Plans for a Robin Hood theme park in Sherwood Forest have taken a step closer to becoming reality.
Tourism experts Discovery Attractions have announced they have secured the funding to deliver the £13 million Discover Robin Hood project.
Notts County Council has already acquired the land opposite the existing nature reserve and visitor centre.
The attraction, hailed as a ‘world class’ visitor experience, would also protect Sherwood Forest and provide a major boost to the economy.
Discover Robin Hood is designed to be an interactive and futuristic tourist feature set among a medieval castle complete with fortified ramparts made from local materials.
Also in the plans are a courtyard offering a taster of medieval activities and a gateway to Sherwood Forest, which will keep its free public access.
There are also major plans to promote the natural habitats and history of the forest - led by the existing county council ranger team.
“We have worked closely with Discovery Attractions to progress this multi-million pound project ever since they were announced as the preferred bidder and we are pleased that we are another step closer to a world class Robin Hood attraction at Sherwood Forest,” We are grateful for the said Derek Higton, service director for youth, families and cultural services, at Notts County Council.
The council will now carry out financial and legal checks with Discovery and its funders before contracts are signed setting out how the visitor centre and accompanying attractions would be delivered.
If all goes to plan, it is hoped the whole process will only take a few weeks. However, it was originally intended the attraction would open to the public by spring 2015 - a deadline which now seems unlikely.
Discovery Attractions marketing director Rob Gray said the delay was due to ‘the extremely difficult financial market’.
He said: “We are now back on track and grateful for the patience and support of Nottinghamshire residents and Nottinghamshire County Council.”