Homes plan for vandalised land

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A DERELICT former school notorious with vandals is set to be transformed into a thriving residential community.

Long suffering residents today told of their joy after plans for 126 houses on the former Fylde Farm site were submitted to the council.

Last year The Gazette revealed shocking images of dilapidated buildings at risk of collapse after years of neglect.

The pictures led to fears a child would be killed on the waste ground and to the subsequent demolition of Westmoreland House and the Fylde school cottages – once used as staff housing.

But this week Wainhomes North West confirmed it has purchased the site off Normoss Road, Poulton.

If approved the development will consist of a mix of detached, semi-detached, terraced housing and apartments.

Steve Toghill, managing director of Wainhomes, said: “Wainhomes are delighted to have secured this exciting development opportunity and we look forward to transforming this currently redundant site into a unique residential environment.”

The site was owned by Northwest Young People’s Development Trust (NYPDT) but a failed planning application has seen the area become derelict.

The Emmanuel Christian School moved onto the site in 2003 and remained until 2010 but was forced to close following the earlier granting of planning permission to Kensington Developments.

Local resident, Sylvia Houldsworth, 71, of neighbouring Sefton Avenue, said she was delighted an application had been submitted.

She said: “I am so happy about it because at the moment the site is an absolute shambles, several of the buildings were demolished but the rest are rotting.

“After years of complaining we feel there is finally light at the end of the tunnel, we have been subjected to this death trap for so many years.

“I hope the development includes affordable housing and green space, as long as were are left with a green belt area I don’t mind what happens.”

Highcross ward councillor, Barry Birch, said: “It has been a thorn in our sides for a number of years now and we are delighted a developer is prepared to put plans forward.”