Battle of green fields steps up

Concerns: Land off Wigan Road in Clayton-le-Woods and
Concerns: Land off Wigan Road in Clayton-le-Woods and
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It’s the final countdown for campaigners battling plans to protect green fields between Chorley and Leyland.

Chorley’s Council’s development control committee meet on Wednesday night and they are expected to decide on a re-submission by Redrow Homes for 160 homes on land off Wigan Lane in Clayton-le-Woods.

Officers at the town hall have recommended the scheme for approval despite refusing a similar application earlier this year at the same stage.

Helen Smith of the group Residents Against Inappropriate Developments fears that it could be the end of green grassy fields in the area near where she lives.

She said: “There is already planning approval for 300 homes on the neighbouring fields.

“However, Redrow want to put 160 here and then that would open the floodgates for Fox Land and Property to get permission for homes on the land in between.

“We were successful in battling the previous plans because there was not enough evidence to show that there was a need for homes in the area.

“It was unaminously voted down but now it has changed.

“The planners have recommended it for approval this time because of what happened with another scheme in Whittle-le-Woods on Lucas Lane.

“The government have said that some safeguarded land will have to be used for homes so I think the council have nothing to defend against.

“We will be represented and speak about our case at the meeting but I am worried that the committee will not change the decision.”

In the report, there were more than 35 letters of objection against the scheme with one of the main concerns that ‘the application is premature’ and is being pushed through before Chorley Council’s Site Allocation document and their Local Development Plan of potential sites for housing and business schemes.

In the conclusions, the officers say that ‘ it is anticipated that this site would be released for housing in 2016 within the proposed phasing schedule.’
The applicant has agreed to conditions so that it will meet the local plans