local arts, crafts and gifts set to open next week, and six luxury apartments due to be completed within the next month.

The second phase of Latitude 51, which will be starting when phase one is complete, will see a second eatery, another shop earmarked as an extreme sports shop and more luxury apartments built on the site.

Kathy Murdoch, director of Westward Living who owns the development, said: “We wanted to put Westward Ho! on the map and create something that will attract people to the area.

“The key focus was keeping it local; everything about Latitude 51 from the construction workers and materials to the food, furniture and paintings in the restaurant is all sourced within a 30-mile radius of the town.

“So far we’ve created 35 new jobs in the restaurant and six part time jobs in the shop, which is exactly what this area needs, and there will be more to come when the next phase is complete.”

Councillor Roger Tisdale said: “Westward Ho! doesn’t really have a centre at the moment and this is where Latitude 51 will come in.

“Often younger generations get forgotten; this is not a retiring town, we want to encourage young people to stay.

“Around 70 jobs will be created from this development when it is complete; I hope this will encourage young people to stay, work and spend in the town.”

Latitude 51 was the vision of Mrs Murdoch’s father Alan Smith, who has overseen the construction side of the development.

“We are trying to establish Westward Ho! as a place to go out to eat; we need more good quality eateries in the town,” said Mr Smith.

“This is the best thing that has happened to the town for a great many years.”

The whole development is set to be completed within the next 12-18 months.