Former Horwich hotel site is 'an eyesore' and 'attracts vandals'

The ‘eyesore’ site in Chorley New Road

The ‘eyesore’ site in Chorley New Road

First published in News The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , reporter

THE site of a former hotel in Horwich set to house two new apartment blocks has become an “eyesore” and attracted vandals, according to angry residents.

Property developer Redrow demolished Swallowfield Hotel in Chorley New Road in 2007 but has since delayed building the apartments.

Since then the site has become a wasteland, neighbours claim, with illegally dumped rubbish, a smashed perimeter fence and traveller groups living on the land among their gripes.

Permission to develop the site into 42 apartments was granted to the hotel’s owners more than six years ago but the land has been left vacant.

The plan seems set to go ahead, with Redrow submitting a fresh application in December last year to overturn a five-year-old agreement to make four of the apartments social housing.

Redrow stand to make an extra £160,000 in revenue if Bolton Council agrees to the change, which has been deferred to a planning director by councillors, and a decision is expected by March 23.

Redrow conceded the site suffers from trespass and vandalism, but insisted it is monitored.

A spokesman also voiced disappointment that an agreement to proceed has not yet been reached with the council.

Ken Bamford, who lives in Ainsworth Avenue, opposite the side of the hotel site, said the abandoned land has deterred people from buying his house.

Mr Bamford added: “People are leaving loads of rubbish on the site and it is an eyesore.

“We’re selling our house at the moment and a woman has told the estate agent that she would buy it if it wasn’t for the site opposite looking it does.

“If I see rubbish on the lawn outside my house I would always clear it up and I have considered going over there but it is too much for me to clear up on my own.”

Charlotte Bovill, who has lived in her Ainsworth Avenue house for 10 years, added: “It has been like that for years now, I’ve become quite used to it.

“Kids go on in the evenings and we’ve even had travellers here.

“There was once even a man asleep in the little kennel which has been left on there.

“It has become a wasteland.”

A Redrow spokesman said: “We are willing to engage with councillors to explain the reasons why the scheme has been stalled for the past six years.

“We do monitor the site and repair the fences but we appreciate it does occasionally suffer from trespass and vandalism.

“Hopefully an agreement can be reached quickly which will allow the development to proceed as planned.”

l We have been asked to clarify that Cllr Richard Sylvester and Cllr Kevin McKeon have not had any direct contact with Redrow Homes in relation to this application.

Comments (5)

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9:01am Fri 21 Mar 14

filthy6 says...

To me this sounds like a Redrow puff piece to try & put pressure on the council to agree their new terms. Giving £30k so they can make an extra £160k is what this is all about - they should build the social housing flats.
In the meantime flytipped waste is the responsibility of the landlord & any waste removed should be charged to Redrow
To me this sounds like a Redrow puff piece to try & put pressure on the council to agree their new terms. Giving £30k so they can make an extra £160k is what this is all about - they should build the social housing flats. In the meantime flytipped waste is the responsibility of the landlord & any waste removed should be charged to Redrow filthy6
  • Score: 6

11:30am Fri 21 Mar 14

steverock6@sky.com says...

I agree the site is a mess I have asked many times for it be cleaned up and asked for a progress report but not had a satisfactory reply from Bolton officers
I agree the site is a mess I have asked many times for it be cleaned up and asked for a progress report but not had a satisfactory reply from Bolton officers steverock6@sky.com
  • Score: -2

3:02pm Fri 21 Mar 14

mdavies11 says...

I can't see any reason other than spite for the council insisting nuisance social housing is plonked in the middle of every development in which nice working people might aspire to live.
I can't see any reason other than spite for the council insisting nuisance social housing is plonked in the middle of every development in which nice working people might aspire to live. mdavies11
  • Score: -1

4:10pm Fri 21 Mar 14

filthy6 says...

mdavies11 wrote:
I can't see any reason other than spite for the council insisting nuisance social housing is plonked in the middle of every development in which nice working people might aspire to live.
Honestly? Surely you need the servants to live close by for your manor houses at the loco work?
[quote][p][bold]mdavies11[/bold] wrote: I can't see any reason other than spite for the council insisting nuisance social housing is plonked in the middle of every development in which nice working people might aspire to live.[/p][/quote]Honestly? Surely you need the servants to live close by for your manor houses at the loco work? filthy6
  • Score: 3

7:46pm Fri 21 Mar 14

steverock6@sky.com says...

filthy6 wrote:
To me this sounds like a Redrow puff piece to try & put pressure on the council to agree their new terms. Giving £30k so they can make an extra £160k is what this is all about - they should build the social housing flats.
In the meantime flytipped waste is the responsibility of the landlord & any waste removed should be charged to Redrow
your correct its their site they should be made to keep it clean why hasn't Bolton council done this
[quote][p][bold]filthy6[/bold] wrote: To me this sounds like a Redrow puff piece to try & put pressure on the council to agree their new terms. Giving £30k so they can make an extra £160k is what this is all about - they should build the social housing flats. In the meantime flytipped waste is the responsibility of the landlord & any waste removed should be charged to Redrow[/p][/quote]your correct its their site they should be made to keep it clean why hasn't Bolton council done this steverock6@sky.com
  • Score: -1

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