Newark and Sherwood District Council has approved the planning application for a new visitor centre at Sherwood Forest, first submitted by an RSPB-led consortium in September.
The consortium won a bid in August 2015 as part of a procurement process organised by the County Council to design and build the new centre and manage Sherwood Forest Country Park in 2018.
The approval makes the way for a modern facility to be built at Forest Corner in Edwinstowe. Following the opening of the new building, the current 1970s visitor centre and car parks will be removed, and the site where they stand returned to nature.
Magical home of Robin Hood
The new visitor centre will be a gateway to the magical home of Robin Hood where ancient oaks and wildlife live in harmony and thrive. It will comprise of a welcome area, a shop and a café. It will also include a terrace for the café and an amphitheatre outdoor area
Ross Frazer, RSPB Project Manager, said: “We’re absolutely delighted to have been granted planning permission to build this fantastic new visitor centre at Sherwood Forest. Prior to our application we took on board a lot of feedback from the local community, and hope that they are just as excited as we are to be one step closer to bringing that vision to life.”
'Bringing the vision closer to reality'
Councillor Alan Rhodes, Leader of the County Council and Councillor John Knight, Culture Committee Chairman are thrilled at the news.
Councillor Rhodes added: "We have always been totally committed to plans for a new and modern visitor centre fit for the 21st century to promote the legend of Robin Hood and our world famous Sherwood Forest. Today's news is exciting as it is bringing this vision one step closer to reality for everyone."
Councillor Knight concluded: "This is great news for Sherwood Forest, for Robin Hood, local communities and for the hundreds of thousands of visitors who come to explore our historic country park each year. Our current visitor centre is well loved but does not provide a full visitor offer that people expect. This new modern centre will be wonderful for everyone and will bring a real boost to the visitor economy."