A RE-SUBMITTED planning application for 20 holiday lodges at a farm near Ellesmere has been refused despite support from local businesses.

The proposed conversion from forestry land to a tourism site by Woodland Park Lodges, off Lion Lane, was initially submitted in October.

Despite receiving support from local businesses like Moolah, The Boat House, Vermeulen and Son, as well as the Cheshire theme park BeWILDerwood, the application was denied.

Ellesmere Rural Parish Council also agreed with the plans but had a request to preserve as much as the woodland as possible.


In its refusal Shropshire Council said: “It is acknowledged that the proposed development, which is an expansion of an existing tourism enterprise could contribute to the rural economy and to the role of Shropshire as a tourist destination.

“However, these potential benefits are considered to be outweighed by locating additional holiday lodges in an unsustainable rural area which would necessitate tourists using the car to access attractions and services at some distance from the site.

“Additionally, insufficient evidence has been provided to show that the established site is a viable tourism enterprise and that the type and amount of additional accommodation proposed is required in this particular location.”

The planning officers also believed that the proposed narrowing of the carriageway was not “acceptable”.

They said: “The proposed narrowing of the carriageway to achieve an acceptable level of visibility is not considered to be acceptable.

“Whilst the applicant has agreed in principle to an alternative means of securing adequate visibility by repositioning the hedgerow, no further details have been provided to allow the authority to fully assess this in respect of highway safety and ecological impact due to the proximity of existing trees.”

Shropshire Planning Committee also added that the proposed development would have a “detrimental impact” to the ancient woodland which is an “irreplaceable habitat”.

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The last reason for their dismissal incident the appearance of the site.

They continued: “The proposed lodges would be located within an area of woodland that would be visible from adjacent highways and public right of way.

“The number of lodges and their density is likely to have a detrimental impact upon the appearance of the site.”