Thursday, February 16, 2023

News: Rotherham country park upgrade approved


A £2.5m improvement plan for Thrybergh Country Park in Rotherham has moved a step closer after plans for a new café building were approved by the council.

Securing money from the Government's Levelling Up Fund, £19.9m was awarded for a number of connected projects which aim to build a new leisure industry that responds to the challenges of economic recovery and health and well-being.

At Thrybergh Country Park immediate upgrades include a new café and public realm improvements. AHR Architects and ELG Planning have drawn up detailed plans for the council which involve the demolition of the existing lakeside café and the erection of a replacement café building and seating terrace. Landscaping improvements and the formalisation of the car parking arrangements are also included.

With an enlarged footprint to accommodate the increased visitor numbers the park is already seeing, the new café is set to benefit from a new welcoming entrance with views through to the waterfront. The indoor seating area will also take advantage of the views with further covered outdoor seating also proposed. Replacing an existing building that is considered to be outdated and no longer fit for purpose, the new space will be able to accommodate 80 covers inside and 40 outside.

Design aspects include asymmetrical multi pitch roof on multiple planes with the building "sitting comfortably within the landscape" using charred timber, gabion stone cages on the walls and cedar wood shingles.

Approved without going before the planning board, planners state: "It is acknowledged that the new building has an increased footprint when compared to the existing, however it will provide the increased number of visitors that the park have been attracting with a more useable space together with toilet facilities. Whilst the park is receiving increased visitors the park will not give rise to undue disturbance, noise or significant traffic issues.

"Furthermore, the building provides staff facilities and customer toilets which are not currently provided. Therefore, it is considered that the proposed building would constitute an appropriate facility for outdoor sport and outdoor recreation."

The report adds that very special circumstances have been shown that overcome the inappropriateness of creating a new car park within the Green Belt.

Thrybergh Reservoir was initially excavated in 1880 and still occupies the land to the present date. Thrybergh Reservoir came under the management of Rotherham Council in 1980 and was then developed into a Country Park and Nature Reserve by 1983.

Images: AHR


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