Save Ryebank Fields - An Exhibition 4th - 8th March MMU Link Gallery You are invited to attend ‘Save Ryebank Fields - An Exhibition’. The launch event will be on Monday 4th March from 6pm, and the exhibition runs until 8th March. The exhibition is organised and curated by MMU art student, Josie Tothill, to celebrate Ryebank Fields and protest about the privatisation and destruction of this much loved green space.
We have an update from the meeting between our group and Manchester City Council (MCC) which took place on 28/01/19. We have tried to be factual in our summary rather than emotive but please let us know your thoughts. 1) Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) are coming up with a new Development Framework for Ryebank Fields which is most likely to be adopted by MCC. This is the next step towards a planning application.
Along with several other members of the Friends of Ryebank Fields, I attended the Chorlton “Community Led” Housing Group (CCLHG) event which took place on 4th December 2018, at St. John’s School, right next to Ryebank Fields. (They are wisely not calling it a “consultation”.) This is the minority group that supports the building of homes on Ryebank Fields, which appears to consist of a handful of Labour Party (and ex-Labour) activists.
The Friends of Ryebank Fields have been dropping leaflets in and around Chorlton over the last few weeks. The leaflet explains why we think Ryebank Fields should be saved from the threat of development. If you missed your copy you can read it here.
A gig was held at the Chorlton Irish Club on 3 November to raise funds for the Friends of Ryebank Fields. The event was co-organised with the Chorlton and Stretford Socialist Club, a non-party affiliated group for those who self-identify as being on the left. The main purpose of the gig was to raise money for further campaigning and leafleting, and we raised £320. The evening started with talks from Nigel Woodcock, Paul Harnett, and Julie Ryan.
We have submitted an application on behalf of the Friends of Ryebank Fields to have the section of Manchester’s historic Nico Ditch, which runs through Ryebank Fields, listed as a Scheduled Ancient Monument by Historic England. Another part of the ditch in Platt Fields Park is already listed as entry number 1015132. As it stands the ditch in Ryebank Fields is already deemed to be a “nationally important but non-scheduled monument” and therefore any works in its vicinity already require consultation, but listing would give it greater protection from the threat of development, as all plans would need the approval of Historic England.
Back in late 2017, Manchester City Council launched a consultation on their plans to redevelop three sites in Chorlton. The results were taken to the Council’s Executive meeting in July 2018 and you can read the full report here. Whilst the consultation solicited views on the development of the former leisure centre and shopping precinct this blog post only considers questions and proposals relating to Ryebank Fields. The Friends of Ryebank Fields are extremely concerned that the consultation was biased, seeking views on what the housing development should look like rather than whether it should exist in the first place.
As the nights draw in and the memory of summer fades, the Friends of Ryebank Fields campaign is enjoying an unseasonable flowering. Local magazine Trafford Community News has covered our concerns and the success of our community picnic event on 2 September. Source: Trafford Community News We were heartened to be featured alongside fellow local green campaign the Breathe Clean Air Group. They are welcoming the news that Peel Energy are now unlikely to build their proposed biomass heat and power plant in nearby Davyhulme.
Ryebank Fields is a 4.6 hectare patch of open land in Chorlton, south Manchester. Once empty pasture land, it was dug up by the local brickworks and its clay pits later filled in with rubble. The land was later gifted by the council to Manchester Metropolitan University as playing fields. The site has been left vacant since 1996 and has re-wilded itself into a mosaic of natural habitats.
Local ornithologist Pete Hines has been delighting and educating Friends of Ryebank Fields with his photos and sightings of birds on our cherished wild space. Many locals have been amazed at the diversity of bird species who call the fields home. Sparrowhawks, chiff-chaffs, rooks, meadow pipits, and house martins have all be spotted, reminding us that the fields are already inhabited even without the proposed housing development. Source: Pete Hines