Blaenavon boutique hotel with conference rooms as part of a leveling offer

LEVELING-UP’s bids to develop a boutique hotel with conference rooms and a cultural center and café district are being prepared by Torfaen Council.

The two projects – for a luxury hotel in Blaenavon House and for a cultural center and café district in Pontypool – have been identified as having the best chance of success in the second round of the UK government’s leveling fund by the heads of advice.

Torfaen’s cabinet of council will meet on Tuesday to approve the submission of bids to the fund.

The bid for a World Heritage Hotel at Blaenavon House focuses on the redevelopment of the former Ironmasters house.

Costing £13.950million, the hotel would include conference rooms and a spa.

A council report says the plan would create 40 jobs and bring “an essential part of the heritage landscape” back into use.

The upgrade bid will ask for £10.949million, with the remaining £3million being provided by the owners of the property.

Meanwhile, Pontypool’s bid includes the development of a new entrance cafe on Hanbury Road, the redevelopment of the derelict Church of St James and improvements to the civic car park.

The new cafe aims to link Pontypool Park and the town centre, attracting visitors between the two sites.

St James’s Church would be redeveloped into a food and culture centre, with the current owners overseeing the redevelopment and operation of the venue.

Improvements to the municipal car park aim to reduce anti-social behavior, improve its visual appearance and create attractive parking options for evening visitors to the proposed gastronomic and cultural venues.

Roof mounted solar panels are also offered as part of the project.

The total cost of the Pontypool project is estimated at £7.086m, of which £4.836m is requested from the leveling fund.

Torfaen council would contribute £1.5 million, in addition to the £490,000 already committed, while the owner of St James’s Church would provide £750,000.

The second round of the leveling fund was launched in the spring.

Local authorities can bid for as many projects as they have constituencies, which in the case of Torfaen allows for two bids.

Richard F. Gandhi