A PLANNING application has been submitted to extend a Wiltshire hotel property in a bid to see it re-open.
The former Howard’s House Hotel, in Teffont Evias, closed in January, and has since been taken over by new leaseholders with the aim of re-opening.
Now, plans have been submitted for an orangery, internal alterations and improved parking provision, part of the refurbishment project by new management company, The Beckford Group.
“Howard’ House Hotel was formerly a residential dwelling but has been in hotel use for a generation but is currently closed due to the modern pressures on the hospitality industry,” the application said.
It went on: “The applicant team have determined that the hotel’s layout no longer serves a modern purpose; there is insufficient dining space, which in turn does not justify the provision of more bedroom space.
“In order for the hotel to run viably in the future, it needs to be able to attract non-resident diners, but also local people too.
“If the hotel use is lost, this would mean the loss of the last commercial/community facility in the village.
“Likewise, retention and investment in the hotel would be a significant benefit to the village, the listed building and the conservation area through the upkeep of the building but also the potential provision of at least 30 full time permanent local jobs and the economic development that fans out from there.”
The proposals would see the number of possible covers in the hotel restaurant treble in number, from 20 to 60, in a bid to make the business viable.
“The vastly changed landscape of modern hotel economics, particularly the increased wage costs for chefs and unrecognisably high operating costs, mean it is simply not viable to successfully trade a hotel in a location such as this without being able to cater for non-resident diners,” the application said.
“Furthermore, a regenerated, revitalised, successful hotel, with larger common parts that can be open to locals as well as residents, will provide a new beating heart of the village.
“The last village pub closed 20 years ago, and so this is the only public amenity left in Teffont Evias and Teffont Magna.
“As such, we will be renaming the new hotel: Teffont House Hotel, to reflect its importance in its local community.”
The orangery and internal changes will be part of a “wider refit and refurbishment of the hotel throughout and adding two bedrooms”, the plan said.
“The hotel’s buildings are stunningly beautiful but the current fit out is dull and completely out of date,” it added.
It is hoped the hotel will be ready for re-opening in spring 2024.
To view the plans in full, log on to www.wiltshire.gov.uk and search for application reference PL/2023/07927.