PLANS for an eco-friendly home on greenbelt land were approved.

Members of the planning and highways committee heard the development at Horrobin Fold in Turton would be an improvement on the derelict buildings currently standing on the site.

And that meant the need for special circumstances to approve building on the green belt were met, according to borough planning boss Gavin Prescott.

A previous scheme to build five homes on the site was scrapped and then scaled down before being brought back to the table.

People living near to the site had raised concerns about flooding and the state of the road – which is unadopted.

Ward councillor Julie Slater said: “This site has had six applications refused and the last one was withdrawn. We had a meeting with the applicant and residents to sort out what would and wouldn’t be acceptable.

“A good plan was drawn up that most residents were happy with but now that's been changed around.

“There are still concerns. Horrobin Lane has collapsed in the past and had to be repaired by United Utilities.”

Cllr Slater also said there were concerns about flooding and called for detailed drainage reports to be completed before development could begin.

Despite concerns, members voted to grant permission.

Chairman of the Blackburn with Darwen Council planning committee Cllr Dave Smith said: “This is a beautiful part of the borough and the buildings that are there are not nice at all.

“A house there will improve the site no end but the problem is the construction and getting the vehicles on site. If that is sorted out, I will be in favour.”

Case officer Rebecca Halliwell said: “Approval of the application will allow positive progress to be made towards demolition of the dilapidated buildings present on site.

“The refusal of the scheme would allow the negative impact of the existing site on the area to grow over time.

“It is, therefore, necessary to advance a high quality development on previously developed land.”