Treehouses for tourists planned for Northumberland coast

A trio of tourist treehouses are on the cards for a woodland site on the north Northumberland coast.

By Ben O'Connell
Saturday, 23rd May 2020, 10:49 am

Permission is being sought for the change of use of the land and the provision of three tree-houses to be used as tourism accommodation, on land at Burnside Lodge, to the south of Embleton.

The site is a small woodland to the south of Embleton Burn and to the east of the C74 road, in the southern extent of Burnside Lodge, which is owned by the applicant, Mr R Lewis.

The plot, which is within the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), already has an access point from the C74.

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File picture of Embleton Bay Beach

According to a planning statement, the aim of the application is ‘to develop a small, innovative and bespoke tourism accommodation experience’ within a small area of the woodland.

It is proposed that the three tree-houses would be ‘elevated slightly above ground level, working with the site topography and creating a feeling of floating within the existing tree canopy’.

Each unit would have a small kitchen and dining area, a double bedroom and bathroom, a sitting/relaxation space and storage provided in a loft space, as well as a deck area for outdoor seating.

One resident has so far lodged an objection to the plans, saying he thinks the proposal ‘will ruin a pretty wooded area within the AONB, which is a home to some of the few remaining red squirrels in the area’.

He also suggests that its access is ‘onto a dangerous part of the local road which will increase the likelihood of road accidents’ and that there is ‘no shortage of holiday accommodation in the area and so the economic impact on the county will be negligible’.

However, the planning statement says that ‘the development will broaden the tourism accommodation offer in the local area, providing an alternative holiday accommodation experience for short-stay visitors’.

It adds that the scheme ‘would have minimal impact on the environment subject to mitigation and would assist in supporting the local economic potential of the local tourism industry and support services’.

The document also claims that three one-bedroom units ‘will not give rise to significant impacts on the local highway network’.

An ecological survey has been carried out which says that ‘no evidence of red squirrels has been recorded on site, however the species is known to be present locally’.

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