SANDY BALLS Holiday Village in Godshill has lodged plans to site 108 holiday lodge caravans in a bid to provide “higher quality visitor accommodation”.

The application submitted to the New Forest National Park by Away Resorts Ltd is proposing a change of use of land to replace 225 touring pitches with a “lower density scheme” of holiday lodge caravans.

Fifty three of the static holiday lodges would be used all year around on Four Acre field and the lower part of the Orchard while the other 55 would be used over nine months of year on the rest of the Orchard site and Northfield fields.

The planning statement said: “The proposed scheme will support the local economy by providing higher quality visitor accommodation at the park which can be enjoyed by guests all year round.

“This increase in the number of higher spending visitors will result in increased spending both within the park, allowing further investments in the park’s existing facilities, and outside the park in local shops, services and visitors attractions.”

It added: “The proposal would result in a substantial reduction in the number of pitches on the site from 225 to 108, in addition to ceasing the use of 120 tenting pitches in summer on the adjoining Cornfield site. Those pitches that remain will no longer be used for touring caravans. Accordingly there would be a significant reduction in visitors and traffic arriving at or leaving the park.”

The firm also stated that the reduction in visitor numbers and the replacement of touring and tenting with lodges would reduce noise disturbances as well as traffic within Godshill and the National Park.

The application said that the proposed holiday lodges would “not harm” the character and appearance of the National Park landscape and the character and appearance of the site would be “enhanced” by replacing 225 “bright” touring caravans with 108 “muted timber lodges”.

It added that the timber clad would be “more in character with the forest setting” and would enhance the appearance of the holiday village.

The statement said: “Overall, the proposed scheme accords with the principles of sustainable development and would offer benefits which would outweigh any harm.”

View the application at (18/00139).