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Windermere outdoor centre set for £3 million make-over
AN outdoor education centre on the shores of Windermere is to be the focus of a new £3 million development.
Tower Wood is to be home to a new accommodation building allowing thousands of visitors, including school parties and families with disabled children, to stay.
Its striking design, stepped over several levels, has been tailored to meet the strict requirements of the Lake District National Park.
Up to 60 visitors will be able to stay in 26 mainly twin-bedded rooms, some of which have been fully adapted for disabled children.
Rooms can even be joined together to form small suites for families with disabled children to visit at weekends and during school holidays.
Funding for the develop-ment has come mainly from Lancashire County Council's children and young people's capital fund allocation and the inclusion and disability support service budget.
The project was signed off by County Councillor Geoff Driver, leader of the county council, who said: "Giving young people the best possible start is one of our highest priorities and this is a superb example of how the county can make a difference.
"Tower Wood is a place that has enriched the lives of young people for many years and this investment will help it make an even bigger and better contribution in future.
"You only have one chance at childhood and we will do everything we can to support and encourage young people to fulfil their potential."
County Coun Susie Charles, of Lancaster, said: "Anyone who has ever been to Tower Wood knows that it's an absolute gem, right on the shores of one of the most beautiful lakes in the world.
"The new development means that our students with disabilities and complex needs can take part in outdoor activities on the same footing as everyone else."
Tower Wood is set in 12 acres of lawns and woodland, extending from an Edwardian house down to the eastern shore of Windermere.
It is mainly used by schools for water-based activities such as sailing, canoeing and kayaking, and also rock climbing, mountaineering, caving and mountain biking.
Tower Wood has its own private jetties and lake access, together with a fully equipped boathouse.