PLANNERS have cleared the way for a landmark tower to be built next to Southampton’s Itchen Bridge and become the city’s tallest building.

The £30m hotel and apartment tower will rise 25 storeys high as a “gateway” to the centre of Southampton.

Councillors backed the plans despite objections from conservation body English Heritage which complained that the designs looked too bulky and the building needed a more “graceful profile”.

Developer Orchard Homes plans to build the 253ft (77m) high tower on the Cedar Press site between Royal Crescent Road and Saltmarsh Road after the printing firm moved to Romsey.

It will house a mix of 122 one, two and three-bedroom apartments giving residents stunning views across south Hampshire, the waterfront, Isle of Wight and the New Forest.

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