First of 471 houses finally built after four-year wait

The first few houses are up at the new Albion Gate housing development at the former Farington Business Park, Leyland
The first few houses are up at the new Albion Gate housing development at the former Farington Business Park, Leyland
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The first raft of houses have finally been built as part of a long-awaited development.

Plans to build 471 houses on the former Farington Business Park near Morrisons were originally passed in 2010, but a knock on the property market following the recession meant no developers came forward until this year to do the work.

Now, Taylor Wimpey has built the first lot of family homes on the new Albion Gate estate, which one councillor believes will be welcomed by the community.

Derek Forrest, who represents Leyland Central, said: “I would always welcome development on brownfield sites like this one, instead of on nice green pastures.

“It’s pointless having a whole area of concrete - we want our land to be used, and it seems that residential is the way to go these days.

“The sooner work like this can be done, the better, as long as the facilities are in place to cope with more people moving to the area.”

The Albion Gate development will consist of 234 houses, 20 of which will be affordable, and is the first phase of a two-part scheme to develop the land, which will be accessed off Wheelton Lane and Carr Lane.

The plot is owned by Ainscough Brothers LLP, and the second half of the project will see a similar number of houses built in the future.

It is not yet known how many of the homes in phase two will be affordable, but the whole scheme is set to include three areas of open space with play facilities, and £1.3m will also be provided to fund town centre enhancement works and highways improvements in the area, including a cycle link.

The first set of homes should be ready for people to move into by the end of this month, but the Albion Gate development will take five years in total to complete, a spokesman for Taylor Wimpey has said.

Meanwhile, the plot of land directly next to the Farington Business Park site, which used to be the Roadferry depot, is also waiting for a developer to take on building work.

Plans by Peel Land and Property for 60 homes to be accessed off Northgate were also passed in 2010, but there has been no movement on the site yet.

South Ribble Council expects work to start in 2016.