DEMOLITION work started on Northwich’s iconic Floatel this week.

Fences have been put up and workmen have moved in to clear the structure, which became an eyesore after closing in January when owners Real Hotel Group went into administration.

Vandals have badly damaged the building, while emergency services and environmental health officers agreed it should be removed as soon as possible.

British Waterways is funding the demolition, which will be completed in time for Christmas.

Mike Coates, of British Waterways, said: “The hotel was put into place in prefabricated segments and will be demolished in the same way.

“Once the site is clear we plan to introduce temporary boating moorings, improving the river-front appearance and offering a glimpse of how the future will look when Northwich Vision becomes a reality.”

Cheshire West and Chester councillor Norman Wright said the demolition was an important part of plans to regenerate the town.

“We’ve been putting pressure on British Waterways to remove the Floatel – it’s potentially a very good waterfront site,” he said.

Clr Helen Weltman said: “It’s what you see as soon as you come over Town Bridge – it could give a really good impression of the town.

“We’re now pushing for the cinema to be demolished.

“That whole area will be made into something attractive for the town.”