Biggest tourism development in Jersey this century – £13 million development for Les Ormes
PLANS for a project billed as being the biggest tourism development in Jersey this century have been revealed – and if approved they will enable a charity to pump £1 million a year into local good causes.
The Bosdet Foundation, which runs Les Ormes in St Brelade, hopes to build 60 new units of self-catering accommodation – increasing capacity at the site by 66% – by 2023.
The work would be carried out in three phases starting in October next year and has been described by the organisation as a major development which would make Les Ormes a ‘top UK destination’.
And further details have been revealed about the new trampoline park and soft-play centre, Jump Jersey, which is on schedule to open at Les Ormes in July. (Full story: Wednesday's JEP.)
If the £13 million self-catering development is completed, Les Ormes would provide 128 units with a total of 266 bedrooms – the profits from which would be ploughed into the charity.
The Bosdet Foundation was established by the late George Bisson in 1989 as a way of making a sustainable difference to the lives of Jersey people, especially young people in need or where there is an emphasis on education or health and social support.
All of the profits from Les Ormes are reinvested into the facility or used for charitable purposes, with groups regularly invited to apply for funding and a process for emergency support for individuals and families in need.
Last year the foundation gave out £367,000 in charitable grants. If the new development is completed, the charity aims to be able to give out £1m every year.
The managing director of Les Ormes and general manager of the Bosdet Foundation, Mike Graham, said there was a proven need for more high-quality self-catering accommodation in Jersey.
‘There is a market for Jersey here, especially self-catering that is very much of a high standard, and we really need to be part of that. We passionately believe that Les Ormes can contribute to Jersey in helping to achieve that.’
He added that the clear purpose of the development was to generate greater returns for the charity.
‘The only reason to do this development is the charity,’ he said.
Under the plans, the driveway at Les Ormes would be re-routed so that all cars were diverted to the back of the property and the main resort became vehicle free.
The existing tennis courts would be replaced by self-catering units and a further block would be built to the west of the site.
A village square would be created at the centre of the resort and would be used for activities and presentations. It could be covered for certain events.
The cycle path being joined with the new Les Quennevais School would also be extended to link to the Les Ormes site and provide a safe passage through to Mont à la Brune.
Eventually, Les Ormes, which went cashless last year, hopes to have a pool of electric cars for use by guests, who would be able to hire them for short periods when they need a vehicle, as opposed to having numerous hire cars sitting around unused most of the time.
Jump Jersey will also be plastic free and from next year there will be electric bikes for hire for guests.
The Island’s netballers, the main users of the tennis courts that will be lost as part of the redevelopment, have already been given notice and are due to leave the site next March. And Mr Graham said very few other people currently used the facility, as tennis was declining in popularity, with each court at the site only used for an average of one hour per day.
If the plans get the go-ahead, work will start next year and be carried out in phases each winter.