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£20m West Midland Safari Park plans receive major boost
PLANS to build a £20 million hotel, conference centre and waterpark at West Midland Safari Park have been given a major boost.
Wyre Forest District Council’s five-member cabinet, at a meeting last night, unanimously voted to approve the project’s planning brief and masterplan, which will now form the basis of a planning application expected to be lodged “in the near future”.
Conservative councillor Anne Hingley, cabinet member for place-shaping, said council planning officers and safari park staff had worked together on the plan, preventing it from going “back and forth and back and forth”.
She added: “This is a major step forward because now the safari park has the confidence to submit an application. There has been several versions of this and the confidence is now there that all necessary work needed to build on a planning application is ready to go ahead to the next stage.
“It would be a major boost for Wyre Forest’s economy and jobs and it is a really good news story.”
Speaking at the meeting, Independent councillor Helen Dyke, observing, said the plans proved it “paid to be ambitious” and Conservative councillor John Campion, leader of the council, said the council “looked forward” to receiving the planning application.
Plans, revealed two years ago, would see a 250-room hotel, a 1,000-delegate conference centre and waterpark built, with a monorail created to link the Bewdley-based safari park to a new Severn Valley Railway station.
If completed, the project is expected to create nearly 300 jobs and increase additional spending in Wyre Forest by £10 million.
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