CONTROVERSIAL plans for a new gym and office complex in Ringwood have been approved despite strong objections from town councillors.

Revised proposals put forward by developers GP Commercial Investments Ltd for the former Wellworthy site at Forest Gate Business Park were given the green light by New Forest District Council's planning committee.

The applicants can now build the four-storey complex after a drawn out planning process.

An attempt was made to speed up the process by appealing to Ringwood Town Council to amend their recommendations on the plan to allow a decision to be made under delegated powers.

However, members stood their ground over concerns about the parking provision for the development.

This presented contractual issues for the applicants, with the gym operator potentially pulling out of their agreement.

Despite Ringwood Town Council's objections, the scheme was recommended for approval by an NFDC planning officer.

Members of the district council's planning board agreed with this view and approved the proposed scheme.