Bare residents disgusted by hotel demolition

The Elms Hotel, which is currently being demolished, but has been subject to metal thefts.
The Elms Hotel, which is currently being demolished, but has been subject to metal thefts.

RESIDENTS say they are disgusted about the state of a former hotel left partially demolished which they claim could injure trespassers, including children, who are getting into the building.

The Elms Hotel in Bare, which is being knocked down to make way for 48 luxury flats for the over 55s, has been left, according to residents, looking like “a scene from the Blitz”.

There are also concerns that someone will get hurt or killed because barriers protecting the site blow down frequently, allowing anyone to walk freely onto the site and into the derelict building.

Michael Moorhouse, who has lived in Bare for six months, said: “Half the building has been pulled down and half left.

“It’s not a matter of if, but when, someone gets hurt.

“It’s disgraceful.”

A local businessman, who did not wish to be named, said: “People have been rooting around in the building for scrap and kids have been wandering in and out.

“Someone will get hurt or killed. It needs proper hoarding put up.

“Only a tiny bit has been knocked down recently, and that was two or three weeks ago.

“I’ve seen people carrying old radiators out and a van stopped on the road with the doors open and scrap was thrown in.

“People have been going in there every day and they are risking their lives because anything could drop off the building.

“They said it would be down in six weeks, but it’s been six months.”

A nearby resident said: “The front of the building looks appalling and has done so for some time now.

“It resembles a scene from the Blitz.”

Another Bare resident said: “The recent high winds have dislodged tiles and the building looks unsafe.

“The security fence around the site is anything but secure with the main site entrance wide open and other areas collapsed.”

Bare Ward Councillor June Ashworth said: “Since demolition of the site began I have had various complaints from nearby residents ranging from health and safety issues to site security.

“Demolition is taking too long and it’s an eyesore and attracting vermin.

“The main concern has been that children have been able to access the site and potentially come to harm.

“I believe plans to continue to carry out the demolition process are scheduled for this week.”

A spokesperson for Lancashire Constabulary said: “We will not tolerate mindless acts of criminal damage or theft and if people in the area do have real concerns about this site, we would encourage them to attend the next local PACT meeting where they can talk about these issues directly with their local neighbourhood policing team.”

A spokesperson for Lancaster City Council said: “The situation was assessed last Thursday and we immediately arranged for the fencing to be re-secured by council staff in order to try and prevent unauthorised access to the area.

“We will be contacting the owner of the building with regard to both the security of the site and their plans for the completion of the demolition works.”

Michael Stainton, of M.H. Stainton Ltd, who are developing the site, said: “We apologise for any inconvenience which has been caused to the residents of Bare.

“The demolition of the former hotel has taken a little bit longer than expected due to the financial situation of Briggs Demolition, who have now re assured us the demolition will be within the next six weeks.

“Upon demolition permanent hoardings will be erected.

“With regards to people continuously trespassing on the site we will now be employing a security firm to monitor the site.

“When finished this development will completely transform what was a rapidly decaying building into a building fit to be part of the Bare Village and the community.”