Plans to transform popular Hayling Island holiday park move forward with more caravans
A HUGE redevelopment of a long-standing holiday park in Hayling Island is set to go ahead after planning permission was granted.
Away Resorts has grand plans to modernise Mill Rythe Coastal Village, formerly known as Mill Rythe Holiday Park, after it bought the site out of administration in 2010.
The holiday park has been a long-standing fixture of Hayling Island, dating back to 1940s when it was called Sunshine Holiday Camp.
It was popular with families after the war and even saw scenes from BBC sit-com Hi-de-Hi! filmed there.
However, Away Resorts, which runs seven sites including Sandy Balls in the New Forest, has big plans to turn it into a contemporary, self-catered destination.
It began a £10m programme of renovation in April, upgrading or replacing existing chalets and installing new park facilities include a lounge bar and a sports court.
It had already secured planning permission for 203 holiday caravans, plus refurbishment of existing holiday chalets, in 2017, however the most recent planning application sought to amend these details.
Council papers show that Away Resorts was unable to justify or attract the funding required for the proposed refurbishment of the existing chalet buildings because the cost of refurbishing each unit is higher than the cost of providing a replacement caravan.
Its latest plans went through Havant Borough Council's planning committee last Thursday, where permission was recommended and subsequently approved for the demolition of redundant chalets and the installation of 112 holiday caravans with areas of open recreational space.
It will also see the pitch and putt become a managed wildlife area.
A spokesperson for Away Resorts said: ‘Our three phase development plan for Mill Rythe Coastal Village is now well underway. After a very positive response to phase one of the works – which have already been completed – phase two is due to begin in November of this year. We are on track for all phases to be complete by 2023.’
A restaurant, coffee house, laundrette, shop and full activities programme will follow in phase two of the development.
Councillor Gray Hughes, who was on the planning committee, said the scheme was welcome.
He said: ‘It is more external investment coming into the borough, creating jobs and bringing more money into the local economy.’
The amount of holiday accommodation units at the park will increase from 291 to 309 once complete.