Water park: work is finally on the way!

The Alpamare all-weather water park in Germany. A similar attraction is to be developed in Scarborough.
The Alpamare all-weather water park in Germany. A similar attraction is to be developed in Scarborough.

Work on a multi-million pound all-weather water park in Scarborough could start next month, it has been revealed.

It was originally hoped construction of the £14 million attraction would begin in February, however legal and traffic management issues have delayed the long-awaited scheme.

But on May 13 Scarborough Council is expected to rubber-stamp an agreement, which will allow the development to finally get under way.

The authority’s leader Cllr Tom Fox said: “We are going through a legal process which should then allow an agreement to be put before full council on May 13 for a decision. It’s not just a case of saying build that and get on with it, we have to come up with a formal agreement that’s acceptable to the developer, the council and the community.

“The idea is once the agreement is signed the work can commence straight away.”

It is good news for Scarborough’s tourism industry after visitor numbers dropped this Easter as a result of the coldest March on record for 51 years.

Cllr Fox said: “I think we are all very excited about it, not just the council but the wider community. Obviously it’s a fantastic tourist opportunity and it should be a destination in itself.

“I’m absolutely sure it will boost tourism when the weather is bad as it’s an all-season facility.”

Last September Roland Duce, the man behind the regeneration of the North Bay, told the Scarborough News he hoped the water park would be open by June 2014.

However, as a result of the delays, the date is now likely to be put back.

He said: “Rest assured that I wouldn’t have spent hundreds of thousands of pounds getting to this point if I didn’t think I was going to achieve it.”

The attraction, near the Open Air Theatre, will form part of a £150 million leisure complex.

It is expected to attract up to half a million visitors a year and is set to include a wave pool, a lazy river and an infinity pool overlooking the North Sea.

The big draw is expected to be a flume know as The Tornado, which will be the biggest of its kind in the country.

The 1,500-capacity water park will be operated by German company Alpamare. Once it is completed, Mr Duce, who bought out Benchmark Leisure in 2010, will then build lodges, which will be log cabins with hot tubs, before starting work on the holiday village on top of the cliff.

Development of the North Bay has been a work in progress for more than a decade.

Initial plans failed to get off the drawing board and The Sands scheme faltered during the economic downturn.

The water park development, which was finally approved by planners last August, includes a restaurant and car park, on the site of the existing Burniston Road car park.

There will also be 29 holiday lodges on the former Kinderland site, and 124 holiday homes at Bay View, formerly Mr Marvel’s.

The existing overspill car park next to Ryndle Crescent will be kept and upgraded with an all-weather surface to provide 309 parking spaces.