A DERELICT former nursing home, which has been branded an ‘eyesore’, has been earmarked for a new housing development.

The Whinberry View site, in Bacup Road, Rawtenstall, could be transformed into 23 semi-detached houses as part of plans by property developers B&E Boys.

The site has been empty for several years, with planning permission first granted for homes in 2003, and renewed in 2010.

That permission has now expired again.

But bosses at B&E Boys have said they are hoping to complete the £3million project this year.

The application is also due to be decided this year.

Coun Colin Crawforth, who represents Rawtenstall, said: “This development would certainly be a better use of the site.

“The building is an eyesore.

“From my point of view, Rawtenstall needs housing and the site is there waiting to be used.

“I can’t really see why people would oppose it,” he added The developers have said the homes could sell for between £147,500 and £170,000 each.

Barry Dean, associate property director at the firm, said they hoped a decision on the plans, for mainly three-bedroom homes, could be reached next month.

He said: “Commencement is anticipated in late spring, with the first completions towards the end of the year.”

Plans to demolish the former care home were first raised in 2003 as part of the closure of 32 Lancashire care homes.