Adventure centre plans in the spotlight

Left to right NETCO vice-treasurer Tom Jenkins, vice-chairman James Davidson and chairman Martin Byers
Left to right NETCO vice-treasurer Tom Jenkins, vice-chairman James Davidson and chairman Martin Byers

Developers behind a world-class outdoor recreation centre in Lower Deeside are to hold a consultation event next week.

NETCO (North East Trail Centre Organisation), along with Collective Trax, will discuss the proposals for a £10 million mountain bike park and adventure centre with snow sports with the public on Wednesday.

The centre could have year-round mountain bike trails

The centre could have year-round mountain bike trails

The event near the proposed development site at Durris Forest, off the A957 Slug Road, will be for people living in the Crathes, Drumoak and Durris areas.

NETCO announced in March that there would be a series of consultations throughout 2018 to seek the views of the local community, businesses and stakeholders.

Residents can also contribute to the consultation by completing a questionnaire, which has been sent by post to every household in the identified site vicinity and is available online.

Plans for the ambitious project, seen as providing a major boost to the area’s growing visitor economy, were announced nearly a year ago.

NETCO chairman Martin Byers said: “We are committed to being open and transparent while developing plans for this exciting and unique adventure resort.

“Our community consultation process is designed to keep people well-informed, giving anyone interested the opportunity to have their say and shape our plans for the future.”

He added “It’s really important that everyone can see what’s happening, so we’re running a series of engagement events at each planning and design stage to ensure that the views and needs of all people concerned are taken into consideration, before we make decisions.

“Earlier this year we launched an online survey to find out what outdoor activities people would like the development to offer. More than 2,000 people took part and we gained lots of useful feedback.”

The drop-in event is at Durris Kirkton Hall from 2.30-8pm.

An application for planning permission in principle will be lodged with Aberdeenshire Council after the consultation period. Detailed plans are likely to be tabled next year.