Plans approved for new Premier Inn hotel at Belfast International Airport

There are currently eight Premier Inn hotels in the north.

PLANS for a new Premier Inn Hotel at Belfast International Airport have been approved.

Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council’s planning committee gave the green light to construction firm JH Turkington’s revived bid for the project on Monday evening.

The 81-bedroom venture was originally launched in 2017 by Moorefield Hospitality Ltd and Premier Inn.

Announced as a £5.5 million project, it originally secured planning approval in 2020.

The proposal centres on a 20-acre site on the Antrim Road, located close to the Maldron Hotel and Belfast International Airport’s long stay car park.

Moorefield Hospitality was subsequently acquired by Gary Turkington and Mark Dundas, both senior directors in the Turkington operation.

The company last year rebranded as JHT Hotels.

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Antrim and Newtownabbey council said the new planning application had been approved in 21 weeks.

The construction phase is expected to support 30 jobs across a 12 month period.

It would bring the number of Premier Inn hotels in the north to nine.

The site of the proposed new hotel at Belfast International Airport.

Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey Councillor Mark Cooper BEM said: “This is a great boost for tourism in the borough offering more choice and improved convenience for visitors.

“With Northern Ireland proudly maintaining its standing as a major visitor destination, the option of affordable hotel accommodation will be an asset for the tourism industry.”

Planning committee chair, Cllr Robert Foster added: “This major investment in a prime location will be an asset to our borough and will enhance Antrim and Newtownabbey’s role in Northern Ireland’s success as a great place to visit.”