AMBITIOUS £7million plans to create a new holiday park and create almost 100 jobs have been unveiled.

The Warren Estate, at Woodham Walter, wants to create a short break holiday and leisure destination for the Maldon district.

Plans include a 50-lodge holiday park, called Warren Lodges North, for families, with a wide selection of outdoor activities and pursuits, and a secluded, luxury 20-lodge Wayside Retreat park for adults.

Full refurbishment of the existing Bunsay clubhouse with an extended bar and grill and indoor activities hall for the use of holiday visitors.

There will also be a purpose-built golf academy.

Bosses say the unique tourism and leisure development will generate "key economic benefits" for Maldon.

Halstead Gazette:

It could provide a £3.9million a year boost to the Maldon economy and wider region and create 97 full-time jobs.

A planning application for a "holiday destination to rival any in the county" has been made to Maldon District Council.

It says the plans are for a "sustainable, practical and visually appealing holiday and golf destination, with a level of comfort and specification which draws visitors from across the UK and beyond".

Halstead Gazette:

A consortium of local business people rescued the 325-acre Warren Estate from administration in 2012.

It now has more than 1,500 members who enjoy the estate's golf, health and leisure facilities.

The application says: "Our primary goal is to grow a successful and sustainable business which has a long term, positive impact on Maldon and its surrounding district.

"We want to make a real difference to the health and wellbeing of those who enjoy the holiday, leisure and sport activities we offer, whether on a short stay visit or for just the day.

"We also wish to leave a legacy for our community, providing secure and rewarding employment for staff, while protecting the beautiful habitats and wildlife that make the Warren Estate so special."

The plans are designed to ensure the new developments merge into the natural environment and are "invisible" from outside the estate, and also to have no negative impact on the ecology and natural habitats.

The number of lodges has also been scaled down from 99 down to 70.

Visit Essex strategic tourism manager Lisa Bone said: "There is a real gap in the market in Essex for a rural, experiential holiday village like this.

Halstead Gazette:

"Other counties with similar holiday parks do extremely well and there is no reason why one in Essex would not thrive given our easy access and drier, warmer climate.

"Furthermore it would offer a great facility to the local population and could provide great educational experiences."