Council Announces Ambitious Plans for Whitespots Country Park

Monday 29th March 2021

Ards and North Down Borough Council has confirmed that ambitious plans are being progressed for an exciting redevelopment of Whitespots Country Park, near Newtownards.

Ambitious plans for Whitespots Country Park

The Council’s vision is to create a unique open landscape with a fully accessible ‘Trails Experience’ of national significance. The plans will help to protect the biodiversity of the site and will ensure its unique history – especially in relation to the World War 1 and mining heritage – is never lost.

The Country Park is a popular location for local walkers and the rich heritage of the site will be brought to life through innovative infrastructure and interpretation, creating a seamless link to the Greenways Network and acting as a gateway to the Ards Peninsula and Strangford Lough.

It is hoped that the exciting project will be realised through a phased development approach that will range from £6m to £20m investment, and Council is actively approaching a number of external bodies that could potentially provide funding to help bolster the Council’s budget for the project.

The Mayor of Ards and North Down, Councillor Trevor Cummings, said:

“Whitespots is a viable and exciting project that everyone in Ards and North Down can enjoy. It is already a very popular location and is enjoyed by thousands of people every year. Accessing other revenue streams will help realise these potential developments and would encourage more people to visit and enjoy the beauty of our Borough.”

The Somme Museum would act as the gateway to the new Whitespots Country Park and the Council is working closely with the Museum on exciting plans to deliver a range of benefits to the estimated 150,000-250,000 walking visitors that are expected to visit the new Park each year.

The proposal also has the potential to create up to 25 new jobs as well as provide volunteering and training opportunities through education in the environment, sustainability and leisure sections.

For more information, visit the Whitespots Country Park Development page.