05:33PM, Wednesday 24 February 2021
Residents fear developers may return to converting a well-loved Maidenhead hotel into flats after fresh refurbishment plans were submitted.
Wingrove Properties Limited wants to give the Thames Riviera Hotel, in Bridge Road, a ‘much-needed’ makeover to make it a ‘gem on the Thames’.
The site is situated along the banks of the River Thames, next to the Grade I-listed Maidenhead Bridge.
Some of the works include replacing a few of the ground-floor windows with bi-fold doors, removing tinder spindles and replacing with a new glazed balustrade, new doors, and more.
While some welcomed the new refurbishment plans, others were suspicious that the developers could be revisiting previous plans to convert the hotel into flats following a quashed appeal.
Residents had a taste of victory last September when an appeal by developers to convert the hotel into 15 apartments – and demolishing an annexe to build 11 more – was thrown out by an inspector.
Councillor Gurch Singh (Lib Dem, St Mary’s), who campaigned against the flats, said he has received emails and calls from concerned residents about the plans.
He said he has spoken to the general manager and was reassured they have no plans to convert the Thames Riviera Hotel into apartments.
According to Cllr Singh, the owner, Galleon Hotels, is looking at investing around £2 million to revamp the well-loved hotel and is hoping to reopen the refurbished establishment around November.
He said: “They started with the Waterside Lodge at the back and started stripping that out. They want to turn it into its former glory and a real gem on the Thames.”
Cllr Singh added: “They’ve said to me that they’re not interested in planning for flats and on that basis I have told them I will work with them.
“They want to develop it in keeping with the surroundings and be respectful to the neighbours.
“I think it’s going to be really good news for Maidenhead, the fact that we fought the flats and we won, residents should look to the future and support these guys, lets give them a chance to make a real go of this place.
“The residents win and the hotel will win.”
A webinar or an online consultation could be launched with the hotel to hear residents’ concerns and dispel any misconceptions on the refurbishment plans.
To see the plans in full visit publicaccess.rbwm.gov.uk/online-applications/ and use reference 21/00188/FULL
Galleon Hotels has been approached for comment.
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