Revamp for Waddecar Scout Activity Centre near Preston

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A youth activity site in the Preston countryside is to get a new accommodation block to replace some of its ageing residential facilities – and make them more accessible.

Waddecar Scout Activity Centre, in the Forest of Bowland – five miles north of Goosnargh – has been given the go-ahead to develop the new two-storey building on a plot that currently provides space for 30 tent pitches.

The Snape Rake Lane attraction offers scouts, guides and other youth and school groups the chance to visit a residential camp where they can take part in a host of outdoor activities, including climbing, abseiling, high ropes, archery, canoeing and raft building.

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The charity-run site boasts a range of accommodation options, such as dormitories and huts, as well as the opportunity for traditional camping. However, according to the planning application for the new block, there has been growing demand for facilities which “meet accessible standards”.

The entrance to the Waddecar Scout Activity Centre (image: Google)The entrance to the Waddecar Scout Activity Centre (image: Google)
The entrance to the Waddecar Scout Activity Centre (image: Google)

Some of the lodges at the centre are of a less modern build type and some are said to be in “a poor condition”. These will be demolished once the new accommodation has been constructed.

The ground floor of the new building will feature two common rooms and kitchen facilities, along with four ‘group leader’ bedrooms with ensuites. A dozen dormitories would be based on the floor above, with 72 beds in total – in a range of configurations – and toilets.

In pre-application discussions with city council planners, concerns were raised that the design of the building would be “incongruous within the local area”, leading the charity to amend its blueprint.

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The authority considered that the tweaked version of the scheme would not have any “unacceptable adverse impacts upon the openness of the countryside, residential amenity, highway safety, the public right of way or ecology”.

“The proposal would have a neutral impact on the…landscape,” a town hall planning officer’s report added.

No public objections were raised to the plans.

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