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Plans to make TraffordCity home to North West’s first surfing lagoon

The multi-million-pound plans would see the former container-base site transformed into a world-class surfing facility for Greater Manchester

Plans to make TraffordCity home to the North West’s first surfing lagoon have been submitted to Trafford Council by Belfast-based property developer, McKinney Group.

The multi-million-pound plans would see the former container-base site transformed into a world-class surfing facility for Greater Manchester, within a well-designed and safe cove environment that is accessible to people of all ages and abilities. 

Alongside the surf lake will be space for a café/restaurant terrace, pop-up beach bars, surf shop, and changing facilities all within an interactive environment with everything from pump track and fitness zone to a halfpipe/boarding area, and exercise, bouldering and balancing zones.

Powered by Wavegarden, the world leader in man-made, wave-generating technologies, the proposed surfing complex will create consistent waves, perfect for beginners, learners and professionals alike to test their skills. 

“We are really excited to have submitted our plans to Trafford Council, off the back of months of discussions with the local community, stakeholders and planning officers and, of course, our online consultation at the start of the year,” said Billy McKinney, managing director at McKinney Group.

“We want to thank everyone who got involved with our consultation and let us know what they thought of our plans to deliver the North West’s first inland surfing facility, and we are delighted that over 85% of all feedback received expressed support for our proposals. 

“TraffordCity already has a huge and growing leisure offer and we are looking forward to bringing something new to the area that is thrilling, interactive and accessible to be enjoyed by surfers of all abilities 

“We await our application coming before Trafford Council and look forward to getting people on the waves by 2023.”

The site in TraffordCity, owned and managed by Peel L&P, is regarded as the UK’s foremost retail, leisure and commercial destination encompassing The Trafford Centre and its surrounding 3.5 million square feet of retail, leisure and office space. 

“It’s fantastic to see the plans for this unique and world-class facility move forwards, following the public consultation period,” said James Whittaker, executive development director at Peel L&P.

“At Peel L&P, we’re committed to investing and developing TraffordCity for the benefit of the local community and economy.

“Our partnerships with developers and leisure businesses, such as McKinney Group, continue to enable us to make the TraffordCity one of the most experiential retail and leisure destinations in the UK.” 

Paul Shuker, director at Lambert Smith Hampton said: “We are delighted to be supporting these proposals and believe that this development will complement the existing leisure offer and regenerate one of its last remaining brownfield sites in TraffordCity, helping to complete the area. 

“We predict that this development will bring a huge boost to the local tourism sector, with over 350,000 extra visitors to TraffordCity, generating over £18 million a year.

“As well a boost to tourism, the development is also estimated to create up to 240 permanent jobs once open, both directly and indirectly, with a further 60 jobs created during construction.”

“McKinney Group’s plans will enable those living across Greater Manchester and the North West to access an Olympic Sport that is growing in popularity, will help to promote an active lifestyle more generally, and will put Greater Manchester on the surfing circuit for local, national and international competitions.”

The £60 million scheme will be located on Peel L&P’s brownfield site off Barton Dock Road in Trafford Park.

It will be the first inland surfing facility to open in the North West and is earmarked to be open by 2023. 


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