Leisuredome project could be scrapped


Leisuredome - Credit: Archant

THE long-awaited Leisuredome sports complex – which its developers claimed would bring millions to Weston-super-Mare’s economy each year – could be scrapped.


Leisuredome - Credit: Archant

The Mercury can reveal the landowner St Modwen is understood to be looking for someone else to takeover the site.

The £50million project was given the green light in August 2011, but after the company behind the project, Leisuredome UK, struggled to find funding the scheme never got off the ground.

The developer said the complex would attract an estimated 550,000 visitors in the first year and bring in millions to the local economy each year, as well as creating 1,000 new jobs.

The plans included a 210-metre ski-slope and 40-metre climbing wall, as well as indoor surfing and sky-diving facilities. The arena would also have a children’s soft play area, gym, laser game area and a BMX and skateboard park.

Big-name brands such as Subway, Butcombe Brewery and clothing retailer Tog 24 were also signed up to the project.When granted planning permission in 2011, the company’s director Clive Hamilton-Davies said he hoped to have the work wrapped up by the winter of 2012.

In May 2012, Mr Hamilton-Davies revealed the company needed to find more external funding to get the project off the ground.

Funding issues continued in January 2013, when Mr Hamilton-Davies said building work was still at least a year away, as they ‘were still trying to find funding’.

At a Locking Parish Council meeting last week, Cllr Peter Lacey revealed he had met with St Modwen, which is developing the nearby Locking Parklands.

Cllr Lacey told the parish council that St Modwen’s senior development manager Ian Guy did not believe the Leisuredome project was going ahead and St Modwen was looking for new prospects for the site.

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A spokesman for North Somerset Council said: “We understand that St Modwen is looking for an alternative development for the site, and we are talking to them about that.”

St Modwen was approached for comment, but its spokesman said the company was ‘unwilling to comment on it at this point’.