December 10, 2020 Plans for a new 15-acre recreational and ecological green space for the community and 150 new energy-efficient family and affordable homes in Horwich have been refused by Bolton Council today (10 Dec). Homebuilder Northstone proposed the development at land off Victoria Road, including Horwich Golf Club, for new homes to meet local housing shortages with a third of the site earmarked for people with affordable housing needs. The plans included the creation of a new green space by opening up land which currently forms part of the private golf club to the general public with a range of health and wellbeing benefits for the community, including proposals for new footpath trails through the area, a community orchard and a children’s play area. Improvements to the environment and biodiversity of the area with new trees, meadow grasslands to attract wildlife and improvements to nearby Nellie’s Clough were also proposed. In addition, Northstone, part of Peel L&P, would contribute £274,000 to towards highway improvements at the Beehive roundabout and a contribution to secondary education provision. Jonathan England, Development Director at Northstone, part of Peel L&P, said: “We’re incredibly disappointed with this decision as our plans for Horwich would help Bolton to meet its housing demand and bring significant health and wellbeing benefits to the community by opening up a private piece of land for the public to enjoy for many years to come. “We listened to the community and the planning committee’s feedback on previous planning applications and our plans significantly reduced the number of homes proposed, reduced the number of access points into the site to just one from Victoria Road and offered 60% of the site as green spaces. “We will review this decision and the feedback carefully before considering our next steps.” In 2019, Peel L&P submitted a revised planning application for 276 homes at the Horwich site following a public inquiry into earlier proposals for 300 homes in 2019. These were refused by Bolton Council in January 2020 and the decision was appealed by Peel L&P. This is appeal process is ongoing.