Seaquarium hopes to expand with plans including 91-metre viewing tower

PUBLISHED: 08:00 14 July 2015

Weston-s-Mare SeaQuarium.

Weston-s-Mare SeaQuarium.


A NEW two-storey building and a 91-metre viewing tower overlooking Weston could be built as part of an expansion to the town’s SeaQuarium.

Weston-s-Mare SeaQuarium.Weston-s-Mare SeaQuarium.

The attraction’s owners have submitted a pre-planning application enquiry to North Somerset Council which also mentions a possible new dinosaur exhibit.

The expansion has been hailed as ‘great news’ for Weston, bringing ‘growth and investment’ and creating new jobs in the town.

The SeaQuarium – which has just celebrated its 20th anniversary – has not undergone any significant external redevelopment since it opened.

But now the venue could enjoy huge investment to create a new building and viewing platform offering unrivalled views across Weston.

The SeaQuarium – which is owned by West Midlands Safari Park – hopes to relocate its existing offices, café, gift shop, restaurant and retail outlet into a new two-storey building on the beach, facing the promenade.

Its current building will be used to house a new attraction – potentially a dinosaur-related exhibit.

Weston-s-Mare SeaQuarium.Weston-s-Mare SeaQuarium.

A 91-metre viewing tower has also been detailed within its plans.

The move has been welcomed for its potential to bring extra visitors to Weston while at the same time boosting employment.

Richard Nightingale, whose North Somerset Council ward Weston Central which includes the SeaQuarium, said: “I am very pleased that yet another organisation has earmarked Weston as the place to invest, grow, and create more employment.

“It shows how far we have come as a town and community when we are shorted listed for such projects and we can not underestimate the importance of providing more jobs locally.”

But he also highlighted the need for consultation surrounding any potential expansion, and said: “We need to see far more detail, and a formal planning application, so residents can be involved in any decision.

“I really feel it’s crucial that the successful future growth of Weston takes into account the views of everyone who lives in our community. It’s important that this new proposal should undergo the same local consultation.”

A spokesman from the council said: “These are exciting plans and we are pleased that the company has got these plans for Weston.

“But of course there is a planning procedure that needs to be followed before those plans can come into fruition.”

The manager of Weston’s Business Improvement District, Steve Townsend, described it as ‘great news’.

He said: “I think it’s a great idea. I think anything they can do to increase its capacity will be good for them and I also think it’s good for the town.

“We live in England, we need more indoor attractions as well as the outdoor ones.

“Down in Weymouth their aquarium has a tower and that’s proved quite an attraction and that’s right on the seafront.

“I think it’s all great news, it’s really nice to see that a big company like West Midlands Safari Park are considering investing more in our town.”

West Midlands Safari Park declined to comment on its plans.

More from Weston Mercury

A father ‘struggled’ to care for his son without support for 20 weeks after North Somerset Council failed to provide him with adequate information about carer’s assessments.

Read more

Burnham and Highbridge Town Council have appointed a new town clerk.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:23

Weston boss Marc McGregor has hailed the performance Tom Llewellyn in the Seagulls’ defeat at Welling United, after the teenage starlet marked his first league start with a stunning goal.

Read more
Yesterday, 23:04

People flocked to Weston on Saturday for a day of alternative therapy, spiritualism and traditional crafts from around the world.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:00

Pupils turned out in droves, sporting yellow ears and eye patches, in support of Children in Need.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:23

A Weston boy, who has been long been hailed as an inspiration to children suffering from bullying, has added another prestigious prize to his collection.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:00

Children as young as 12 have been caught running on the roof of a derelict factory and trespassing in the collapsing building.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:41

A six-year-old has raised more than £500 for a Wraxall charity with a sponsored hair cut.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:44

The following cases were heard at North Somerset Courthouse from October 4-16.

Read more
In The Dock
Yesterday, 07:00

The Government is set to invest more than £1million to improve pothole problems in Weston and North Somerset.

Read more

Most Read News

Read Online

Read the Weston Worle and Somerset Mercury e-edition E-edition

Local Weather



max temp: 8°C

min temp: 0°C

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Send Your Letters
Order Photos
Family notices
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Newsletter Sign Up

Weston Mercury twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Show Job Lists