Support for sauna enterprise seeking to stay at St Catherine

Cole McLean The Sauna Society at St Catherines Picture: DAVID FERGUSON. (37890080)

ISLANDERS have rallied behind a mobile-sauna owner as he fights to obtain planning permission to run the facility at St Catherine.

Fitness enthusiast and entrepreneur Cole McLean launched the business in St Ouen’s Bay last year, before moving it to the top of the slip next to the breakwater on the opposite side of the Island.

But just two weeks later he was told that he had to move the sauna. He later positioned it next to the nearby Jersey Canoe Club, and was told he had to submit a planning application.

This was rejected in January, as the application lacked supporting evidence and required a heritage impact assessment, transport statement and visual impact assessment to be submitted.

The most recent application seeks to obtain permission to stay at the canoe club site, where the business is still operating.

A number of people have lodged supporting comments.

One Islander in her twenties said: “The sauna is such an amazing asset to the Island… I would be very gutted if the sauna is removed.

“As an Island, we should support small businesses like this and offer them all the support they need to thrive.”

Another Islander added: “It’s a wonderful entrepreneurial addition to the Island to inspire others to start a small business.”

However, others have raised concerns regarding the aesthetics of the sauna and its potential impact on traffic and parking.

One Islander said: “Sadly this structure is an ugly square corrugated metal structure not in keeping with the surrounding breakwater buildings.

“The participants in the ‘service’ also take up valuable restricted car parking for those visitors to the breakwater and to the Breakwater Café.”

However, Mr McLean argues that parking has never been an issue and there have been no traffic incidents since he set up the site in October.

He said that the sauna only holds a maximum of eight people per hour, with many people travelling to the site in the same vehicle, and many tending to leave immediately afterwards as there are no shower facilities on site.

He added: “I want to thank everyone who has supported the Sauna Society so far. We have created a really nice community and it is great to see how people have built this into their routines and prioritising their wellness.”

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