Rural tourism may get lift at popular ice cream parlour

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Dewsbury and Mirfield’s tourist industry could be given a boost as a result of new plans at a popular ice cream parlour.

Charlotte’s Real Jersey Ice Cream Parlour has applied to build “self-catered tourist accommodation” at its Whitley Road premises on The Meadows.

The work, which is subject to planning approval from Kirklees Council, would allow four visitors to stay on the site at any one time and explore the surrounding countryside.

The owners of the parlour say the plans will be of particular benefit to the rural economy.

Making its pitch in a design and access statement to the local authority, the parlour says: “The Kirklees Economic Strategy 2014 identifies the importance of the attractive built and natural environment and distinctive heritage, which adds to the visitor offer as one of the strengths and opportunities of the district.

“It sets out that a strong tourist offer will be an important component across much of the district.”

The accommodation would consist of three log cabins, each complete with two bedrooms, a kitchen and an open plan lounge. Permission has also been sought to build a six vehicle car park which would accompany the accommodation.

The parlour has become one of Kirklees’ most popular attractions in recent years following its expansion and presence of farm animals along with its ice cream produce.

The parlour, which currently employs 16 people says that the proposed development will “help diversify the current business”

The statement said: “The income from the cabins will further support the farm and the ice-cream parlour. The proposed development will ensure the longevity of the business protecting long term employment and further adding to the vitality of Kirklees as a tourist destination.”

Tourism and “quality places” is featured heavily in The Kirklees Economic Strategy, which was formed in 2014 to improve quality of life across the area.

Addressing the issue directly in one section, the report outlines: “Across the district we will seek to maximise our cultural offer; setting out a clear strategy on cultural priorities in support of quality of life, investment and tourism.”

A decision over the plans is expected to be made before the beginning of December.