PLANS to build new social housing on a site that has long been “an eyesore” have been welcomed by a ward councillor.

Developer Watson Homes has applied to put up 33 properties on land near Mortfield Lodge, in Halliwell.

If given the go-ahead, 24 two and three-storey houses and a three-storey apartment block of nine apartments, will built on the site off Shepherd Cross Street and Hatfield Road.

And once built the homes will be let and run by housing association Places for People.

The proposals have been welcomed by Halliwell ward councillor Akthar Zaman.

Cllr Zaman told The Bolton News that he welcomed additional social housing for the area.

He said: “I do welcome this planning application because that particular area is quite an eyesore for us.

“For a number of years we, as ward councillors, have been trying to bring about some kind of scheme to develop that area and because it was in private ownership it was very difficult for us.

“But now the somebody has come forward with a proposal, I welcome that. It really will be good for that particular area, and also for the wider Halliwell community.”

By bringing a previously developed site back into use, the plans would also be in keeping with Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham’s “brownfield first” strategy, which has been embraced by the council.

Cllr Zaman said: “It’s a brownfield site we have had boarded up previously, but the boards are now falling down, it doesn’t look very nice when you drive past, it’s an eyesore.

“We’ve had complaints from various people at various times, I think it’s going to be really good for us.”

And he added that the development would be good news for both Halliwell and the borough.

He continued: “It will also contribute to the housing targets that we have.

“Demand exceeds supply in Bolton so any proposal to build new housing contributes to it and helps that situation.

“It will be good for the borough as a whole.”