LEIGH MP has called for a deferral of the decision on a planning application to build homes on a farm due to be ruled on later today (Tuesday).

Wigan Council's planning committee is today set to rule on an application to build 69 homes on land at Thompsons Farm, Lowton, the latest phase of the Bloor Homes estate being built at the site off Heath Lane.

Leigh MP James Grundy says that residents "have not been informed" of the meeting, which he brands "unacceptable".

However, Wigan Council refutes this and says all planning prodecures, including a site visit, have been followed.

In a statement released on Monday, ahead of the planning committee meeting, the MP said: "I am concerned to learn from local residents group Traffic Action Group for Lowton and Golborne, that Wigan Council is once again ploughing ahead with housing developments without suitably notifying all the local residents who objected.

The Bloor Homes (Thompsons Farm) development, which proposes to build 69 homes on a local farm, received more than 1,000 objections. I also submitted my own objection to this application.

"A decision on this application is expected to be made during tomorrow’s planning committee, yet, a number of local residents have not been informed of this meeting taking place.

"Wigan Council’s own protocol states that all residents who objected to the development should receive notice of the Planning Committee at which the proposals will be discussed, at least five working days before.

"In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, some residents were notified of the committee taking place via email, whereas others are yet to receive a letter confirming the details of the meeting, which should also outline their right to attend.

"This is unacceptable, and I believe strongly that everyone who has objected to this application has a right to know it is being considered by the planning committee, especially given that this will have a lasting impact upon the local community."

Leigh Journal:

Mr Grundy had claimed a site visit has not taken place as part of planning protocol due to the coronavirus pandemic, which a council spokesperson has refuted.

The Conservative MP added residents are "sick of seeing planning application after planning application approved whilst the council’s own planning rules are disregarded and our local voice is ignored".

Leigh Journal:

He added: "Local residents are sick of seeing planning application after planning application approved whilst the council’s own planning rules are disregarded and our local voice is ignored. This is why I am supporting residents’ calls for the deferral of the discussion of the Bloor Homes planning application at tomorrow’s planning committee."

A council spokesperson said: “Appropriate planning procedures have been followed and affected residents have been notified. A site visit has taken place ahead of committee.”

Earlier this year after the pandemic broke out, a Wigan Council statement said: "There is nothing to prevent a planning application being submitted during the COVID-19 lockdown, indeed the Government has instructed the planning process to continue.

"Therefore, the Local Planning Authority is required to continue to receive, validate, publicise, consult on and determine applications in line with normal processes and timescales."