PLANNING chiefs have given Cheshire East Council the green light to press on with a £2.3 million renovation of Tatton Park.

CEC, which runs the deer park on behalf of the National Trust, is set to build a new welcome building for visitors, as well as improve the stableyard, new barn and public toilets.

Renovation work is set to begin later this year, and is expected to be complete by 2020.

Cllr Don Stockton, cabinet member with responsibility of cultural services, said: “This is a real boost for Tatton Park, which already attracts more than 800,000 visitors a year.

“Tatton is an important contributor to the local and regional economy, contributing nearly £35 million to the north west economy – so investments in further improvements are great news for many local businesses."

Renovation works will include a welcome building between the stableyard and the car parks, while a new central building will provide a covered seating area in the stableyard for visitors to relax in.

Alterations to the new barn, which was built in 2000, will include increasing the space for toilets and installing a lift to make it accessible for people with limited mobility.

A change of use request for the building, which was part of the planning application, will also allow Tatton Park to host events within the first floor space of the new barn to bring in additional income.

Cllr Stockton added: “This project will help us to sustain the park and its various attractions so they can continue to educate and entertain the visitors, schoolchildren, volunteers, special interest groups and local community organisations that come here every year.

“We are blessed with some tremendous visitor attractions and Tatton Park stands out as a jewel in our crown.”

Toilets to the east and west of the stableyard will also be improved, along with resurfacing of the stableyard itself.

Knutsford Town Council had raised an objection to the potential loss of cobbles following resurfacing, but planning officers were satisfied that the character of the yard would be retained.

Town chiefs had also objected to glazing on the proposed central structure being ‘too stark a contrast to the stableyard’, but this was removed from CEC’s revised plans.

National conservation organisations Historic England and Gardens Trust both supported the plans during consultation.