Developers who want to build what has been described by objectors as a ‘monstrous carbuncle’ wedding venue in Pendle will finally receive a decision on approval or refusal at a meeting on Monday.

Hundreds of objections have been lodged since December by disgruntled residents, after a planning application to build a large-scale wedding venue near Nelson Golf Club was submitted to Pendle Council.

If approved, the Rockwood Glass Marquee, on a piece of land next to Rockwood Manor, Halifax Road, between Brierfcliffe and Brierfield, would be able to accommodate more than 500 people within the venue, plus 60 staff, with provision for 159 car parking spaces and room for two coaches.

A new access road off Halifax Road would also be created.

The location is more than 200 metres from the nearest residential properties to the north-west, and more than 400 metres away from the nearest to the south, and would overlook Nelson Golf Club's first green and second tee boxes.

Lancashire Telegraph: Halifax RoadHalifax Road (Image: Google Maps)

The plans were due to go before the planning committee at the beginning of February following an initial consultation period which ended on January 1.

However, hundreds of objections were made to Pendle Council throughout January, not only from residents, but from local authorities and stakeholder agencies.

On January 10, Burnley Council raised some concerns about the development, but said it “trusted that Pendle Council would carefully consider the use of planning conditions should the application be approved”.

Briercliffe Parish Council also objected on January 10, stating it was “dismayed it had not been properly consulted" on the plans, despite not being part of the borough of Pendle, and raised the point that as a bordering local authority, along with Burnley Council, it should have been properly consulted about such a major development right on its doorstep.

The Coal Authority too, originally objected, but then withdrew its objection on January 11 following submission of a coal mining risk assessment report. The Flood Authority raised no objections to the proposals.

A meeting was then held at Briercliffe Parish Council on Sunday, January 7, where approximately 200 residents gathered to object to the proposed development.

The meeting included members of Briercliffe Parish Council and Burnley Council, and members of the Nelson, Brierfield and Reedley Committee, where it was pointed out that objections had also been made by Burnley MP, Anthony Higginbotham, and Pendle MP, Andrew Stephenson.

In meeting minutes seen by the Lancashire Telegraph, objectors, as well as raising concerns over noise, access, and environmental impacts, mentioned the development of a separate wedding venue not far from Halifax Road.

READ MORE: Hundreds of objections over plans for Nelson wedding venue

The minutes stated: “Another wedding venue for 600 patrons is already under development on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal with outstanding views of Pendle Hill, only five minutes away from the proposed development on Halifax Road.”

The further supposed impact on Halifax Road by the proposed new cemetery was also highlighted.

READ MORE: A 600 capacity wedding venue is to be built in Nelson

Following the overwhelmingly negative response to the application from members of the public, developers submitted a full statement to Pendle Council on January 11.

It read: “We want to emphasise that we have made several efforts to establish communication from the developer's perspective.

“We have reached out to community activists and organisers on multiple occasions, but unfortunately, we have not received a positive response.

“We recently expressed our interest in participating and being available at the residents' meeting held at the Briercliffe Parish Council, but this request was declined.

“While we wholeheartedly support the democratic process and encourage all stakeholders to voice their opinions, we have unwavering confidence in the value of our proposed scheme and the substantial economic and social benefits it will bring to Pendle.

“Despite facing objections, we have garnered backing from hundreds of Pendle residents, and their names and addresses are accessible for verification.

“Additionally, a substantial portion of the local community shares the desire for such avenue and actively supports its realisation.

“The substantial number of supporters must also have their voices heard, and elected public representatives, including MPs, should equally advocate for their views, just as one MP in Burnley has chosen to do.

“We are professionals who have invested an immense amount of time in this application, and the overwhelmingly positive feedback from residents fuels our commitment to this project.”

Lancashire Telegraph: What the development could look like from Halifax Road What the development could look like from Halifax Road (Image: Pendle Council)

A report from the planning committee was shared with the developers at the end of January listing five reasons they were considering the application be refused, which included sustainability/accessibility issues; landscape impact; access and parking; impact on the neighbouring golf club; and noise and disturbance.

The matter was then taken to the Nelson, Brierfield and Reedley Committee on February 5, with the developers asking for a deferral in any decision making.

The developers asked for the plans not to be discussed so early due to a number of outstanding issues with reports and technicalities, which they stated were still in the process of being resolved, and suggested the committee meeting was “premature”.

The developers said: “We remain of the view the application is being prematurely presented to the committee for resolution, and again reiterate our willingness to consider areas of concerns and work positively with the council.

“For all of these reasons we seek a deferral of this major submission, to be given the opportunity to address the matters outlined in this statement.”

Meanwhile, at the beginning of February, Lancashire County Council’s highways department objected to the development.

It said it is "of the opinion the proposed development will have a significant impact on highway safety, capacity or amenity in the immediate vicinity of the site”.

The developers have submitted numerous amendments to the plans throughout February in terms of access and visual impact, as well as amendments in respect of golf safety and noise impact.

On February 23, Burnley Council submitted another response, stating it noted the application was due to be determined by the Nelson, Brierfield and Reedley Committee on February 5, 2024, with an officer recommendation of refusal.

The authority added: “However, the application was deferred due to the anticipation and submission of additional and amended details.

“I have reviewed the additional and amended details available via the public register and confirm the comments in our formal consultation response still stand.

“We trust that your authority will continue to take them into account when determining the application.”

In total, four consultations periods have been issued for the scheme, with the latest one giving residents and local authorities and other organisations the chance to comment until March 12.

It is estimated more than 500 objections have been lodged with Pendle Council to date. 

The application will be reconsidered by Nelson, Brierfield and Reedley Committee on Monday, March 4, but is still being recommended for refusal.