Disused cement plant may be transformed into eco-friendly holiday homes

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UK: According to the Daily Mail, a disused cement plant in Shoreham, West Sussex will be transformed into a Euro143m eco-friendly resort that will 'resemble the Shire from the Lord of the Rings.'

The disused Shoreham cement plant on the edge of the Sussex Downs near Shoreham is set to become one of the most environmentally-friendly holiday resorts in the UK. Plans for the 477,529m2 site will see 600 eco-friendly holiday pods with glass roofs constructed. 1.5MW solar panels mean that the on-site vehicles will not consume any petrol.

The development has been drawn up by architects at ZEDfactory, which has claimed that the project could provide 500 jobs. "It's taken a colossal amount of work and will see a significant investment," said ZEDfactory director Bill Dunster. "It will be a very beautiful place. Instead of seeing vertical chalk cliffs that look rather like a moonscape, it will be entirely green, ivied, with trees. It will look stunning." As well as the amphitheatre and 600 holiday homes, the quarry will also house 50 'earth sheltered homes' built partially underground.

"Nestled in the heart of the South Downs National Park is one of the South East's largest brown field sites. The local residents as well as the Parks Authority want to see something truly exceptional happen there," said a project spokesman. "Working with the local parish and experienced architects, we have put together a community-led proposal to redevelop the cement plant into a world-leading eco attraction showcasing and housing green businesses as well as an earth sheltered holiday park, an outdoor concert amphitheatre, natural swimming lakes and much more." The scheme has the backing of the Low Carbon Trust and the plans will be lodged later in 2015.

The brownfield site is one of three major developments in the pipeline for the area of outstanding natural beauty, according to the South Downs National Park Authority. The authority said that no formal planning application has yet been submitted for the cement plant, but said that a great deal of thought would be given to any application.

"This is an important strategic site in a very sensitive location. It will be considered as part of the Local Plan for the National Park," said a park spokesman. "'No applications have yet been submitted and there's still much work to do to ensure that any proposals safeguard the South Downs' wildlife, landscapes and heritage and can actually be delivered. The site has the potential to make a substantial contribution towards sustainable growth, but also to accommodate innovative development, which promotes National Park purposes."