Alton Towers to build 'fairy tale' treehouses in expansion plan


Alton Towers is a theme park and resort located in Staffordshire, England. In 2011, it attracted 2.6 million visitors per year,

The Alton Towers Resort in Staffordshire is planning to introduce fairytale-inspired tree houses as part of the park's extension. Source: PA.

The theme park is applying to build 10 luxury tree houses and 61 unique holiday lodges as part of efforts to increase its foothold in the short-break holiday market, park bosses said.

The park's new tree houses will be perfect for thrill-seeking families.

Each tree house will sleep up to eight people, and will be equipped with hot tubs on an outdoor terrace.

An artist's impression depicting how the wooden buildings might look has been released alongside the planning application, showing some of the tree houses sporting pointed turret-type roofs.

The location of the planned expansion, which also includes a new restaurant, is on what is currently undeveloped land next to the site's existing hotel complex, which neighbours the main theme park housing rides like Rita, Air and Nemesis.

Merlin Entertainments, which owns the theme park and other UK attractions including Thorpe Park, Madame Tussauds and Blackpool Tower, has said the project could create about 140 new full and part-time jobs in the area.

Mark Kerrigan, the resort's development director, said: "The proposed new development will consist of 61 uniquely themed, individually styled lodges and 10 luxury tree houses that will further enhance our position as a short-break holiday resort."

He added: "Tourism represents a £1.8 billion industry to Staffordshire and we want to be part of the ongoing growth of that figure through our planned future development.

"It's a very exciting concept for us and one that we believe will create real opportunities for the surrounding area.

"Further accommodation has been in our Long Term Plan since 2009 and we've worked incredibly hard over the past 20 years with Staffordshire county tourism to grow the appeal of Staffordshire as a holiday location, resulting in an increase in the overnight stay market volumes of 21% from 2008-2012.

"We firmly believe therefore given the overall increase in this wider short breaks market there is ample opportunity for both the resort and the local area to benefit from our even more focused positioning as a two or three-day destination."

The application will now be determined by planners at Staffordshire Moorlands District Council.

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