MP objects to Hulton Park development

Bolton West MP Chris Green has formally objected to proposals for the building of houses on the historic Hulton Park estate.  His full objection can be read below:


"I am writing in order to submit my objections to planning application number 00997/17, regarding the Hulton Park Estate.

The roads around the Hulton Park Estate are already congested on a regular basis, especially in the Chequerbent area and at the Four Lane Ends junction, and introducing hundreds of extra cars will significantly add to the current problems. Westhoughton has been in desperate need of a bypass for many years and I am concerned that the development will have an adverse impact on future plans stopping them from going ahead. This will prevent a much needed solution which will ease the problems residents are facing.

With many more cars due to be added to our roads by the completion of this development, I have concerns about how this congestion will affect the response time of emergency services when they need to access the busiest roads in the area. Furthermore, the increase in cars will also lead to more emissions and result in more air pollution in the most congested areas.

With regards to health services, it is already difficult to get a doctor’s appointment in the local area and an increase in the local population will make this even harder. As well as this I have deep concerns about education and where the children who live in this development will go to school, especially as there are no plans to create new school places in the Bolton area. Parents will either be forced to send their children to schools with a choice places - which may be some distance away and require the use of a car, therefore leading to more congestion on our roads - or local schools will be forced to take on an even higher number of pupils, thus further saturating local schools.

The Hulton Park Estate is green belt land and it is disappointing that houses are being considered on this historical site. The environment is extremely important and once the development has begun we will lose valuable green space, including woodland, and natural wildlife habitats will be destroyed. This development will not only contribute to air pollution but will create noise and light pollution. It will also effect nearby farms which have served the surrounding community for many years, closing down good local businesses.

With 300 houses already approved at Lee Hall, plans for considerably more than 1000 houses will contribute in merging the surrounding towns of Westhoughton, Over Hulton and Atherton and merging into Bolton and Manchester. This will result in a loss in the identity of the towns and will rob local residents of the benefit of living in a smaller community creating endless suburbia and urban sprawl.

There are already a number of golf courses in the local area and, with plans to close Horwich Golf Club and build 300 houses on the site, it is clear that we do not need another one. Existing clubs will also lose established customers which will be detrimental to their business.

I understand that the intention for the new course is to bring the Ryder Cup to Hulton, however this is a three day competition yet the housing development will be permanent.  There is also no evidence or survey of public opinion that suggests local residents want the Ryder Cup to take place here. The development of the course will turn the estate from green belt land to a brown field site and there is a danger that this will allow the potential to build further houses in the future.  

These houses are not intended for local residents but for people that currently live further afield such as in Manchester. There is already huge strain on public transport and people struggle everyday with overcapacity on buses, trains and with car parking capacity. This development does not address the existing problems and adding extra commuters to these services will only increase the strain.

This development will have a negative impact on a wide range of matters and therefore I cannot support these plans.

Yours sincerely,

Chris Green MP"