Approved canal marina plan will be ‘tourist boost’

AMBITIOUS plans for a 220-berth marina on the Grand Union Canal near North Kilworth have been given the nod.

The plans, which were first approved more than a year ago only to be called-in by Harborough District Council and turned down at the second time of asking, received unanimous backing at a council planning committee meeting on Tuesday.

Applicant Mike Goode said the plans had been altered since the last application to allay some of the fears over access to the site, which would be from the eastern edge of North Kilworth.

One of the speakers at Tuesday’s meeting, Stephen Rice, was speaking on behalf of Yelvertoft Marina in Northamptonshire and said the plan should be refused because the canal network was already too busy to accommodate more narrowboats.

Apart from the marina, the scheme also includes the construction of workshops, an office building and car park.

Council leader Mike Rook spoke about the plans, saying that the Grand Union Canal was an important tourist destination in the Harborough district.

He added: “This is just what the district needs.”

Councillors voted unanimously to approve the plans, with an additional condition that someone involved with the scheme should be appointed to liaise with the public and council if problems arise during construction.