Worcestershire’s plans for a hotel at New Road have been delayed following the withdrawal of the developer for financial reasons.
The county thought they had finally cleared all the hurdles needed to start work on the project last September but the developer who was due to build the hotel for Premier Inns has now withdrawn for financial reasons.
Work on the project, which was due to start last month, will not begin until later this year at the earliest and it is likely that the Premier Inns company will now take on the project themselves.
A revised plan for the site on the River Severn side of the ground will be drawn up and a new planning application for the development will also have to be submitted for the project.
The original plan included new offices for Worcestershire, but the revised plans are likely to be for a hotel only with an increased number of rooms.
Instead of leasing the land on which the hotel will be built to Premier Inns, Worcestershire are now expected to sell off the plot to the hotel chain which means that they will receive only a one-off payment rather than a regular annual payment over a period of time.
“We would still hope to get a hefty sum but we are looking at a land sale rather than a long-term lease,” said Worcestershire’s chief executive David Leatherdale.
“The initial plans are two-and-a-half years old and were drawn up when the market was more buoyant. Premier Inns are reviewing those plans at the moment to make them more viable.”