About Us


Major Leisure Resort and Visitor Attraction for Chesterfield and the Peak District

Peak Resort is a £400 million pound integrated leisure, health, sport and education resort on the 300 acre Birchall Estate, Unstone. It will be a major visitor attraction to the north west of Chesterfield on the boundary of the 550 square mile Peak District National Park and will become one of the UK’s flagship tourist attractions

The all year tourism destination will be open to day and staying visitors, offering all-weather activities, events and a digital retail experience.


Following the announcement of the partnership with US based Grand Heritage Hotels by the Prime Minister Cameron and President Obama in January 2015, progress has continued throughout the year. Pre commencement planning conditions in respect of the Reserved Matters Planning Approval have been discharged sufficient to implement the consent.  Works have been completed to achieve ‘implemented consent’ status.


The necessary Footpath and Bridleway Diversion Order was approved by the Secretary of State in December 2015.  The project is therefore now ready to proceed.  Section 73 Applications to vary aspects of the Reserved Matters Consent were granted in August 2016. .  These  variations  enable realisation of the educational component  of the Resort by  allowing the inclusion of a University and Collegiate Campus with related sports hostel.  The Campus  will support  hospitality, tourist guiding and events.    Students will have the chance to learn and earn – a more affordable real world education open to national and international students.


£2.8 million of funding from Sheffield City Region’s Infrastructure Fund has been awarded to build the consented A61 development access, the new public footpaths and bridleway network around the site and the site security.  The funding will facilitate the connection of the property to the bicycle and footpath networks into the National Park, the town, the city and the countryside in between.


The development build is expected to start on site in spring 2017  before the start of the Ecology Season and to open to guests from  winter 2018.  The Resort will be built in three phases and is forecast to create 1,300 FTE new jobs.

Peak Resort is a joint venture partnership between a UK development company and US firm Grand Heritage Hotel Group.


The site, which was reclaimed from open cast mining in the 1990’s , includes a former golf course, areas of woodland and open countryside, and will be at the leading edge of eco-technology.   Phase One of Peak Resort will deliver:

• Peak Gateway – Basecamp to the Great Outdoors

• University Campus & Hostel

• 4* Aspire Hotel – Leisure & Spa

• Union Building

• Indoor & Outdoor Events Arenas

• Outdoor Leisure, Parkland Landscaping, Greenway, Footpaths & Bike Trails

• 1,000 Car Parking Spaces

• Connectivity & Access


Leadership at its Peak

As one of the most ambitious regional tourism projects in the United Kingdom in recent history, the Peak Resort development brings together a unique and capable team of international talent and partners.


Project founder and entrepreneur, Rupert Carr’s 25-year commitment and contribution to the project includes taking the project from a period of open cast mining to a freehold acquisition of the Estate, to formation of the resort concept and the obtaining of detailed planning permission.  Rupert has also assembled the core team and business relationships required to implement and operate Peak.


Long-term project partner Crispen Kelly founded the development and investment company Baylight Properties in 1982, and went on to qualify as an architect, and has served as President of the London Architectural Association.   Crispen brings great technical and design expertise to the project from public art to efficient design.


The UK team is joined by John W. Cullen and the U.S. based Grand Heritage Hotel Group specializing in individually distinctive, significant hotels that are –or can become- thriving, high-profile destinations in their communities. Grand Heritage was founded in 1989 by Mr. Cullen with a focus on historic properties.  Since then, GH has built a proven track record of developing one-of-a-kind properties and resorts around the world with an emphasis health, sport and lifestyle branding.


 Together the team provides a unique skill set which values local character and recognizes the individuality and nuance of each property – relying heavily on collaboration and partnerships to design a dynamic constantly evolving resort ecosystem.



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