Torbay’s MP Kevin Foster has today (Tuesday 24th October 2023) welcomed plans to end the use of 50 hotels across the country which are currently being used as accommodation by the Home Office.
It has been confirmed the Esplanade Hotel in Paignton is one of the 50 hotels which will cease to be used by the Home Office. The closure will be complete by the end of January.
Delivering this outcome has received vital support from the Conservative Administration of Torbay Council, who since taking office in May have been more pro-active in using the Council’s Planning Enforcement powers to emphasise The Esplanade Hotel in Paignton is part of Torbay’s core tourism area. This means converting it to longer term residential accommodation was never acceptable.
A hotel in Torquay which had been used by the Home Office was taken out of use as asylum accommodation earlier this year. This, combined with today’s announcement, means as of January there will be no hotels in Torbay holding a contract with the Home Office to provide asylum accommodation. This step forms part of the Government’s overall plan to reduce the reliance on hotels to house asylum seekers and reduce the burden on the taxpayer.
Those leaving the Esplanade, having been accommodated there by the Home Office whilst their asylum claims are being considered, are not eligible to apply for housing via Torbay Council and will be accommodated elsewhere in the UK by the Home Office.
Kevin Foster MP said: “A hotel is not a home. The Esplanade was never meant or built to provide longer term accommodation. I am therefore pleased it will now return to offering tourist accommodation, as part of wider work to end the use of hotels as asylum accommodation, with packages to stay at the hotel in 2024 already being advertised online.”