London Resort: ‘We will be changing the proposals significantly’
Plans to develop the wildlife-rich Swanscombe peninsula for the country’s largest theme park have been scaled back drastically.
Further, the man charged with getting the London Resort project back on track – former Millenium Dome champion PY Gerbeau – has stepped down as chief executive.
The developer behind the scheme, London Resort Company Holdings (LRCH), said Mr Gerbeau quit after it withdrew its application for a Development Consent Order last year.
That withdrawal came after Natural England designated Swanscombe Marshes as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) – CPRE Kent was among the groups that had campaigned hard for the site’s protection.
Another issue for the developer was the government’s declaration of Tilbury, across the Thames in Essex, as a freeport, meaning the London Resort transport strategy had to be revamped.
Despite the latest issues in this long-running saga, LRCH is ploughing on with its project, which it is understood will now require less land-take on the peninsula than under the original proposal.
Steven Norris, LRCH chairman, said: “Progress has not been easy or straightforward. We have faced a number of issues which have delayed us including a designation by Natural England as a SSSI, and being forced to revise our entire transport strategy…
“[The scheme] will be funded, has a realistic and deliverable business plan and compelling partnerships with global brands. It’s time to move forward at pace with our new application.
“We have benefited from a first‐class team at the London Resort, but after this tumultuous year, it’s time for a comprehensive reset and refocus…
“We will be changing the proposals significantly but remain wholly committed to delivering in Swanscombe. There is huge scope for an exciting destination leisure development and we will share more as we move forward.”