Plans to demolish a set of "historic" stables in Horwich and replace them with a house have been thrown out by town hall officials.

The proposal to demolish a unit on Hilltop Stables on St George’s Lane would have seen a new home with two parking spaces built on what is designated as green belt land.

But building on land like this requires certain conditions to be met and the council has now decided to refuse the idea.

Cllr Richard Silvester, who represents the area, said: “I am very pleased that this application has been refused.

“Very special circumstances are required in order to build in the green belt and none were proven.

The Bolton News: The plans have now been refused by Bolton CouncilThe plans have now been refused by Bolton Council (Image: Bolton Council)

“The application also upset many local residents in the process.

“The applicant should hold up their hands and say, I got it wrong and forget any further idea of building a house at the location.

“If they persist, then they must understand that they will encounter the same resistance.”

The project, which was put before the council last December, envisaged building a modern structure made of timber, metal and stone cladding over the stable site and would have included a kitchen diner area, with a lounge, bedroom, bathroom and boot room.

The developers also claimed this would not have much affect on the nearby landscape in Horwich and would go some way to helping the borough meet its need for housing.

A statement said: “The building has been designed to sit unobtrusively in the landscape.

“Accordingly it is considered that the proposal does not have a greater impact on openness than the existing development, and is therefore acceptable in terms of green belt policy.”

It added: “Bolton Council is currently unable to demonstrate an up to date five year housing land supply.

“This proposal will result in a small but valuable contribution.”

But council planning officers recommended the idea for refusal after concluding that it did not meet the necessary special circumstances.

ALSO READ: Stables earmarked for demolition for home under plans for green belt land

ALSO READ: New plans for housing estate given greenlight

ALSO READ: Developer wins battle to build houses on 'beloved' green space

A report said: “It should be noted that the historic stable is in poor condition and has been repaired several times and is wholly of timber construction.”

It added: “Overall, therefore, the proposal would result in a development that would have a greater impact on the openness of the green belt than the existing one. It would be inappropriate development.”

The council announced on Thursday, February 9 that the plans had been refused.