IN a bid to stop new homes being built in Haskayne, almost the entire village signed a petition.
Campaigners wanted to prevent four cottages being built in a field behind Woods Close, off Delph Lane.
Cllr David O’Toole said he was bombarded with letters from Haskayne residents.
He said: “I have had more correspondence about this than anything else in four years. There is a difference between ‘nimbyism’ and an entire village being against it. The silent majority has spoken. We should be taking note of what people feel strongly about.”
A petition of 235 names was handed to West Lancs Borough Council planning committee ahead of the meeting last Thursday.
The proposal for four three-bedroom houses was recommended for approval by officers but was refused by councillors in a majority vote.
After the meeting last week, one delighted resident Colin Smith said: “It is lovely to see local democracy in action. What more can you ask for than that.”
Developer Mike McComb said he was disappointed by the reaction from residents.
He said: “I went along to two parish council meetings before I even spoke to the local authority.
“I took big artists’ impressions of how the cottages would look. At the first meeting, there were concerns about conservation, overlooking and the size of gardens. I understand the concerns of the immediate neighbours and I hope that we addressed them.
“We conducted two wildlife surveys that satisfied ecologists and created additional parking .
“I do not know what more I could have done. I am not sure if all the people who signed that petition, which included minors, realised exactly what I intended to do.
“At the end of the day, I want to build four cottages on a derelict piece of land.”
Mr McComb will consult advisors about an appeal.