£8m centre for watersports to replace chalets
An ambitious £8 million beachfront development in Cornwall has been given the green light by planners.
The Carbis Bay Hotel, overlooking St Ives Bay, will be transformed into a modern watersports centre.
The development will incorporate a range of new facilities, including a wedding venue, conference centre, restaurants and eight beachside apartments on the site of a row of ageing chalets.
Stephen Baker, managing director of Carbis Bay Hotel, said he was delighted with what is "a major development plan for our St Ives Bay".
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The 47-bedroom hotel, which first threw its doors open in 1894, sits on a 100-acre site and is a popular venue for weddings and Mr Baker said it was booked for this purpose every weekend until 2015.
Nine objections were made to Cornwall Council over the plans, citing harm to the beach setting, parking and access issues and fears about overdevelopment. St Ives Town Council, while supporting the application in principle, expressed the "strongest possible objection to the beach side apartments".
However, planners also received a letter of support and the development of the hotel has been hailed as offering a major boost for tourism as a well as praised for creating up to 65 new jobs.
Construction will be undertaken in three six-month phases over successive winters.