December 22, 2016
Council approves change of use of Highbridge's former George Hotel

Town councillors have this week given their backing to proposals to convert a former hotel in Highbridge into a new business.

As first reported here, the prominent George Hotel in Church Street and the derelict tattoo studio next door look set to be turned into a new furniture business by Burnham couple Matt and Emily Scott, pictured below, creating new jobs and new investment in the town.

Town councillors this week considered the application to change the former hotel's use from 'Class A3' (restaurants and cafes), A4 (drinking establishments) and A5 (hot food takeaways) to 'Class A1' (shops) and A2 (professional services).

Cllr Louise Parkin said at the Town Council's Planning Applications Committee meeting: "I'm happy to see this going ahead. It will smarten up an important building at the entrance to Highbridge. I would like to see it retained as a commercial premises, generating jobs and business facilities."

Cllr Bill Hancock added: "I'm really pleased to see this happening - it's fantastic to see investment in Highbridge town centre. Really brilliant."

And Cllr John Parkes said: "I echo those sentiments. This will be a positive development. We need to keep shops in the town centre and I fully support the proposals."

Cllr Andy Brewer, Committee Chairman, added: "These plans are fully in line with our strategy for this part of the town centre."

The fnal decision rests with Sedgemoor District Council. A seperate planning application for the site is also due to be considered in the New Year.

The George Hotel closed earlier this year and is understood to have been built around 1775 as a Coaching Inn. The shop next door has lain empty for a number of years, having previously been a newsagent and will be remembered by many locally as the factory shops of the former Bacon Factory and Creamery which were once major employers in Highbridge.


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