I feel I must point out the anomaly of Lancaster Council, who is asking the public for recommendations of buildings of interest/in need of preservation and yet are giving planning permission for the demolition of the Broadway Hotel.
The Broadway is an iconic 30s building, mirroring also the adjoining terrace, all built by Mrs Maud Bourne of Blackpool.
It was the first and probably only hotel in Morecambe to have its own indoor swimming pool, which is still no doubt in the foundations of the side wing.
It may have become a little rundown over the past few years but so did the Midland Hotel – and now look at that.
I wrote to McCarthy and Stone on this subject, stating that many locals (council tax payers) feel that if the apartments must be built then they should retain the facade and build behind it.
Their standard reply was that it was not possible to build an all inclusive access.
This is clearly not the case, as witness the Empress Court apartments further along where the facade was kept and refurbished.
Thankfully the facades of two projects in town, ie the former Oyster building and the Cornerhouse, are being sympathetically restored, as have others, by concerned local owners.
Morecambe may be the poor relation of ‘Georgian’ Lancaster, but it has or had its own particular appeal to many people. It has lost far too many of its art deco and other landmark buildings already, and presumably planning permission must have been given for two art deco ‘ocean liner’ style houses on Broadway to build pitched roofs which has completely altered their appearance and ‘dis-authenticated’ them.
We need to nurture the art deco heritage not delete it. If the old bus depot in Lancaster was worth preserving, albeit with a completely inappropriate orange block on top of it to greet visitors to the city, then the Broadway Hotel, which greets visitors to Morecambe from the north, is more than worthy of preservation.
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