THE owner of Llandudno Pier has revealed plans for a £15m-£20m entertainment complex at the old Pier Pavilion site.
Adam Williams says the new complex will likely include a bowling alley, bars and restaurants if the plans get the go-ahead.
The complex is currently at an early stage but will be submitted as a future planning application.
The pier already employs 100 staff as well as another 50 seasonal positions, but the new development could potentially generate an additional 150 year-round jobs.
The revelation follows Adam buying the land from developer Alan Waldron last month. The old pavilion was destroyed by a fire over twenty years ago.
In an exclusive interview with Conwy’s Local Democracy Reporting Service, Adam commented: “I can reveal what the plans are going to be, but I haven’t got the drawings to reveal how exactly it is going to look.
“The basis for how I would like it to be is a similar look to the (old) Pavilion and a similar but modern-day use where it’s all indoor entertainment, bowling, restaurants, bars, all indoor stuff.
“We would have to look at a list of what works in leisure and entertainment and see what we could physically get in there and afford. But you are probably looking at £15m-£20m for the development, something like that. But it is premature to know what that is going to look like yet because we’ve only owned the site for a week.”
He added: “The finished building is going to take a while. I don’t want to rush into it. This building is going to stay there for at least 100 years and be useful for all that period. So there is a lot of thinking to do, a lot of work, a lot of design. We need to make sure we get it right. So the definition of getting it right is what suits the town and the tourism industry. It’s got to suit everybody.”
Last month Adam bought the land from developer Alan Waldron before an auction could take place. Mr Waldron had planning consent for 54 apartments and a restaurant.
Adam believed placing residents so close to the pier threatened its future as a tourist spot, due to the likelihood of complaints about noise and smells from residents. But after spending years fighting against that planning application, which was approved in 2018, Adam has now re-registered this planning consent under his own name with Conwy County Council.
This allows Adam to retain the maximum value of the land, enabling the new project to borrow against its worth when seeking finance from the banks. Although it also means, if the banks took control of the land in future, the old plans for 54 apartments and a restaurant could be back on the cards.
Adam added: “This is huge for Llandudno. Everyone knows I think Llandudno’s great to start with. But we do miss out in the winter season and the rainy days, for something for families when the weather is not nice. This would help that immensely. It would help the pier keep jobs 12 months a year. I think it would help a lot of the hotels keep full-time jobs too and really change the economy. We don’t need to change the summer. What we need to improve is the rainy days and the winter.”
“It’s very exciting. Obviously, I’m very nervous. I might not be able to deliver everything I would like to deliver, and it is quite a scary thought. There is a lot of investment going into there, but I can see the potential. In 20 years, we’ll look back and think, my God, that was the right thing to do.
“The aim of the game is to secure the pier’s future. Everything we do is to make sure the pier can afford its maintenance. The wind the other night didn’t help! But this will make an economic impact so we can keep going in the future.”