Thornton retirement apartments plans to go before planners today

A controversial scheme to flatten a derelict building and replace it with 33 retirement flats in Thornton will be decided by council planners today.

Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 12:30 pm
Updated Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 12:45 pm

Plans submitted by James Carter Homes to demolish the Craiglands property on Hillylaid Road, Thornton in order to build 29 one-bed and two two-bed flats for over 55s in its place, sparked controversy in July 2019 when trees surrounding the house were felled before planning permission was granted.

The scheme, which is set to go before Wyre Council's planning committee today and has been recommended for approval, has received nearly 50 objections from local residents.

Objectors voiced their concerns about the disruption of nesting birds and potential harm to wildlife during the felling of trees.

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Craiglands, on Hillylaid Road in Thornton, could be set for demolition and replaced with retirement apartments if planning permission is granted at a Wyre Council committee meeting today. Photo: Gail Crampton
Craiglands, on Hillylaid Road in Thornton, could be set for demolition and replaced with retirement apartments if planning permission is granted at a Wyre Council committee meeting today. Photo: Gail Crampton

But Wyre Council said the trees felled were not protected by a Tree Preservation Order, enabling developers to destroy them.

A Tree Preservation Order was subsequently made at the site last year to protect the remaining trees of sufficient quality, the council said.

A "robust and appropriate landscaping scheme" has been proposed by the council as a condition of planning permission, along with suitable protection measures.

The development has been recommended for approval on the terms the company agrees to pay an offsite contribution of £273,592.53 towards affordable housing.

But in December last year, documents showed James Carter Homes had informed the council the "project would not be viable should the extra costs required by planning payments (contribution to affordable housing) be imposed."

Despite this, further costs in the absence of affordable housing are required for the development to be given the green light, the council said.

This includes £39,093.94 towards the provision of green infrastructure, which "could be provided towards improvements at Wyre Estuary Country Park including access and seating."

Some £5,627 towards the refurbishment and reconfiguration of Thornton medical centre would also be required to mitigate the impact of the development on local health care facilities, documents showed.

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