Issa Memorial Garden Cemetery, Issa Foundation, P Planning Documents
Plans for the layout of the Issa Memorial Garden in Oswaldtwistle. Credit: via planning documents

Issa brothers’ cemetery withdrawn in Lancashire

Julia Hatmaker

After being tipped for refusal by Hyndburn Council planning officers, the Issa Foundation’s application for an 84-acre burial site on Green Belt is set to be revised.

Consultant Atticus Planning stated in an email to planning officers that the project team was withdrawing the application to “take stock of the various consultee comments made to date” and would be meeting next week to make changes to the application.

The scheme, which was designed by Archi-Structure, had faced fierce objections from members of the community. A group of Lancashire residents had even raised more than £15,000 to oppose the plans for the cemetery, which would have been located off Blackburn Road in Oswaldtwistle.

The Issa Foundation is a charity created by billionaire brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa. It would operate the cemetery and invest any profits into providing burial services for the Muslim community.

Planning officers had stated that the 35,000-plot cemetery would have an adverse impact on the openness of the Green Belt, rural and historic landscape. Officers also stated that more information was needed regarding what impact the cemetery may have on protected species, groundwater and the road network.

The application had been on the agenda for Hyndburn’s 19 January planning committee meeting.

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