A TOWN centre eyesore is finally set to be transformed after land on a key gateway to Bolton was bought for an undisclosed sum.

The Bolton News:
Developers Goodwin Developments are drawing up plans for a residential development on the former Bolton College site. The 1.3-acre land­ has been on the market since 2014.

The site has lain empty and boarded-up since 2011, after Bolton College relocated to Deane Road to a multi-million pound purpose-built campus.

The Bolton News:

Bolton Council earmarked the site as a key part of its £1.5 billion town centre regeneration masterplan.

Outline planning approval has previously been given for a mixture of two, three and four-bedroom houses, plus apartments, and now with the purchase of the land, The Bolton News understands a planning application for the site is imminent.

Godwin Developments recently announced residentially-led schemes in Nottingham, Sheffield, Stafford, Milton Keynes, Derby and Doncaster.

Cllr David Greenhalgh, leader of Bolton Council, said: “This sale shows strong continued confidence and interest from developers in Bolton, proving it is still a great place to invest.

“It is reassuring to see acquisitions and private developments continuing in Bolton despite the Covid-19 climate.

“It is fantastic that there will be a new scheme coming forward to assist in transforming the heart of the town centre. The council remains committed to supporting and collaborating with businesses, developers and investors to make Bolton town centre a great place to live, work, shop and visit.”

The Bolton News:
The site is in the Westbrook Gateway development, part of the Trinity Quarter Intervention area, with planning permission already granted for the development of two blocks of 144 apartments, 30,000 sq ft of office space and a 505-space multi-storey car on the corner of Bradshawgate and Trinity Street.

Now developers are working with the council to draw up detailed plans for the land opposite.

The Bolton News:

Stuart Pratt, group development director for Godwin Developments, said: “We are really excited to have secured this prime site in central Bolton.

"The Bolton Masterplan presents impressive opportunities for investment and property development in this fast-growing Northern town, which is set to attract over £1 billion in public and private investment while creating 7,400 jobs.

"Our aim is to work closely with all local stakeholders, particularly Bolton Council and the wider community, to deliver a scheme that will enhance and support the considerable regeneration planned for this area, while also strengthening our growing footprint in the North of England.”

The land was acquired through PSP Bolton LLP, a public and private partnership between Bolton Council and Public Sector Plc (PSP)— which requested the outline planning permission for homes in 2013.

Leena Gillespie, Development Manager, Public Sector Plc said: “We have successfully been able to bring this site to market and sell it through our long-term partnership with Bolton Council. Lamb & Swift were able to help us find a purchaser with aspirations for the site to match those of our council partner.

“The development will see further regeneration of the town centre and deliver an important gateway scheme.

The Bolton News:

(The development on Trinity Street and Bradshawgate)

“At Public Sector Plc we are keen to deliver socio-economic benefits to local communities through our long-term relationships with our council partners — this development will lead to regeneration of the area as well as increased jobs for the local community and help the local economy.”

Nick Swift, development director and owner of Lamb & Swift, agents for the sale, added: “The sale process of this site attracted significant interest from a number of different developers and purchasers.

“Godwin Developments were chosen as preferred bidder and have been refreshingly consistent and clear in their offer and vision for the site. It is in an excellent location close to Bolton’s New Transport Hub and the A666 road network and the scheme will dovetail exceptionally well into the Town Centre regeneration plan.
“Negotiations for the legal contract were conducted throughout the lockdown period, which demonstrated great commitment from both Public Sector Plc and Godwin Developments to get the deal over the line.”