Chippings are latest travellers’ site dispute

Travellers' site on Hut Lane, Heath Charnock
Travellers' site on Hut Lane, Heath Charnock
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The latest row in a hugely controversial Chorley travellers’ site saga centres around - chippings.

Protestors have formally objected to the travellers’ plans to replace wood chippings with limestone chippings on their Heath Charnock land.

They are concerned it would lead to permanency of the Hut Lane site, which is detested by neighbours who want the travellers thrown off the green belt land.

However, temporary permission for the site was granted last July after a four-year battle against Chorley Council.

The council had to order a stay of execution on an outstanding eviction order because its five-year development plan did not assess the number of gypsies and travellers who would need somewhere to live in the future.

The council says the site is wholly inappropriate for the green belt.

The chippings application was submitted to the council’s planning department by traveller Michael Linfoot.

It will go before the development control committee tomorrow and has been recommended for temporary conditional approval by planning officers.

The council received more than 30 letters of objection. Heath Charnock Parish Council has objected, so too has Coun Kim Snape.

The parish council also argues that it will be more difficult to restore the site after the Linfoot family leaves,

Protests from Coun Snape include that the land is green belt and that the travellers’ stay is temporary.

More than 40 letters, however, support the application, with views such as: It will enhance the area; the chippings could easily be removed; and that they are needed on health and safety grounds.

The committee will be told in an officer’s report that it is considered the limestone chippings would not affect the green belt or residential area.

It adds: “It is therefore recommended that planning permission is granted subject to the requirement that on cessation of the temporary permission for the gypsy traveller site, the stone chippings shall be removed from the land, which accords with the conditions of the temporary permission.”