£1.8m plan to revamp and expand watersports centre
A WATERSPORTS centre at a country park in Peterborough is set to undergo a £1.8 million revamp which will see it almost double in size.
Nene Park Trust has submitted a planning application to Peterborough City Council for a refurbishment and extension of the Ferry Meadows Watersports Centre.
The trust has said the scheme will be funded from its reserves and will revamp a 30-year-old building which “no longer meets the expectations of visitors”.
James Mcculloch, chief executive of Nene Park Trust, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be moving forward with this major improvement project - the largest that the trust has ever carried out.
“The watersports centre and cafe are such an important part of the Ferry Meadows experience for our visitors and this project will give our one million visitors a year a waterside cafe and activity centre that is among the best in the country.”
The work would see an expansion of the centre’s bar and cafe area, including the creation of a much larger outdoor decking area extending towards the edge of the Gunwade Lake.
It would also provide new training rooms, larger changing facilities, better storage for boating equipment and bicycles, and an external workshop and storage unit for boats.
An improved glazed front of the building meanwhile would give cafe customers unparalleled views over the lake, while a private function room would be created next to the main dining area.
The existing watersports and bike hire shop will be split up, creating two shops.
Construction on the refurbishment is expected to take around nine months and, planning approval pending, the work should get underway at some point in the next 12 to 18 months.
A trust spokeswoman said: “The trust is currently looking at ways to ensure that as much of the work as possible takes place at the quieter time of year for the Park and that disruption to visitors is minimised.
“The existing building is nearly 30 years old and no longer meets the expectations of visitors.
“The whole of the existing building will get a makeover to almost double the current space in the very popular cafe and a new extension will increase activity space by nearly 50 per cent giving cycle hire and watersports provision an exciting boost.
“Changing rooms and facilities all get brought up to the very latest standards with particular attention paid to all-ability access. Outside, the centre gets a whole new welcoming look which is perfectly balanced with the surrounding landscape.”
PROPOSAL: How the Watersports Centre would look if the planning application from Nene Park Trust is accepted. PICTURE: MABER ARCHITECTS
CURRENT: How the Watersports Centre looks at the moment.