New hotel and distillery proposed for scenic village of Glenarm

A new four-star hotel and whiskey distillery are part of regeneration plans for Glenarm, Co Antrim, that have just been given the green light.

Thursday, 11th June 2020, 9:33 am
New regeneration proejcts are planned for Glenarm.

A state-of-the-art visitor experience and community hub are further elements of the development proposals for the coastal village.

It follows Mid and East Antrim Council approval for the sale of three plots of land.

Permission was granted for the sale of the council-owned former quarry, fish factory and Eglinton yard sites.

Elected members agreed the sale be awarded to the successful bidder.

The Mayor, Councillor Peter Johnston, said: “The sale of these council-owned lands will serve as a tremendous catalyst in breathing new life into the area - boosting the local economy, increasing tourism and creating jobs in Glenarm.

“The successful bidder has exciting and inspiring plans for the three plots, including the development of a 4* hotel and a cultural, heritage and community hub on the former quarry site. This will be complemented by the development of an Irish whiskey distillery, supported by a state-of-the-art visitor experience, at the former fish factory and Eglinton yard sites.”

The move comes on the back of an in-depth open public consultation process. The subsequent launch of a development brief for each of the sites in November 2019 resulted in submissions from a number of interested parties, which were evaluated by a panel last month.

The process was driven by the Glenarm Steering Group, made up of council officials and elected councillors including Aldermen Robin Cherry MBE, Gerardine Mulvenna and Tommy Nicholl MBE and Councillors Andrew Clarke, James McKeown, Maureen Morrow and Angela Smyth.

The decision to progress with the sale of the land was agreed at this week’s meeting of full council, proposed by Cllr Gregg McKeen and seconded by Cllr Morrow.

The Mayor continued: “The Glenarm Steering Group has been instrumental in working collaboratively – even throughout the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic – to bring this process to a most successful close. That their combined efforts will result in three underutilised assets being brought back into use, impacting so favourably on the regeneration of Glenarm, is testament to their vision and their commitment to the economic growth in Mid and East Antrim.”

The decision has come as welcome news to residents and businesses in the Glenarm area.

Adrian Morrow, of Glenarm Castle, said: “This is fantastic news not only for Glenarm Castle, but for all hospitality and tourism businesses in the village and the surrounding area.

“We are grateful to Mid and East Antrim for their vision and leadership in bringing this process to a close and very much look forward to seeing the successful bidder’s plans unfold in the coming months and years.”

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