Victoria Wilson at Chasewater

Investment plan for Staffordshire’s green treasures

Some of Staffordshire’s best-loved green spaces have been earmarked for investment and improvement.

 

Country parks at Cannock Chase and Chasewater, and the 92-mile Staffordshire Way will receive an £18 million investment in the coming years.

 

Victoria Wilson, Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for Communities and Culture, said: “In recent years there has been a rediscovery and renewed appreciation of our green spaces, which has seen more and more people using them.

 

“In Staffordshire the council invests millions of pounds on roads, schools, business parks and internet provision to support residents by helping our economy, but we also want to keep investing in the county as a place to live in and enjoy here and now.”

 

Long term plans include:

  • Redeveloping visitor facilities at Marquis Drive to reflect the Chase’s status as a National Landscape and internationally important habitat for plants and wildlife, while keeping facilities away from the sensitive Special Area of Conservation (SAC).
  • Upgrading the Innovation Centre and south shore area of Chasewater Country Park to improve the facilities for the local community and visitors from further afield, with a focus on healthy activity within a beautiful, natural environment.
  • Relaunching, improving and promoting the Staffordshire Way, which runs from Mow Cop to Kinver. As well as promoting physical activity and enjoyment of the countryside, the scheme has the potential to support local businesses and communities to promote tourism.

As well as Cannock Chase and Chasewater, Staffordshire’s countryside estate includes country parks at Apedale, Deep Hayes and Greenway Bank, as well as smaller sites, picnic areas and three greenways.

 

The council’s country parks saw a marked increase in visitors during and after the pandemic, as people rediscovered the natural beauty and open spaces on their doorstep.

 

Victoria Wilson said: “Each of these projects is an important flagship project in its own right so we will be researching and developing each one carefully. This will include making sure these projects are inclusive and accessible for visitors.

 

“We will be working closely with partners including the Cannock Chase National Landscape Partnership and the Cannock Chase SAC Partnership and we will be involving the public as we develop specific plans.

 

“We will be beginning by asking the views of residents, businesses, visitors and other interested groups later this year.”

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