£100m Golf Resort for North Coast
Alex Attwood (Environment Minister) has approved the construction of a £100m golf resort in Bushmills beside the Giant's Causeway.
The SDLP minister said he had not "taken lightly" the decision to give the green light to the project which the National Trust has also opposed. "To ensure that the environment is fully respected, my decision will be accompanied by stringent conditions which will mitigate the impacts of the development on the ecology of the site and the local landscape," he said.
"The development is an important one for the causeway coast and for Northern Ireland, will help to grow tourism, create new job opportunities, enhance our golf product and continue to protect our natural heritage, such a big part of the quality of our lives."
The National Trust said the dune system was the wrong place for such a large development and they would now consider their options.
Ian Paisley Jnr (MP for North Antrim) stated: "The 10 years that this application has taken to reach approval has taught us all a valuable lesson on how patience wins the day. The Bushmills Dunes course will be a significant asset for the region and a significant tourist facility. It will become one of the most iconic golf courses in the world, generate employment and write a new chapter in the history of this ancient coastline."
The US-based consortium behind the project claim that 360 new jobs will be created at the 365-acre site, which will be known as Bushmills Dunes Golf Resort and Spa. The plans include the building of a 120-room hotel, a golf academy and 75 self catering cottages.