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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Hotel extension plans backed by £8m investment in Co Antrim hotel

Aerial image of proposed development site at rear of the Rabbit Hotel, Templepatrick in County Antrim.

A planning application is set to be considered for an extension at a County Antrim hotel by Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council at a meeting of the Planning Committee on Monday evening, 19th February.

Representing an investment of £8millon, Galgorm Collection are seeking approval for a 46 bedroom extension block, spa and leisure facilities, parking and landscaping at the Group's Rabbit Hotel, located at Antrim Road, Templepatrick.

The area of proposed development is to the rear of the current hotel which has been in operation since 1990. It was purchased by the current owners, to be part of the Galgorm Collection, early in 2019, and since has been the subject of significant investment to bring it up to the standards increasingly expected by customers.

Site Plan to the rear of The Rabbit Hotel

Above: Site Plan to the rear of The Rabbit Hotel

Above: Floor plans for proposed development at The Rabbit Hotel, Templepatrick.

The three storey block will provide 46 bedrooms, including those with a lake view, as well as some additional spa facilities. Shown in the plans above these facilities include include treatment rooms, an outdoor pool, sauna and steam room, and a cinema for guests, alongside dedicated parking and garden areas.

The proposal represents an important investment by the owners to continue to improve the facilities for its customers. Galgorm Collection have already made an investment of £2.5m in the hotel when it was purchased, which seen the spa developed, bar and restaurant facilities refurbished, banqueting and conference facilities improved and existing bedrooms upgraded.

Elevations of proposed development at The Rabbit Hotel, Templepatrick.

Above: Elevations of proposed development at The Rabbit Hotel, Templepatrick.

According the applicant's Planning Statement, "The investment will bring significant benefits to local (whether that be the residents of Templepatrick, the wider Borough or Northern Ireland) and out of country visitors.

"The proposed development will deliver a range of significant economic benefits, including:

  • increased visitor numbers, expected to be some 30,000 additional visitor stays per annum and increased visitor spend;

  • increased employment through new full and part time posts — with this development likely to result in some 30 new positions;

  • support for construction jobs during the construction contract;

  • increased business for local suppliers to The Rabbit; and

  • ongoing rates income to the local authority to support the delivery of public services."

During consultation eight neighbouring properties were notified of the proposal and fourteen letters of objection were received by the local authority.

Planning Officers at Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council have recommended that the application be approved as it comes before Members on Monday night.


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