REGARDING the recent story about former football player Gary Neville not going ahead with plans to install an oversized turbine on an attractive area of open land.

Those hoping to see a few areas of unspoiled local open land handed on to a future generation must be thankful for any small mercy that comes their way.

Unfortunately, this latest altered plan by a local developer is the exception and it is untypical to want to work with local residents on shaping outcomes.

They invariably then get away with what has been put up on land, with often major variations signed off retrospectively by a planning control section that, in my experience, operates a mantra of ‘peace at any price’.

The Bolton landscape and townscape has suffered needlessly as a result of Council planning policy and control.

The former Turton District area has been ruined by allowing developers a free hand for years and it is clear that the 1972 Act and post-1974 new system of local government reorganisation, by a Conservative government, has proved to be utter madness and has done for sound civic administration what the 1990s Tory government did for railway privatisation.

I doubt the French, or Spanish populace would have allowed local and national government to ruin things in the way it is so accepted by nearly all British citizens.

Libraries and local swimming baths are closed, you still get to pay handsome local taxes anyway and it is simply accepted as inevitable.

Churchill would be dismayed.

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