Following the granting of planning permission for a 71-bed Premier Inn at Tweedbank in September, the UK’s largest hotel brand has now also been given permission to sell alcohol there by Scottish Borders Council’s licensing board.
The hotel is part of the controversial £10m Borders Gateway development off Tweedbank Drive, including a BP fuel station, Marks and Spencer food kiosk and drive-through Costa cafe.
It will be the first branded discount hotel in the region.
At a meeting of the council’s licensing board today, October 25, solicitor Christopher Grunert appeared on behalf of Whitbread, the Bedfordshire-based parent company of Premier Inn.
Mr Grunert, of Sheffield-based law firm John Gaunt and Partners, told councillors: “This in an application for a new Premier Inn.
“The site is yet to be developed but it is adjacent to the Tweedbank Industrial Estate and about a quarter of a mile down that road is Tweedbank railway station.
“We think this is a perfect location for a new Premier Inn, and we’re proposing a 71-bed establishment that we’re hoping will act as a gateway to the beautiful countryside here in the Scottish Borders.
“We have included off-sales as we have a very limited off-sales display area, and those sales generally come from people who are dining at the premises and buying a bottle of wine but not finishing it and wanting to take it home.
“We don’t have any sort of trade in selling bottles of beer and wine.
“We have addressed children’s access and will allow children onto the premises until 10pm if accompanied by an adult.”
The hotel will be able to accommodate 213 people, and the bar and restaurant, which will be open from 11am until 1am on Thursday, Fridays, and Saturdays and up until midnight on all other days, will cater for up to 66 people at a time.
There will also be a 64sq m outdoor seating area.
Speaking in support of the application, Kelso councillor Tom Weatherston told the licensing board: “The first thing I’d like to say is that I’m glad that the objectives of this licensing committee have been met, and there are no objections to this.
“Secondly, the only thing left to say is that I think this is a hugely exciting prospect for the whole of the Borders.
“This is something the Borders has needed for a long time, and I’m delighted to support this application.”
Councillors voted unanimously to approve the application.
The Borders Gateway development, being overseen by Edinburgh-based developer New Land Assets, is expected to create 80 jobs.