Doubts over waterpark

“World Waterpark is the world’s largest indoor waterpark (under one roof) with a size of roughly six acres. The World Waterpark opened to the public in 1986. It is located in the West Edmonton Mall in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. It has a maximum capacity of 40,000 guests” (Source: Wikipedia)

If the proposed new waterpark in Newhaven is to be larger than ‘World Waterpark’ then presumably it will occupy a site larger than six acres. The developers say they are looking at up to eight locations; can anyone name eight potential locations of six-plus acres in size in Newhaven?

1. Lewes Road, the recreation ground has already been earmarked for a hotel, but there is much more than six acres between this and Piddinghoe Pond. 2. Land behind Valley Close and Metcalf Avenue, bordering Peacehaven Golf Course and Piddinghoe Mead must be large enough to accommodate a waterpark, and it is close to the proposed hotel development.

3. East of Station Road, Mount Pleasant, a large area of land which has recently been sold. (Buyer unknown?)

4. Behind Quarry Road Industrial Estate, bordering Court Farm Road, there’s a large open space here which is probably big enough.

5. With the demolition of a few factories at Beach Road, East Side, a waterpark could easily be accommodated here.

6. North of the Tory incinerator is a potential site, between the railway and the A26.

7. Between Denton and South Heighton, behind Wellington Road, could this be a possible location?

The spokesman for the developers said in your report (July 27) that a hotel built at Lewes Road would not include views of the incinerator. Is this because the waterpark would be in between? Why would you build a hotel in one part of a town, for the express use of the visitors to an attraction, and then build the attraction somewhere else? It has also been suggested this entire scheme could be under an ‘Eden Project’ style dome to limit noise and increase the season during which it could be used. How large a dome are we talking about here? Would it dwarf the incinerator? Would it too be visible from Firle Beacon?

With regard to the number of ‘guests’ and the traffic logistics, ‘World Waterpark’ can accommodate up to 40,000 guests. Can you imagine even a quarter of this number turning up at any site in Newhaven over the period of a day?

This would almost double the town’s population. The spokesman also said he was aware of traffic problems during the 9am rush-hour, but the park would not be open at this time. Surely it would open by around 10am though? In which case visitors, and staff, would most likely begin arriving at the tail end of the morning rush-hour, visitors would continue to arrive all morning, most likely up to and including (and possibly after) lunchtime.

Anyone who drives through Newhaven will be aware that the A259 remains busy for most of the day and starts to become congested at around 3/4pm until around 6pm when traffic levels tend to ease off a little. If 10,000 guests are going to be coming and going, mostly by car probably, then Newhaven town centre will grind to a halt. And if the world’s largest waterpark can accommodate 40,000 guests then why wouldn’t you expect the newest world’s largest waterpark to attract a similar number?

I also find it surprising that some people are assuming a development of this kind will be a boost to the town centre. Has anyone ever been for a day trip to Chessington World of Adventures, Thorpe Park, or Alton Towers?

After your enjoyable but tiring day out at a venue which catered for all your needs that day, did you then go to the nearest town to do some shopping? Or did you just go home?

Some people may think I am being negative about my home town. I will say that if this scheme ever gets off the ground, then the only positive thing I can see is employment for some local people.

If, however, it was built in a more suitable area nearby then even this argument in favour of the waterpark is not valid, particularly as quite a large number of people who live in and around Newhaven already travel out of town to work.

M C Young,