Further to my previous column where I discussed the benefits of the Bury’s Green belt, in particular at Simister and Elton Reservoir, and our moral duty to protect these areas for future generations. Since then the GMSF has not only been a huge part of my daily inbox, but with being due to be published this week the proximity of the threat to our greenbelt is greater than ever before.
After seeing the updated details for the GMSF, the council will clearly be pointing to a reduced usage of green belt as a success. I would strongly disagree that the best part of 2000 new homes and a new metro station in the green belt at Elton reservoir could be considered in any way a success. The concreting over of our green lungs around our towns runs counter to not only local plans on protecting the environment but are clearly not able to support a national policy of protecting and enhancing the green belt.
With a national brownfield first stance we should be following that lead locally and tackling the issues of contamination and viability on our brownfield sites to remove the need for building on our beauty spots.
Similarly, in Simister, whereas previous discussions suggested that the village could be saved from unnecessary and unwanted development, this has turned out not to be the case. Again, the best part of 2000 homes and a new school to be built in the tranquil fields surrounding the village.
Whereas my last column was a warning as to what lay on the horizon, I consider this week’s column to be a call to arms. Let your local councillors know of your views and seek the representation that you not only want but deserve. The decision as to whether this plan is adopted lies with the Council and it is unable to proceed without the Council’s support.
Now indeed is the time to stand up and say NO. Bury Folk Keep It Green have done some amazing work in recent weeks in promoting the issue and my thanks go out to them, however we need to ensure that all residents of the borough are aware that there green spaces are soon to be concreted over due to the Mayor’s and the Council’s plans and we all need to mobilise to prevent this.
For those saying this a Secretary of State issue, they could not be more wrong. This will only get to the Secretary of State if all Greater Manchester Councils agree to the proposals which will make matters much more difficult.