Reader's letter: 'Historical hall and ancient wood at risk'
After coming across the huge For Sale sign on the A49/ Shady Lane corner, advertising Cuerden Hall for sale, I have to say I am very worried.
This wonderful building of significant heritage at Cuerden, Chorley, has been home to residents of a care provider for more than 30 years and, previous to that, was owned by the Central Lancashire Development Corporation from 1977 to 1984.
Before they owned it, it was home to the Army (Ministry of Defence) from 1950 until 1977.
I would like to point out that this iconic building was once paid for by the taxpayers of Lancashire and beyond and the present charity, in situ there, was virtually given this building by the CLDC, a government office, for a small transfer fee.
Surely, because of this, the people of Chorley, plus the Chorley Borough Council and Lancashire County Council, should have a say in its demise and future use.
The woodland surrounding it, also part of the sale, is ancient on Lancashire County Council’s Historic Environment Record records.
It is well used by the public and home to our precious wildlife.
It is next to the Cuerden Valley Park, now a biological heritage site and once owned by the Townley Parkers and other historical families in the area. Would it not be feasible to donate the woodland to the Cuerden Valley Park Trust to manage like the rest of the parklands?
The hall is home to large colonies of bats which were deemed of ‘regional and county’ significance in ecological reports, carried out in 2014.
There are other protected species in the grounds, such as slow worms and great crested newts, not to mention hedgehogs, deer and an abundance of birdlife. This building and beautiful grounds should be preserved for the people of Chorley and Lancashire to enjoy.
A very worried resident
Clayton-le-Woods West and Cuerden