Luxury holiday lodges plan for Second World War air raid shelters rejected

An example of one of the Stanton air shelters found on the Laughton woodland site.
An example of one of the Stanton air shelters found on the Laughton woodland site.

A bid to create 20 new luxury lodges in Laughton, including the conversion of Second World War air raid shelters, has been rejected by West Lindsey District Council.

Mark Simmonds Planning submitted the plan to the district authority for land off Blyton Road in the village.

Under the proposals, one Stanton air shelter would be fully restored while a further three would be converted for holiday accommodation.

Twenty lodges would be created on the site in Laughton Woods, including two for a caretaker and family.

Developers said the new holiday site would help to bring tourism into the area and benefit the economy.

In its plans, it said: “The proposed scheme represents an opportunity to deliver a high quality and sensitively designed development, which will contribute towards the rural and visitor economy, as well as make efficient use of what is redundant and quite vulnerable land.”

But, district council officials said the proposals were in an “isolated and unsustainable” location and did not “relate to an existing visitor accommodation site”.

In a decision notice, the authority added that the plan would not preserve the heritage value of the site.

It said: “The proposed change of use will not preserve the World War Two heritage value of the Stanton shelters or their existing woodland setting through inappropriate conversion and the introduction of 20 lodges within their setting. 

“Furthermore insufficient evidence has been submitted to justify the proposal as enabling development, particularly when the development harms the heritage value of the site.”

Another application for 26 lodges on the site was refused by the council in September 2018.