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Last Updated: Monday, 5 June 2006, 20:02 GMT 21:02 UK
Village proposals for theme park
Camelot was built more than 20 years ago
The owners of a theme park in Lancashire want to close it down and build houses on the site.

Managers of Camelot at Charnock Richard in Chorley say it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep up with the competition.

Prime Resorts wants to create a new village with 1,000 homes, a school, pub and health and fitness facilities.

Chief Executive Roy Page said the park "would not exist much past the next seven to 10 years".

He said Camelot, which was built more than 20 years ago, "was finding it increasingly difficult to meet the aspirations of younger people.

"We are a small site, we cannot build the huge 10m to 12m rides they (rival theme parks) build."

The government has decided that house building in the North West region has to increase considerably
Nick Laister, planning consultant

Mr Page said the new proposals would offer more all-year-round jobs, rather than Camelot's seasonal posts.

The company made an unsuccessful planning application for houses at the site in 2004.

It was rejected by Chorley Council, which said there was no evidence of a need for houses in the area.

But according to planning consultant Nick Laister, the climate has now changed.

"The government has decided that house building in the North West region has to increase considerably," he said.

"They are currently proposing an annual increase of 68% in the amount of houses built."

Families continued to enjoy Camelot's attractions on Monday, but some said its limitations were becoming more obvious.

Paul Shelley, from Northwich, said: "It's getting to the point when they need to put some money in or do what they are proposing because you look around and some of the rides are getting a bit tired."

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