Slag Lane, BDW, p planning docs

The site was released from the Green Belt last year. Credit: via planning documents

Housebuilders press ahead with 464-home St Helens scheme 

David Wilson and Barratt have tabled plans to redevelop a 47-acre former Green Belt site in Haydock. 

The housebuilders have submitted a planning application for the 464-home scheme at Florida Farm to St Helens Council. 

David Wilson Homes plans to build 184 of the units with Barratt delivering 280. The developers plan to offer up 30% of the properties on affordable tenures. 

As well as a mix of two-, three, and four-bedroom houses, the scheme features proposals for: 

  • A new access route off the East Lancs and another from Vicarage Road 
  • A linear park around the existing watercourse that cuts through the site 
  • 540 new trees. 

WSP is advising on planning and Escape Urbanists has drawn up a masterplan for the site. 

To learn more about the plans, search for application reference number P/2023/0512/FUL on St Helens Council’s planning portal. 

The plot is allocated as a strategic housing site in St Helens local plan and is located on the opposite side of the East Lancs Road to Bericote’s emerging industrial park, home to the likes of Amazon and Kellogg’s. 

The site was one of six the local council opted to release from the Green Belt in its most recent local plan. In total, these plots have capacity for 2,114 homes. 

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As someone who uses the A580 cycleway occasionally, I can’t help but notice that this development would add an unnecessary extra junction and therefore a ratrun from the A580 to Vicarage Road (because why would you wait for traffic lights if you can make that shortcut?) But I also notice that none of the development links to the A580 cycleway – not anywhere. You have to mix with traffic at the proposed new link road. It also has no active travel connections to the surrounding housing estates. It is lacking paths across the waterway that runs centrally along the development. There are two schools to the south – but no short walking/wheeling routes to get there. So parents will almost certainly drive those trips.

It’s yet another low-density car-dominated proposal that locks people into car dependency.

By Flixton resident

Well the builders have found the land for all these extra people but where are these people going to go when they are not on there new homes.
I don’t know if anyone in the council have noticed but you can’t move on the roads of st helens and surrounding areas. There’s too many people and cars already. There is no infrastructures either to support so manybextra people. Do the builders intend building schools , hospitals and other essential service so as not to put any more pressure on our already overstretched facilities.

By Anonymous

More Green Belt being lost. Make me wonder about the planners- the local authority designated the Green Belt, and yet as soon as a house builder rocks up they can build more nasty unimaginative boxes without any thought for infrastructure, travel, the impact of loss of green space.

By Anonymous

I’m a haydock resident and the traffic chaos that already exists is horrendous so I hate to think how much more traffic this will create.
Green spaces are paramount to people’s mental health. It’s very sad that these are vanishing in France not of our eyes. I have no respect for st Helens after the Amazon debacle!

By Anonymous

The tragedy of the way green belt has worked across the NorthWest is it’s left so many places sub-scale, with lots of 2nd order effects for the prosperity of places, where they don’t have a big enough pool of high quality labour to attract employers or enough demand to maintain a vibrant town centre. St. Helens has plan to break out of that paradigm, and good luck to them. Not close to whether it will overload the current infrastructure, but in the UK this how Treasury brain works, you get to retrofit infrastructure after-not-before economic growth has clogged up your road system. That said, if this isn’t making the active travel connections that’s a big miss. I look across to East Manchester, where they are building the UK’s biggest indoor concert venue, it’s not hard to see that overwhelming Metrolink capacity in that part of town. Do we not build it, or do we go fix it afterwards?

By Rich X

This town is a lego town we need business not more houses

By Ken

I also live in Haydock, close to the A580 East lancs road.
The traffic situation in Haydock is already dire, queues everywhere during the morning and early evening.
More lorries on the Lancs, more cars etc on lancs and through Haydock.
If there’s going to be a further 400+ houses, that will most likely mean at least another 400+ vehicles!
There are so few outdoor recreational places left already, people need some space to take their families out, walk the dog, ride your bike through a scenic, uncrowded and peaceful place.
The extra demand on already impossible to access GP practices is unfair on the current residents, not to mention schools demand too.
St Helens used to be a good place to live, but it now seems to run on a council that’s more interested in making money, rather than looking out for their electorate and making lives better.
What’s the use of building more houses, or even a Hotel in town?
Who wants to stay in a hotel who’s surroundings have nothing to offer, and the views are dull and miserable.
Come on council, wake up and show some consideration for your current residents, give us a better place to live, somewhere with space, fresh air, and beauty.

By Mummy Bear 55

Brilliant idea, the local area needs new homes and affordable ones, alot of people can’t see the bigger picture, I hope they get as I will be buying one, good luck barratts

By Anonymous

After looking at the planning application
I think it’s a good idea to build new home next to a580 for commuting to Liverpool or Manchester, better it be built there instead of built up areas such has Garswood or Rainford

By Wendy hill

@mummy bear “St Helens used to be a good place to live, but it now seems to run on a council that’s more interested in making money, rather than looking out for their electorate and making lives better.”

Councils do not ‘make money’. Sure, they collect council tax and business rates from new development and this money goes into paying for local services such as bin collection, maintenance, leisure, social care etc. But the driver for this is central government planning targets which compel councils to provide planning permission for a certain number of housing units over a 5 year period. These targets do not apply to all the other bits of infrastructure which are needed to make it a nice place to live, the roads, buses, schools, surgeries, green spaces etc.

Money for all this must be found separately which is why the planning system in this country and the places it produces is such a big ugly mess.

By Anonymous

AIR Pollution from the A580 traffic, what impact will this have on those who buy these homes. Planting saplings will not help the air quality, you are not going to plant hundreds of mature 20 ft trees are you, too costly, doesn’t exist.
Those buying these houses no doubt will have 1, 2, 3 cars increasing pollution. What about the buzzards that live nearby, the kestrels. Putting concrete houses where grass was so the tits, wrens, robins, dunnock, chaffinches, green finches (red listed bird! can’t get their seed heads as you’ve got houses not fields). Where will these children go to school as I’m almost certain these houses won’t just be professional 2 person working class people. Extra burden on roads, schools, buses, infrastructure in general including Dr’s and Dentists. I feel sorry for all the nature lost, ripped up, wildflowers. But hey, planting a few hundred trees that’ll shut them up eh? There’s your BNG, your net gain.. NOT!

By Anonymous

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