Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Lyndhurst 'Conan Doyle' hotel sold to property developer

Lyndhurst Park Hotel Image copyright Hugh Venables
Image caption The former hotel building has been unused since 2014

A former hotel with links to Sherlock Holmes author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has been sold after its owners failed to win approval to demolish it.

PegasusLife wanted to build more than 70 retirement flats on the site of the Lyndhurst Park Hotel in Hampshire.

It has been sold to property firm Hoburne Development for an undisclosed sum.

The firm said it would "deliver a plan that will work for everyone".

The building was originally built as a private mansion house - Glasshayes House - in the early 19th Century but has been disused since the hotel closed in 2014.

PegasusLife's plans for 75 retirement flats and 15 affordable homes were rejected by the New Forest National Park Authority in December 2017, which said the development would not "cater for local needs".

Image copyright Brice Stratford
Image caption Archive drawings appear to show plans for the building which became a hotel in the 1920s

Sketches of the building by Conan Doyle, including plans for a new facade and a third-floor extension dating back to 1912, emerged sparking calls for the building to be protected.

More than 850 objections were received to the planning application.

Campaigner Rachel Emm said: "I'd love to see a development which is in keeping with the area, essentially providing affordable family homes so we can encourage more families to stay in Lyndhurst to support the longevity of our community."

A spokesperson for Hoburne Development - part of a group which includes Hoburne Holiday Parks - described the hotel as "a landmark site with historical value".

"Like the local community of Lyndhurst, we are sad to see it has fallen into disrepair. We will now work closely with the local authority to deliver a plan that will work for everyone."

Image copyright PegasusLife
Image caption The initial development plan by PegasusLife would have seen 74 homes for elderly people as well as 12 holiday lets

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