£60 million Ayrshire Eco-Therapy Wellness Park plans a step closer to reality

A Proposal of Application Notice (PAN) for The Barony Eco-Therapy Wellness Park, located on the site of the former Barony Colliery, has been submitted to East Ayrshire Council.

The move signals the intent by Barony NP (UK) Ltd to submit a new application for planning permission in principle (PPiP), following a minimum 12-weeks of public consultation, which will include two local events.

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), required by East Ayrshire Council, will be submitted as part of the planning application, together with evidential geotechnical and engineering information. This will focus specifically on the suitability of the ground conditions of the ‘bing’ for the development of lightweight guest accommodation and facilities.

Allocated for recreational and leisure uses by East Ayrshire Council, Barony Wellness is proposed to be the first ‘true’ nature-based wellbeing destination in Europe. This will incorporate managed planting of Scottish flora to increase biodiversity and encourage future natural development

public consultation events will be held, with the first on Tuesday 27th June from 4pm-7.30pm at Ochiltree Community Hub, and the second at the beginning of August at a venue to be confirmed.

The proposed health and wellness destination has been tipped to stimulate local economic growth, and create around 400 jobs.

A mining heritage museum is proposed to reconnect the community with the former coal site. Barony NP (UK) Limited will support The Barony A-Frame Trust with its future plans.

The development will also aim to demonstrate renewable energy technology, including geo-thermal energy from the warm mine water beneath the surface.

A proportion of the profits accrued from the development by National Pride UK CIC will be reinvested back into community wellbeing projects and to support NHS student training.

Irene Bisset, chair of National Pride UK, said, “We are delighted to be progressing this planning application and to provide reassurance on the ground conditions through an Environmental Impact Assessment. The Eco-Therapy Wellness Park will serve to enhance the biodiversity of the currently unmanaged site and deliver considerable investment and employment opportunities in East Ayrshire, in what we believe will be the first true nature-based wellbeing destination in Europe.

“We look forward to engaging with the local community as we progress these exciting proposals.”