Wednesday 11 August 2010

£15m rugby ground revamp plans are scrum-thing else!

The long awaited plans for a new hotel and clubhouse at Raeburn Place have moved a step forward, with a decision expected by the end of the year.

A planning application is set to be submitted next month for the £15 million development, which includes a new £5.5m sports clubhouse and the restoration of the derelict Raeburn House Hotel - a grade B listed building - to create a 50 bedroom hotel.

The original planning proposal from Festival Inns lapsed amid concern over rising costs and the economic downturn, but they have since revived the project, launching a new period of consultation in May.

With a planning decision now possible by the end of the year, the club could move into its new home by early 2012. Plans for the three-star hotel also include a bar, restaurant and conference facilities.

Sandy Burnett, president of the Edinburgh Academical Club, said: "We are obviously keen to see this development go ahead so that Raeburn Place can be restored to its former glory. "It is vital we have a high- quality clubhouse that will last for future generations."

The original plans attracted criticism within the Stockbridge community and various changes from the original plan were made to the hotel development around the listed Raeburn House. The less controversial proposals for the rugby club remain the same, with six new changing rooms, a weights room, office and social club rooms.

Festival Inns director Richard Spanner said: "A positive planning decision would mean we can go ahead with these exciting plans to create a clubhouse of which the Edinburgh Academicals can be proud.

We await developments - but we not holding our breath!!

To see the latest plans please click here. (Thanks to the Edinburgh Evening News)



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