A hotel on the seafront at Weston-super-Mare that provided respite breaks for military veterans is to become a quality residential development.
Somerset Legion House has been sold by the Royal British Legion to PG Group, the Bristol-based property development company which specialises in creating high quality, affordable homes. It intends to convert the four-storey detached building into a residential scheme which will be primarily aimed at first time buyers, with Help to Buy being available across the site.
The detached freehold property, which is prominently located on a corner of Beach Road overlooking Marine Parade, has been purchased for an undisclosed sum after being brought to the market with a £1.2 million guide price by commercial property specialist Colliers.
Stuart Gaiger, Director of PG Group commented: “We are delighted to have acquired this landmark site in Weston-super-Mare. We are excited to be able to bring this site back into use, and to be able to provide much needed new homes, primarily to first time buyers, with Help-to-Buy being available across the site. The building is stunning, and we can’t wait to get started!”
Somerset Legion House was constructed in 2006 with 47 en-suite bedrooms, extensive public areas and facilities, and a car park with space for around 20 vehicles. It closed its doors to guests in January 2020, and was then brought to the market last year by Colliers as part of a portfolio of four coastal properties released by the Royal British Legion following a decision to close its Break Centre hotels for veterans, in order to provide greater resources for its increasing casework.
The four properties were marketed as hotels, with potential for alternative uses such as healthcare, residential and commercial offices, subject to planning permission. So far two other sales of properties in the portfolio have seen Byng House, on the Promenade in Southport, purchased for conversion into a nursing home, and Bennet House in Portrush purchased for use as a boutique hotel that will be called Elephant Rock.
Robert Smithson, senior surveyor in the Hotels Agency team at Colliers, said Somerset Legion House had attracted keen attention from a range of potential end users.
“The Royal British Legion had invested significant capital in this property, and as a result offered opportunities for continued use as a seaside hotel and also for alternative uses such as residential and healthcare, subject to planning consent.
“The fact that it has been purchased for an alternative use reflects a trend which has added a new dimension to the UK hotels market, and we are currently seeing keen competition for prime properties, such as this, which offer opportunities for conversion to other uses.”