I HAVE consistently said the town centre development formerly known as The Oval would not go ahead. I wanted the site of the former Pioneer to be developed as the Job Centre Plus site and, at the time, had another section of the Department of Works and Pensions willing to move into Burnley and on to the site.
My discussions with Bentham’s at national level always indicated they would not develop a store in Burnley – a position I indicated to the then Chief Executive of Burnley Council giving their reasons for this.
Despite this, Henry Boots for some time continued to say Bentham’s had an interest in the site.
Last year at the final planning approval for the site I opposed it saying the plans were seriously flawed – what a crazy situation for example to leave the old derelict County Court site untouched.
I obviously wanted to see the investment in our existing centre. In Charter Walk for example. Perhaps moving Primark if it wants to come into Burnley into the former TJ Hughes sites? Perhaps doing something with the Empire site? Perhaps doing something with the site near the bus station and also facing onto Parker Lane the former Lucas Sports Club block.
The Lib Dems have really strung this one along for so long and are now clearly shown to have been conning us when they have kept saying it will be starting soon.
PETER PIKE, BURNLEY