The chairman of Droitwich Means Business has praised the progress being made in the planned redevelopment of the Raven Hotel site by a Worcestershire developer.
Matt Nicol said that since Malvern Homes had acquired the property from the owners of Chateau Impney in March 2019, work had already started to assess the best way forward for the building.
“The Raven, which is currently derelict, needs a lot of TLC and in particular, work to preserve the Grade II listed parts of the building.
“Discussions are now underway on the best way to take this project forward and secure this site for the town and future generations,” he said.
David Rahal, managing director of Malvern Homes Ltd, said: “We acquired the former Raven Hotel, with its grounds of 2.4 acres, and planning consent for 51 new dwellings in March this year.
“We intend to carry out development at an early stage and are currently in the process of planning the construction programme. A date for commencement on site has not yet been set but is likely to be in early 2020.”
He said Malvern Homes shared the concerns of local residents about the condition of the former Raven, and in particular the historic element of the building.
“It is our intention to carry out the restoration of the old building at an early stage to ensure preservation of the property.
“The directors of Malvern Homes, with their team of skilled and experienced team of tradesmen, take pride in producing high standard of development and our intention is to ensure that we are all proud of the finished project on completion.”
A meeting including the Leader of Wychavon District Council Cllr Bradley Thomas, Cllr Richard Morris and council officers Phil Merrick, Director of Economy & Environment, Jim Burgin, Heritage Manger, Shawn Riley, Inward Investment Manager, and Mr Nicol was recently held to discuss the issues surrounding the development.
Matt Nicol said: “Malvern Homes has already demonstrated its commitment to the project, and the company has a reputation for quality developments that don’t cut corners.
“Also on the table for discussion is a potential new home for the Droitwich Brine Baths.
“We recognise the sterling work of SOBBS, the campaign to save the brine baths, and Malvern Homes are currently assessing the commercial viability of any project.
“Droitwich Brine Baths is an important site that means a lot to our community and it is important we find a solution that makes commercial sense if we are going to give this institution a permanent future and safeguard this legacy for the town.”