Public air their opinions on former vehicle test track

Barrier Bolts
The Leyland Explorer
Moss Side Test Track
Barrier Bolts The Leyland Explorer Moss Side Test Track
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A second public consultation event for a former vehicle test track will take place later this week.

The old Leyland Motors site in Moss Side has been derelict for two years.

But is set to be transformed into a mixed use development of housing, industrial units and open space for the community.

Landowners Pilgrim, a subsidiary of Leyland Trucks, are in discussions with South Ribble Council over the site’s future.

A first consultation session was held at Moss Side Community Centre last week when members of the public were urged to go along and air their views on the plans.

Another will take place at Midge Hall Methodist Church, Longmeanygate, Leyland, this Friday between 1pm and 7pm.

It is believed the 120-acre site between the Moss Side Industrial Estate and Longmeanygate could go on the market as early as autumn, and would attract interest from major developers.

Moss Side ward councillor Michael Green was at the first consultation session.

He said: “I attended, I was there for most of the afternoon.

“It was well attended particularly early in the afternoon.

“A lot of people were there from Moss Side and the Midge Hall area, so they came from right across the local community area and beyond, neighbouring parts of South Ribble.

“Obviously it was a drop-in and I wasn’t party to all conversations with the developer or council officers.”

He said though that the conversations he did hear and the concerns of residents who approached him included access towards Longmeanygate and the opening of Paradise Lane; support for Midge Hall station being reopened; the employment site not being as large as was first proposed; and the number of residential properties planned, which has increased by 500, putting a burden on the infrastructure such as GP surgeries and schools.

It is believed the 120-acre site between the Moss Side Industrial Estate and Longmeanygate could go on the market as early as autumn, and would attract interest from major developers.

Peter Dawson-Gerrard, of property advisers Matthews and Goodman, said: “The land will be sold on the open market, in conjunction with South Ribble and a grand masterplan for the test track and adjoining land.

“It is a very good site worth a lot of money and will be a full scale improvement to benefit everyone in Leyland.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to re-map and re-plan a very large area of land.”

The former test track was used by Leyland Motors to trial both prototypes and vehicles once they came off the production line.