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Alemouth Road Travel Lodge, Hexham

By George Spreckley
GJP 0060

This mixed commercial development is located in Hexham, 25 miles east of Newcastle. It is one of a number of developments designed to revitalise and regenerate the town.

The 5.5-acre site, a former nuclear bunker, had been unoccupied for 30 years and had become derelict. This £10 million redevelopment, which also included a supermarket and fast-food restaurant, therefore brought a long-term vacant site back into use.

The building in the spotlight here - the attractive new 69-room Travelodge - consists of four storeys. Newcastle-based Union Property, who purchased the site, worked with a variety of local stakeholders including Esh Construction, Light Gauge Steel Framing specialists Sigmat, and architects FaulknerBrowns to deliver the project.

The scheme, which carefully reflects the character of Hexham, utilises Ibstock Ivanhoe Cream Originals and Bradgate Medium Greys prominently. These specific bricks were chosen in close dialogue with the conservation officer to ensure that the building complemented the tones of the brick and stone buildings of the town centre. Coloured mortars were used, which closely match each brick type, to provide a more monolithic appearance to the building.

The Ivanhoe Cream is the dominant brick, generally laid in a half lap stretcher bond, with three rows of soldier course bricks breaking up the facades and providing definition to the floor levels of the hotel building. The recessed panels of Bradgate Greys provide further definition to the elevations of both buildings.

A transformational project to Hexham, the project breathes new life into the site. It has created approximately 60 new permanent jobs and boosted visitor spending by an estimated £2.16 million. It therefore represented a significant economic investment in the town and is playing a pivotal role in the region’s economic recovery from the pandemic.

Ibstock have invested significantly improve the energy efficiency and quality of product at the site. This includes installing brand new, state-of-the-art dryers, which now include screen-controlled moisture monitoring. This helps minimise surplus heat wastage, without compromising on the final quality or durability of the bricks you see in this project.

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