CGI showing Watson Homes' plans for the site off Hall Lane. Credit: SquareCGI

Watson plots waterside homes at Creams Mill

Salford-based housebuilder and contractor Watson Homes has opened a consultation on its plans to build almost 300 homes across three plots in Little Lever near Bolton, including the site of the former Creams Mill.

The regeneration of Creams Mill and Hall Lane would include a mixed-tenure development of 297 affordable homes. 

The majority of the homes would be built on two plots close to the River Irwell – the former a paper mill, and a smaller site next to a disused part of the Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal. 

A third site, located further to the west off Hall Lane, would also take advantage of a section of the disused canal, providing waterside apartments and houses.

Creams Mill opened in 1677 and was demolished in 2011.

Under the proposals, Watson plans to re-integrate the canal into the scheme after it closed in 2004, by providing future residents with access to the water and surrounding woodland. 

The scheme would comprise one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom houses and apartments, as well as private gardens and designated parking areas for residents. 

Watson bought the site earlier in 2020 from a private landowner and has approached housing association partners Great Places Housing Group and Bolton at Home to discuss affordable housing provision for the scheme. 

Little Lever Watson Homes 2

Stockport-based TADW Architect designed the scheme

The developer is working on the project with consultancy P4 Planning and TADW Architects, which designed the homes.

Rob Watson, co-founder and director at Watson Homes, said: “Our priority is always the people who will be benefiting from our builds: the local community. 

“We are holding a public consultation as this ambitious project has the potential to absolutely transform a major part of Little Lever. We want to know what the surrounding  community thinks of our regeneration aims and how we can incorporate their views into our plans.” 

Bolton Council granted planning consent to the previous owner, which had bought the site in 2016 from paper manufacturer Mondi, to build 98 homes on the 26-acre former mill site in November 2017, but that project was never delivered. 

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