A11 motorcycle restaurant delays build of short-stay lodges
- Credit: Christine Thompson
The build of short-stay lodges at a restaurant and motorcycle shop along the A11 has been put on hold after a difficult year for the hospitality industry.
The Route 11 restaurant, located on the A11 near Attleborough, is one of many businesses which have struggled amid the coronavirus pandemic.
With the spread of Omicron, fewer people on the roads and her regular biking community venturing out less, owner Christine Thompson said it was an extremely quiet Christmas period.
But having only just started the build of her five short-stay accommodation sites in November - after planning permission was granted last year - Ms Thompson is hesitant to carry on while the industry remains so volatile.
The 61-year-old, who also works full time for the NHS, said: "We dug out the foundations and we have now put in the concrete base layer and the bricks have all been delivered - but we are going to stop temporarily.
"Hospitality has been going through a rough time and I just want to pause to see what happens with the world.
"I also made this decision because it is not cheap and prices are increasing.
"I don't want to borrow money while everything is so uncertain and end up struggling even more.
- 1 'It's a nightmare' - Roadworks leave town 'gridlocked'
- 2 Take a look as former Norwich City footballer tours site of 15 new homes
- 3 WATCH: Inside ex-Aviva office being bought for millions by councils
- 4 'Metal monstrosities' - Opposition to new East Anglia power line grows
- 5 'Green bridge' over A11 could help newts to cross
- 6 Dotty the missing barn owl returns home after sightings across Norfolk
- 7 A11 bus service diverted as ongoing roadworks cause severe delays
- 8 Dad left fuming as royal flag stolen weeks before jubilee weekend
- 9 How the proposed energy price cap changes could affect your bills
- 10 Plane gets into difficulty while landing at Norfolk airfield
"But as soon as we get back to normality, we will continue."
The site will include a mix of double and single bed accommodation options and each one will have an en suite bathroom with air-con.
Ms Thompson - who opened the business nearly six years ago - said she hopes to have the build completed this year and is looking forward to welcoming back live music and meet ups at the venue in the summer months.
As well as the restaurant and soon-to-be built accommodation, Ms Thompson, from Ashwellthorpe, also introduced a motorcycle shop back in December 2020 - as part of her plans to diversify the business.
She added: "It has been one of our toughest years, but that's the same for all businesses.
"I opened this place because I saw a gap in the market. There was nothing around here where bikers could meet.
"That is one thing we have got which is quite special, a great community. This is not just a normal business."