I have just read with interest the article in BN talking about a new future for the former Moor Lane Bus Station as part of the £1billion scheme to regenerate Bolton town centre.

This development will include housing and mixed uses but not student accommodation. How quickly times change!

In 2015 Bolton & District Civic Trust, having successfully led the campaign against the proposed alteration to the facade of our magnificent town hall, turned its attention to fighting the proposals announced by the Leader of Bolton Council and the University Vice Chancellor to build a student village on Cheadle Square right in front of our other town centre 'jewel' , Le Mans Crescent.

Not content with just opposing the plans, readers might recall that the trust held a public meeting in May, 2016 at which they gave a presentation and distributed a leaflet aimed at promoting its vision of a 'Better Bolton — fit for the 21st century' .

This included detailed plans for the redevelopment of the Bus Station site and the safeguarding of Cheadle Square.

These proposals were extensively publicised by the BN in May, 2017 and the same presentation was given to the council leader, chief executive, Director of Place and the University of Bolton Development Team.

There has neither been an acknowledgement or response from any of these parties.

Scroll forward 12 months and once more the public of Bolton is being told that the council has a multi-million pound vision for the town centre, so good that the Director of Place was chosen to go to Downing Street to present it to potential investors and developers.

Forgive me if I have missed something, but I haven't seen a 'Master Plan' for this vision. I have heard some 'sound bites' about potential opportunities in various parts of the centre and seen a few 'artists impressions' but where are the plans like the ones the Civic Trust produced only 12 months ago?

The Bus Station site is the biggest and most important development site in Bolton town centre since the Market Place over 20 years ago.

Surely the Council can afford to bring in some top class architects to produce a Master Plan and Design Guide for this critical site which will shape the character of the town centre for the next 100 years!

Or maybe it should hold a designer/developer competition for such a prestigious site? This plan should also safeguard and enhance Cheadle Square and protect the views and approach to Le Mans Crescent and ensure that the 'development plots' form part of a coherent design rather than the dreaded 'piecemeal' development we are trying to avoid in schemes like Horwich Loco Works.

Now that it is taking shape, I would like to invite the Director of Place to share the Council's Master Plan vision for the town centre and bus station with its 'stakeholders', the people of Bolton, at a public meeting so that we might become engaged and informed and hopefully enthused about something that is so important for the future of the town.

After all, if a small organisation like B&DCT can do it, I am sure the council can — and who knows all the hard work that the trust put into their plans might still come in useful in the formulation of the new plans.

Stuart Whittle

Albert Road West