By Dan Santy Friday 02 November 2012 Updated: 19/12 15:36
A HUGE and controversial marina at Onley looks set to get the nod with planning officers told to approve it at a meeting next week.
With Daventry District Council having already given the green light to the £15 million, 550 berth Barby Pools marina in principle, Rugby's planning chiefs look set to follow suit on Wednesday (November 7).
The plans, proposed by J Marine Ltd, have been divisive since they were revealed, with villagers in Onley supporting them while members of the boating community united to express opposition.
In a report to go before chiefs at the town hall next week, planning officer Richard Redford wrote: "Overall the proposal is considered to be an acceptable use within this countryside location due in part to its nature, the need to be linked to the canal network and, as it will contribute towards improved recreational opportunities and facilities in this rural area."
Mr Redford goes on to say improvements to Onley Lane and the A45 junction being tabled as part of the plans would makes the roads safer, while the provision of meadow and wetland areas will help the natural environment.
If permission is granted by councillors next week as expected, the specifics of the project will have to be hammered out and approved by planning bosses before building work can begin.
It would be one of the country's biggest inland marinas if built, and would create around 100 jobs.
Parish councillors and villagers in Onley back the scheme, saying it would regenerate the area and provide much needed amenities.
But there has also been strong opposition, led by nearby Braunston Marina, with concerns voiced over congestion, the loss of countryside and damage to wildlife.
Visit www.therugbyobserver.co.uk on Thursday November 8 for the decision.
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