BATTLING Lowton residents have donated over £5,000 to fight plans for a “monster school” on the Lowton Civic Hall site.

The Hesketh Meadow Action Group are preparing to scupper the Wigan Metro Schools for the Future scheme by applying to protect the land for ever with Village Green status.

But more cash is needed and the group will continue to organise fund raising concerts at Lowton Labour Club.

The first solicitor appointed on their behalf had to withdraw after it was discovered another colleague in the same office was representing a land owner, who is selling land adjacent to the Civic Hall to Wigan Council.

Their new solicitor is Rachel Watkin from Halliwells in Liverpool who is well equipped to fight the Village Green Application having written articles and presented seminars covering the Commons Act 2006 on town and village greens.

A group spokesman said: “We would like to thank the people of Lowton for the great response to our appeal.

“To date they have donated £5051. This is wonderful, and demonstrates clearly just how against this monster school the people of Lowton are. We are finding with the public meetings, together with the concerts, a community spirit is being developed not seen in the village for a long time.

The group had a constructive meeting with Andy Burnham MP and Wigan council officers on Friday to discuss the problems the planned School Campus would create in Lowton.

As a result council representatives have been charged with looking at creating a dedicated road into the school from Slag Lane or Sandy Lane. This would take the traffic out of Lane Head, enabling the children to get to school without having to use the A580.

The spokesman added: “However it is our intention to stop this school being built and the best way of doing this is to protect the land with the status of Village Green.

“We still need your help. If you can donate please make your cheque payable to Hesketh Meadow Action Group and post to our secretary at No 7 Hesketh Meadow Lane Lowton. Or pay direct to Nat West Bank Leigh A/C No 40675378. “