A PROPOSAL to create 158 homes on a section of the Horwich Loco Works has been backed by the town council.

Members of the planning committee narrowly recommended that Bolton Council approve Hong Kong Racing's plan for 130 houses and 28 apartments opposite Horwich RMI.

The application was originally submitted in 2014 but was deferred in 2015 to allow negotiations to take place between Bolton Council officers and the developer.

The entire Loco Works site already has outline planning permission for 1,700 homes.

Cllr Kevin McKeon said: "I do not think they need to come forward with the application because the Loco Works has outline permission.

"I think we should accept this. The Loco Works will be a very important addition if Bolton wants to meet the targets that we have set."

Cllr Steven Chadwick said he did not want to see building on the site until funding has been obtained by Bolton Council for the link road between the Loco Works development and Middlebrook.

But members voted to accept the plans, which will go before Bolton Council's planning committee in the near future.

The application is in two sections — part one details plans for the site access, demolition of some buildings and the change of use of one building to 28 apartments, car parking and a ‘mix of commercial and community uses’.

Part two seeks outline permission for 130 homes, recreational open space, landscaping and new pedestrian and cycle routes.

It came after Belway Homes received permission to build 112 homes on the site last year.