Paddock Johnson New Brighton
Viking is in talks with hotel operator Hilton

Viking pushes boat out on leisure at £80m New Brighton scheme 

Dan Whelan

The developer aims to submit an application for a mixed-use scheme at Marine Promenade this summer and is close to agreeing a deal that will see a leading UK entertainment provider take 80,000 sq ft at the Wallasey project. 

The attraction will be Gravity Active’s second North West venture. The family entertainment provider signed for 31,000 sq ft at Warrington’s Time Square last summer. 

In New Brighton, the ground floor leisure space would replace the existing New Palace and Adventureland attractions that are to be demolished in a bid to revitalise the promenade.

The £80m scheme is being delivered by Viking New Brighton, headed up by director Patrick Shea.

“If it is going to make anything of itself, we need to bring New Brighton up to date,” Shea told Place North West.

Up to 190 residential units, and a 100-bedroom hotel to serve the nearby Floral Pavilion Theatre conference venue also feature within Viking’s proposals. Lidl has also expressed an interest in building a 25,000 sq ft store at the site, according to the developer. 

Talks with Hilton over a deal that would see the operator run the proposed 90,000 sq ft hotel under its Hampton brand are ongoing, Shea told Place North West. 

Adventureland Wallasey

New Palace and Adventureland are to be demolished 

“We are trying to develop a go-to leisure facility. We have got a chance here to rectify any wrongs that have been done, like not putting a hotel next to the conference centre. It is common sense,” Shea said.

The developer has agreed to pay £6m for the site, which is owned by Wilkie Leisure Group, and is to prioritise the delivery of the leisure element ahead of the hotel and residential portions.

Subject to approval, demolition could commence in September. 

Plans for the project, designed by architect Paddock Johnson, were first revealed in 2019 but the scheme was put on the back burner when Wirral Council instructed BDP to draw up a refreshed 15-year masterplan for New Brighton. 

The masterplan is part of the council’s wider Left Bank vision, which aims to guide the regeneration of SeacombeLiscard, Birkenhead, New Ferry and Bromborough. 

Your Comments

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The knock on effect from Liverpool investment is catching all over the City Region.

By Anonymous

Bland square boxes. The loss of the Art Deco frontage would be a major regret. Why do architects only use rulers these days?
I hope Wirral Council will be brave enough enough to send this application back for a redesign?

By Prescotian

Although very run down, the art-deco arcade will be a sad loss. It is iconic to New Brighton’s, and Britain’s, seaside heritage. Would have preferred to see the arcade revitalised rather than knocked down.

By Anonymous

This Art Deco beauty was best thing I saw last time I went to New Brighton. Permitting its destruction would be a retrograde step

By retro

It’s great that it is getting redeveloped. I just can’t understand why they couldn’t have made it more fitting with New Brighton – like 1930s arty. Just no imagination at all.

By Mark Walch

Why is a skating rink either ice or roller ever considered as a place to go all year round.
It would attract people from the whole of Merseyside and beyond.
The New Brighton frontage of the amusements arcade could stay as that is how it has been recognised for years. Just needs a tidy up

By Barbara Lawrence

We really don’t want the Liverpool effect this side of the water. Wirral council should use a bit of imagination and develop this grand old building rather than give into the cheap bland square box look that so afflicts our neighbours.

By Wirralwanderer

Agree with the comments about the loss of the Art Deco frontage which added great interest to a rather bland series of developments in New Brighton . Hope the council demands the retention of the frontage and for it to be integrated into the new design

By George

Onwards and upwards, stop living in the past I say!

By Anonymous

It would be such a shame to demolish the art deco amusement arcade to put a modern building , I have just returned from new Brighton yesterday and my grandchildren loved the arcade

By Tracey m

That design needs art deco incorporating into it. Architecture is supposed to be pleasing to the eyes, Cmon! Let’s see a building with style and design for a change! Not bloody boxes and dullness.

By Terry

Let’s hope there’s lots of art, green spaces, seating and people-friendly traffic free areas so we can still enjoy walking and cycling around.

By Lefty

The Wirral Waterfront is stuck on the year 1805

By Anonymous

I’ve lived in Wallasey all my life I’m in my 70s. It’s about time they modernised New Brighton. Just do it.

By J Rutherford

Please no more Liverpool boxes. Let’s try to maintain some quality over here. We should be going for quality on the Wirral, not tat or tomorrow’s slums.

By Anonymous

There are many houses whose view will be obstructed by these flats. For a seaside town, New Brighton offers very little in the way of good entertainment, just a string of chain restaurants. It’s time the council developed a decent plan for improvement.

By Ken

Identical to what was proposed on October 2019.

No character, no sense of place like the 1939 building it is destroying.

And if you do have to destroy the last remaining early 20th century buildings that gave New Brighton its identity do something better. Take advantage of the views, add some balconies. Why the mishmash of different claddings?

By Anne

I like the scale of this. Like others have mentioned I wish the architects could have given a nod to the Art Deco style of its predecessor.

I think a bridge over the Mersey (ideally in the iconic Golden Gate style) would really accelerate growth on that side of the Wirral. It would be a proper ‘left bank’ then. It would also join up the city region and aid both sides.

By Chris

Move on. Lived here all my life. Need knocking down before it falls down.

By Anonymous

“We are trying to develop a go-to leisure facility. We have got a chance here to rectify any wrongs that have been done, like not putting a hotel next to the conference centre. It is common sense,” Shea said.

Whilst submitting an application to build a 100 bedroom hotel next to the Floral Pavilion conference centre.

There does need to be an improvement of what there is but please something more imaginative and creative than a Lego brick Hotel or yet another new Lidl store. Even a car park would sound more imaginative….

By Happy Matty