|What a wonderful idea to turn an empty building in Torrington into a community asset?
The former Globe Hotel was once a bustling and iconic building in the centre of Great Torrington but has sadly stood empty and unused for the last three years. This has prompted a number of partners to join forces and start to plan for its repurposing as a community asset with community involvement and ownership at the heart of the plans which are taking shape.
|Great Torrington Town Council, Torridge District Council, Petroc and The Plough Arts Centre have been working with the Architectural Heritage Fund and Real Ideas Organisation to explore how the Globe could be acquired by the community through a Community Share issue and run as a training hotel with an arts branding. The plans, which have been through a detailed viability study supported by the Architectural Heritage Fund, focus on the Globe offering up to degree-level apprenticeship training opportunities in Hospitality and Tourism- the first ever degree-level course in Torridge. The project would create an eight-bedroom boutique hotel with a restaurant and bar area. Within the Grade II Listed building the plans also propose the creation of vibrant co-working and meeting spaces, ideal for people who don’t want to always work from home and who are also keen to find opportunities to work in a collaborative, innovative environment.
The next step is to get the views of as many people as possible to find out what they think of the plans and to explore how community ownership could be developed. Torridge are working with a range of funders who are excited by the project, and the survey has the potential to unlock additional expert advice and further grant funding. All of this heralds a bright new incarnation for the building benefiting residents, local businesses and the community as a whole.
Torridge District Councillor and Lead Member for Community, Culture and Leisure Cheryl Cottle-Hunkin said:
“This is such an exciting opportunity for Great Torrington! The Globe Hotel is at the heart of the town centre, it’s a wonderful building and has so much potential; it should and could be the beating heart of the town and community. It has now been inactive for over three years, causing a significant negative economic and mind-set impact on the town, surrounding businesses and the community. Our ambition is to see The Globe thriving and enhancing the town and also driving improvements in the tourism offer, hospitality provision and educational opportunities across northern Devon. The Globe needs community support to achieve all of this and so people’s views are very important to the project’s progress.”
To take part in the survey and to get involved with the project people can access it via the Council’s consultation page on the front page of the website or directly copying and pasting this link into their web browser bit.ly/TheGlobeTorrington Paper copies are available for those without internet access from Great Torrington Town and Community Hall.