AN as-seen-on-TV hotel in Wareham is getting a makeover.

The Black Bear, which featured in the Channel Four series The Hotel Inspectors where it received a "withering" assessment from host Alex Polizzi, has been closed for several months.

But now mother and daughter partners Janet and Emily Strange have bought the hotel following a deal brokered by Colliers International. It had been on the market for £750,000.

And they have embarked upon a major refurbishment aimed at transforming the Grade II listed building's fortunes.

"It was looking more than a little run-down but that didn’t put us off," Janet said.

"It’s a fine building in a fantastic position at the gateway to the Purbeck peninsula and we could see massive potential."

Janet and Emily, who also run a successful café in Swanage, have begun a three-phase refurbishment of the entire building to create a 'boutique' bed and breakfast, alongside a bistro called Love Cake at the Bear.

"We have so much to do, but we’re hoping to use the enormous kitchens to provide a classic food offering including deli shop and takeaway cake, fine local catering and an artisan bakery," said Janet.

"There is also a two-bedroom cottage which we are hoping to open up for lettings.

"We’re aiming to re-launch the downstairs element in time for Christmas, and are confident we will create a fantastic local business."

The Black Bear has occupied a prominent position in the centre of the Purbeck town since the eighteenth century.

Ed Jefferson from Colliers said: "Before it was placed on the market the Black Bear was clearly under-performing, and this became apparent during the filming of The Hotel Inspectors. Alex Polizzi had given a typically blunt assessment of the facilities.

"But Janet and Emily have launched a complete refurbishment programme which will transform the business offering and provide a massive boost for locals and visitors alike."