Access footpath goes through graveyard at new Little Lever Tesco

Former Little Lever councillor Sean Hornby at the site of the footpath

Access footpath goes through graveyard at new Little Lever Tesco

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

A FOOTPATH is being built on consecrated land by developers working on a new Tesco store in Little Lever.

Concerns have been raised over the works — but Bolton Council and developers Zerum Consult insist that no graves will be disturbed.

The footpath will be installed in the village’s memorial gardens, at the junction of Ainsworth Road and Market Street, to give shoppers easier access to the new store once it is opened.

The gardens, which are at the site of the former St Matthew’s Church, closed in the 19th century but there are still graves there.

Sean Hornby, a former Little Lever councillor who has lived in the village all of his life, said: “As these memorial are on consecrated ground there should have been more thought going into where this footpath was placed.

“I don’t believe the footpath is required.

“I know the history of Little Lever inside out — I was born here and my dad lived here all his life.

“So of course I’m worried if Tesco are using it to carry out work, as this land is an important part of the village’s history.”

Bolton Council says only part of the ground was used as a graveyard, while Zerum Consult says the design will not threaten any graves, as workmen will only dig about six inches into the ground.

A council spokesman said: “The footpath follows the route of an existing path which people already use to cross the public open space.

“The contractor has carried out investigations along the line of the path, and found no evidence of graves or remains.

“Only part of the ground was a former graveyard for St Matthew’s Church before the church moved in 1865 and the area is now public open space.

“From the historical record the path crosses what used to be several buildings.”

Andrew Duffy, associate director of Zerum Consult, added: “I understand the sensitivity around the building of this footpath, but we have managed the development to the best of our ability.

“The footpath will only about be about six inches deep, which will not reach the depths of graves.”

Comments (8)

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9:42am Tue 5 Aug 14

Wolfie190 says...

Anybody ever heard anything good about Tesco's ?
Anybody ever heard anything good about Tesco's ? Wolfie190
  • Score: 5

10:11am Tue 5 Aug 14

Regulatory Man says...

Walking over the graves to get to Tesco eh. Whatever next. I remember a time when this country had respect. Seems commercial gain wins again at the expense of some common decency, dignity and respect for the dead.

Tesco - You just lost a customer. As for Bolton Council - They couldn't give a flying fig biscuit so long as their 'councillors' are happy and the development is left undisturbed.

Money talks eh.
Walking over the graves to get to Tesco eh. Whatever next. I remember a time when this country had respect. Seems commercial gain wins again at the expense of some common decency, dignity and respect for the dead. Tesco - You just lost a customer. As for Bolton Council - They couldn't give a flying fig biscuit so long as their 'councillors' are happy and the development is left undisturbed. Money talks eh. Regulatory Man
  • Score: 17

10:23am Tue 5 Aug 14

Reality50 says...

Tesco will be good for Little Lever and a major supermarket there is long overdue. Hornby was an appalling councillor while in power and seems he may be planning a comeback. Well UKIP were voted in last time in Little Lever in the last local elections so if i was Mr Hornby,i'd stay in retirement if i was him.
Tesco will be good for Little Lever and a major supermarket there is long overdue. Hornby was an appalling councillor while in power and seems he may be planning a comeback. Well UKIP were voted in last time in Little Lever in the last local elections so if i was Mr Hornby,i'd stay in retirement if i was him. Reality50
  • Score: 12

1:17pm Tue 5 Aug 14

marco999 says...

If this is true then it's outrageous that people are being encouraged to walk over graves to get to the supermarket, no matter how shallow the footpath may be. It is never right to walk over the resting place of the dead because it is disrespectful and wrong – what if a relative of yours were buried there and you knew that people tramped over their grave as they made their way to buy a loaf? The graveyard might be old and unused but that is totally irrelevant. The graveyard should have been considered earlier on in the planning stages, and the necessary exhumation and reburial of all remains should have been carefully and delicately organised by the appropriate religious leaders. This is greedy development and profit coming first over dignity and what is morally right.
If this is true then it's outrageous that people are being encouraged to walk over graves to get to the supermarket, no matter how shallow the footpath may be. It is never right to walk over the resting place of the dead because it is disrespectful and wrong – what if a relative of yours were buried there and you knew that people tramped over their grave as they made their way to buy a loaf? The graveyard might be old and unused but that is totally irrelevant. The graveyard should have been considered earlier on in the planning stages, and the necessary exhumation and reburial of all remains should have been carefully and delicately organised by the appropriate religious leaders. This is greedy development and profit coming first over dignity and what is morally right. marco999
  • Score: 10

1:22pm Tue 5 Aug 14

boltonnut says...

Is nothing sacred anymore?It would appear that most people worship money these days.PS,can you imagine the uproar if this footpath ran through a non Christian property but we all know the council would never allow that.
Is nothing sacred anymore?It would appear that most people worship money these days.PS,can you imagine the uproar if this footpath ran through a non Christian property but we all know the council would never allow that. boltonnut
  • Score: 10

1:45pm Tue 5 Aug 14

SleepingThunder says...

This is public ground walked across daily by people & pets, You see what happens when you mix religion with common sense ? It makes everyone seem unreasonable.
This is public ground walked across daily by people & pets, You see what happens when you mix religion with common sense ? It makes everyone seem unreasonable. SleepingThunder
  • Score: 1

2:37pm Tue 5 Aug 14

leverite55 says...

If Sean Hornby is so concerned about the history of Little Lever then he and the other people who are anti Tesco should get their facts right before commenting. That plot of land was left derelict for years, became very overgrown and a dumping ground before the people of Little Lever and the council got together to have the site made into a memorial area with access pathway linking Ainsworth Road and Market Street. At one time before the area was landscaped there was also a row of garages on the Independent Street side of this site.
If Sean Hornby is so concerned about the history of Little Lever then he and the other people who are anti Tesco should get their facts right before commenting. That plot of land was left derelict for years, became very overgrown and a dumping ground before the people of Little Lever and the council got together to have the site made into a memorial area with access pathway linking Ainsworth Road and Market Street. At one time before the area was landscaped there was also a row of garages on the Independent Street side of this site. leverite55
  • Score: 7

9:13am Wed 6 Aug 14

IvanCamposHair says...

Reality50 wrote:
Tesco will be good for Little Lever and a major supermarket there is long overdue. Hornby was an appalling councillor while in power and seems he may be planning a comeback. Well UKIP were voted in last time in Little Lever in the last local elections so if i was Mr Hornby,i'd stay in retirement if i was him.
You do know the UKIP councillor opposed the building of the Tesco?

And then abstained on it at planning I heard lol.
[quote][p][bold]Reality50[/bold] wrote: Tesco will be good for Little Lever and a major supermarket there is long overdue. Hornby was an appalling councillor while in power and seems he may be planning a comeback. Well UKIP were voted in last time in Little Lever in the last local elections so if i was Mr Hornby,i'd stay in retirement if i was him.[/p][/quote]You do know the UKIP councillor opposed the building of the Tesco? And then abstained on it at planning I heard lol. IvanCamposHair
  • Score: -1

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