New seafront hotel for Weston as YMCA takes on Flowerdown House
- Credit: ©darrenkamaraphotography
A former seafront hotel for RAF veterans has been taken over by a charity which is preparing to reopen it as a Beach Hotel this summer.
The building, in Beach Road, has been leased to the YMCA Dulverton Group by the Royal Air Forces Association (RAFA).
Flowerdown House was used by RAFA to provide holidays and respite breaks for veterans, but the charity decided to close its hotels last summer to safeguard its welfare services.
YMCA Dulverton Group has taken on the building to add to its portfolio of hotels across Somerset. The charity is planning a mini refurbishment and recruitment drive, ready to reopen in late May.
Building on its model of social enterprise, Weston's new Beach Hotel will offer accommodation and meals, while supporting young people into training and employment. The hotel features eighteen en suite rooms and a bar and restaurant area.
Dave Jackson, the YMCA’s head of community enterprise, said: “It’s such a great privilege to
take over a building with so much history and in such a great location.
"Our experience over the past years in Minehead puts us in a good position to be a great addition to visitor’s stays in Weston.”
The YMCA’s other hotels include the Beach Hotel, in Minehead and The Great Western Hotel,
in Taunton. The charity also owns Wrington wedding venue, Barley Wood, and The Campbell Room in the Quantock Hills - low-cost self catering accommodation for groups.
Dave Jackson added: “The team began the conversation with RAFA last year and it became
clear very quickly that whilst charities with very different beneficiaries, our values were well
aligned, and it’s great to be able to continue the operation as a hotel, whilst so many in this
area have been closed as a result of financial pressures of the last year.”
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YMCA Dulverton supports 10,000 children, young people and families across Somerset and Devon every year. The charity runs a range of services including training and education courses, supported housing and emergency accommodation and youth clubs, day camps and after school activities.