A HOTEL chain has officially opened its long-awaited new location in the centre of Kendal.

After a Covid-19 set back Travelodge’s new site at the K-Village on Lound Road has finally opened and will be accepting leisure bookings from May 17.

The hotel has been open for people who have had to stay overnight for work and other legal exemptions.

Kendal Town Centre Travelodge is the group’s tenth hotel in Cumbria and has created 21 new jobs within the community, according to the company.

The original opening date for the 69-room hotel in December was postponed due to the second lockdown and because of uncompleted works to the building.

Diane McMullen-Hall, manager at the new site, said the opening process had been ‘challenging’ but that she was proud of her team.

Ms McMullen- Hall managed Travelodge’s first site in the area on the outskirts of Kendal for four years before becoming the manager at Kendal Town Centre Travelodge.

“It’s great to mark coming out of lockdown with the official opening of our second hotel in Kendal town centre and becoming the town’s biggest branded hotel chain,” she said.

“It has been very challenging opening a hotel in a pandemic but I am extremely proud to have built a fantastic team who have worked around the clock to get the hotel open ahead of lockdown restrictions easing for leisure customers from 17th May 2021.”

The mayor of Kendal, Councillor Alvin Finch, welcomed the news of the hotel’s opening.

“Welcome to Kendal and our famous hospitality,” he said.

“It’s great to see a building that is idealised by the community being transformed into accommodation that will help bring more people to Kendal to discover the joys of our lovely town.”

Proposals were submitted for the multi-million-pound hotel build in 2018 by Lou-Kendal, who took over the struggling and largely empty shopping centre from Kendal Riverside Ltd in 2015.

Alongside the hotel, planning application was granted for dozens of apartments to be created from the existing commercial space.