Petition opposes plan for development

Coun David Molyneux
Coun David Molyneux

A residents’ petition is calling on the council to withdraw the industrial and housing development near to junction 26 of the M6 in Orrell.

It has received almost 500 signatories since its launch this week and refers to the plans - part of the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework - as a “pointless development.”

The roads can’t cope as it is and this huge development on greenbelt land will mean extra traffic for the M6, which is already jammed for much of the day

Stephen Magrath

The petition, launched by Pemberton resident Stephen Magrath, details that the land, locally known as The Bell, has been protected in previous planning masterplans.

Mr Magrath told the Evening Post: “First of all, it’s not true to say we’re objecting to this just because it is in our backyard.

“The roads can’t cope as it is and this huge development on greenbelt land will mean extra traffic for the M6, which is already jammed for much of the day.

“It would be 1.6m sq ft of warehouse sheds, 13 times the Asda warehouse on Scot Lane and the talk of local jobs is misleading.”

The petition is now live on the change.org site entitled Stop this threat to our local ‘The Bell’ Green Belt.

It has encouraged residents to visit the council’s drop in event about the GMSF held at the town hall tomorrow between 3pm and 7pm.

Council bosses have said the GMSF is a “massive” opportunity for the borough’s economy to take advantage of its proximity to crucial transport links such as the M6.

It has been criticised for its encroachment into greenbelt land although the town hall has said just 4.6 per cent of the borough’s total will be part of development masterplan.

In terms of infrastructure, council bosses have said they will be “proactive in securing any funding from the devolution agreement to improve transport.”

Coun David Molyneux, deputy leader of Wigan Council, said: “This will be an important plan that will inform future planning decisions for the whole of Greater Manchester.

“As a key part of GM, Wigan must play a central role in the growth and development of the city region.

“There will be significant economic growth coming to GM in the coming decades and we need to make sure our residents are able to share in that growth.”

Related article MP to lead fight against greenbelt development