A Southampton resident has said it is ‘sacrilege’ to turn the Dolphin Hotel into student accommodation.

Last week, council officers recommended a plan that would see the Grade II-listed Dolphin Hotel turned into student accommodation.

The application is set to be deliberated on this afternoon (Tuesday).

As reported in the Echo last week, Dolphin Hotel Property Limited’s plans attracted more than 20 objections during a public consultation.

One of those objectors, Kathleen Kinchington, has lived in Southampton all her life and grew up in the St Mary’s area of the city.

She said that upon finding out about the development she thought it was ‘disgusting’ that the application had even crossed the developers minds.

Kathleen said: “Southampton is not Cambridge – we already have enough buildings for students in the city and the Dolphin has so much history.

“Not only is the building Grade II-listed but it has so much history tied to the city – Jane Austen danced at the hotel and historic guests have included Queen Victoria and Lord Nelson.

“It feels like developers are trying to tear away the city’s heritage.

“Surely a Hotelier could come and save the hotel as with the case at the historic Botleigh Grange Hotel in Hedge End.”

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The Botleigh Grange Hotel into administration in 2020 and was bought by international hoteliers, Grand Hotel Excelsior International Ltd.

Built in the 17th century the Botleigh Grange Hotel is back up and running as a hotel rather than being demolished or turned into another development.

Kathleen continued: “It's sacrilege to make the Dolphin student accommodation.

“The hotel is close to the waterfront and would make a fitting place to stay for cruise passengers and other visitors to Southampton.

“I feel that these objections have fallen on deaf ears.

“We have lost so many hotels in Southampton such as the Southampton Park Hotel and the Polygon – we only have Travel Lodges and Premier Inns these days.”

The Polygon closed its doors in 1997, while the Southampton Park Hotel shut in 2015.

Members of Southampton City Council’s planning committee will debate the change of use plans for the High Street site at a meeting today, July 9.

The Dolphin Hotel has most recently been used to provide temporary accommodation for asylum seekers.