2,500 homes planned

Lea councillor Julie Buttle at the land proposed for the Redrow development, off Lightfoot Lane, Fulwood
Lea councillor Julie Buttle at the land proposed for the Redrow development, off Lightfoot Lane, Fulwood
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Up to 2,500 homes could be built in Preston’s biggest housing development in 15 years.

House-builder Redrow has unveiled plans to build 330 new homes with the potential to increase to 800 on land off Lightfoot Lane, Fulwood, just days after planners gave the go ahead for a further 1,100 homes to go up at Cottam Hall.

The first 100 homes as part of the Cottam scheme will go up from April.

The new homes on top of 450 properties given approval at neighbouring Haydock Grange at Higher Bartle, which went through despite a wave of objections from local people.

Councillors and residents have voiced fears the wave of new homes could send roads around the area into meltdown, but the projects are also expected to create hundreds of new jobs and apprenticeships.

Ken Hudson, who represents Preston Rural North where the latest plans are targeted, said action needed to be taken to sort out the areas roads before a brick is laid.

He said: “You are going to have five or six different developers building 20 or 30 houses a year on each of these site and they are all spewing out onto the same roads without any improvements.

“The county council (which handles the roads) and the HCA have a big problem on their hands to resolve this.

“The infrastructure needs to be in place or the north of Preston is going to grind to a halt.”

He warned that, under current agreements, house-builders could build more than 1,000 homes at Cottam Hall, Haydock Grange and the former hospital site at Whittingham, where 600 homes have been approved, before a penny is spent on local roads.

Coun Julie Buttle, who represents Lea on the city council, said local councillors wanted a block on all over developments until the Cottam Hall plans, submitted by the Homes and Communities Agency, got underway.

She said: “Preston does not have a supply of homes for the next five years, so we have to deliver new homes.

“Cottam Hall has been a development on the stops for 20 years, so this has to be approved both in principle and in detail - before other sites are considered in a disjointed and unstructured manner.”

Fellow Lea councillor Christine Abram said the city council needed to “take a stronger line” on the plans.

She said: “Until we stop allowing people to build a certain number of homes before they are willing to do something about the roads, nothing is going to happen.”

The Redrow plans are to build 330 homes on 35 acres of farmland off Lightfoot Lane, east of Tabley Lane as part of a three phase scheme which could see 800 homes, shops, a primary school and parks built on 120 acres.

In its application, Redrow says the site offers the chance to create “a high-quality residential development with a strong and distinctive sense of place based on the existing landscape features.”

It claims the rural character has been “eroded” by the development of a number of large housing developments around the northern edge of Preston city centre and the creation of the M55 motorway.

A spokesman for Redrow Homes said: “This represents the first phase of a potentially larger development comprising up to 800 homes, community facilities, a primary school and open space; all set within the context of a masterplan for the wider area.”

Lancashire County Council was unavailable for comment.