THE fate of five part-built mansions constructed on a prominent hillside location then ordered to be torn down because they contravened planning regulations looks set to be finally resolved next month.

After a series of delays a date for an inquiry into the controversial mansions built at Grundy Fold Farm, Horwich, has been confirmed for March 15, almost a year after it was first due to be heard.

An inquiry was originally set to be held on March 24, 2020, with the four day public event by the independent Planning Inspectorate due to examine the luxury properties on Grundy Fold Farm, off Chorley Old Road.

However, this was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

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A new date for the inquiry was then set for October 6, 2020 but that too was postponed ‘due to illness’ of staff.

The properties, some of which have six bedrooms, are on an exposed hillside location, can be seen from large distances away.

The inquiry will examine Bolton Council’s decision to order the five luxury homes to be torn down as they were bigger than the original planning permission allowed, and positioned in the wrong place.

Even though the mansions are yet to be completed, all the plots have already been sold.

The council ordered all the dwellings be demolished but a group the homeowners came together to offer alternative plans.

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The Grundy Fold Home Owners’ Association forged plans to knock down and rebuild two of the houses, at a cost of more than £1m, and reduce the size of another one.

This was also rejected in August 2019 despite receiving the approval of town hall planners, but councillors did not agree.

The planning committee had earlier decided that the houses are too big and too far apart from each other.

A council spokesman, said that the inquiry would examine the enforcement by Bolton Council.

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They said: “The inquiry follows an appeal by Elendra Raja against the refusal of planning application and an enforcement notice issued by Bolton Council’s planning department

“The enforcement notice alleges that five dwellings and a garage building were built on the site without proper planning permission, along with alterations to land levels.

“The planning refusal was on green belt and landscape grounds.”

Just prior to the last scheduled hearing, the Grundy Fold Homeowners Association, which has taken over negotiations with planners from the developer, said it had been a very difficult period for the homeowners, who had invested a lot of money into the properties.

They said the ‘human’ side of this complex development ‘was taking a toll on all families’ and that ‘the financial burden is devastating’.

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