Plans to develop Great Wolf Lodge – a world-class indoor water park in Chesterton (near Bicester), were approved by the planning inspector after an appeal process. The widespread economic benefits of the scheme, including the direct provision of up to 600 jobs to run the park, and the contribution of £23m GVA per annum to the local economy, were cited as factors in the decision-making process. Similarly, the social benefits of a leisure facility appealing to young families were judged important and not to be underestimated. Specifically, the inspector mentioned the ‘acknowledged benefits of the development, particularly the economic and social benefits that would accrue in the local area’ in reaching the decision in favour of the application.
Volterra, on behalf of Great Wolf Resort (GWR), provided an economic benefits statement along with a socio-economic chapter that formed part of the EIA submission. The water park will represent an investment of £200m in the area, which is expected to permeate through to local businesses and residents in the local community. This economic boost is particularly important at a time when the damaging economic effects of the pandemic are still felt across the tourism and hospitality industries.
Press release – https://www.thisisoxfordshire.co.uk/news/19295085.oxfordshire-water-park-resort-great-wolf-lodge-given-green-light-inspector/