No done deal for Belle Vue

Sudbury business man, Barry Drury who hopes to buy Belle Vue House from the local council and save it for the town. ANL-140209-233030009
Sudbury business man, Barry Drury who hopes to buy Belle Vue House from the local council and save it for the town. ANL-140209-233030009
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A Sudbury Steering Group member has insisted that no deal has already been agreed to sell a Sudbury landmark to a major budget hotel chain.

Concerned resident Sarah Thomas believes a decision has already been made over the future of Belle Vue House in the popular park, following a steering group meeting to discuss results of the park consultation.

Mrs Thomas, who attended the meeting despite a late change of date, feels that the idea for a budget hotel has been chosen, with it previously suggested that this could be hotel chain Premier Inn.

Steering group member Chris Storey insisted, however, that this was not the case.

“I can say there is no clear plan for any alternative use for the site,” he said.

Mr Storey confirmed that an offer had been made by Barry Drury, who told the Free Press he wanted to save the building and allow the town to choose what to do with it.

“Until a deal is done, it’s not done,” said Mr Storey. “Potentially, we may have other proposals coming forward.

“Babergh will do what’s best for the park and for Sudbury – the park is a key site for the town.”

Despite this, Mr Storey did say that Babergh would take into account opportunities for “investment in the town that will create jobs”.

“This week, we have been talking about shops shutting,” he said. “We have to make sure there are other ways of creating employment.”

Mrs Thomas also questioned whether there was a need for more hotel rooms in the town.

In response, Mr Storey said there was “most certainly” a need and said he had been talking to an unnamed large employer in the town who was struggling to find accommodation for employees and “had to go outside of Sudbury” to find rooms.

He said that other than the Mill Hotel, there was very little accommodation and felt budget hotels provided a “very useful service”.