Star date: 11th April 2018


Over 1,500 people have now signed a petition urging Salford City Council not to allow houses to be built in Buile Hill Park, which, it states, would be a "travesty".

Now Weaste and Claremont Community Committee is set to discuss the issue at its next meeting on May 22nd, as the issue rages on.

Full details here...

Two weeks ago, the Salford Star revealed that Salford Council and Salford Mayor, Paul Dennett, had signed a 'Memorandum of Understanding' with the developer, Capital and Centric, to consider building houses in Buile Hill Park, in order to facilitate a Salford Red Devils Foundation bid to re-open the Park's Mansion (see previous Salford Star article – click here).

Since then the backlash against the Mayor and Council has been phenomenal, with over 1,500 people signing a petition begun by local resident Lynda Curran that states...

"Buile Hill Park is one of the few green public spaces left in the centre of Salford in an area that is surrounded by motorways and main roads. It has been a park since 1902 and loved by the people, it is well used and very much needed. 

"It would be a travesty to build houses on it" the petition adds "It's a public space.  Salford is drowning in construction so we need to preserve our green spaces for future generations to enjoy, as we have before them."

While the developer is now stating that the scheme to build houses was just one option for the site of the old stables and garden centre; and that there could be artists' studios or something else built there, the Salford Star understands that these 'other' options were not included in the original 'Memorandum of Understanding' signed by the Mayor.

Now the Weaste and Claremont Community Committee is set to discuss the issue at its next meeting at 6:30pm on Tuesday 22nd May at De La Salle Sports Club (although this venue might not be big enough and could change).

The meeting is open to all local residents and there will be representatives present from the Council, as well as local councillors who have promised an update on the plans...

"Like many residents in Salford, I'm keen to see the mansion returned back to its former glory" says Weaste and Seedley Councillor Paul Wilson "Whilst I accept that some development will be required to do this, I don't think residential property in a public park is the way forward. My views on this are reinforced by the 2016-17 Public Parks report produced by the cross Party Commons Communities and local government committee."

He adds that he has told the Mayor he is "personally opposed to a residential development in a public park and asked that we work together to reach a solution; I'd like to see enhanced leisure facilities developed within the park to enable the mansion to be returned back to public use...

"The City Mayor assured me that the outcome of the six month Memorandum of Understanding between the City Council and Salford Red Devils Foundation and Capital and Centric Group would be open to public consultation" he explains.

However, with the 'secret' 'Memorandum of Understanding' now known to the community, people are demanding transparency well before the 'outcome' is announced in six months time.

To sign the petition to 'Stop Salford Council building houses in Buile Hill Park, before it is too late' – click here

Felsey wrote
at 09:35:25 on 09 May 2018
Thank you Mary for keeping us informed. I have now seen the public word on this development saying it is not wanted. Time to kick it out and to save the heritage park because clearly that is the will of the people living in the area. Salford does not need another wrong doing and I urge Conservative Councillors to turn up at this meeting and shout enough is enough.
Mary ferrer wrote
at 16:28:22 on 08 May 2018
Please remember the next Claremont and Weaste community committee meeting is on the 22nd of May at the De La Salle clpvub Lancaster Road at 6.30. I understand the proposed houses within the park are on the agenda. Even if you don't live in these wards please turn up. Show the council how people feel across the city
Lynda Curran wrote
at 14:48:46 on 01 May 2018
We now have 1799 signatures on the petition opposition is building please keep sharing and signing it is good to now so many people care about the park.Thank you
Philip Amatt wrote
at 14:34:30 on 22 April 2018
Here's an idea. On May 3rd you have a vote. Find out which councillor is on your side and vote for them. If they support this development, then get rid of them. Don't have any consideration for what party they represent. It's meaningless in local elections. They aren't politicians, they just think they are. Get rid of the dead wood and get somebody in that sings to your tune. It's your park. Not a project for Councillors to play with.
Mary ferrer wrote
at 08:57:57 on 19 April 2018
When the foundation put their plan forward they should have made it clear they didn't have the money to renovate the Mansion.Or did they.how did the council expect this group to fund this big project. Remember this is not any old building.it's a Charles Barry grade 2 listed building. They can't get the local builders in to get it sorted. Could cost a few million.So who has decided to sell of some land within the grade 2 historic park. The foundation? ?? Or the council.how long has this proposal been on the cards. It didn't happen overnight.This has been on the table for some time. I have heard 30 houses.That's a big area.30 houses 2 cars per household. Going in and out.Air quality is bad in Salford. Are parks are supposed to be healthy places to spend our leisure time.60 cars plus visitors sounds a bit unhealthy to me.So god forbid this plan went ahead.Not only will the city be leasing the Mansion to the federation,we will be paying for the renovations.Sounds a bit odd.this is the same council some years ago would not work with our group to help us bring it back into use.WE didn't want their money,just the help of their officers. But they said a big fat NO.They can't be allowed to do this to our park.
Philip Amatt wrote
at 08:58:39 on 18 April 2018
The park belongs to the people of Salford. It has been a leisure facility for over 100 years. You have no right to build houses here.
Hedley Hopper, Political Correspondent and Geographer wrote
at 09:23:02 on 17 April 2018
Come on Councillor Warmisham, Langworthy Labour Councillor up for election next month, tell us what YOUR views are in respect of building in Buile Hill Park. You have had plenty of time to concoct a response! Oh, I forgot, Salford Labour Councillors don't respond to Salford Star. Convenient get out!!
Christine Diamond wrote
at 12:23:27 on 16 April 2018
It will be a disgusting move if this beautiful park becomes developed like all other green spaces in Salford. The park is well used even now by Salford people, young and old alike. Leave it alone!!
Lynn macdonald wrote
at 12:23:19 on 16 April 2018
This is a public space and should remain so. Stop stop stop ripping the heart out of my city. The council don't own the city the people do. Don't forget we have the power to take away your power with one little cross.
Brianfkirkham wrote
at 12:22:20 on 16 April 2018
A solution to the current mess is easily done. Developers have been landbanking in salford for quite a while now. They make an initial offer, make an announcement and when that area is clear of the community they pick up even more of the land. Strangely, proximity to tramlines is a must, green space is gold, and if it’s right by the regional centre...premium prices can be levelled at any buyer. If developers don’t want to use the land they should Cut their losses and pass it to someone who does. As for parks, the green spaces should be preserved particularly if it’s been designated as such. Council officers opened the floodgates in weaste by shipping schools around and entertaining the idea of country estates in a public park. A word of advice for our mayor, pop into the local history library and find out who those green spaces belong to....their people that gave them to the city might thank you for it.
Hedley Hopper, Political Correspondent and Geographer wrote
at 21:43:05 on 12 April 2018
THE IMPORTANCE OF CHECKING FACTS When I was young in the days before SatNav, I often wandered off from home on my trusty and rusty Raleigh Tricycle, if I got lost I would draw a map to find my way home. As I got older, I learned to look at maps first before wandering off. This is a very valuable tip. I’ve just had a call from a resident of the Langworthy Twilight Home for the Politically Retired and Old Wrinklies, Christopher Barnes (of almost-blessed memory), the original “Rainbow Candidate” of the UKIP-Liberal-Liberal Democrat Alliance asking me where Buile Hill Park is situated exactly. He was rather agitated as he had heard a rumour that Salford Council was in the early stages of building houses in the Park – not bird houses but solid brick and mortar ones for humans – on the site of the old stables and garden centre. He was very incensed! “Fancy building houses like that, there in Langworthy Ward!” he said. Being ever the diplomat I queried, “Are the tablets becoming ineffectual? After all, wouldn’t Langworthy’s esteemed Councillors Warmisham, Reynolds and the other one be fighting to save the Park. They have been silent on the matter.” “Check your maps, Hedley,” retorted Old Barnesy, exhibiting an old steely flash of tenacity and his usual politeness from his days of Yore, “The House and Stables are in Langworthy, the Banqueting Suite is in Weaste!! So, Langworthy IS at risk…no wonder our esteemed councillors are keeping quiet. Letting everyone bark up the wrong tree. Either that or they are ignorant of the area they represent along with the Weaste Councillors.” The line went dead. So, I got out an old map of Langworthy Ward but suspected it to be a lot newer than the one Old Barnesy had referred to. AND WHAT A SURPRISE! Old Barnesy was right - (the curmudgeonly old so&so)! Still unable to believe my eyes I went to the Ordnance Survey Election Maps which can be found at https://www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/election-maps/gb/# AND WHAT A SURPRISE!!! Old Barnesy was right!!! The Old Hall and Stables ARE in Langworthy Ward. Basically the Ward Boundary runs up the path from the gate on Lower Seedley Road, past the community allotment on your left up to the junction with path at the foot of the steps, turn left, following this path with the bowling green on your left, up the path that becomes the path BETWEEN the Old Hall and the Banqueting Suite, following it to the entrance on Eccles Old Rd. So here’s an idea for Councillor Warmisham to get the Electorate on his side, as well as the Weaste Councillor who is up for election this year too and whose Electorate will be affected too. TELL US WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO DO TO PROTECT THE INTEGRITY OF BUILE HILL PARK’S VITAL OPEN SPACE – AND OTHERS – IN LANGWORTHY, WEASTE AND SALFORD!
Jeff wrote
at 18:18:49 on 12 April 2018
When will Salford people realise this Mayor and council do not have the interests of ordinary people at heart? They are trying to make Salford into something it never will be.
Mary ferrer wrote
at 13:49:30 on 12 April 2018
Let's be fair the Weaste councillors didn’t know anything about this.If this Labour council can't be up front with their own councillors,what chance have we.if this latest plan goes ahead,NO park playing field or green site will be safe. We lost £4M of lottery funding with the proposed hotel. If this madness goes ahead we can wave goodbye to any lottery 5.A housing estate in 5 middle of OUR grade 2 heritage city wide park. If you haven't signed the petition, please do so. And even if you don't live in Claremont or Weaste come along to the meeting in May.anothe project behind closed doors. If Stephen and the Star had not found out about these plans.we wouldn't have a clue. This Labour council are becoming a dictatorship.They don't even let their own councillors know what is being planned behind closed doors.
Cody wrote
at 12:05:03 on 12 April 2018
More of the same, investment at any cost and in secrecy. Even if they did build new homes there I imagine very few of them would be affordable to many Salfordians. The Council's defence of this would be pointing to Tory austerity. I understand the Tory cuts have bitten deep, but they weren't the ones who insisted on PFIs with high interest and letting Developers who build new homes that not only price many Salfordians out of renting/buying them (with the loss of over 2000 affordable homes), but also allowed the Developers to get away with avoiding paying their fees and subsequently losing £18 million according to a study by Sheffield University. However the Council argues that challenging these Developers would cost money as they would appeal to the Secretary of state. I'd like to know how many times they actually tried. So rather than challenge them they give them land and loans for investment at any cost. The people of Salford need affordable homes, and the Council's £3 million pot just isn't good enough. If the Council would challenge these Development companies for their fees and set a precedent for any others thinking of cheating the system here, then possibly there wouldn't be any need to sell-off parkland. On the flip-side of this however making sure the Developers would have to pay their fees could possibly see a drop in investment, something the Council doesn't want. Though I personally think it wouldn't be much of a loss. So for now it looks like until the law changes the Developers have the Council over a barrel and the Council is only too willing to drop their pants for them.
at 12:04:48 on 12 April 2018
Imagine a Salford without this poxy council. Imagine money invested in Buille Hill Park and not some poxy garden village in Worsley. Imagine a restored Buille Hill Mansion, with the museum and the mining museum. Imagine the hot house and the animal section in their full glory. School trips to the museum, mining museum, hot house and animal sections of the park. Maybe some bee hives producing a bit of honey? A small pond created for aquatic wildlife? Maybe some red squirrels could be introduced? Local residents or the whole of Salford, proud of the park restored to former glories. Something that Salfordians , born in Salford can enjoy with their families. Surely any council would want something like that? No---this lot want to sell it off to developers.
at 12:04:32 on 12 April 2018
Salford Council are letting the good people of Salford down, the park belongs to the people not the Council who appear to want to sell it off to private developers. You would think to have such a wonderful resource as the park, that should be developed for the community, and marketed to bring money into the area for the good of all.
Martin Finch wrote
at 17:02:02 on 11 April 2018
Buille Hill Park.should be cherished as a rare green part of Salford.and not developed.
Bob wrote
at 17:01:57 on 11 April 2018
If our Local MP's and Councillors allow this then they are NOT fit to represent the People of Salford. Local Councillors are giving away all our free open spaces to give to developers who make money and NOT the council. Instead of the old terrace slums, we now have high rise slums. people compacted into small square box one on top of the other. Disgrace to salford.
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