29 September 2020
Oldham & Saddleworth Green Party say help protect Moston Brook from developers
Moston Brook is a large natural green space running the length of Failsworth from the border with Hollinwood to Newton Heath, Manchester. It is vital for local residents for recreation, health and wellbeing, especially those of us living in the terraced, gardenless streets of Failsworth West. It’s vital for the environment: reducing air pollution from Broadway (A663) and Oldham Road (A62), combating the climate emergency and the biodiversity crisis.
Its strategic importance as green infrastructure is recognised in the Greater Manchester and Oldham environmental plans. It is one of only two priority Biodiversity Opportunity Areas in Oldham listed in the Greater Manchester Ecological Framework for wildlife habitat creation and repair. It is recognised by Greater Manchester Combined Authority as a major park and green space. It is designated as a Green Corridor for wildlife and walking and as Other Protected Open Land. Oldham Council is committed to protecting both in its Local Plan. But as we have seen with other areas of OPOL land at Thornley Brook, Grotton, and Cowlishaw, Shaw, this protection cannot be relied upon.
We can help protect open land at Moston Brook by taking part in the public consultation currently taking place until 10 October 2020. The consultation is open to Oldham residents.
The key question is whether the part of Moston Brook running along Broadway owned by Oldham Council should be transferred to Failsworth Trust which owns the adjoining Memorial Land and Park. The Trust land was purchased by public donations after the first World War and can only be used for public enjoyment and recreation.
Transfer to Failsworth Trust will safeguard the land from being built on - Bellway Homes who have a housing development next to that part of Moston Brook want to build on the land. Transferring the land to the Trust will safeguard the natural habitats, green corridor and recreation space. It will allow plans to go ahead to create a much needed visible entrance to Moston Brook on that side and new footpaths.
Transfer to Failsworth Trust will help safeguard Moston Brook as a whole - Building on the land would give the green light to private developers looking to build on other privately owned parts of Moston Brook
The other issues are about making good the effects that Bellway’s housing development has had on Trust land at Moston Brook. Bellway is required to landscape and make safe its attenuation basin on the Trust land created to collect excess surface water from its housing estate. It also has to landscape large areas of mounded soil it deposited on Trust land.
As the issues in this consultation show, Moston Brook, like so many other essential green spaces in Oldham, Greater Manchester and across the country, is under ongoing threat from private developers. We need to keep watch and take action to protect our green places.
The consultation is open to Oldham residents. You can take part by answering a very short questionnaire online https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/N3SLHJK .The closing date for the consultation is 10th October 2020.
For more information and a copy of the site and landscaping plans
See Moston Brook Friends Group Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Moston-Brook-Friends-Group-191786807541410/posts/
Or contact Ann Bates (Moston Brook Project Officer) email email@example.com or tel 07801 204 804.