Wishing Lyme Regis a Prosperous New Year
Like the rest of the country, the town will no doubt be subject to the general economic climate but as a tourist destination the local people will be hoping that their particular attractions will bring more visitors and business over the next 12 months.
With the recent launch of Peter Jackson's first film of The Hobbit, there is every possibility that Tolkien fans from far and wide will make their way to Lyme Regis to see The Three Cups Hotel where the author spent many holidays and to enjoy the countryside and seascapes which inspired him. But how many more would come if the hotel were actually open for business and advertising?
I'm sure most people in Lyme Regis would vote in favour of re-opening The Three Cups as a hotel to attract more tourists if they were given a chance. However, as readers of this blog will know, the hotel is unlikely to reopen unless West Dorset District Council uses its powers of compulsory purchase to transfer the property (at zero net cost or a small profit) to one of several parties interested in running the famous building to provide accommodation for visitors.
Given that WDDC's redevelopment plans in Dorchester with outside big business have not been very successful (see this in the Dorset Echo and this on the BBC), they might consider doing more to represent the people of the county who elected them. Re-establishing an existing business with increased popularity and untapped potential would seem to be a safer proposition.
Such a move could be a vote winner. If that is not of interest to existing councillors, voters may wish to note that there is a more patriotic party gaining momentum which aims to introduce more direct democracy and is more entrepreneurial in spirit. See this and this.
I am sorry that there have not been many posts on this blog lately. I have been busy completing my chapter reviews of The Hobbit for the release of the first film. Click here to read more.
The current planned release date for the third Hobbit film is July 2014. That should give some time for West Dorset District Council to fulfil their obligations to act in the interests of the economic well being of the people of Lyme Regis and surrounding area.
The re-opening of The Three Cups Hotel for visitors would also please the growing number of Tolkien fans. I was recently advised that this blog has been mentioned in a new biography of Tolkien by Colin Duriez, albeit in a footnote (J.R.R. Tolkien: The Making of a Legend. p.222 - footnote 12 for chapter 2). It is already linked to the home page of The Tolkien Society. So a potential clientele around the world is watching and waiting.
P.S. If you click on the link to the Internet Movie Database to read about The Hobbit film, you may also wish to search for The French Lieutenant's Woman, part of which is set in The Three Cups Hotel, showing both interior and exterior views. Needless to say, advertising the hotel as a location for this famous film could attract more tourists to Lyme Regis, if it were open for business.