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Beechburn Quarry holiday park a no-go in Durham

Oct 10 2012 Posted by Laura Canning

Plans for a proposed holiday park near Bishop Auckland in Co Durham have been withdrawn after local opposition.

Park Leisure Ltd 2000 had applied to Durham County Council to open a site for over 300 static caravans at the former Beechburn Quarry, between High Grange and Witton Park. Operators said the park would have created 43 jobs and given local tourism a £1.7 million a year lift.

But residents of both adjoining villages of the proposed park, as well as some villagers in nearby Witton-le-Wear, opposed the plans on the grounds that the local roads were too narrow for caravans.

A local ecologist, Terry Coult, also said that the park could be detrimental to local wildlife.

‘A large-scale development of 300 caravans will have impacts from light, noise, vehicles, dogs etc in what is now a dark and quiet wetland habitat,’ he said.

Durham County Council would not elaborate on the reasons for the plans being withdrawn. However, its website had noted concern from environmental groups on the impact of the proposed holiday park on the local countryside, as it is close to a Special Site of Scientific Interest.

A Park Leisure 2000 spokesperson said: ‘It is with regret that, after seven years of developing the scheme and taking it through the planning system, Park Leisure 2000 Ltd has chosen to withdraw the planning application and concentrate their investment and development programme in other counties around the UK.’