The fight goes on say Harris Park campaigners despite reduction in number of proposed homes

Harris ParkHarris Park
Harris Park
An action group fighting plans to build homes on land at the former Harris Orphanage say their protest goes on despite the proposed number of properties being reduced.

Friends of Harris Park are outraged at the attempt to turn the Grade II Listed site at Fulwood into a large housing estate.

Despite just learning that a revised planning application has now dropped the new homes development total from 83 to 50, they say their campaign goes on as before.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Prema Taylor, who co-founded the action group in Fulwood said: "We have been waiting for a decision from the planning department for some months and are dismayed to discover instead today that an amended application has been submitted by the owner.

"The only difference appears to be that the number of houses to be built has been reduced.

"This will not reduce the impact the development will have on the park and the listed buildings on site and our objections remain unchanged."

The objectors were informed of the revised planning application by Preston Council.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

They are also disappointed at the short time they have been given by the council to object to the new plans.

Prema added: "The letter from Preston Planning Department giving notice of the amended application to neighbours is dated the 16th of November and gives anyone who wishes to lodge an objection less than two weeks to do so as the cut off date is the 1st of December.

"The original application was registered by the Planning Department on the 2nd of March 2020 and we are surprised at the length of time that is being taken to determine this application.

"We believe it may be included in the agenda for the Planning Department meeting in December and that all objections raised already will be taken into account along with any fresh ones lodged."

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Friends of Harris Park was set up in May to oppose a planning application proposing to build 83 new dwelling houses on the site of the historic, Grade II listed Harris Park in Fulwood.

The site was originally an orphanage created by funds from estate of the late Edmund Thomas Harris to benefit the people of Preston.

The Harris Museum and Free Library and the Harris Arts Institute were also created from bequests in the estate.

The campaign group says there are ongoing questions as to how the site it describes as 'unique' has passed into private ownership.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The campaign is supported by close to 2,000 people on its Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram.

Objections to the planned development have also been lodged by national organisations such as Historical England, the Victorian Society, Lancashire Garden Trust, Save Britain's Heritage, Growth Lancashire, the War Memorials Trust, Lancashire County Council's Archaeological Department etc.

The campaigners have written to the Prince of Wales, as a champion of heritage sites, urging him to back their fight.

Locals have also sent a petition to Defence Minister and local MP Ben Wallace asking for Government support.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Edmund Robert Harris died in 1877 and bequeathed the sum of £300,000 to the residents of Preston, in memory of the Harris family.

The Harris Trustees bought the land in 1881 and an orphanage was opened in 1888.

It went to what is now UCLan in 1985 for student use and became Harris Knowledge Park.

It was sold to the Bhailok family in 2006.

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.