£470m boost as vision revealed for holiday home plan

Dorset Echo: JOBS  BOON: An image of the proposed scheme JOBS BOON: An image of the proposed scheme

THE firm behind a 1,000 holiday home development at Crossways has promised that the economic benefits will be felt across the region.

Habitat First Group was granted outline planning permission by West Dorset District Council’s development control committee for its Silverlake development.

The scheme will transform the 560-acre Warmwell Quarry site into a sustainable holiday park with hundreds of lodges and chalets.

There will also be a hotel, country club and spa as well as areas of protected countryside that will be made open to the public.

Habitat First, which also runs an award-winning development in the Cotswolds, says that the scheme will create up to 750 jobs and see £470million invested in the local area over the next 20 to 30 years.

Managing director Will Vicary said: “We have been highly consistent in our vision and our approach of working closely with the local community.

“Silverlake provides a sustainable solution to the future of the quarry and will also supply an economic benefit which will be felt across the local region – from Crossways to Dorchester, from Weymouth to Poundbury and the Heritage Coast.

“Silverlake delivers nature conservation and landscape management at the highest level and firmly ties in with key objectives in the government’s national planning policy framework and West Dorset District Council’s local planning strategy.”

Warmwell Quarry currently has permission to be used for quarrying until 2028 but Habitat First has purchased the site and says that work is due to cease by 2017, allowing work to begin on the Silverlake scheme.

The application received strong support from both the Warmwell Parish Meeting and Crossways Parish Council. Vice chairman of Crossways Parish Council Nigel Bundy spoke in support of the application at the meeting.

He said: “Silverlake is a unique opportunity in West Dorset for an innovative form of development.”

Mr Bundy added: “We see this as a tremendous endorsement in this part of West Dorset.”

Habitat First has also promised to maintain relics on the site that date back to its previous existence as a World War Two airfield and will provide buses to link the development with Moreton train station, Dorchester, Weymouth, Poundbury and the coast as well as creating cycling and footpaths to discourage car use.

It is estimated that 573 construction jobs will be created during the development of the site, 286 of them with local firms.

Another 180 full-time jobs will be created on the site of the completed scheme.

Residents welcome proposal

PLANS for the Silverlake development have been welcomed in Crossways.

Chairman of the parish council Andrew Brewer said he had not met anyone who opposed the Silverlake development.

He added: “We are very pleased that planning permission has been granted as we have been working very closely with the developers who have kept us well-informed on everything that is going on.

“There are many benefits for Crossways including employment opportunities for the many young people who live here and it will also bring more people to the area.

“We need to remember that something much worse could be built there and we are pleased that an eyesore in the area is being turned into something natural and positive.”

Vice chairman Nigel Bundy, pictured, added: “It is a very welcome investment into our area and will be a lasting legacy.”

Another parish councillor, Barry Thomas, said all councillors were in favour of the plans and it would bring many benefits.

Comments (6)

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7:39am Tue 21 Jan 14

dorset & proud says...

Just need a bypass that doesn't flood every time it rains, a better link road from W Stafford to Crossways, oh and some grit on the roads when it's icy wouldn't be a big ask really.
Just need a bypass that doesn't flood every time it rains, a better link road from W Stafford to Crossways, oh and some grit on the roads when it's icy wouldn't be a big ask really. dorset & proud
  • Score: 6

8:51am Tue 21 Jan 14

Exiled_Abbasite says...

Can't wait for that jobs 'boon'...
Can't wait for that jobs 'boon'... Exiled_Abbasite
  • Score: -4

1:01pm Tue 21 Jan 14

yellowhunter13 says...

And finally get rid of that awful Warmwell leisure centre and parkdean holiday park who have hired and fired willy nilly for years. I for one know as worked for them for ten years and they just got rid of me for doing my job properly! kind of says it all. Good luck to the new developers.
And finally get rid of that awful Warmwell leisure centre and parkdean holiday park who have hired and fired willy nilly for years. I for one know as worked for them for ten years and they just got rid of me for doing my job properly! kind of says it all. Good luck to the new developers. yellowhunter13
  • Score: -1

5:18pm Tue 21 Jan 14

JamesYoung says...

This is clearly good news, but we seem to have moved into an era where job numbers are just dreamt up to justify planning decisions. 750 jobs from 1000 holiday homes?
This is clearly good news, but we seem to have moved into an era where job numbers are just dreamt up to justify planning decisions. 750 jobs from 1000 holiday homes? JamesYoung
  • Score: 5

12:57am Wed 22 Jan 14

Harpya Orkinus says...

Funny how "jobs" and "employment" is always used as an enticer to get locals to accept yet ANOTHER piece of countryside desecration, isn't it ?? Crossways itself was an airfield during WW2, as was the now Granby industrial estate in Weymouth, so two useful sites for LOCAL people to enjoy flying from were lost for the sake of that sacred cow: "jobs !!" I'm sure the quarry site could have been made suitable once more for heathland Wildlife - one of our area's REAL gems - but, of course, what we have STOLEN from Nature is very, very seldom restored back to her, a sad fact that may be seen wherever one looks..
Funny how "jobs" and "employment" is always used as an enticer to get locals to accept yet ANOTHER piece of countryside desecration, isn't it ?? Crossways itself was an airfield during WW2, as was the now Granby industrial estate in Weymouth, so two useful sites for LOCAL people to enjoy flying from were lost for the sake of that sacred cow: "jobs !!" I'm sure the quarry site could have been made suitable once more for heathland Wildlife - one of our area's REAL gems - but, of course, what we have STOLEN from Nature is very, very seldom restored back to her, a sad fact that may be seen wherever one looks.. Harpya Orkinus
  • Score: 1

6:36pm Wed 22 Jan 14

dorset & proud says...

But will this bring decent, well paid, full time employment or yet more low wage part-time work? - How does this help local young people get on the housing ladder when property is so expensive here and decent, well paid employment is so scarce?

It's something we desperately need in West Dorset. Look at the recent interest in Pets at Home when it was announced that they're opening a new store and the amount of people who applied but yet again it's part time work that pays peanuts.
But will this bring decent, well paid, full time employment or yet more low wage part-time work? - How does this help local young people get on the housing ladder when property is so expensive here and decent, well paid employment is so scarce? It's something we desperately need in West Dorset. Look at the recent interest in Pets at Home when it was announced that they're opening a new store and the amount of people who applied but yet again it's part time work that pays peanuts. dorset & proud
  • Score: 3

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