Theme Park Plans great boost for Borough’s Growth

Published Thursday, 16th February 2017
Gullivers Theme Park
Gulliver's Theme Park

One of Rotherham’s leading projects is due to take a step forward after planning permission was approved for a theme park and resort at Rother Valley this week (Thursday).

Gulliver’s Family Theme Parks hopes to begin construction of its development before the end of the year, and the first phase— the main entrance and access roads, theme park hub and core parking — could be open in 2020.

The £37m resort will feature a theme park, woodland adventure centre, an education and ecology centre, hotel and woodland lodges.

Rotherham Council approved plans for the Pithouse West site project at its planning board meeting. The Secretary of State now has 21 days to say whether the Council can deal with the application or call it in.

The Gulliver’s scheme is one of a number of leading projects in the borough to be delivered as part of the Rotherham Economic Growth Plan.

Rotherham Council Leader Cllr Chris Read welcomed the latest news saying it is a “great boost” for the town’s plans, and contributed to over £150m of investment for key regeneration projects in Rotherham. 

In 2015, Rotherham Council committed to a ten-year plan to grow the borough’s economy and infrastructure by generating 10,000 new private sector jobs, creating 750 new businesses and raising productivity across the borough.

The Growth Plan, which is jointly owned between Rotherham Council and the Local Strategic Partnership, focuses on a number of projects including future development of an Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID), the creation of a Higher Education Campus, and the addition of a town centre cinema and hotel.

Cllr Read said: "These projects are part of a detailed, aspirational plan and we need to make sure we deliver on them. We have been determined to gain the full benefits of working within the Sheffield City Region and we are now starting to see funding coming into Rotherham.

"We are in a very strong position and it’s now an excellent time to look towards the next stage of growth, and to achieving our ambition to create thousands of jobs across the borough."

Rotherham is currently seeing plans come to fruition with a number of key projects being progressed. These include: 

  • £12 Higher Education Campus, including £3.5m for the RNN Group from the Sheffield city region skills capital fund for the Higher Education Campus at Doncaster Gate
  • £50m luxury supercar manufacturer McLaren chassis factory at Rotherham’s Advanced Manufacturing Park in Catcliffe - creating 200 jobs
  • £50m retail and leisure development at Waverley in the Advanced Manufacturing and Innovation District to include a hotel, shops, restaurants and a new town square, with links to the Advanced Manufacturing Park and a transport hub to central Rotherham
  • Multi-million leisure development on Forge Island
  • £6.8m for affordable housing developments and a portion of the Government’s £1.2 billion Starter Homes initiative, to help first time buyers into home ownership.
  • £1.1m for road improvements near Wales to enable growth in the area around the successful Vector 31 industrial park, including £759,000 from Sheffield City Region Combined Authority
  • £12m refurbishment scheme at Rotherham Interchange car park, together with improvements to the bus station located below

A number of partners from the public, private, and voluntary sectors are tasked with leading and working together to deliver the Economic Growth Plan.

It provides short, medium and long term solutions to grow existing, and attract new, businesses; improve skills and training to reduce unemployment and open up career progression; increase land for new housing and business developments; and expand strategic transport links.

View the Economic Growth Plan