PLANS to build an industrial development on green belt land have been criticised by residents.

The team behind Logistics North, Haworth Group, were given the green light by Bolton Council’s planning committee earlier this month to build a 100,000 square-metre site west of Wingates Industrial Estate.

Westhoughton councillors have hit out at the proposals, which are due to go to the government for final approval.

At a town council meeting on Monday, the Westhoughton representatives launched their latest efforts to stop the application from going ahead, asking that the Secretary of State for Housing call in the proposals and start a planning inquiry.

Speaking after the meeting, Councillor David Wilkinson said: “Some people are worried this is just the start, it will be industrial estates from Wingates to Blackrod to Chorley.

“The implications of this application is that all the green belt on that side of Westhoughton just becomes concrete.”

The town mayor voiced concerns about the impact of an industrial development alongside other plans for the area, including housing proposed in the nearby Hulton Estate.

He said: “The whole area would become a building site for five, ten, 15 years — we would have developments from Newbrook Road to Dicconson Lane.”

The development pledges to bring with it up to 1,500 jobs, with one councillor saying the green belt was a "sacrifice that we are going to have to make" to bring in investment.

Cllr Mudasir Dean, who said he has never supported building in the green belt before, said he had “no hesitation” in supporting the proposal.

He said: “If we are to be a part of this Northern Powerhouse, if we are to be part of the improvements of industry going to the North, then there are some sacrifices that we are going to have to make. It’s going to create jobs, it’s going to be an opportunity for young people in this town.”

The decision will now go to the Secretary of State.

A spokesman for Haworth Group said: “The application approved at committee has been carefully designed to minimise its effect on local residents, to improve highways connectivity and to deliver hundreds of new jobs close to Junction 6 in the same way Logistics North has at Junction 4. We await the Secretary of State’s decision.”