Outline plans submitted for Lomond Banks leisure development

Outline plans submitted for Lomond Banks leisure development

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Flamingo Land has submitted its outline planning submission to build a £40 million sustainable world-class tourist destination in Balloch, Loch Lomond.

This major milestone comes following nearly 12 months of extensive community liaison and consultation which has led to a number of fundamental changes to the plans compared to the previous submission lodged in 2018.

These include a revised vision of the site adjacent to the pierhead, separate to the public slipway managed by the National Park, to be more in keeping with the natural landscape, and the complete removal of any development in the ancient woodland of Drumkinnon Wood. More extensive ecological evaluations have also been undertaken for this submission to ensure a considered approach to the development and protection of the surrounding environment.

Breaking away from its traditional portfolio of theme parks, the proposed new Lomond Banks development being put forward by Flamingo Land will be centred around a new accommodation-led resort that will be devised to complement the local environment whilst bringing much needed investment and job creation to Balloch and West Dunbartonshire.

The new proposals for West Riverside and Woodbank House, which is adjacent to Loch Lomond Shores, have for some time been identified for tourism development in the Local Development Plan. The Lomond Banks development team will work with leading planning consultants, Stantec, and project architects, Anderson, Bell + Christie, to deliver the prestigious project.

Lomond Banks also includes the retention of the Grade A Listed Woodbank House, which is on the ‘Buildings at Risk’ register. The conservation and redevelopment of these listed structures within the site will be subject to future applications for Detailed Planning Permission and Listed Building Consent (LBC).

The development has also made significant pledges regarding employment, supporting local supply chain in the area as well as providing learning and training opportunities for visitors and staff alongside creating close links to local schools and colleges. 

Jim Paterson, development director for the Lomond Banks project, said: “After an extensive period of reflection, community liaison and enhanced ecological studies to make Lomond Banks the best it can be, I am delighted to be submitting our plans and taking forward a proposal which we believe is both robust and of benefit to the local community. 

“We have listened to the issues raised throughout our consultation process, and the plans now include very significant amendments to ensure Lomond Banks will be in keeping with its environment and protect its treasured assets.

“Our environmental and commercial commitment to Balloch and West Riverside remains steadfast, and we want to complement what makes Loch Lomond so attractive to visitors. Our aim would be to invest and hire locally, as well as working with local businesses to maximise the benefits of the development for all.” 

With the outline planning submission having been registered by the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park Authority, Lomond Banks will now seek Planning Permission in Principle, at this stage. If approved, the team would progress to work on plans for Detailed Planning Permission. At this point, the indicative details outlined below would be confirmed.

The proposed development comprises a tourism, leisure, and recreation-led mixed-use development, including:

  • Refurbished tourist information building
  • Up to 60-bedroom apart-hotel
  • Up to 32-bedspace budget hotel
  • Up to 127 self-catering lodges of various sizes
  • Reconstruction and refurbishment of Woodbank House to provide up to 15 self-catering apartments
  • Reconstruction and refurbishment of the attendant structures at Woodbank to provide up to six self-catering units
  • Leisure pool / water park / spa facility
  • Water sports hub
  • Water sports equipment storage building
  • Restaurants / café / retail areas
  • Craft brewery including pub
  • Visitor reception area and hub building
  • External activity areas including event/performance areas, children’s play areas, picnic and barbeque areas
  • Monorail
  • Staff service and welfare accommodation
  • Associated parking, landscaping, and infrastructure development works; and
  • Access from the surrounding road network including Ben Lomond Way and Pier Road.

The revised plans for West Riverside and Woodbank House offer an opportunity for a unique leisure-based development that truly respects and complements the surrounding area. It is also in-line with the long-standing vision for the site that has been held by the local authority for more than 30 years, which has been articulated in the Local Development Plan and in the Balloch Charrette.  

The vision – along with the developer’s renowned conservation credentials – will bring new life to the site, honouring its industrial past, improving biodiversity and protecting the natural woodland setting. These qualities are essential to the overall character of the development and the local area and central to the developer’s vision. 

The application will be determined by National Park Authority in due course.

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