Weston’s derelict Royal Pier Hotel site to be sold?
- Credit: Archant
A £1.2million offer has been made on Weston-super-Mare’s derelict Royal Pier Hotel site – meaning North Somerset Council could soon get back the £120,000 it is owed for the building’s demolition.
James Scott, a London-based businessman who grew up in the town, is waiting to find out if his offer will be accepted.
The Royal Pier Hotel site was owned by CNM Estates until September last year, when receiver CBRE was called in so the bank Investec could recoup its multi-million-pound investment.
The Mercury understands CBRE was due to end marketing on the Royal Pier Hotel site on Friday and will consider any offers made. However, when asked if a marketing end-date had been set, a spokesman would not comment on the specifics.
Mr Scott’s interest in the Royal Pier Hotel dates back to 2007. It is understood his £1.2million offer, subject to contracts, includes the cost of his initial investment in the hotel of around £36,500.
He told the Mercury the land is not worth as much as £1.2million, but he may aim to obtain a ‘lock-out option’, giving him exclusive rights to buy the property, during which time he would try to gain planning permission to add value.
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However, Mr Scott said the main benefit of any sale is North Somerset Council. It has a charge on the land, which means it will get back the £103,000, plus interest, it spent on the demolition of the hotel in 2010 following a fire.
A council spokesman said: “We took the decision to demolish the hotel following the fire to protect public safety but also to help restore some normality for the local community as roads around the site were closed off.
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“It is standard practice in these circumstances to put a charge on the land to ensure our costs can, at some stage, be reclaimed.”
Mr Scott does not know if any other offers have been made for the Royal Pier Hotel.
He said his intention when he was involved with the site the first time was to use the profits to restore neighbouring derelict Birnbeck Pier, a dream he still wishes to see fulfilled.
He said: “I will not make loads of money. I want the pier restored again, so I have done something good for myself and for the town.”
The pier is owned by CNM Estates, run by Mr Scott’s former Royal Pier Hotel business partner Wahid Samady, and his plans for the structure remain unclear. He previously told the Mercury he still hoped to find a ‘viable way forward’ for Birnbeck.
His plans for the Royal Pier Hotel site featured 63 apartments, shops and a café. The application was approved by North Somerset Council in 2011, subject to agreements being signed.