04:08PM, Thursday 12 October 2017
A councillor has urged Windsor Racecourse to ‘be an asset, not an island’ after plans for its new hotel were given the go-ahead.
The Arena Racing Company (ARC), which runs the racecourse, submitted an application to the council to build a 150-bed hotel at the Maidenhead Road site.
Members of the Windsor Urban Development Management Panel discussed the plans at Windsor Guildhall yesterday (Wednesday).
They decided that while the hotel will be built on greenbelt land, this will be outweighed by the economic benefits it will bring to the town.
Cllr Jack Rankin (Con, Castle Without) said: “It’s evident to those of us who know Windsor’s economy that we need more hotel facilities in the town centre.
“I know that the racecourse is a key employer and a key driver in Windsor’s economic landscape.”
Independent councillor Wisdom Da Costa (Ind, Clewer North) told the meeting that he hoped that jobs created by the hotel would be made available to Windsor residents.
He said: “My concern is there isn’t really that much economic benefit to the town.
“Lots of jobs will be created but the probability is lots of these people will be agency staff.”
He added: “I really want Windsor Racecourse to be an asset and not an island and to integrate with the community.”
Simon Chadwick, speaking on behalf of ARC, said the company placed great importance in investing in the racecourse to provide more tourist facilities in Windsor.
The panel voted in favour of the application, with the council’s head of planning Jenifer Jackson now set to grant planning permission subject to agreeing conditions in relation to transport and flood risk.
The hotel is expected to be run by the Hilton chain and will be open all year round as well as offering accommodation to stable staff on race days.
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