Center Parcs to build €200m holiday village in Co Longford, creating 1,000 permanent jobs

UK holiday company Center Parcs has officially announced plans to develop a €200m holiday village in Co Longford that will create 1,000 jobs.

The company said 750 jobs will be created in construction phase followed by up to 1,000 permanent jobs. 

The holiday village will be located at Newcastle Wood, five kilometres from Ballymahon, County Longford, and 21 kilometres from junction 9 (Athlone) of the M6 motorway.  Center Parcs has signed an option agreement with Coillte, which currently owns the 375 acre site.

The new Center Parcs, which will have capacity for up to 2,500 guests, is expected to open in 2019, subject to receiving planning permission.  

Center Parcs said it estimates that, when operational, the new holiday village will add approximately €32m to Irish GDP per annum.

The company offers short breaks in a secluded and natural woodland setting and the five parks in the UK are particularly popular with families. According to Center Parcs, the business in the UK consistently exceeds 97pc year round occupancy.

The new development will include up to 500 lodges, more than 100 indoor and outdoor activities, a spa, a range of restaurants and cafés and a ‘Subtropical Swimming Paradise’, with water rides for all ages.

Public consultation and information meetings will take place in Ballymahon for local residents “in due course” and a planning application to Longford County Council will be prepared.

“This new Center Parcs will have all of the ingredients that have made us so popular with families in the UK for the last 28 years and I am certain that Center Parcs will be a great success in Longford,” said CEO of Center Parcs, Martin Dalby. 

“We look forward to liaising closely with the local community during the next few months to fully share our vision and to explain the huge economic and social benefits that a Center Parcs holiday village will bring to the area.”

“Coillte is delighted to have been able to play its part in facilitating this major inwards investment opportunity through the sale of forest land to Center Parcs,” said Coillte Enterprise managing director, Mark Foley. “Coillte is particularly pleased that this opportunity will deliver quality jobs in this exciting and sustainable tourism initiative. Tourism has been identified as a key sector for growth in jobs and Coillte, as Ireland’s largest provider of outdoor recreation, welcomes this major project.”

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