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Haighton residents concerned with Priory Group plan for children’s home in village

Posted on - 28th August, 2014 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Grimsargh, Preston News
Haighton residents are concerned by the plan

Haighton residents are concerned by the plan Pic: Jack Toner

Plans for a residential care home housing six children with behavioural difficulties looks set for approval.

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The Priory Group has applied for permission to convert a former farm building in Haighton into the home.

It has been met with fierce objections from Haighton Parish Council and local residents who say it would “blight the area”.

The children, ranging from six to 19 years of age, have complex learning difficulties including behavioural, emotional and social difficulties and autism.

A statement from the Priory Group, who operate a similar home in Leyland, say they want to create a family style home for the youngsters.

They write: “The residents would have a structured programme of education and care. For significant periods of time they would be away from the site being educated.

“Furthermore, they would also often be away at weekends and during school holidays undertaking structured activities. This would normally mean being taken out by staff to undertake recreation and other types of activities in the local area. There would be qualified staff at the site 24 hours a day in order to ensure the safety of the young people in their care. Generally there would be three care staff on site during the day, two of whom would remain present overnight to supervise the residents.”

36 letters of objection from local residents have been received saying the building on Cow Hill is “unsuited for use as a residential home”.

Haighton Parish Council say in their objections they feel a “perceived threat of criminal activity would cause much anxiety for the local residents, especially for the elderly and those with young children, adversely affecting the happiness and wellbeing of the local community.”

Planning officers at Preston City Council have recommended the plans for approval.

They state: “The site is located within an Area of Separation, but the proposed development would not lead to a risk of settlements merging, or have an unacceptable detrimental impact on the rural character or identity and distinctiveness of the area. The proposed use would help reduce health inequalities. There would be no unacceptable detrimental impacts on visual or residential amenity, or safety and security.”

The plans are due to be heard at the city council planning committee on Monday 1 September.

Do you live in the area? What do you think of the plans? Let us know in the comments below

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