Popular outdoor activity centre to relocate canoeing and kayaking base

Mendip Outdoor Pursuits will move its kayaking base to Wick St Lawrence. Picture: Google

Mendip Outdoor Pursuits will move its kayaking base to Wick St Lawrence. Picture: Google - Credit: Archant

An outdoor activity centre will soon offer more kayaking and watersports activities with a move on the horizon.

Mendip Outdoor Pursuits will relocate its second attraction from Hewish to Wick St Lawrence by summer 2020.

The firm will move its canoeing and kayaking base to Dolecroft Lane in order to access Oldbridge River.

The move is designed to limit disruption and noise pollution caused by motorway traffic near the M5.

The new base will also feature an obstacle course with tyre rollers, a hanging net and balance poles.

The news was announced yesterday (Wednesday) after planning permission was granted by North Somerset Council.

Applicant Richard Eddins says the move will make centre’s activities and facilities more accessible to wheelchair-users and people with limited mobility.

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He said: “We have been using farmland in Hewish as a location for canoeing and a small obstacle course for more than 25 years.

“The noise and pollution from the motorway is far from ideal and has always negatively impacted the experience for our groups.

“Unfortunately, due to the design of our jetties and facilities, activities are not always accessible to people with physical disabilities.

“We have received permission for a slipway with disabled access for canoeing and kayaking at the new site.

“The schools we work with insist on inclusive, outdoor activities which are suitable for the whole class.

“Understandably, it’s an all or nothing policy – so if we are unable to provide activities for the entire class then they all miss out.

Villagers have welcomed news of the firm’s plans to move its canoeing base to Wick St Lawrence.

One, in their response to the council, said: “The company has been operating directly next to me for many years.

“It is approachable, friendly and relentless with dealing with litter and other issues created by guests.

“I am confident the move will create no issues for their new neighbours at the Wick St Lawrence site.”

Mendip Outdoor Pursuits has been operating in North Somerset since 1987.

The firm’s primary location in Lyncombe Drive, in Churchill, has a dry ski slope, climbing and tobogganing facilities. The relocation plans will not affect that centre.