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FRACKING IMPLICATIONS FOR SALFORD AS LANCS GROUP LOSES LEGAL CHALLENGE
 

Star date: 13th April 2017

LOCAL DEMOCRACY IN PLANNING PROCESS TRASHED

Yesterday's decision in the Manchester Civil Justice Centre against a community challenge to Secretary of State, Sajid Javid, that will allow fracking to go ahead in Lancashire has huge implications for other areas, including Salford, states Preston New Road Action Group, which is currently fighting Cuadrilla's attempts to frack in Fylde.

The Group adds that the Court decision and Government attitude make a mockery of allowing local people more say, the so-called foundation of Greater Manchester devolution...

Full details here...


Andy Burnham at Manchester Anti-fracking rally Frack Free Lancashire GM Mayor Environment Hustings
click image to enlarge

"If a planning process can be controlled by external corporate interests and the government policy of the moment, it...begs the question whether local democracy now plays any valid part in the planning process."


Anti fracking campaigners yesterday lost an appeal against the decision by the Secretary of State, Sajid Javid, to overturn Lancashire County Council's democratic refusal of Cuadrilla's application to frack four wells at a site near Blackpool.

The group had sought to have Sajid Javid's determination declared unlawful, with five points of law having been breached. However, Justice Dove ruled in favour of the Secretary of State and Preston New Road Action Group states the decision will have massive implications for other areas, including Salford, the site of fractious anti-fracking protests at Barton Moss a few years ago.

"The ramifications of allowing an unwanted industry to proceed, against the express wishes of the democratically-elected local planning committee and local community's wishes, are immense" explains Pat Davies, Chair of Preston New Road Action Group

"For residents to have no say in shaping the community they live in, is also against the overarching commitment outlined as a key aim within the Government's own National Planning Policy Framework" she adds

"This contradictory approach smacks of muddled thinking at best, or autocracy at worst" she says "If a planning process can be controlled by external corporate interests and the government policy of the moment, it is neither fit for purpose and begs the question whether local democracy now plays any valid part in the planning process."

The group points to the irony of Greater Manchester devolution, where the Government and politicians argue that it will put more decisions in the hands of local people...but, if this issue is anything to go by, not anything that really matters.

Indeed, Greater Mayor candidate and favourite, Andy Burnham, espoused his anti-fracking views at a huge rally in Manchester last November, also attended by Bianca Jagger...

"These fantastic campaigners from Lancashire - how can it be right that their voice can be taken away by a Government that's too close to the vested interests of big business and has rigged the law in their favour?" he asked "...That's what George Osborne and the Tories have done, taking their public for granted, taking the say off local people, and we want to stand up against it. I will stand up against it if I am elected Mayor of Greater Manchester..."

And then he added "The law as it stands doesn't give me the power to ban it..."*

After yesterday's decision, Claire Stephenson from Preston New Road Action Group concluded... "Justice and democracy have not been observed in Lancashire. We are truly dismayed at this decision.

"We will now take time to reflect on the ruling and liaise with our legal counsel to advise us further" she added "We said no and we will continue to say no. This is not the end..."


*For a full report on Andy Burnham's speech see previous Salford Star article click here


On Friday 28th April there's going to be a What about the environment? mayoral hustings being jointly hosted by Frack Free Greater Manchester, Campaign Against Climate Change, Friends of the Earth, Global Justice Manchester and the GM Environment Forum.

It will run from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at Friends Meeting House in Manchester and to book free tickets click here. People can also submit questions to candidates in advance or on the night.


Main photo by Steven Speed

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SHIRLEY BAKER EXHIBITION HUGE SUCCESS AT MANCHESTER AT GALLERY

Star date: 21st July 2017

PEOPLE INVITED TO SHARE EXPERIENCES OF BAKER'S PHOTOS THIS WEEKEND

The Shirley Baker Exhibition, currently running at Manchester Art Gallery, has already been a huge success, with over seven thousand people alone 'engaging' with the audio guide, never mind actually just looking at the brilliant photos of Salford and Manchester.

This weekend, 22nd and 23rd July, between 10:30am and 4:30pm, visitors are being asked select an image and make a three minute audio recording, sharing whatever the photo triggers, which could end up in the official audio guide to the exhibition.

Full details here...

SALFORD CITY COUNCIL TO BUILD PRIVATE SALE AND RENT HOUSES

Star date: 21st July 2017

SALFORD MAYOR UNVEILS PLAN TO BUILD FOR PROFIT HOUSING 

Yesterday, Salford City Mayor, Paul Dennett, further revealed plans for Salford Council to build council houses for sale and private rent, with the profits from these subsidising desperately needed social rent properties.

This was part of his new 'vision' for housing across Greater Manchester, unveiled at  Salford Lads Club. While homelessness also took centre stage at the Conference, people who actually work with the street homeless were denied entry.

Full details here...

SALFORD TOWER BLOCK CLADDING CRISIS WILL COST MILLIONS OF POUNDS AND COULD TAKE YEARS TO SOLVE

Star date: 20th July 2017

RESIDENTS COULD 'VOTE WITH THEIR FEET' AND LEAVE ADMITS COUNCIL LEAD MEMBER

The Salford tower block cladding crisis could take years to sort out and will cost millions of pounds that the Council doesn't have, civic leaders told a full meeting of Salford City Council yesterday as they criticised the Tory Government's response post-Grenfell.

Meanwhile, as concrete boards are starting to be installed over exposed insulation on the blocks, Lead Member, Bill Hinds, said residents could start "voting with their feet" and leave their homes.

Full details here...

SALFORD CITY MAYOR TO FACE PROTESTS FROM HOMELESS AT HOUSING CONFERENCE

Star date: 19th July 2017

SALFORD LADS CLUB AFFORDABLE HOUSING CONFERENCE TO FACE PROTESTS

Tomorrow, 20th July, Salford City Mayor, Paul Dennett, is to be the keynote speaker at a 'housing crisis' conference, hosted by the National Housing Federation and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation at Salford Lads Club.

Dennett will be setting out a new 'affordable housing vision' for Greater Manchester but homeless campaigners will be protesting and holding a procession from the Lads Club to a squat at Hulme Hippodrome. Salford City Council has been bulldozing affordable housing for the last decade and allowing developers to evade contributing to new affordable housing.

Full details here...

SALFORD BATTLE WITH PEEL HOLDINGS BEGINS AGAIN

Star date: 18th July 2017

PEEL PROPOSES 165 HOUSES IN WORSLEY GREENWAY AS PUBLIC INQUIRY INTO BROADOAK PREPARES TO COMMENCE

Salford's battle with Peel Holdings kicks off again this week when the company's planning application to build 165 houses at Broadoak South, in the Worsley Greenway, gets considered by councillors with a recommendation to refuse permission.

Anticipating this, Peel has tried to include an appeal for the 165 houses within a Public Inquiry into its whole Broadoak scheme which starts on 3rd October.

Full details here...

 



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