Longleat’s plans to build a new 240-room hotel, with a water park and business conference facilities on the edge of its estate near Warminster have been approved by Wiltshire Council.
The proposal, which has been given the go-ahead, is expected to create 300 new jobs and boost the local economy as well as providing additional accommodation in the area.
With more than 40% of its one million annual visitors driving for more than two hours to see its attractions, including the safari park, the management at Longleat believe the new hotel will secure the sustainability of the estate with its Grade 1 listed Elizabethan house, and Capability Brown and Humphry Repton heritage parkland.
Bob Montgomery, the CEO of Longleat Enterprises Limited, which manages the commercial development of the Estate assets, said: “The decision to approve our application is a huge boost to Longleat’s long term future, for Wiltshire and our local town and village communities.
“We’ve still a little way to go and are working to secure Highway England’s final view on the impact of our proposals to the strategic road network in the area, but are confident this will be concluded soon.
“We believe the hotel will enable Longleat to develop and grow over the coming years and will provide a new tourism hub for the area which will create many more jobs and attract new investment,” he added.
More about the Longleat estate
Longleat Safari Park opened in 1966 as the first drive-through safari park outside Africa, and is home to over 500 animals, including giraffe, monkeys, rhino, lion, tigers and wolves.
Longleat House, meanwhile, was built in the 16th century by Sir John Thynn on the site of a dissolved priory, and in 1949 became the first stately home in Britain to be opened to the public on a commercial basis.
The house, park and attractions are open from mid-February to the start of November each year. The estate overall covers 9,800-acres, of which the park occupies 900 acres. The proposed hotel is planned to be built on a 135-acre site to the south and south east of Tascroft Court, and close to Warminster and the A36.
For updates and more information visit www.longleat.co.uk.