Bolton Council has blocked a bid to turn a pub in Great Lever into an HMO with more than 20 bedrooms.

The applicant, Javed Ali, applied for planning permission for the site of the Park Hotel on February 20.

The Bolton News: The Park Hotel

The bid to turn the pub on Bridgeman Street into an HMO with more than 20 bedrooms included the creation of an additional storey ahead of the creation of nine rooms on the ground floor, nine rooms on the first floor and nine rooms on the second floor. There would have been kitchen areas and living areas on each floor, although a handful of rooms would have had their own, making them standalone studios.

Two councillors, Richard Silvester and Linda Thomas, argued against the application alongside four residents for a range of reasons.

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Bolton Council blocked it on the basis the sizes of some of the rooms were not up to space standards.

It was not up to so-called LACORS [Local Authorities Coordinators of Regulatory Services] standards either as, according to Housing Standards, there was a risk the residents would not be able to escape from it in the event of a fire.

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A report said: "The development would create lower cost housing which would meet a need however it is not considered the standard of accommodation is acceptable contrary to Bolton's Core Strategy and Places for Everyone. Although this is a sustainable development which would contribute towards the undersupply [of housing] in terms of numbers, the standard of accommodation is poor, below Nationally Described Space Standards and contrary to policy and therefore this is overrides the presumption in favour of the development.

"The proposal is therefore not in accordance with the policies within Bolton's Core Strategy or Places for Everyone and the guidance contained within the Supplementary Planning Documents and the National Planning Policy Framework."

Mr Ali is able to appeal to the Planning Inspectorate within six months of the decision by the council.

This article was written by Jack Tooth. To contact him, email or follow @JTRTooth on Twitter.