February 11, 2015
Community art unveiled at Highbridge Hotel as revamp is set to start

Community artwork has been unveiled around the the derelict Highbridge Hotel as a £1.8million YMCA development is finally set to get underway this month.

The long-awaited overhaul of the eyesore will see the hotel transformed into 22 affordable flats for young people, as well as new sports facilities for the community and a YMCA hub.

Local groups, including King Alfred School and Highbridge Children's Centre Nursery, have decorated a series of panels that have been installed outside the hotel to support the revamp.

"The hoardings have been designed by local community groups. These hoardings will sit together to paint a picture of the aspirations of a generation for Highbridge - it is our hope that we can then use these designs alongside others within the building itself once complete," said YMCA Somerset chief executive, Martin Hodgson, pictured, this week.

He told that the redevelopment is set to begin shortly: "It is anticipated that activity on site will commence following our next site meeting on 16th February."

"The initial stages will be the careful removal of the current scaffold and the reinstatement of a new structure which allows access to the building. This will then kick-start the rest of the development."

"We are currently undertaking the design development stage alongside a detailed site survey."

He added: "As to timescales, we continue to be on schedule and look forward to good progress as the site begins to take shape."

The project is due to be completed in the autumn of 2016. The building has been derelict for over six years since a huge blaze destroyed the Highbridge Hotel in April 2008 followed by several other smaller blazes.

The artwork created by Highbridge Children's Centre Nursery

King Alfred School students designed this artwork at the site

The YMCA outlines its plans for the development at the site

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