Ambitious proposals for an Arbroath gateway hotel and restaurant have risen from the ashes of the town’s former Seaforth Hotel.
More than a decade after a ferocious blaze destroyed one of the Angus town’s most famous function venues, national pub and restaurant chain Marston’s has lodged a proposal for the site in a move described as a “win-win” for Arbroath and Angus by a local councillor who feared the eyesore sight would continue to blight the town for years to come.
Marston’s made a first foray into Angus a few years ago with the Dunnichen Stone pub/restaurant development at Orchardbank, adjacent to the A90 Forfar bypass, and the Seaforth site proposal involved a plan to create a 150-cover restaurant and 24-bed hotel within the same building on the site.
The proposal lodged newly lodged with Angus planners is a redrawing of a pre-application development plan which envisaged a 40-bed lodge hotel in a separate building on the site.
The company said that from advice received the design philosophy “moved from two separated buildings to a combined development, wherein the lodge bedroom accommodation is set above the pub/ restaurant footprint.”
“This moved both building functions away from any overtly ‘model’ principle and the combined structure evolves as a bespoke design,” said the company.
Arbroath West and Letham Independent councillor David Fairweather has long campaigned for action on the site of a property which dated back to around 1830, and he said the Marston’s plan was a major boost for Arbroath.
“This has been a long time coming – since 2006 this site has been a total eyesore and I am over the moon that this has now come forward,” he said.
“The council’s economic development department did what they could to try to get someone interested, but the site doesn’t belong to the council so that was always a problem.
“For a national company which has developed a well-run operation in Forfar to express this intention to come to the town is a win-win for Arbroath and Angus.
“I have no doubt it will be a huge success story, not only for visitors to the town but to add to the fantastic offering that we already have throughout Arbroath, including the area from the busy marina to the West Links.
“The gateway to the town has been an eyesore for too long and hopefully this will mean it is not like that for much longer.” said Mr Fairweather.