ALMOST 200 jobs could be created if plans for a 70-bedroom care home, complete with a doctor’s surgery and pharmacy, are given the green light by West Lancashire Council’s Planning Committee tonight.
The care home on land to the east of Greaves Hall Avenue, in Banks, will include offices, communal areas, day space, café, hairdressers and training/cinema area.
The proposals by GJP Southport Ltd & WS Lamm & Co Investments Ltd also seek outline permission for a mixed use development on the site, possibly including a combined health facility, a children’s day nursery and a specialist care facility.
Some concerns have been raised among local residents, some of whom question the need for another doctor’s surgery.
In his letter to the authority, Dr Ghannad pointed out that: “there are already two local surgeries and chemists in the area.”
Ms Valentine, a local resident, wrote: “To have another doctor’s surgery, pharmacy and nursery will exacerbate the problem of congestion.”
Traffic congestion is a major issue for a lot of locals, who already feel that the traffic levels are too dangerous.
Jeff Smith is concerned that “access to the estate (behind the proposed site) is through one road and extra traffic would cause increased congestion.”
Lancashire Highways has no overriding objections and has stated that “the proposed development will result in relatively minor increase in traffic flows”.
United Utilities has no objections to the plans, provided the site is drained on a separate system, despite many residents expressing worries about sewage and drainage problems.
Freda Valentine has reported that “sewage has appeared in some gardens”, while Mr and Mrs Atkinson recognise the “very low lying [land] is often under water – this needs to be dealt with by suitable drainage”.
Concerns about the consultation process have also come under scrutiny from some residents.
Marie Donaghy wrote in her objection letter to the planning permission: “Why were residents not informed of this proposal?
“I only just became aware of it when a kind neighbour put a letter through my door.”
In his report to councillors, borough planner John Harrison recommended they back the plans.
He said: “The site was previously allocated for development as an institutional /health use as part of the council’s desire to see the comprehensive redevelopment of the former Greaves Hall site including a mix of housing, employment and community uses.
“It is envisaged that the care home will generate the equivalent of up to 60 full-time jobs; the children’s nursery (up to 100 children) 35 jobs; specialist care facility 70; and GP surgery 20.”