Leaplish is located on the shores of Kielder Reservoir in the heart of Kielder Water & Forest Park which was crowned England’s Best Tourism Experience in 2013. Leaplish itself is a multi award winning holiday park and was named as the North East’s Best Holiday Park in 2015. The development of Kielder Water & Forest Park over the last few years has been profound; it now generates over £24.6m benefit to the regional economy, attracts over 360,000 visitors and supports 471 jobs directly and indirectly. In 2013 the park, together with Northumberland National Park, was awarded Gold Tier, International Dark Sky Park status making it the third largest park of its kind in the world with the others being located in the US. The park is home to a large outdoor art gallery, 106 miles of mountain bike trails and 26 miles of lakeside way which is home to Britain’s Most Beautiful Marathon.
Development of further accommodation at Kielder Water & Forest Park presents the opportunity to further improve facilities within the park, attract additional visitors from outside the region and to reinforce the sustainable community and tourism offer that has been developed over the last ten years. Mosedale Gillatt was appointed by Northumbrian Water to carefully manage the process of creating a high quality landscaped environment to complement the ‘off site’ lodge programme. The proposed development looks at installing 36 new lodges within the forested areas, in individual character defined ‘clusters’ sculpted from an existing caravan site.
As part of the design development stage, artist Simon Watkinson has been engaged to develop a strategy for the arts which is in tune with that of the wider scale Art and Architecture programme in place at KWFP. The artist involvement has included the creation of ‘orientation hubs’ to form a character node in three locations and to contain shared facilities including waste storage and visitor information
‘It’s been a pleasure to work with MGA over the last few years on the development of our master plan, visitor facilities and now our expansion. MGA were the natural choice of partner for this project because they understand our business, they’re creative and innovative and they buy into our vision.’
David Hall – Head of Leisure Strategy & Transformation