Weston's hotel industry thrives as more people choose to holiday in the UK

PUBLISHED: 13:00 21 September 2017

Clockwise from the top left: The Grand Atlantic Hotel, Premier Inn, the plans for Holiday Inn Express (picture: Mountford Pigott and Dowlas UK) and the proposals for The Royal Hotel (picture: View Architects).

Clockwise from the top left: The Grand Atlantic Hotel, Premier Inn, the plans for Holiday Inn Express (picture: Mountford Pigott and Dowlas UK) and the proposals for The Royal Hotel (picture: View Architects).

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Weston's hotel sector is thriving as new research shows the industry is one of the most stable in the South West.

Research by insolvency and restructuring trade body R3 found the hotel sector is the healthiest of 10 key sectors in the region, with the agriculture and transport sectors following close behind.

In Weston, hotels are benefiting from more people staying in the UK for their holidays and big hotel firms are showing confidence in the town’s sector by building here.
R3’s South West chair Alan Bennett said: “The fall in the value of the pound over the past year is likely to have contributed towards the strong performance.

“A ‘cheaper’ pound will have boosted the UK’s ‘staycation’ market and made it more attractive for overseas tourists to come to the UK.”

MORE: Weston College buys hotel near its campus.

But the statistics show insolvency affects hotels more in coastal areas than it does elsewhere and Mr Bennett said: “The inconsistent, seasonal nature of the tourist trade will leave many smaller firms particularly vulnerable to the impact of any unexpected financial costs, which in turn will be felt by those employed within the industry.”

But general manager of The Grand Atlantic hotel, Wayne Entwistle, said the hotel experienced a good summer in 2016 and even more visitors chose to stay at the hotel this summer.

He added: “What we have started to see is rather than people booking one seven-day holiday a year, people are taking multiple two or three-night breaks.

“We get people booking later now, on a more ad-hoc basis when the weather is nice, rather than booking 12 months in advance.”

MORE: Birnbeck’s future could be decided by independent company as owner hands over control of Royal Pier Hotel site.

Mr Entwistle said offering other services, such as conferences and weddings, also helps to strengthen the industry, a belief backed up by the willingness of big chains to set up new businesses in the town.

In the past few years Premier Inn has opened new hotels on the seafront and near Haywood Village, and it is currently expanding its hotel near Hutton Moor Leisure Centre.

A £12million, 119-room Holiday Inn Express is also due to be built near junction 21, at Weston Gateway Business Park, and the 200-year-old Royal Hotel has also submitted expansion plans for 70 new rooms.

MORE: What are the extension plans for The Royal Hotel and a new underground car park?

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