A LONG-mooted plan which could regenerate Barrow has taken a further step forward.

The Marina Village plan is one of seven key projects chosen for further development through the £25m Brilliant Barrow initiative to help transform the town.

The scheme has been in the pipeline since 2007 and could include around 650 homes and new leisure facilities.

And now a 'scoping report' has been published which has sought the views of relevant organisations ahead of works to get the site ready ahead of marketing it to private investors.

Councillor Ann Thomson, the leader of Barrow Borough Council, said: “No authority wants to see land or property sitting unused if it could be brought back to life in a way that enhances the area for local people or the public good.

“Longer-term community planning and development must be a key factor, however, when considering regeneration options, residents must get the services they need, in the most-suitable locations.

“This is why the council has been working for some time with partners on the Marina Village Masterplan, so that it can go on to be developed by the private sector into a mix of quality new homes and leisure areas, to bring people and families back into a key area of the borough.”

The council has been carrying out works to make the site suitable for development including purchasing land, completing surveys and some infrastructure work.

The proposal includes enabling work to remove potential constraints to development such as removing contaminated land, improving the ground, demolishing some structures, mitigation of flood risk and ecological monitoring.

It does not include the proposed housing development.

The site occupies a large area of mainly former industrial land between Salthouse Road and the waterfront.

Barrow MP Simon Fell said he hopes the project will become a reality.

“The Marina Village development would be a very significant project for Barrow and I am very keen to see it move out of the planning stages and into reality," he said.

“It has been backed by the Town Deal board and is receiving a portion of the £25million investment which the government is putting in to Barrow, but I’ve also been working with Ministers in the Housing Department to ensure that it gets support from Homes England too.

“This site may seem neglected now but with the arrival of the new university campus opposite it could form part of a very exciting regeneration of our town."