CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a hotel next to Warwick Racecourse are back on the table.
A proposed hotel has been included in Warwick District Council’s masterplan to redevelop St Mary’s Land around the racecourse.
Plans for a larger 100-bedroom hotel were previously rejected in 2012 – at the proposed location near the racecourse’s main entrance at the junction of Friars Street and Hampton Road – following an outcry from neighbouring residents.
But new proposal is for a hotel on the other side of the racecourse stands, opposite Warwick Cricket Club. There has been no indication as yet of how many rooms it would have.
The masterplan also includes proposals to improve footpaths, expand the number of caravan pitches, link the existing cycle route with a new one through the racecourse, improve the golf club’s facilities, create more parking spaces and improve drainage and flood defences.
Landscaping for the grade-II listed Hill Close Gardens on Bread and Meat Close has also been included in the redevelopment proposals.
Community group Friends of St Mary’s Lands has previously raised concern over the proposed masterplan fearing development would reduce land available for public use, and impact on the open nature of the area.
Work has just started on the first stage to revamp Racing Club Warwick’s ground – neighbouring the racecourse – including the knocking down old buildings, tarmacking and leveling the site and putting up a new perimeter fence.
The district council is working with the club in a bid to extend the facilities for community use – including using the main bar as a community hall and opening a nursery.
Coun John Holland, former Warwick mayor and Warwickshire County Council spokesman for the working party developing the plans, told The Observer: “There are many interesting ideas here and I hope residents will read the consultation document.
“I particularly like the proposed cycle route. This will complete the cycle route from Aylesford School to Woodloes and it will also provide a cycle route from Chase Meadow to the town centre.”
The masterplan will be discussed by the district council’s Executive on Wednesday (April 6).
They are set to agree to a public consultation being held on the plan.