Work begins on new Royal Hotel
WORK has already begun on the new Royal Hotel.
Workers began digging this morning, with developer Justin Garvie using a bobcat.
Speaking in December, Roma-born Mr Garvie said the famous building, which burned down in 2014, could be back by June 2016.
The man in charge of bringing it back has some big plans for the site, which he says will be nothing like what Roma has ever seen before.
"With the weather permitting, we are aiming tobe open by June," he said.
While the final name and full details can't yet be revealed, Mr Garvie says the finished product will be a mix of old and new.
"We spent nine months just to design the building," he said.
"It's going to have the history (but) it isn't a nightclub or restaurant - it will be a pub for all occasions."
Mr Garvie was one of many locals who witnessed the Royal Hotel, which had stood since 1920, go up in flames in November last year.
But he said a new building might help the fight against Roma's current problem - the town's economic slowdown.
"It needs a lift, so by getting in and building it, we'll be hiring local sub-contractors to help build it with us and, when it's open, we'll employ locals," he said.
"Everyone has memories of the Royal - it's probably the first pub most of us had a drink at."
This isn't the first time someone has had to rebuild a venue called the Royal in Roma - buildings of the same name have burnt down five times since the late 1800s.
For more information, see Friday's Western Star.