“Significant progress” behind scenes of £46m Buxton Crescent development

The Crescent, Buxton
The Crescent, Buxton
  • Council: “significant progress” made on finalising designs and timescales
  • Long-awaited development will create 79-bedroom five-star spa hotel
  • Scheme bids to bring Grade I listed Crescent back into public use
  • Flagship £46 million development plagued by delays
  • Final piece of funding secured in January, paving way for work to start

Work on the multi-million pound transformation of Buxton’s Crescent into a five-star spa hotel is progressing, councillors have confirmed.

Despite a lack of visible progress on-site, High Peak Borough Council said this week that good progress was being made on finalising the designs and timescales for the flagship £46 million development - which has been plagued by delays due to legal difficulties and funding problems.

The Crescent, Buxton

The Crescent, Buxton

The final piece of public sector finance was secured in January, paving the way for the main work to finally get underway.

Cllr Tony Kemp, executive member for regeneration at High Peak Borough Council, one of the project’s funding partners, said: “We know that the public are keen to see progress made with this project and the council shares their desire to see work starting as soon as possible to restore the Crescent to full use so it can fulfil its key role in attracting many more people to the town and providing a huge boost to the local economy.

“Securing the public sector funding contribution was essential to unlocking the major regeneration plans and now that it is all in place I’m pleased to report that significant progress is being made on finalising designs and ensuring that the work is carried out safely and securely.

“We, and our partners, will continue to work with the developer on the timescales and we will share these details once they are agreed.”

We know that the public are keen to see progress made with this project and the council shares their desire to see work starting as soon as possible to restore the Crescent to full use so it can fulfil its key role in attracting many more people to the town and providing a huge boost to the local economy.

Cllr Tony Kemp, executive member for regeneration at High Peak Borough Council

The long-running project to bring the Grade I listed building, built by the fifth Duke of Devonshire, back into public use for the first time since 1992, will see it transformed into a 79-bedroom spa hotel incorporating the neighbouring natural baths, along with a state-of-the-art thermal, natural mineral water spa, and six specialist, boutique shops.

European leader Danubius Hotels has already been secured as the hotel operator.

Plans also include an interactive visitor centre, tearoom and heritage experience in the Grade II listed Pump Room - open to the public free of charge - as well as enabling public access and interpretation of the Assembly Rooms.

At a recent meeting of the local business organisation Vision Buxton, it was reported that contracts were in the process of being negotiated with main contractor Vinci for the final stage of the restoration.

A model showing how the finished Crescent development will look.

A model showing how the finished Crescent development will look.

Funding for the project is being provided by the borough council, Derbyshire County Council, Historic England, D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and developer Buxton Crescent Hotel and Thermal Spa Co Ltd.

In November, the Heritage Lottery Fund stepped in with an extra £11.3 million to plug a funding shortfall, with D2N2 supplying the final £2 million for the project in January.

Councillor Anne Western, Leader of Derbyshire County Council, added: “All of us involved in the Crescent are grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund, the D2N2 LEP and Historic England for their generous support which completes the public sector funding for the scheme and moves us another stage forward.

“Reflecting the interest and enthusiasm that has been shown by local people, we’re also working on plans to ensure there is more public involvement in the development of the Trust and visitor facilities and we’ll be launching this soon so watch this space!”

The county council had previously offered to step in, if needed, with a multi-million pound loan to fill a £5m funding gap left by the disbanding of the East Midlands Development Agency.

The Crescent project is jointly being developed by Trevor Osborne Property Group and CP Holdings.

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