20th December 2023
The new hotel will offer a restaurant and exclusive basement whiskey bar
Planning permission has been granted by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council to transform a 159-year-old former bank into a 22-bed boutique hotel.
The brainchild of two local businessmen, the £5m redevelopment will create between 50 and 60 permanent and temporary local jobs on Omagh’s High Street and will answer the demand for accommodation in the town centre.
The Foundry, named based upon the former Henderson’s Iron Foundry, will offer all day dining and an exclusive basement whiskey bar.
Carrickmore native, James McCallan Co-Founder and Director of the building remediation specialists, Anamore – is behind the new concept along with his business partner Anthony Marley and will now begin the search for the right strategic investment partner to realise the new development and operate the new venture.
Mr McCallan said: “The Foundry will provide Omagh with a much needed accommodation offer that will support the wider tourism and hospitality ambitions held by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council and organisations such as Omagh Sperrins and Fermanagh Lakelands. The new hotel will be the first of its kind in Omagh town centre since the Royal Arms Hotel closed its doors in 2002. The hotel will create well-paid jobs in the hospitality sector and ultimately increase footfall and dwell time in the town.
“We acquired the building 6 years ago and we knew it was special and had the potential to be turned into something Omagh residents and visitors will enjoy. We are looking forward to realizing the development and deliver something that will allow Omagh to compete on a national scale for international business travelers, tourists and locals.”
Anthony Marley said: “It’s a big undertaking but we believe it is a project worth doing. We have a very good understanding of the existing structure and have already carried out significant inspection works to understand its construction. We are very mindful that it is a well-known local building and is of significant architectural importance to the town. We are excited by the plans and we thank the council for working throughout the process and approving this application to allow us to bring life back to not just this beautiful historic building but help drive as much interest and traffic to our town centre as possible, supporting the high street retailers, residents and visitors alike.”
Peter Dolan, Chartered Architect at ADP Architects, said that the “proposal of transforming a vacant listed building with a new lease of life will retain and preserve the former bank building. The transformed building will serve as a catalyst for the regeneration of Omagh town centre and finally give the derelict building an important role to play in the regeneration of the Omagh area. The new development will improve the significance and heritage of the building through its contribution to the character of the local area.”
Planning approval was granted by the local council Planning Committee on 14th December with unanimous approval from all council members and construction on the new hotel is expected to begin in Autumn 2024 and will take 18-months until completion.
The old bank building on High Street was originally built in 1864 and has been unused since 1998.