Falmouth Beach Hotel Development
PA16/08689 Link to council website
Application Validated Mon 19 Sep 2016
Creation of multi-use resort buildings providing 64 residential apartments, cafe/restaurant and village shop and provision of 73 parking spaces. Provision of new access and other associated works.

Revised scheme to PA14/07349 dated 10/12/2014 to allow the residential apartments to be developed in 3 phases with a connected phase of works to provide the commercial unit and beach facing public works
St Michaels Hotel And Spa 7 Stracey Road Falmouth TR11 4NB

Status:  Decided. Decision Approved with conditions.  Decision Issued Date Thu 30 Mar 2017

Viewed from the sea
This application was decided by the
Centre Sub-Area Planning

Commitee Meeting
on Monday 13th March 10:00am,

​The proposal provides: 3 apartment buildings, 5, 6 & 7 Storeys.  58 two & three bed apartments and 6 penthouses.  Provision of 270 sqm restaurant/cafe/deli

The site sits within the conservation area of Falmouth and matters of
conservation and heritage should be covered by an assessment.

Look at the objections that have been submitted:
Falmouth Civic Society (Objects)
The proposal represents a considerable increase in the size of development from the approved 'Liner' building. There is a 40% increase in floor area, the footprint on the site is almost doubled, and the easterly building has increased in height by another storey. The proposal is thus a significant over-development. The three buildings are designed in such a way as to create considerable and negative wind tunnel effects. The apartments are too close together which could, as they appear to be mostly glass walls, give rise to fire safety issues. Also there is very limited view from and light into the rear apartments, and the Civic Society questioned whether anyone would wish to buy them.

The Civic Society sees little difference in principle to this proposal and that for 35 apartments on the land at Middle Point on Pendennis headland. The proposal here is for a residential development of three apartment blocks containing a total of 64 units. Our view is that this should be judged in the same way, and consider that it should conform to the requirements of the Local Plan to provide 35% affordable accommodation. As the proposal is for luxury apartments, then (as with the Pendennis scheme) a pro-rata contribution to fund affordable housing elsewhere in Falmouth should be made.

It was also noted that the emerging Neighbourhood Plan stressed that design was import
ant (referring to the NPPF) and that schemes should follow the guidance in Building for Life (BfL) and the Cornwall Design Guide. Accordingly, the Civic Society tested the proposal against the BfL criteria of 20 questions, 13 of which were relevant to the proposal. Out of a potential score of 13 this scheme scored around 4. While in relation to environment and community the proposal added a welcome facility of a shop and café/restaurant, it did not provide an accommodation or tenure mix, had inadequate access to public transport and appeared to lack features to reduce its environmental impact. The character of the scheme succeeds in providing a specific design, distinctive character and some architectural quality, but does not fit well with existing buildings or landscape, being out of scale with its surroundings.

Falmouth Bay Residents Association (Objects)
F B R A OBJECTS to this development (PA16/08689) to reflect the views of the majority of its members - some 450 who live mostly in close proximity to this development. Recognising that a significant part of the development being planned has already been approved, the footprint of now 3 buildings (as opposed to 1) and related hotel rooms and parking spaces have been significantly modified in this new application for variation, and are only acceptable in part. The first building planned to be built and the largest of the 3 is that at the eastern end of the site which is both too high and too close to the narrowest part of Cliff Road. Its dominance as a result will be unsightly and a mass that might render it to be an eyesore we will all regret. Moving this particular building back away from the road by some metres and raking the upper floors will make a significant difference to its visual impact. Parking spaces appear to have reduced from the originally approved application; the number of hotel beds are also reduced (ignoring the potential for apartments that might be sold and passed back to the development for management and letting). But the overriding objection is the mass of the principle building - too close to the roadway and too high; whatever relationship to the previous buildings resonance with those buildings in Stracey Road. Some creative architectural changes might provide for a far better visual appearance and allow for an acceptable and much needed development on this part of our coast and enhance the attractiveness of Falmouth to the benefit of St Michael's and the rest of us. Surely the preferred objective.

Other comments:
The proposed buildings are too big and over bearing for this site.  Their scale and massing are too great and they will have a negative impact on this area. They will impact negatively on the character and appearance of the beach area, views towards land from the sea, Queen Mary Gardens and the Falmouth Conservation Area. Walking on the pavement near the building you will feel daunted by their scale and it will seem more like a city centre or over developed Spanish holiday resort than the beautiful and relaxed Gyllyngvase beach residents and visitors have come to know and love.  With the previous ‘Liner’ scheme the sense of scale was mitigated by its shape and the large, low level green roof on each side, but this is not the case with the new ‘Flotilla’ scheme

This planning application falls under Saved policy 11c.
" In the prime sea front Hotel area of Falmouth the conversion of Hotels and guesthouses to uses other than holiday accommodation will not be approved where they have an adverse impact on the tourist character of the area.".
Malcolm Bell Visit Briton recently stated in the West Briton that Tourism is worth in excess of £1.8 Billion to the Cornish Economy. 

This Development is a prime seafront tourist location and as such has been deemed worthy to protect under Policy 11c.
Residential apartments are proposed in this application not Tourist apartments, so for that reason alone this planning application should be refused.

After The Falmouth Beach Hotel burnt down Cornwall planners insisted a Hotel be rebuilt on site!

The fact that external Finance is not forthcoming should not be a factor to the detriment of Falmouth's seafront.

And a great many other Falmouth residents all oppose this scheme,  with their good reasons.
The seafront will be changed forever.
Please use the link above to comment on this planning application.

View our information pages on how to register with the council and leave a comment.

Alternatively email: [email protected] or
Post to: One Stop Shop (Planning), Cornwall Council, Carrick House, 
Pydar Street, Truro, TR1 1EB

Let your councillors know your opinion, they can only represent you if they are advised how you feel.

Councillors: ARWENACK WARD
See our website page for details

Link to relevant points from the Cornwall Design Guide
Newspaper coverage, see links below:​

West Briton - Falmouth Beach Hotel flotilla apartment complex 'more suited to Benidorm' than Falmouth

Falmouth Packet - St Michael's Hotel's "Flotilla" scheme receives support and criticism

Falmouth Packet - Work starts on £6 million redevelopment at St Michael's Hotel as plans revealed for "Flotilla" apartments

Falmouth Packet - Falmouth's St Michael's Hotel and Spa reveal details of £6 million investment project

Template letter: PA16/08689
Falmouth Beach Hotel Development

West Briton -  Failure to attract interest prompts St Michael's Hotel to scrap 'liner' plan for Falmouth Beach site

Alternative template letter: PA16/08689
Falmouth Beach Hotel Development

Falmouth Packet - Plan for new hotel on old Falmouth Beach site gets green light

West Briton -  St Michael's Spa Resort plans for new development on site of former Falmouth Beach Hotel passed by Cornwall Council

Falmouth Packet - Falmouth Beach Hotel site resort plans: REACTION

Falmouth Packet - Public reaction to Falmouth Beach Hotel site redevelopment plans: HAVE YOUR SAY

West Briton - Residents slam St Michael's resort plans

West Briton - Design for Liner hotel plan for Falmouth Beach Hotel site is 'flawed'

West Briton - Fire ravaged Falmouth Beach Hotel gets planning permission for new building