Greenbelt protests before Greater Manchester Spatial Framework consultation closes

Date published: 07 March 2019

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Campaign groups in Littleborough and Heywood are planning their last-stand protests against plans to build on greenbelt land before a consultation on the proposals closes.

Littleborough and Smithybridge Save the Greenbelt Group hope to have a lasting impression with their Hands Around the Lake event – a chain of 2,000 people around Hollingworth Lake – before the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework consultation closes on 18 March.

The group was formed when local residents found out about proposals for Littleborough and Smithybridge. A public meeting was held on 3 March, with 300 attendees.

12-year-old Ben Limer gave an impassioned speech about the proposals and how it will impact not only his life, but friends and those around him.

Co-founder of the group, Kate Clegg said: “I’d come up with the idea of uniting visitors and residents around the lake and asked Daniel [another organiser] if he felt it was a bit ambitious. We decided to go for it.

“Time is short, but we are really motivated to save our greenbelt and preserve the lake and the area around it. Tourism is really important for us and the lake businesses and the proposed big developments on greenfield land will be disruptive and damaging. The field is an important wildlife corridor between habitats and provides a lovely green walking and cycle route between the canal and the lake.

“Both proposals in Smithybridge and Littleborough will remove important green spaces valued by our children, as demonstrated beautifully by Ben, as well as increasing traffic and air pollution on already heavily congested roads.”

Littleborough and Smithybridge Save the Greenbelt Group will be meeting at the Lake at 12 noon on Saturday 9 March.

More details can be found at:

Save Crimble Mill Green Belt is also planning a last protest before the consultation closes: Crimble Mill and the surrounding fields have been identified for change of use to develop around 250 houses

They will be meeting at the water fountain in Queen’s Park at 10am on Sunday (10 March), walking around Mutual Mills to Crimble Lane before returning to Queen’s Park.

More details can be found at:

Thousands of residents have so far opposed the plans though protest marches and public meetings.

Thousands of people gathered in protest against plans to build homes on local greenbelt at Tandle Hill on Sunday (3 March).

Groups from Milnrow and Newhey, Slattocks, Middleton, Royton, Chadderton and Shaw marched from their respective areas to the monument at Tandle Hill, a united effort to oppose proposals of almost 2,000 homes plus employment space to be built on Rochdale’s greenbelt.

Land put forward locally includes Bamford and Norden, Castleton Sidings, Crimble Mill, land north of Smithy Bridge, Newhey Quarry, Roch Valley and Trows Farm.

The consultation for the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, currently in its second draft, will close on Monday 18 March 2019.

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12-year-old Ben Limer gives a speech about proposed greenbelt developments

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