Expansion of Henlow holiday business approved despite ‘huge concerns’

Plans to expand the Henlow Bridge Lakes site have been approved by Central Bedfordshire Council. Pic

Plans to expand the Henlow Bridge Lakes site have been approved by Central Bedfordshire Council. Picture: Henlow Bridge Lakes. - Credit: Archant

A leisure business in Henlow is being allowed to expand its tourism activities, despite councillors’ fears about road safety on the A507 outside the main entrance.

Henlow Bridge Lakes Limited has been given permission for two projects to increase its holiday-related provision.

The 32-acre Bridge End Road site includes four fishing lakes, formal camping and caravan pitches, glamping pods, leisure lodges and angling cabins.

Situated within open countryside between Henlow and Arlesey, there is also a function room, hairdressing salon, day nursery, reception area and shop, as well as a secure caravan storage facility.

One of the schemes is for the storage of 30 caravans, with an extra manager's unit, as well as a workshop building for caravan repairs and maintenance.

The other is to put up a reception/sales building and associated caravan holding area, to have a detached buggy store, extend the day nursery, create a new tearoom and relocate the salon to a holiday cabin.

Central Beds councillor Ian Dalgarno, who represents Arlesey, said: "I applaud the hard work the owner and his family have put into this site.

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"My reason for calling the application in was the A507 and access to the site. It is an extremely fast stretch of road outside of peak times. If traffic is waiting to turn right out of the site, it's an accident waiting to happen. I'm really disappointed officers haven't picked that out in the highways report."

Fellow councillor Steve Dixon, who lives opposite the site and represents the Stotfold and Langford ward, added: "I think the A507 is getting worse by the day. It's becoming choc-a-bloc. I have huge concerns."

Site owner David Curson said: "We have, over the last 12 years, adapted to the requirements of our customers. These plans will build on our past success and take it to the next level.

"To my knowledge there's only been one accident since we've owned the site in 20 years and that didn't involve anything coming into our yard."

Principal highways officer Rob Page said: "I don't think there is a problem. The access was built to the proper standard and is functioning as it should."

Councillors at a Central Bedfordshire Council development management committee meeting approved both developments.