A leading Fleetwood councillor says the town should now try to gain maximum benefit from controversial plans to build on the town’s former pier site.
Coun Alan Marsh, chairman of Fleetwood Town Council, was speaking after propsals by Simmo Developments to build an 18-bedroom hotel on the site were given the green light by Wyre planners.
The scheme was vigorously opposed by Fleetwood’s Wyre councillors, town councillors and individuals in the town, who wanted to protect the town’s seafront views. But after it was granted, Coun Marsh said it was now time to flag up the importance of jobs for local people.
He told the Weekly News: “Yes, we’d like our pier back, but it’s not going to happen.
“We look back with nostalgia and wish things would stay the same, but now we have to move forward. Let’s see these plans in detail, and if this hotel does get built we must make sure Fleetwood benefits fully.
“There will be jobs during the construction phase and jobs will come with the building that finishes up there. We have to make sure that local people get them and this town can benefit.”
Coun Marsh said the fight by protesters had been worthwhile because it helped knock back the originals plans for a three-storey, 42 bedroom hotel which would have been more intrusive.
Town council vice chairman, Coun Steve Clarke, said: “Our town motto is Onward, so let’s now move on and hopefully local people can get jobs.”
But another town councillor, Coun John Warnock, commented: “Jobs are important, but I am still worried about these plans and the future of our seafront.”
Mike Simmons, aka Joey Blower, who heads the Simmo Consortium, was not available for comment on his plans.