A retrospective temporary planning application has been submitted for a large marquee which has been erected at a Mellor hotel.

The structure has been operational following the lifting of Covid restrictions, at Stanley House Hotel off Preston New Road.

Monte Leisure, which is owned by the Issa brothers has now submitted a retrospective planning application saying the marquee will help ‘serve the demand for weddings’ at the site, until more permanent work can be completed A year ago, Monte Leisure announced multi-million investment in the buildings and wanted to create 70 more bedrooms at Stanley House, expand its spa and leisure facilities and build a banqueting hall for weddings and other events with outdoor gardens.

There were also plans for an extension to the hotel entrance and restaurant and an expansion the car park to 400 spaces. These plans have been approved by Ribble Valley Council.

Ahead of this major building works, a marquee was put up 'to serve pent up demand' for larger weddings. It now transpires this did not have the correct planning approval.

The planning documents say: ‘The marquee in question has been erected on site to allow the business to remain operational during the construction of the approved development.

‘There has been a significant backlog of weddings at the hotel due to Covid-19. In order to deliver these weddings and to protect employees at the site, Monte has erected the aforementioned marquee.

‘The applicant has determined it would not be feasible to deliver all of the different approved developments (spa, bedroom block, banqueting) at the same time as this would turn the hotel site into a building site to the extent that could not remain open resulting in many weddings being cancelled.

‘The marquee will allow the business to remain open whilst the scheme is built out.’ A letter adds: ‘It is proposed that the structure will be removed immediately from the site once the remainder of the building work on the site has been built out and the permanent banqueting hall starts on site (of the marquee).’ The proposal adds that ‘additional trees have been planted along the access road which screen the marquee site from vantage points to the west’.

Stanley House was originally a small manor house which dates back possibly as early as the 1640s. Former owners the wealthy Walker family were behind its expansion into a premier hotel in the 2000s.