Fear over old pub flats plan

Worried: Residents have voiced co
Worried: Residents have voiced co
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Residents are worried that a closed-down Leyland pub will become a halfway house for people recently released from prison.

Plans have been submitted to transform the Waggon and Horses on Bent Lane into flats.

Initial proposals said the accommodation would be for adults with disabilities and learning difficulties, but, it has now been confirmed that the flats will house adults with ‘mental health problems.’

People living near the pub and have vowed to fight the proposals.

Resident Trevor Williams said: “There is one hell of an opposition locally to this scheme. The concern is the bit about people not being able to integrate into society without support. People are really up in arms.

“We’re worried it could mean people who have just been released from jail, and we certainly don’t want that on our doorstep.”

Councillors in the area organised a meeting between residents and the applicant, Next Stage Ltd, which around 70 people attended.

However, service providers Next Stage say tenants would be vulnerable, not anti-social.

Paul O’Rourke, from Next Stage, said: “In real terms, these people already live in the community, but it’s a challenge for them without having support. We support people to maintain their tenancies if they struggle with things like cleaning and cooking. They’re not anti-social or aggressive, they’re just vulnerable.”

He added: “We’ve got similar accommodation in Wigan and we haven’t had any concerns from people there.