Top-rated business is forced to close by planners
Battlefield Live, a war-games business based on French Drove, has been forced to close after losing a planning appeal.
The business, which is rated number one in Peterborough in the Fun and Games category on Trip Advisor, was started in 2011 and has been operating for the past couple of years on temporary planning permission.
Despite Peterborough City Council officers recommending the application, it was turned down by councillors following objections by residents concerned about noise.
Business owner, Nigel Simons, appealed against that decfision, but heard this week that the planning tribunal had upheld the original decision.
“We’ve no choice now but to close. I’m hoping that I might be able to buy or rent a couple of acres of land somewhere else in the village, but if not, we’ll have to move away,” he said.
“I don’t want to be bitter, I have to take it on the chin, but it’s a shame that facts have been distorted. I guess people are just worried that the business will affect their house prices.”
The planning inspector’s report said the business would have a detrimental impact on people’s well-being, but Nigel says the noise is no worse than a children’s football match.
“Sound engineers employed by objectors set up noise monitors and in a 12-day period they recorded just 85 seconds of noise,” he said.
Battlefield Live employs five people and is a war game, similar to paintball, but uses guns which fire bolts of infra-red light and can “hit” a target at much greater distances.
It is marketed as being suitable for ages seven to 70 and most business has been from children’s parties. The Duke of Bedford School had visited twice and Nigel has also hosted sessions for disadvantaged children.
“We always expected that we’d get planning permission, so we don’t have a plan B,” he told Thorney Post. He’s now hoping he can buy or lease some land (ideally near the bypass where noise wouldn’t be a problem) and keep the business going.
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