£5m improvements at Willen Lake

Image one - artist impression of new building.jpg
23 January 2020

We’re pleased to announce that work on the second phase of major improvements at Willen Lake, Milton Keynes’ most popular park, will be starting this month.

The works will involve the construction of an impressive new building situated on the edge of the lake.  The building will house a purpose-built watersports centre with state-of-the-art facilities for customers including; modern changing rooms, showers and additional toilets.  This centre will be the hub for all watersport activities at Willen Lake by bringing them under one roof. It will also be home to popular activity, Aqua Parcs, the inflatable water course based on Willen Lake. The building will include a new café and restaurant, which will offer dining options on both the ground and first floor. The restaurant will offer stunning views across the lake and the opportunity to dine alfresco.

The building will be fully accessible, with level access, lifts, accessible toilets and baby change facilities.  Furthermore, we are excited to announce the inclusion of a full Changing Places facility in this building.  This is in addition to the accessible toilets and will accommodate people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people with severe disabilities.  For more information visit: www.changing-places.org

The improvement of the peninsula on the western side of the lake will create a vibrant promenade along the waterfront and improve public access to the water’s edge. Improvements will also be made to the landscaping at the lake, opening up views and creating a relaxing environment. The children’s play area is being upgraded and, once complete, Willen Lake will have over an acre of free play, offering the biggest free play area in Milton Keynes.

This area for the improvements is located on the western peninsula and will stretch from the northern bank of the peninsula across to the southern leisure route where the bird feeding area currently is - this area will be closed to the public through the duration of the project. The majority of the existing play park will remain open, along with all other activities on and off the lake including; Wakeboarding, Aqua Parcs, watersports, Splash ‘n’ Play and Treetop Extreme. In order to bring these improvements to the site and as part of the re-landscaping and development, some trees will be removed but new trees will be planted as part of the scheme.

David Foster, Chief Executive of the Parks Trust says: ‘This is a really exciting improvement to Willen Lake and, at just under £5 million, is our biggest, single investment in the park’s facilities to date.  It will give visitors a choice of two wonderful new eating places; a café and a restaurant.  The design for this phase of improvement at the lake has been created by taking on board feedback from our customers and we look forward to enhancing visitor experience.

Phase two of the improvement work is due to be completed in time for the 2021 summer season. The improvements will be entirely funded by The Parks Trust, the independent charity that cares for the greenspace in Milton Keynes. The income generated from activities and car parking at Willen Lake contributes to this.

To keep up to date with developments and to find out more please visit: www.willenlake.org.uk/phasetwo