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MP welcomes news that Premier Inn have pulled out of university deal!

November 20, 2014 9:43 AM

Tim also singled out Ambleside councillor Heidi Halliday for praise after her campaign to make sure communities within the National Park did not lose out.Lakes MP Tim Farron has congratulated hard working councillor Heidi Halliday and campaigners with the Future Ambleside group after news was released by campaigners that Premier Inn have pulled out a deal with the University of Cumbria to build a hotel at the Hill Top building

Future Ambleside said in a statement: "Future Ambleside have received notification, via correspondence to a member of the group, that Premier Inn are no longer pursuing their proposed budget hotel development of the University of Cumbria's building Hill Top.

"English Heritage has insisted that the original building be retained and this, along with other considerations, has influenced their decision.

"However Whitbread/Premier Inn have stated that they will continue to seek an alternative development site in Ambleside.

Premier Inn have not yet commented on the news. According to the Westmorland Gazette the University of Cumbria has said that it would comment at a later stage.

Tim said: "If true, this is wonderful news and I want to pay massive tribute to local B&B owners, Future Ambleside and Councillor Heidi Halliday. They have worked so hard and this announcement is down to their tireless work. I was pleased to support them and help them every step of the way.

"We must be careful and remember that Premier Inn are still looking at a site within the town and I will be liaising with local residents about this and supporting them in any way I can in the days, weeks and months ahead.

"I am the biggest supporter and champion of the University of Cumbria and one of my proudest achievements is being able to keep the Ambleside Campus open and stop bosses closing it. But as I told university leaders and bosses from Premier Inn, this development was in the wrong place, in the wrong town at the wrong time. We need to protect the unique charm of Ambleside and our tourism industry.

"Premier Inn have a good product and is an incredibly successful business but I think it's not right tor Ambleside."

Heidi Halliday, councillor for Ambleside added: "This is good news and shows what communities can achieve by working together.

"I would urge the University to go back to the original consultation documents where community suggestions for Hill Top included affordable housing and community or health uses. Finally, people struggle to stay in this area, so I would like to explore the option of affordable work units to enable people with good business ideas to set up. This would be a perfect opportunity to come up with a truly innovative scheme."