A scheme to demolish a former residential home to make way for an overnight break centre for children with disabilities is gathering pace.
Lancashire County Council has put forward a planning application to South Ribble Council to pull down the aging Lynnhurst building in Stanifield Lane, Farington.
County Coun Matthew Tomlinson, cabinet member for children, young people and schools at LCC, said: “This is a really positive development in the process.
“There is going to be a state-of-the-art facility for vulnerable children.
“One of the most pleasing aspects is that when we went out to public consultation, there was an overwhelming response that this would be the best site for the facility.
“This is the first step in the development, and I’m looking forward to seeing the work being done.”
It is expected that the project will take 18 months to complete.
When it’s finished, the new centre will serve Preston, South Ribble and Chorley, and will replace services previously provided by Maplewood in Bamber Bridge, The Bungalow in Preston and Long Copse in Chorley.
Lancashire County Council launched a public consultation over two potential sites last year – this one in Leyland and another in Chorley.
If the plans are approved by the borough council’s planning officers at delegated level, the existing building at Lynnhurst will be demolished and a high-spec centre will be built with the latest in technology and adaptations.
It will prove an easy-to-use and comfortable environment where young people with disabilities can have overnight breaks and spend time with their friends.
When it was announced that the scheme would be coming to Leyland, Coun Tomlinson described it as an historic moment.
“We have come a long way since these changes were first broached,” he said. “The location of Lynnhurst – near three motorways – and the size and scope of the building and grounds make this a great choice.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity to get things just right, having used buildings for so long which – although very well loved – no longer served their purpose well.”
However, the reorganisation means the number of residential care worker posts will be reduced.
It is anticipated that compulsory redundancies will largely be avoided by voluntary redundancy.