The Royal Automobile Club is seeking to build a “destination spa” to attract members to its Woodcote Park estate.

Planning applications details revealed a ‘Masterplan’ of improvements that will span 15 to 20 years.

Woodcote Park is on protected greenbelt land and English Heritage criticised plans for an extension to the sports premises when it was first put forward in 2015.

The planning application, submitted to Epsom and Ewell Borough Council on December 22, claimed: “The Royal Automobile Club is one of the foremost private members’ clubs in the world.

“It was the birthplace of motorsport in the UK: in 1926, the club organised the first British Grand Prix at Brooklands and, in 1948, the first modern Grand Prix at Silverstone.

“It aims to provide its 17,000 members with first class accommodation, dining, sports and leisure facilities for the enjoyment of members and their guests.”

Woodcote Park was purchased by the club in 1913. It already employs over 500 staff and has won numerous awards for its activities - including the Surrey Heritage Award last year for the transformation of the old barn at Woodcote Park into a home for the club’s heritage vehicles.

The club was founded in July 1897 to promote automobiles in society and champion the interests of motorists.

In 1907 King Edward VII announced that the club should be known as ‘The Royal Automobile Club’.

The club organises two major annual events free of charge to the public: the famous annual London to Brighton Veteran Car Run (featuring pre-1905 cars) and the Regent Street Motor Show (which had half a million visitors in 2017).

The application added: “The development of the Spa and Cedars Sport at Woodcote Park is a critical element of the Club’s strategic plan.

“As part of the range of facilities that will increase current members’ use of Woodcote Park and attract new members, the provision of a ‘destination spa’ was a high priority identified in extensive surveys.”

The spa plan includes an extension to the sports club, changes to existing tennis courts, demolition of the existing plant room, and associated landscaping, engineering works and operations.

The application was validated by Epsom and Ewell Borough Council on December 29.