Star date: 28th October 2016

Salford City Council is set to unleash its draft Local Plan on the community, a 250 page document that sets out how Salford should develop over the next twenty years.

Many of the shocks, such as loss of green belt to housing and Peel Holdings, have already been aired in the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, but the Local Plan has more detail - including a new `masterplan' for Lower Broughton, the building of over 1,000 new houses in Charlestown, the loss of Hill Top Moss in Walkden and protection for Victoria Theatre but not the Crown Theatre in Eccles.

Full details here...

City Centre Salford Salford Green Belt Destruction Map Lower Broughton Pre-Flood Redevelopment Plan
click image to enlarge

Salford City Council is shortly to begin consulting the community on its draft Local Plan which sets out how the city should be developed over the next twenty years. The 250 page document covers everything from where new housing developments, industrial and office space should be sited, to energy supply, flood risk strategies and loads more.

The big shocks of the Plan have already been outed in the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, which also goes out to consultation next week; the main controversy being the loss of huge swathes of Salford's green belt (see previous Salford Star article – click here).

Areas being taken out of the green belt total over 500 hectares, with the biggest at Irlam and Cadishead which will see the loss of almost 300 hectares in order to build 2,250 houses. Green belt loss around Boothstown and Ellenbrook accounts for almost 50 hectares, Hazelhurst Farm in Worsley will lop a further 31.2 hectares, and the Port Salford expansion in Irlam another 122.2 hectares.

Against this, 184.5 hectares of green space at the newly named West Salford Greenway in Worsley will be converted to green belt, as will 15.3 hectares which are part of the Logistics North Country Park in Little Hulton and 7.9 hectares of Wharton Playing Fields.

10% of all 34,900 units of new homes will be built on green belt land over the next twenty years. Meanwhile, over half of all new properties, or 18,700 apartments and houses, will be situated in Salford Quays, what's now called Ordsall Waterfront and the `City Centre', which stretches from Salford University, down the Crescent and Chapel Street to Greengate and New Bailey*

The Council estimates that the city's population will grow by 20% to around 290,000 by 2035, and argues in the Plan that it needs to accommodate this growth via "housing that meets the full range of needs" and the development of "a strong, diverse economy that can withstand economic shocks and provide a range of accessible employment opportunities".

The Council adds that it needs to "Facilitate the continued growth of those locations that are essential to Greater Manchester's future prospects, such as the City Centre* and Salford Quays" and "Ensure that all residents share in the benefits of growth"...

One particularly cryptic section of the Plan is related to what it calls the `Cambridge' area of Lower Broughton. This is the area near the Grade II listed Victoria Theatre, the Cambridge Industrial Estate and around Lower Broughton Health Centre.

Houses here were hard hit by the Boxing Day Flood and will be subject to a `masterplan'..."to develop a comprehensive approach to addressing the high level of flood risk in the area".

Masterplans in Salford usually involve demolishing houses – ask anyone in Lower or Higher Broughton – but the Council is being very coy about details. The Plan merely states that the priority will include "Enabling existing residents to remain in the area, in a home with a significantly lower risk of flooding".

Elsewhere in the Plan it states that the Council will be "Supporting the replacement of existing buildings at risk of flooding, particularly housing, with new/alternative accommodation that has a significantly lower risk of being badly affected by a flood event due to careful location, design and 'flood proofing'".

If it looks and quacks like a duck it usually is a duck, so the Star spoke to local councillor John Merry and asked whether the houses will be bulldozed. Councillor  Merry responded: "There are no proposals at this stage to knock people's houses down...there is absolutely no plan to move them out of the area", before adding that "It might be that in some cases we can provide them with a better house than they have at the moment. Our intentions are to protect people and make the area safer."

Further up the road, the 'Fairways' site for travelling showpeople at Clarence Street
is definitely being bulldozed due to its `greater than 1 in 100 year risk of flooding', with residents being `relocated' to an unspecified area.

"Cambridge has the most severe flood risk in Salford, with most of it lying within flood zone 3 and liable to significant water depths in the most severe flood events" the Plan states "However, it also benefits from an excellent location in the Irwell valley close to the City Centre..."

The Plan adds that there will be new areas for water storage in the event of a flood, that the grade II listed Victoria Theatre will be protected, "securing its positive reuse, preferably for a community use in keeping with its original function and design", and that it will seek to be "improving connections through Cambridge and into surrounding areas, including across the River Irwell and to neighbouring parts of Manchester."

In a sense, residents will be able to guess what the masterplan might entail – Alexander Gardens is being `redeveloped', there are tentative plans for the health centre to re-locate to Mocha Parade, and, years before the flood, Countryside Properties had the whole `Cambridge' area down for proposed `redevelopment'.

In relation to future plans for Cambridge, Councillor Merry added: "All three councillors were involved in discussions over this with a view to guaranteeing the right of all residents to stay in the area, but also as the residents wanted strengthening the flood protection especially in the Cambridge area. To that end we want to work with the residents to come up with the right plans."

Elsewhere, as well as the green belt and green space sites around Boothstown, Irlam and Cadishead being earmarked for housing (see previous Salford Star articles – click here and click here), Little Hulton is down as a site for 885 houses – at Brackley Golf Course (500), Ladywell Avenue (35), the former playing field of St George's School near Burgess Farm (200) and land near Kenyon Way (150).

The Plan also includes proposals for 100 houses at Clifton Business Park, sixty `highest quality' houses on land near St. Augustine's Church, Pendlebury, 550 houses on employment land at Swinton Hall Road, while the former Swinton Sewage Works is down for around 250 houses as part of a new green space.

The controversial plans for around sixty houses at Hill Top Moss on Hill Top Road in Walkden, already the scene of bitter protests and recriminations, are also in the Plan; the Council arguing that the development will "Provide a high quality frontage to Hill Top Lane, helping to present an attractive gateway into Blackleach Country Park" – which will, no doubt, rile the residents even further (see previous Salford Star articles – click here and click here).

Also up for a 75 house development is Moss Lane in Walkden, despite the fact that the "north-west corner of the site falls within the hazardous installation middle notification zone for a gas depot". As the Plan notes, "this will need to be reflected in the design of any development in accordance with health and safety guidance"!

Peel Holdings has also suggested plonking 315 houses on Swinton Golf Course. The Council responded "If the loss of part of the golf course was to be considered acceptable, then the site would in principle be suitable to accommodate housing development".

Meanwhile, the freshly named Charlestown Riverside is earmarked for a further 1,310 houses and apartments, stretching from the former Castle Irwell student block to Langley Road... "The riverside setting provides the opportunity to deliver a series of attractive housing developments" states the Plan, adding "However, the location next to the river also means that significant parts of the site are at risk of flooding."

The Plan states that sports pitches will be "lost", there could be a new primary school to cope with the influx, and that the area's heritage assets will be `protected and enhanced', particularly citing "the locally listed Manchester Racecourse Turnstiles at Cromwell Road". This is weird because only last month, Salford Council approved a plan to demolish them (see here).

Also on heritage, while Victoria Theatre is to be protected and Collier Baths will be `re-invigorated', the Plan says nothing about the listed Crown Theatre in Eccles, Monks Hall, Buile Hill Mansion, the Lancastrian Hall and more.

The Plan has lots to say about all the infrastructure to cope with 34,900 new properties over the next twenty years... that development "will not be permitted until an appropriate supply of school places can be guaranteed in the local area" and that it will be "Protecting, adapting and enhancing the city's existing transport infrastructure" and "Managing the impact of new development on transport networks", while "reducing the overall need to travel" with "An increase in the proportion of journeys made by walking and cycling".

The Plan adds that there will be a new M62-A57 link road at Barton and a junction on the M62 between junctions 11 and 12, and will be investigating "the potential for developing new road links across the Manchester Ship Canal between Salford and Trafford".

There's also information in the Plan about how the Council intends to cut emissions and move to low carbon, renewable and other energy sources, improve biodiversity at Chat Moss and cut pollution (more on this to follow). While all this is very nice, the Plan doesn't mention fracking once, nor the Council's attitude towards it.

The Local Plan for Salford is just a draft and all citizens have a right to challenge it and try to change it. The public consultation runs from Tuesday 8th November until Friday 6th January 2017, and all the details should be on Salford Council's website.

Comments on the Local Plan can be made by email to plans.consultation@salford.gov.uk

Online using the comments form at http://www.salford.gov.uk/draftlocalplancon
By post to: Draft Local Plan Consultation, Spatial Planning, Salford Civic Centre
Chorley Road, Swinton M27 5BY

Any questions about the consultation can be asked by contacting the Council's spatial planning team on 0161 793 3782 or email plans.consultation@salford.gov.uk

* While the Council calls this `Salford City Centre' for the Local Plan, in the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework it's called just the `City Centre' that's part of Manchester City Centre

See also related Salford Star articles...

Salford Green Belt Attack in Greater Manchester Planning Diktak - click here

Salford Labour Party Councillors Issued with Idiot Sheet on Green Belt Backlash - click here

Salford Council Tightens Up on Developer Planning Fee Evasion - click here

mike Thorpe wrote
at 09:44:15 on 03 November 2016
I do accept that there will be a need for the City to build on its green belt if we are to reduce the demand for our citizens to have access to affordable housing. However, not sure where this commitment is in these proposals. As for ensuring there is a fit for purpose infrastructure we got that wrong with our schools and are having to build extensions or re-open parts of others we closed (the Council knows best). Will we really enjoy all that is promised by regeneration? little has come back from the regeneration of Broughton to the local community. There is little paid in the way of the old 106 monies. The NDC area what was, where is the economic, social and environment legacy of the 56 million pound programme run by the Council for those communities? ( the Council knows best) The City seems to shy away from giving developers KPI's around sustained employment for it young people.(the Council knows best) We will be losing Industrial area's of the City such as the Cambridge Industrial estate, that will not be replaced.(the Council knows best) The only things that will enjoy the financial benefits or returns as a result of these plans will be the developers and the City Treasury. I am not opposed to regeneration or the development of the City but it needs but to be for the City and all its residents not simply to accommodate what GM needs and want. We need as a City to stop apologising for being poor and realise that we have what they want and for the first time in our History get and make real a proper change for all our citizens.
Screwed over wrote
at 13:31:29 on 02 November 2016
Look how Merry treated the people who lived withing a couple of hundred yards of him in Higher Broughton. The man is an idiot. I don't know if he is a liar as I think he believes what he says when he is saying it. He is not a socialist and he should join the Tory party with Felse. They deserve each other.
Robert Kerr wrote
at 11:59:36 on 02 November 2016
John Merry .......he needs to think about promises made to people of Salford before he makes remarks about there being no demolition of properties , wasn't it this councilor who said if you didn't want to move you didn't .tell that to the people who used to live in Hatton Avenue and surrounding and all the what was promised.
BREXIT wrote
at 19:19:10 on 01 November 2016
I can see where Mr Felse is coming from. He is the mercy man saying social change is needed in the UK. Good luck Mr Mercy Man. I hope you get to raise a million for the Chtisities and stuff Burnham.
at 19:18:18 on 01 November 2016
Momentum aka Felse, what are you blithering on about?? There's only only Tory candidate declared and that is Trafford Council leader Sean Anstee. If Felse has indeed jumped ship to the Tories (no evidence to say they have accepted him - I'm sure if they aren't that desperate), why on earth would they pick him as candidate?!?! You do a search for his name and the main thing that comes up is when he was Pride Queen! Not so much a serious contender really?!
at 15:28:49 on 01 November 2016
Ray keep up the attacks on Felse. If he gets to be Tory candidate with that concrete Christies pledge our Andy Burnham is stuffed. We need Labour supporters to attack Mr Felse or else risk Tories ruling Greater Manchester. Quick do it comrades.
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 12:46:20 on 01 November 2016
So Michael do you and your Tory mates (have they clocked yet what a deeply troubled person you are), support public sector obligations being imposed on private developers -- for example 10% of the proposed build be available as "affordable rented property"?6
Carol Matley wrote
at 04:49:15 on 01 November 2016
Deja Vous ....councillor Merry said the same about Hatton Ave, our houses wouldn't be knocked down if we all stuck together, low and behold we we're all moved out and as for the promise that neighbours would be kept together that was the biggest lie I wouldn't trust a word they say as money is at the bottom of this and always was.
Michael James Felse wrote
at 16:47:51 on 31 October 2016
Forgive me Stephen for not throwing a party at your comment. Tell the 6000 kicked off the housing waiting list or the 8000 left on the Salford list that will grow to 28,000 in 20 years while they wait to be picked for one of the 100 new social homes. Labour do not give a flying fig.
The end wrote
at 21:42:30 on 30 October 2016
Thank you Salford Star for the quick response, much appreciated
Steven wrote
at 21:42:12 on 30 October 2016
I've generally found John Merry to be sincere and there is a very new set of faces in Salford Labour now thanks to determined efforts to get rid of the previous corruption led as i understand it by unite, with Dennett in the lead. Whatever lies and neglect and avoidance people might have suffered in the past, im not at all sure that Salford Labour is now what it used to be.
Salford Star wrote
at 14:22:47 on 29 October 2016
See The End's comment below - sorry, didn't read it properly - it's gone!
Paul Delve wrote
at 14:20:43 on 29 October 2016
Salford Council are the Biggest Bunch of Liars!..I bought a house on Lane End Eccles in the eighties and heard a Rumour in the early nineties that some of the houses including mine were to be knocked down for new developments!..I went to the council and asked the question if this were true or not..Only to be told.."That is absolute nonsense"..Well My house and others No longer stand there but Morrisons does!..So what does this tell you?..I would not believe a word John Merry speaks as they are All Liars!..
The end wrote
at 14:20:08 on 29 October 2016
Can't believe the star have printed Dave has let,s disgraceful abuse. Really is a low for this publication.
Michael James Felse wrote
at 10:33:18 on 29 October 2016
This plan is the nail in the coffin for Labour. Such influx of private owners willing to vote in Conservatives will overtake the Labour Party voters in Salford's 12 wards. Goodbye to Labour who have now printed plans to destroy their supporters trust that will never forgive Labour GMCA for destroying green belt land. Why have Labour turned away from protecting vulnerable people and green belt land? It makes absolutely no sense.
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