Property owners of one of the Bolton hillside mansions demolished as they were built larger than permitted and in the wrong place have had their plans to rebuild on the plot thrown out by councillors. A second plot owner, who submitted a separate application, was successful with proposals to rebuild and Bolton Council’s planning committee granted that application.
Last year, five partially-built mansions were ordered to be torn down after a planning inspector dismissed appeals from the house owners.
The luxury detached properties, at Grundy Fold Farm, off Chorley Old Road, for which Bolton Council issued an enforcement notice for demolition in 2018, were up to a third bigger and in different locations than allowed, a planning inquiry heard.
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Dismissing the appeal by the plot owners last May, a planning inspector gave the householders a year to demolish the structures and return the site to its previous form.
That project has largely been completed in the past few months, with the majority of the structures pulled down by contractors. Planning permission was initially granted in 2014 for the conversion of the farmhouse and four new homes around a central courtyard in 2014.
The owner of the farmhouse plot and another of the house owners submitted plans to rebuild the houses in separate applications put before Bolton’s planning committee today (Thursday, March 24). The owners of plot 5 at the site, which was to be the refurbished farmhouse, named on the application as Mr and Mrs Thompson were seeking to build a home there.
However, planning officers recommended refusal of the plans as there has only ever been previous planning permission granted for a refurbishment
and the farmhouse, which had stood for more than 100 years, was not refurbished but demolished.
An officer’s report to councillors, said: “Plot 5 is the site of the former farmhouse demolished in 2016 and an unauthorized dwelling was subsequently built on the plot.
“This unauthorized dwelling along with the other four unauthorized dwellings at Grundy Fold Farm have been subject to numerous refused planning applications, the serving of an enforcement notice for their demolition, and a dismissed combined planning and enforcement appeal.
“Plot 5 did have planning permission for alterations to and the extension of the farmhouse building but as the farmhouse was demolished in 2016 this previously approved dwelling cannot be built. “Officers consider that the proposed development would constitute inappropriate development in the green belt.
“Officers do not agree with the applicant that the erection of a new dwelling at Plot 5 could be described as a replacement dwelling, with the original farmhouse having been demolished and in any event the new dwelling would be materially larger than the original.”
The majority of the committee agreed with that assessment and voted to refuse permission.
The owner of plot 4at the site, Hasan Ayirgan also applied to rebuild a home at the site with some variations to scale and orientation from the existing 2014 planning permission.
The changes include re-orientating the dwelling so its front elevation now faces north, repositioning the detached garage and removing an arched porch.
The committee approved that application.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.