The redevelopment of the site of the St Andrews abattoir took a giant step forward this week with the lodging of a planning application for a 65-bedroom hotel and quality retail food store with Fife Council.
Ashleigh (St Andrews) Ltd, sister company of the leading construction firm Ashleigh Scotland, propose to build a Premier Inn and a Marks and Spencer Simply Food store on the site in Largo Road, at present occupied by the slaughterhouse operated by the St Andrews Abattoir Company Ltd.
The £7 million plans have already come under public scrutiny at two well-attended exhibitions in St Andrews and the developers are known to be extremely happy at how they have been received.
Ged Hainey, of Ryden - the firm who prepared the planning application - told the Citizen: ”We are pleased to confirm that the local authority has registered our application. We have built up a very convincing and robust case in support of our proposals, which will complement those at present on offer within St Andrews.
“The pre-application consultation exercise demonstrated that there is overwhelming support for our proposals from both members of the public and key stakeholders.
“Against this background, we are hopeful council members will see the benefits that our proposals will bring to St Andrews, including improvements to tourism and the economy, new jobs, more consumer choice and also improvements to Largo Road.”
Mr Hainey added that an early favourable decision by councillors would allow the start of recruitment and work to get under way on site in the spring of next year, with M&S opening in October and the Premier Inn during early 2014.
The project, say Ashleigh, will comprehensively redevelop the brownfield site to improve the environment and amenity of the area.
The food store - providing just under 1000 square metres of retail floor space - will primarily concentrate on foodstuffs and, in a first for the United Kingdom, the Premier Inn will feature a bespoke and secure golf club store as part of the hotel development.
The multi-million pound project will bring approximately 80 full and part-time jobs to the area.
Premier Inn, owned by Whitbread, is the UK’s largest hotel brand with over 600 hotels and, like M&S, operate around the world.