Iconic mill could be flattened within days

Wesley Street Mill in Bamber Bridge
Wesley Street Mill in Bamber Bridge

Wesley Street Mill in Bamber Bridge could start to be demolished next Tuesday, according to developers.

A notification about the plan to flatten the building has been sent to South Ribble Council and posted on the mill’s gates.

The document states that the mill could be demolished between now and November, but on the gates, it says work could start on Tuesday.

However, there is a 21-day period to allow for objections to be posted, and a campaign group is hoping to give the mill a three-month reprieval by getting listed status.

It follows a planning meeting last month where outline planning permission to build up to 200 homes on the site was granted.

Derek Rogerson, from the Save Wesley Street Mill campaign, said: “Recent actions by the campaign included applications to English Heritage asking them to consider listing the building, and to the Heritage Lottery Fund asking for funding to help refurbish the mill.

“Both requests have been acknowledged and are currently being investigated.

“We were assured by a representative of the council that these applications alone would give the mill a minimum three month stay of execution whilst these applications were processed.

“Imagine our shock and horror when we learned that a notice had been posted on the mill gate on Monday stating that demolition would commence on Tuesday.”

Resident Charlotte Cropper added: “As a campaign we want to work with South Ribble Council to try and re-develop the mill, however I feel alienated and let down.

“Where is the justice for this mill?”

Coun Cliff Hughes, cabinet member for strategic planning at the council, said: “The council’s planning committee decided it was minded to approve both applications last month and the site owner has now formally notified us they intend to demolish the mill.

“That’s entirely their decision and they don’t need planning permission to do it.”

Gorrie Ltd, which submitted the housing plans, made no comment.