South West Wales

Petition to stop Premier Inn opening at St Davids

St Davids Cathedral Image copyright Alan Thomas / Geograph
Image caption St Davids Cathedral

Almost 1,000 people have signed an online petition to stop a hotel chain building in the UK's smallest city.

A 63-bedroom Premier Inn is included in plans to develop land at Glasfryn Road in St Davids, Pembrokeshire.

St Davids is renowned for its cathedral, independent shops and businesses, and is bidding to become the UK's 2021 City of Culture.

A spokesman for Premier Inn said issues raised by the petition would be clarified at public exhibitions.

The petition claims the hotel would "undermine" local businesses and "pave the way for more big chains" to come to the city.

The Glasfryn Road development includes 75 new homes, 40 of which would be available to rent from Pembrokeshire Housing Association and reserved for people who live locally.

It is hoped homes sold on the open market will help fund a new swimming pool to replace the one which closed in 2007.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The Premier Inn would create about 20 year-round jobs in St Davids

The petition, set up on behalf of the No Premier Inn St Davids (NOPI) group, said the housing development "does not need and should not support a Premier Inn".

It said the hotel was part of a "large multi-national company" and "could potentially pave the way for more big chains" in the city which would "destroy independently-run businesses and threaten its cultural identity".

James Anderson, associate director at planning consultancy Turley, which is leading community engagement on the plans, said Glasfryn Road was an "important development for St Davids" and "one the joint applicants want to get right".

"The issues raised by the petition will be clarified at the public exhibitions and the full team will be available to explain the proposals and how the new homes and hotel are working together," he said.

"Feedback on the latest proposals is important to us and we are looking forward to talking residents through the latest plans and listening to their views."

The exhibitions will be held at Oriel y Parc in St Davids on Friday and Saturday.

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