Indoor riding arena

Mom of Olympic hopeful wants to build indoor arena in Chedworth

The mother of an Olympic dressage hopeful wants to build a covered arena for her daughter in the Cotswolds to help her reach the top.

Sophie Morgan is currently competing in the sport for Britain’s junior team, and there is an “urgent need” for her to train in an Olympic-sized area in Chedworth, according to a planning document.

Ms. Morgan recently finished ninth in two of the junior competitions at Hickstead International.

His mother, Sally Morgan, has asked the Cotswold District Council to build the 60m by 20m arena on land in Cherry Orchard and a decision will be made tomorrow.

But council officials recommended that the development be refused because the arena would “have a huge visual impact on local views” and “would not contribute to the rural economy.”

In March, the district council’s landscape manager spoke out against the size of the arena and called for it to be reduced.

But the claimant claimed in a planning document that the authority considers a 60m by 20m building to be an industrial-sized arena building.

They added that they could not reduce the dimensions because “the competitions for which his daughter trains are held on a 60m by 20m”.

The planning document stated: “The area of ​​the arena will be 60m by 20m, which is the standard size of an Olympic dressage arena.

“The applicant’s daughter, Sophie Morgan, is now competing for Great Britain and therefore has to train on an Olympic-sized arena.

“She needs to train all year round, and that’s not possible with a simple outdoor arena given the UK weather and daylight hours. Sophie recently finished 9th in two of the junior competitions at Hickstead International.

The arena would be built alongside barn stables and an outdoor sand arena, already approved and built.

Explaining the reasons for the refusal, a council document said: ‘On the whole, officers consider that the proposed scale, mass and design of the proposed building would not respect the character and appearance of the Cotswold region. of exceptional natural beauty.

“The arena would have a huge visual impact in the local views and the impact of the lighting would also be seen in the larger context.

“The proposal would be for private use and would not contribute to the rural economy except for the employment of support services and therefore would bring very few public benefits that would not outweigh the harm that would be caused to AONB. ”

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