It seems fitting that the first UK Property Forums event since early last year is at one of the area’s most interesting development sites.

Bicester, itself, seems to attract major schemes and Bicester Motion, one of the more interesting projects, is relevant to several markets. It spans both business and leisure and incorporates both the old and the new of motoring and aviation.

It is gradually adding to its attraction and on September 9 delegates at UKPropFest will get a chance to see what is there and hear about what is coming.

A few miles down the road Great Wolf Resorts will be on site next year, building another major tourist attraction. That scheme, a water park with 500-room hotel, involved a classic set-to with locals who fought tooth and nail to ensure it was stopped at planning committee, only to see it passed on appeal.

Great Wolf’s determination to get permission was, as much as anything, because the site was so good. The key was the transport links – in particular the connection to London, but also to the Midlands.

In December 2019 the company told us how tourists visiting London from abroad could be tempted up the M40. Since then, of course, much has changed but the demand for a family holiday park has probably not reduced.

If Bicester Village can navigate its way through the retail crisis, Great Wolf and Bicester Motion could help make a once unremarkable Oxfordshire town, 15 miles from Oxford, into a rare tourist hotspot of its own.

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