Allocating Land for building

This piece appeared in Rochdale Online 10 September 2018

The public are being asked for their views on a plan which identifies sites for the new homes and employment spaces needed in the borough up to 2028.

The draft plan focuses development around major town centres and transport links. These include new homes in and around Rochdale town centre, south of Heywood town centre, Warwick Mill in Middleton and sites close to Littleborough town centre.

The plan will also identify and protect important green spaces, identify sites to manage the risk from flooding and help to deliver associated infrastructure like transport.

The proposals prioritise development of brownfield sites, including the re-use of vacant older employment land which no longer meets modern business needs.

Around 400 homes could be built on the British Vita site close to Mills Hill station in Middleton, 200 homes at Royle Barn Road in Castleton and 150 homes at Dyehouse Lane, Smallbridge.

Land is also identified for around 210 hectares of new employment uses including land within Kingsway Business Park, Heywood Distribution Park, Stakehill Industrial Estate and Smallbridge Business Park, along with employment development as part of a wider mixed-use urban extension south of Heywood.

The document includes designated green spaces, which will be offered additional protection from development under the plan. This will include areas safeguarded for flood storage to help flood risk management for Littleborough and central Rochdale.

The plan designates sites to help bring the East Lancashire Railway from Heywood to Castleton.

Councillor Daalat Ali, Cabinet member for planning, development and housing at Rochdale Borough Council, said: “We have identified a number of key brownfield sites as part of this plan which will help us achieve this, but we want residents’ and businesses’ views.”

The consultation on the allocations plan runs from the 10 September to 5 November 2018.

Comments can be made by email to:

All comments must be received by midnight on 5 November.

Drop in sessions will take place at the following locations:

  • Monday 17 September, 4-7pm – Phoenix Centre, Church Street, Heywood
  • Tuesday 18 September, 4-7pm – Hare Hill House, Hare Hill Road, Littleborough
  • Monday 24 September, 4-7pm – Number One Riverside, Smith Street, Rochdale
  • Monday 1 October, 4-7pm – Middleton Library, Long Street, Middleton
  • Tuesday 23 October, 4-7pm – Butterworth Hall, Milnrow


Click this link to see the RBC Draft Allocations Plan – Sept 2018

From small beginnings

27,000 people commented on the first draft of the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework [GMSF].

Following this the local community came together to form SOS-Save Our Slattocks and joined other local residents from across Greater Manchester to rally at Manchester Town Hall.

 Since then we’ve looked at how best we can influence local planning and consequently formed the Thornham St John’s Neighbourhood Forum

Here’s a video reminder of our ‘roots’

Website To Watch – ‘’

Whilst there are many good websites and articles out there, we’re particularly impressed with this one.

Its writer, Dr Quintin Bradley, is no stranger to the area having been one of the presenters who introduced us to neighbourhood planning at Smalley Hall  in November 2017.

Along with articles on neighbourhood planning, localism, community action,  inequality and urban social movements, he’s gone on to publish research into the Greater Manchester Greenbelt movement, including the thoughts of SOS-Save Our Slattocks members.

Take a look at Quintin’s website:

Local Greenbelt research published

An important piece of research on the Greenbelt has been published by Dr Quintin Bradley.

Part of this research was done with members of Save Our Slattocks greenbelt group.

We’re proud to be associated with this research and wholeheartedly congratulate Dr Bradley.

You can read the reasearch paper here: PublicSupportforGreenBelt_full

Why was the boundary chosen?

The initiating group of local residents and business owners met and discussed options for the area to be used as the Thornham St John’s Neighbourhood Plan Area.

It was suggested that it would be appropriate to base the Plan Area on the long established boundary of the Parish of Thornham with Gravel Hole (R18834) map.

After further discussions, it was decided that the Parish area would best be amended by making two small changes. These were:

  1. Using the M62 as the Northern boundary
  2. Including all the houses opposite Cardindal Langley school to the traffic lights at Stanycliffe Lane.

See:  Thornham St John’s Neighbourhood Plan Area map.