Transformation To Bolton Petrol Station

The £2.3m transformation of a petrol station, which includes the addition of a drive-thru Starbucks and a Greggs bakery, is now underway.

The BP garage and Spar in Blackburn Road have closed while the work takes place.

The development in Sharples is going ahead after Blackburn service station giant Euro Garages appealed Bolton Council’s decision to refuse permission for the plans in August 2017.

Councillors voted against the proposal when it was brought to the planning committee three years ago.

Town hall planners recommended approving the first application, but when new plans were submitted the following year, they were rejected by officers.

The company appealed this decision and a hearing took place last July.

The local authority argued that the proposal was an “inappropriate and incompatible” expansion for the predominantly residential area.

A council statement said: “Due to the nature of the proposed development, it is likely that the cumulative level of traffic movements associated with the proposal would increase when compared with the current petrol filling station use, especially in respect of the proposed drive-thru coffee shop.”

However, a government inspector ruled that the scheme would not conflict with local planning policies and overturned the council’s decision last September.

A bungalow neighbouring the petrol station was acquired by the company and knocked down earlier this year to make way for the expansion.

Group commercial director Ilyas Munshi said: “The site will offer customers an enhanced fuel, convenience shop and food-to-go offer that will include a Starbucks Drive Thru and Greggs fresh bakery. The development will create an additional 25 new jobs.

The new “refill service station” is expected to open by September.

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