Plans to transform a former military base into a vibrant new waterfront for Lee-on-the-Solent have been approved.

Gosport Borough councillors unanimously voted to approve the Daedalus Waterfront development on Wednesday.

The project, which is being led by the Daedalus Development Company, will see up to 346 homes of different sizes, 24,500 sq m of employment space, 48 retirement/care apartments, 5,200 sq m of commercial space, a museum and public open spaces.

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Speaking to the committee, councillor John Beavis said the hybrid application is the “most important” the council has determined “in a long time”.

He said: "Daedalus closed in 1996 as a military establishment and since then we’ve had a number of interested developers who have come forward with completely unacceptable proposals.

“I appreciate the plan will take 10 years to complete but at last on completion Daedalus will be back again as a part of our community. I’m delighted to see such an excellent proposal.”

Cllr Kevin Casey stressed the historical significance of HMS Daedalus, stating the “site cannot be forgotten”.

He said: “This site has a lot of heritage and history in many strands.

"I hope that the developer will highlight that in some ways – I don’t want to see boards everywhere around the site but there are subtle ways of doing it.”

Cllr Steve Hammond, chairman of the regulatory board, said he hoped members could support the scheme “because Gosport needs it, we need the jobs, we need something done with that site, it’s wasted as it is at the moment”.

Councillors unanimously approved the application.

The board which approved the plans will meet again to assess issues concerning the design, size, and look of a section of the development.

HMS Daedalus began as a seaplane base in 1917 during World War One. It played a vital role in naval aviation, serving as a training centre and supporting seaplane operations.

During World War Two, HMS Daedalus became a primary training hub for Royal Navy aviators, contributing to the defence of the English Channel and the D-Day landings.