Peterborough: Have your say on £50m leisure plan in the Ortons

A plan to create one of Peterborough’s most exciting culture and leisure developments will be submitted early next year by its operators – and you can have your say on its future.

In early 2023 AEPG (Asset Earning Power Group), will submit an outline planning application for a £50m leisure development alongside 1500 homes for the East of England Showground site in the Ortons.

While the details of the leisure package will be finalised, a golf driving range, a health and fitness centre, hotel, adventure golf, sports pitches, family entertainment centre and enhanced Arena could all be included as superb new offerings for the city.

The leisure site would be named Cultura – signifying learning, knowledge and education embedded within the environment and linking into the legacy of the East of England Agricultural Society.

The land has previously been earmarked for housing development as part of the Peterborough City Council Local Plan.

The 165-acre site would be maintained in partnership with local environmental experts. 

This would include the creation of a central square and new nature reserves, green spaces and ecologically-sound Sustainable Drainage Systems as part of the plan, which is compatible with the city’s aspiration to be an environmental capital.

In addition, the current Arena will be redeveloped for the 21st Century, and there will also be a new school and residential care facilities for the elderly. 

Should it be passed it’s expected that around 500 new jobs that will be suitable for all skills and ages would be created in the plan, which would also include office space, dining and coffee shops. 

This creates a great employment opportunity with the growing ARU University, as well as creating locations for SMEs, start-ups (digital and traditional) and entrepreneurs.

A five-month PPA (Planning Performance Agreement) has seen AEPG working with Peterborough City Council to identify the strongest possible application for the site to benefit the wider city.

Now the group wants the people of Peterborough to have their say on the plans in its three-week consultation, which opens on Monday, November 21st.

AEPG CEO Ashley Butterfield said: “This development represents what we hope will be regarded as a new Gateway to Peterborough, but it is important to us that the community shapes its direction.

“The plans would be a completely new offering for the city, suitable for all ages and embracing the spirit of ‘multi-generational active leisure’ – something fresh for a city which boasts such rich heritage and cultural diversity, of which we should be proud. 

“The 1,500 residential homes would be state-of-the-art, ecologically sound properties, in green space maintained to an exceptional standard.

“We believe this site has so much potential and our development will realise that by changing the face of Peterborough as an aspirational destination for visitors and an attractive living space for residents.”

Outline planning is likely to be submitted in the first quarter of 2023, in two ‘parcels’ – Parcel 1 for the 650 units that are allocated by PCC in the Local Plan; the other application for the remainder of the residential land (Parcel 2) and the 50-acre Leisure site.

The three-week consultation portal opens on November 21, and can be found at at

We would encourage interested parties to comment on the site, and share the consultation with other people who may find it of interest.

A new Facebook page has been set up (search for AEPG), and in addition a ‘drop-in day’ will be held on Wednesday, 30th November from 8am to 8pm, at APEG’s Marketing Suite at the East of England Showground.

A drop-in day will also be held on Wednesday, 7th December at ARU, University House, Bishop’s Road, 

Comments can be submitted until the consultation closes on 14th December, either via the website or email

For more information email