Task force to investigate Frontierland buy-out

February 04, 2020

A task force will be formed to find out if the long-abandoned Frontierland site can be bought on behalf of the people of Morecambe.

Morecambe Town Council wants to set up a 'feasibility group' "to consider the possibility, logistics and merits of acquiring and developing the Frontierland site for leisure purposes, including by compulsory purchase order if appropriate, for the residents of the district".

A compulsory purchase order would allow the former fairground site to be bought without the consent of landowners Morrisons.

Meanwhile more than 2,300 people have signed an online petition at Change.org to stop housing from being built on the derelict seafront land.

The petition, set up by a resident, says: "Stop Opus North designing the Frontierland to become houses. We want entertainment such as a indoor waterpark, a bigger cinema with 6 screens at least. And we want retail units too."

The Marine Road site has been a virtual wasteland since Morecambe's Wild West theme park closed in 2000.

Plans by developers Opus North to build a £17m retail park called 'the Bay Shopping Park' hit a roadblock after big names Marks and Spencer and Premier Inn pulled out.

Opus North said in October 2019 that they wanted to come up with another blueprint for the site but this was likely to be focused around residential housing, not retail or leisure.

A motion by the town council's ruling Morecambe Bay Independent group said: "The derelict site has monopolised the promenade for too many years already and must be put back into leisure use. Some of the suggested uses are a conference hotel, and ice hockey/skating rink and a velodrome, but any positive leisure ideas would be considered.

"The site can no longer be left neglected as a detrimental divide between the central and West End of Morecambe."

Town councillors voted in favour of the motion at a meeting last month, agreeing to establish the task force with the help of Lancaster City Council officers.