Sex and drink at Fortfield Hotel

PUBLISHED: 16:44 11 April 2008 | UPDATED: 10:32 17 June 2010

EVIDENCE of underage drinking and sex have prompted calls for the derelict Fortfield Hotel to be boarded up. Further fears about the dangers posed by the building have been voiced by town councillors. They called for the owners to board up the building, a

EVIDENCE of underage drinking and sex have prompted calls for the derelict Fortfield Hotel to be boarded up.Further fears about the dangers posed by the building have been voiced by town councillors.They called for the owners to board up the building, after more reports of trespassing.PC Steve Lemon said: "There is evidence of underage drinking and condoms. Maybe we need the Health and Safety Executive to look at it.""Couldn't they [owners] board the building off? It has gone on long enough," said Councillor Graham Liverton. "This is not the sort of thing Sidmouth expects."PC Lemon said officers had come from Tiverton "the nearest resources available."He added: "This has been running much too long. We have talked to the developers and managed to get more fencing put up. "Youths will still get in. I am not happy to send anyone into the hotel in the dark because of the state it is in. "People could get seriously hurt in there. The owners have put up a fence and lots of signs. "Most of the window glass has been broken and 12 months ago thieves were caught after stealing lead off the roof."Chairman, Councillor Tom Cox asked: "Is there no obligation to make sure it is safe?"Last November, there was a small fire at the hotel and just weeks ago Sergeant Andy Turner said: "I am sick to death of kids making their way into the hotel and either we, the fire brigade or ambulance having to risk ourselves to go in to the building, which is falling down, to deal with them."He warned that parents of youths found in the hotel would be contacted and said trespassers would be arrested.There were nearly 100 objections to owner Andrew Torjussen's original plans for a modern glass design building for the site. An application to replace it with 63 holiday apartments/hotel rooms, seven suites, 74 parking spaces and service and leisure facilities was withdrawn.l What do you think should be done about the Fortfield? Write to the Herald at 106 High Street, Sidmouth, EX10 8EF.

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