Holmes Chapel News

 

Unless the Government allocates additional money, schools and academies will lose huge amounts of money - rising to £2.5 billion a year in real terms by 2020.  The impact on our local schools in Dane Valley would be:

Hermitage Primary

-£92,512 Budget change by 2020

-£460 Per pupil

-2 Teachers

Holmes Chapel Primary

-£132,299 Budget change by 2020

-£366 Per pupil

-3 Teachers

 

Holmes Chapel Comprehensive

-£290,644 Budget change by 2020

-£282 Per pupil

-7 Teachers

Goostrey Community Primary

-£50,463 Budget change by 2020

-£239 Per pupil

-1 Teacher

 

The Data

The NUT and ATL used published Department for Education data to calculate cuts to England’s primary and secondary schools over this Parliament, 2015 – 2020.  They used the 2015/16 funding as the baseline. They calculated the impact of the cash freeze on per pupil income, the proposed cut to the Education Services Grant and the proposed introduction of a National Funding Formula. They included a minimum funding guarantee (MFG) as this has been in place since the Government started moving towards a National Funding Formula in 2013/14.

  

England’s schools are now experiencing the largest real terms cuts in funding in more than a generation.

SCHOOLS ARE STRUGGLING FINANCIALLY. CLASS SIZES ARE RISING, CURRICULUM CHOICES ARE BEING CUT, PUPILS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS ARE LOSING VITAL SUPPORT AND SCHOOL STAFF ARE LOSING THEIR JOBS.

The Government’s proposed ‘Fair Funding’ reforms will not make matters any better. Without additional funding, a new funding formula will simply spread an already inadequate amount of money around more thinly.

If you are worried write to or email your MP and sign the petition at www.schoolcuts.org.uk/

 

 

Cuts will affect local schools

  Unless the Government allocates additional money, schools and academies will lose huge amounts of money - rising to £2.5 billion a year in real terms by 2020.  The impact...

Members of the Labour Party in Holmes Chapel had another successful meeting on Monday 16th November.  There was a lively discussion on topics such as the local NHS, parking near schools, Jeremy Corbyn's reaction to the Paris terrorist attack and the use of social media.  Next meeting is on January 11th at the George and Dragon starting at 7:30.  Join us for a drink and friendly political chat.

Holmes Chapel Labour Party Meeting November

Members of the Labour Party in Holmes Chapel had another successful meeting on Monday 16th November.  There was a lively discussion on topics such as the local NHS, parking near...

Developers have submitted a planning request for an environmental assessment for a possible development on London Road just south of Alum Bridge.  The development would be for mixed use including up to 190 dwellings, offering land for a potential primary school and 350sq.m of B1 employment space.  Although geographically just in Brereton Parish, such a development would have a major impact on Holmes Chapel.  Very early days but let us know what  you think.

Even more development in Holmes Chapel

Developers have submitted a planning request for an environmental assessment for a possible development on London Road just south of Alum Bridge.  The development would be for mixed use including up...

On Saturday 6th September, there will be another public meeting to update the public on the state of the campaign to date and to show that the continuing efforts. This will take the form of a coffee morning/public meeting to allow the various stakeholders  to discuss the proposals.
 

Darren Price, our recently selected PPC,  is attending.

Saltersford Corner Protest Meeting

On Saturday 6th September, there will be another public meeting to update the public on the state of the campaign to date and to show that the continuing efforts. This...

Developers have resubmitted a bid to build 100 houses on the Saltersford Farm site on the edge of Holmes Chapel despite an earlier bid being rejected by Cheshire East.  Local Labour Party member Bill Armstrong-Mortlock will be leading a renewed campaign against this unwanted expansion of the village,

Saltersford Corner Bid Reopened

Developers have resubmitted a bid to build 100 houses on the Saltersford Farm site on the edge of Holmes Chapel despite an earlier bid being rejected by Cheshire East.  Local...

Save Saltersford Corner

Report for Public Meeting on Wednesday 26th March 2014

6:00 pm at The Victoria Club, Holmes Chapel

 

3 Campaign Progress

3.1 What have we done?

  • Continued to campaign with support of local dignitories
  • Communications through two leaflet drops, Facebook ('Save Saltersford Corner') and twitter (@saltersfordhc)
  • Knutsford Guardian and Sanbach Chronicle have published stories of the campaign's success so far
  • Online petition 516 signatures on Change.org before resubmission
  • Highlighted key issues with infrastructure, personal objections and greenfield site restrictions
  • Reported how the development is not necessary for council plans as it is not needed for the 5 year housing plan

3.2 How have we achieved this?

  • Heavy public backing and support driving the campaign
  • Efficient communications- mainly social media and press attention
  • Support and advice of local dignitories on how to proceed and further the campaign
  • Recruiting more passionate members for the team

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4 Reasons for Opposition

4.1 School Representative - Jeff Sharp on behalf of HCCS

  • Jeff Sharp stated his delight and pride on behalf of the community for students driving the campaign
  • Identified the demongraphic dip in year 7 where there are only 180 students and that the planned admission for 2014 is far greater
  • Next year will see 210 students accepted and a further 30+ students waiting list which are likely to gain places after they appeal
  • Reinforces the idea that this is before the additional residents
  • Developer's software states that from 230 properties (approx) their computer modelling suggests that there will only be 28 students of school age. Sharp suggests that this is unrealistic and again reinforces that this is only from the Manor Lane development and not a substantial representation of the growing community
  • Key Quote: "We have no- or very little- capacity without any significant investment... Where will they be educated?"
  • Identifies that numbers are expected to grow with post-16 education becoming compulsory
  • Promised guarentee of place for local area from feeder primary schools as HCCS is not selective- despite being an Academy.

 

4.2 Public Opposition

Abbie little- Local resident (16 years old)

  • Brief history of why the campaign is important to her- local resident since the age of 5 months old
  • Young representative of village- believes the "next generation" should have a say in proposed development
  • "Unsuitable development" and homes will appeal to young families who are keen to move into the area- however identifies lack of local facilities within the Village (including healthcare and schools which would be necessary in educating the new young residents)
  • Reaccessed access point to Saltersford Corner is still dangerous and will not be fit for children walking to school
  • Reports that according to Cheshire East's website, due to availablility guidelines, the site isn't developable and that Saltersford Corner is outside of Holmes Chapel's development zone

 

4.3 Local Groups - Les Gilbert on behalf of the Parish Council

  • Praises campaign team and says it is "encouraging" that young people are taking an interest in the village
  • Parish are opposed to application
  • Technical services oppose on a number of grounds as it is contrary to already sufficient housing needs
  • Identifies the "negative impact" on local infrastructure
  • "If you're against this development, the Parish Council is right with you!!"

 

4.4 Elected Representative- Dean Grice- Holmes Chapel Health Centre

  • Reports problem of the health centre being already "busy and over subscribed"
  • A number of patients have raised concerns to the practise already and regarding the impact of the proposed developments in the village
  • Funding for GP practices is due to number of patients - could expand however the funding is very low for primary care
  • Identifies the pressure on GPs will increase, that there will be a longer waiting list and that there will not be the choice to see a GP of your choice
  • Population increase without funding runs the risk of additional stress for GPs and "burning out"
  • Other concern is premises reaching the end of its useful age and being of an inadequate size. If the village sees a significant increase, the site would need be redeveloped which is funded by NHS england which have currently frozen funds for GP practises
  • Emphasises the need for Council, MP and public awareness - encourages public to fight for infrastructure
  • Feedback from GPs: they're happy to see who needs to be seen, but concern to does lie with the lack of funding for the practise and commissioning body
  • Promotes action of public to write to MPs, Parish Council and Cheshire East Council to fight for funding

 

4.5 Fiona bruce- Abbie Little quoting a statement quoting from BBC stoke

  • Fiona has been fighting since 2010
  • Declared support for campaign and has also been fighting development on greenfield- farmland, like Saltersford Corner
  • Identifies problem with additional pressure on local infrastructure, as well as the extra pressure on jobs for people in the local area

 

4.6 Michael Jones- Head of Council

  • "I'm totally against it and I'm backing it* 100%" (Save Saltersford Corner Campaign)
  • Believes it is in a bad area that is not safe for development
  • "Bring it on- we'll protect you and we'll support you!"
  • States that the public is in a position to fight against it and that the public should definitely have some influence on the issue

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5 Future Campaign Progress

What is happening and what can we do? -Advice from Les Gilbert and Michael Kolker (Cheshire East)

  • The process of the local plan for Cheshire East sets out high level policies and establishes a job led growth strategy- Crewe and Macclesfield
  • The plan identifies key infrastructure projects and shows where jobs and houses will go
  • Settlement heirarchy: Holmes Chapel is one of thirteen places for 2500 houses to go. However, as Holmes Chapel is already doing this with the development in progress, we are less of a prospect as we* are well in credit already (*Holmes Chapel)
  • Core strategy needs to be approved by secretary of state
  • Later in the year a document will be produced with a site specific strategy
  • "Unplanned Unneccessary and unsustainable" - Michael Kolker
  • Now have 5 year housing land supply so the council can now defend against developers on greenfield site therefore the council are actively refusing applications on greenfield because they are not included in 5 year land supply and they're not included
  • Optimistic about defence
  • The development decision will go to a planning committee including councillors, professionals, solicitors and democratic services-the decision of councillors
  • Public have right to speak- 3 mins to fight their case (suggestion that Bill speaks on behalf of the public)
  • Encouraged to "Show your support. Bring your kids- bring everyone!" to make an impression on planning committee. Strength in numbers
  • Agenda will be published a week before
  • Suggests public write to the council and object on Cheshire East's website (Search "Saltersford Farm")

 

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Any Other Business

Questions from the floor:

  • "Are you confident this will happen?" (Reference to Brereton case which fell through a few years ago) "YES!" -Michael Jones
  • Concerns were expressed that there were no legal reasons to refuse the planning applications currently, so what basis would we have to form the campaign's argument and objection? Michael Jones replies stating that we have material evidence now (five year plan under new MPG guidelines) and that his backing will ensure that he does whatever he can to prevent this development from going through
    "We will do what we need to do to defend you"
  • "Does it carry weight to object on planning website?"
    Michael Jones: "Yes. Give us as much information as you can."
    eg, Highlight flooding or drainage issues (on fields on SCorner)
    and relevant material issues such as footpaths and traffic flow
    "Write different letters"
  • "Who decides and who can refuse the plans?"
    Michael Jones: Strategic planning board will decide- which is made up of impartial councillors with no predetermined position to consider application -including public opinion
  • "What is the time scale on opposing now they've reapplied?"
    Bill: 10th april and an expected decision on 2nd June
  • "If we originally objected, do we need to resubmit objections?"
    Michael Jones: Yes- before the 10th of April

 

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Close of Meeting

Thanks for support and dignitories

 

"We will continue to fight and I will continue to fight on behalf of our Community" - Bill Armstrong

Saltersford Corner Public Meeting

Save Saltersford Corner Report for Public Meeting on Wednesday 26th March 2014 6:00 pm at The Victoria Club, Holmes Chapel   3 Campaign Progress 3.1 What have we done? Continued...

Even though Cheshire East Council claims to have a strategic housing plan that meets the government's target of a five year supply of housing, a developer is seeking to build over a hundred new houses on Saltersford Farm.  These will be in addition to the over 400 already in the pipeline for the village.  The planned development is on a greenfield site at the edge of the Village.

Local Labour member, Bill Armstrong, has started a petition to protest against this latest plan.  You can sign the petition here 

The local infrastructure in Holmes Chapel is already under pressure and 100 more houses can only make matters worse. Residents are already campaigning to ensure that the growth in population is matched by the provision of leisure and sporting facilities which are now under threat.   

Even More Houses for Holmes Chapel

Even though Cheshire East Council claims to have a strategic housing plan that meets the government's target of a five year supply of housing, a developer is seeking to build...

Holmes Chapel Parish Council look to save AP Club

Holmes Chapel Parish Council is setting up a working party, comprising representatives from the council itself, the Holmes Chapel Partnership and other interested local organisations, to consider the possibility of the community acquiring and operating the AP Club site including the associated playing fields.  The working party will seek expert professional help to undertake this task and will seek a pre-feasibility grant from the Community Right to Bid scheme to finance the initial study.  The working party will report back with its recommendations within three months.

The current owners of the site, the French pharmaceutical company Sanofi Aventis, want to dispose of it.  They have issued notice to quit to all the users of the club and announced that the site will close in December and will be made secure.  This has already led to the local squash club having to leave the village.  The rugby club will have to leave by the end of this season.  Discussions have been held with the owners in an attempt to keep the site open whilst any developments are being considered, but such discussions have not been successful.

The parish council are keen to preserve the site and its facilities for the local community.  Following its closure in December there is a real danger that the site will become derelict whilst its future is sorted out.  Developers have already expressed an interest in using the site for even more housing.  The Parish Council has sought guidance regarding planning options from Cheshire East Council and Sport England.  Both have indicated that they would object to development of the site for other than sporting and recreational purposes unless any developer provided equal or better facilities in the village.  These restrictions could well reduce the realisable value of the site below that expected by the owners.

The parish council has also applied to Cheshire East Council for the site to be registered as an asset of community value.  If successful this means that the community would have six months from the date that Sanofi put it up for sale to submit a bid for the site.  There are no guarantees that such a bid would be accepted but at least Sanofi cannot sell the site without the community having a chance to preserve it.

Any local residents and organisations that would like to help with this campaign are urged to contact the parish council.

The AP Club in the community

The AP Club in Holmes Chapel Cheshire has been in existence in its present form since 1975 as a sports and social club for the local community, both within Holmes Chapel itself and the neighbouring parishes, and the workforce of Sanofi Aventis Pharma Ltd and its predecessor companies.  It includes a large outdoor sports field with associated changing facilities, a fitness gym, a badminton court, a squash court, a physiotherapy clinic, a large function hall with stage, a bar and associated kitchen and several smaller function rooms.  It has parking facilities and a floodlit outdoor training area.

The Club provides a health, leisure and fitness facility for the community.  It has the only squash court in Holmes Chapel and the only dedicated badminton court in the village.  It is home to a rugby union club which uses the large outdoor playing area and associated changing facilities.  The pitch provides the only large playing field in the village suitable for rugby and football.   The bar, lounge area and function rooms are used by many local organisations for indoor activities, social and charity functions.   These indoor spaces are used by a variety of groups from toddler exercise classes to adult fitness classes.  It formerly provided a bowling green and tennis courts but these have fallen into disrepair.  It has over 400 members.

Holmes Chapel has a population of over 6,000 which over the next five years, if current development plans come to fruition, could increase by 20%.  The AP Club site could be developed into a full community centre, offering not only the current sporting and recreational facilities, but also such activities as a community cinema, a performance and display space for local cultural societies; as well as a venue for local events both community and private.  This would not only enhance the wellbeing of the community but would also provide accessible local facilities for which residents currently have to travel to other towns.  By increasing the opportunities for all age groups to participate in community activities it would develop a stronger community. 

The next steps

The working party would produce a report which would enable the community to decide whether or not to proceed to a full feasibility and planning study prior to any bid.  The report will:

  • Provide an outline assessment of the support within the community for the acquisition of the Club, including an assessment of the likely use of any facilities by local organisations and businesses;
  • Take into account the impact on, and any possible cooperation with, other existing sporting and recreational providers in the Village, such as the Victoria Club and HCCS;
  • Outline of the facilities to be provided at any proposed community centre;
  • Estimate of the potential cost of purchasing the Club taking into account possible planning restrictions;
  • Understand the current physical condition of the Club and determine outline refurbishment costs;
  • Estimate of the costs of running the Club and of potential income.

Labour supports campaign to save sporting facilities in Holmes Chapel

Holmes Chapel Parish Council look to save AP Club Holmes Chapel Parish Council is setting up a working party, comprising representatives from the council itself, the Holmes Chapel Partnership and...

Cheshire East give outline permission to Persimmon to build 80 houses on the western fringe of Holmes Chapel.  The infrastructure in the village is already fully stretched and although we recognise the need for more housing, developments must be matched by expansion if vital infrastructure.  developments must also provide a high proportion of affordable houses that will enable first time buyers to live in the village in which they grew up.  We must not exclude the next generation.

80 more houses in Holmes Chapel

Cheshire East give outline permission to Persimmon to build 80 houses on the western fringe of Holmes Chapel.  The infrastructure in the village is already fully stretched and although we...

Would you want a large supermarket in Holmes Chapel?

Many people from Holmes Chapel travel to the supermarkets in nearby towns for their weekly shop.  “Would you prefer there to be a supermarket in or near the village so that you could do your big shop locally?

 

There are points both for and against such a plan.  Certainly not having to travel to Sandbach, Congleton, Knutsford, Northwich or Crewe to do your shopping would save time and cut down on car journeys but it could also increase traffic coming into the village as people came to shop at a new store. 

 

A store located on the edge of the village might ease parking problems in the village, but would it also threaten the continued existence of the local stores and could it even change the nature of the village centre itself.  How many new jobs might a new store generate but how many existing jobs would it put at risk?

 

The viability of the centre of the village is already of concern.  Some shops are empty, some have changed radically and others are facing uncertain times.  A new store might attract more visitors to Holmes Chapel, but could the current shops and services take advantage of the increased footfall?  Is it time to reassess the shape and use of the village centre?

 

Sainsburys have submitted plans for the site.  New housing developments on the former Sanofi and Fine Arts sites, will lead to a substantially increased population, with consequent pressures on the infrastructure – the health centre, schools, roads and parking for instance – but could also open up opportunities for new businesses and community services.

 

We need to start thinking about this now.  So please let us know your thoughts and ideas

Supermarket in Holmes Chapel

Would you want a large supermarket in Holmes Chapel? Many people from Holmes Chapel travel to the supermarkets in nearby towns for their weekly shop.  “Would you prefer there to...

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