Plans for £50m holiday village scheme creating 670 jobs unveiled

Plans for Ellel Holiday Village

Almost 700 jobs could be created as part of £50m plans for a North West holiday village development.

An eco-friendly holiday destination is proposed for Lancaster.

The development will include a 90-bedroom hotel designed to sit within the landscape, complete with grass roof. It also includes a combination of unique visitor attractions ranging from an Artisan Marketplace to an Immersive Wildlife Centre where woodland walks are combined with 21 st century technology to deliver a state-of-the-art visitor centre.

The new initiative is the brainchild of Lancaster based M Capital Properties and Susie Charles, a direct descendent of the Sandeman port dynasty. The land was once part of the famous Ellel Grange estate, the former home of the Sandeman family.

The development will include a retail area where artisans will be encouraged to set up shop and trade their wares. The scheme will scrap traditional rents, and instead allow artisans to pay a percentage of their turnover instead of rent, in an attempt to encourage entrepreneurship in this innovative project.

Also, 450 lodges will sit within both mature and new woodland, alongside canals and wetland walkways in what is deemed to be one of the eco-friendliest holiday parks ever built in the UK.

There is also a commitment to plant more than 30,000 trees and the achievement of a 15% biodiversity net gain is a massive step forward in moving the area to a carbon neutral area, and potentially a National first, as to date this has never been achieved in a local planning application.

Rather than destroying the landscape the local company behind the project is committed to building new micro communities and forming new habitats in which wildlife can be encouraged to thrive.

Once complete, the Ellel Holiday Village, complete with both retained and restored woodland as well as wetlands and grasslands, has the potential to absorb and store a staggering 977.7 tonnes of atmospheric carbon each year.

Visitors will move around the site on electric buggies and bikes, in a further aim to reduce carbon emissions.

According to experts ‘Hatch Regeneris’, the proposed site will generate approximately £28m of additional revenue for the local area and create 670 jobs, making it one of the most important developments and job creation initiatives the area has seen in a long time.

Andrew Stanyon, project director, said: “We have set about to fulfil a dream, a dream to build an eco-friendly legacy we can be proud of for generations to come.

“Everyone is aware we are facing a climate emergency, and unless we take action now we will ultimately destroy our wonderful planet. It’s no longer enough for new developments just to reduce carbon emissions, we also need to remove carbon from the atmosphere.

“Nature is our greatest ally in locking carbon away and protecting our climate. ‘Rewilding’, planting woodlands, wetlands and encouraging wildlife, can help nature recover on a massive scale. Done right it can help significantly reduce our carbon footprint, and help shape a better future for people.”

He added: “The vision of Ellel Holiday Village has nature conservation at its heart. ​Guests will be guided through walkways, and wetlands, they will experience birds, mammals, butterflies , beetles, reptiles, plants and fungi in a setting that not only feels natural, but wild and dynamic.

“Our team of experts have been working on this dream for the last five years. This development not only has the ability to create jobs, and prosperity for the area, it also (gives) the opportunity to become a game changer, in terms of biodiversification, and how we holiday. This is a chance for Lancaster to put itself on the global map, to become leaders in showing the world how, working with nature, we can deliver economic growth, and job creation, whilst enhancing the area, and the lives of the people who work and play within it.”

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