BOLTON Wanderers have been given the go-ahead to build a new pavilion at their academy on land in Lostock, after months of debate.

Councillors at Bolton Council’s planning committee approved the football club’s plans for a single-storey pavilion building, with floodlights in Ox Hey Lane in December — but on the condition that the structure was given a “green” roof and that a reeded pond for wildlife was constructed.

Richard Gee, speaking on behalf of the club, said they had worked hard to include the committee’s recommendations but could not find a way.

He told the committee there was nowhere on site for the pond to be built, and adding turf or sedum to the roof would make it too heavy for the pavilion, which was designed as a “very lightweight” structure.

Mr Gee said: “We can’t actually deliver the two conditions — and if we did, it would make very little environmental difference.

“To create a pond by the pavilion would mean we would have to pump water up hill at least 100 metres.”

The club is still waiting on a decision for their Middlebrook Masterplan — a scheme to build a £100 million sports, education and office development along Burnden Way.

Councillors deferred making a decision on the plans until a highways report was carried out, to reveal how the development would impact on traffic in the area.

Voting for the pavilion application, Cllr Ann Cunliffe said she had concerns about the plans when they were first discussed in December, but was now satisfied, She added: “It is disappointing that a green roof to the pavilion is not achievable, but I must accept the reasons given by the applicant.”

The club now has permission to replace the temporary buildings at the academy on Ox Hey Lane with a new pavilion, including five pairs of team changing rooms, a first aid room and parents’ and coaches’ lounge.