Does this look like a brownfield site to you? No me neither. Does it look like part of the Park? It does to me and to you I have no doubt!
On the day that local campaigners travel to the High Court in Manchester to launch their judicial reviews against the planning decisions of the Council in respect of the Redrow applications I can reveal the motion behind the Extraordinary Council Meeting to be held on 14th November.
We are really delighted as local councillors to stand behind the tremendous work being done by our local residents who have campaigned, fund raised and argued with a determination that would win over the most obstinate of politicians.
Our role has been to back them up with work inside the Council both in public and private activities. The pincer movement between us and the campaigners has produced resolutions in the Riverside and Wavertree Constituency Labour Parties against the selloff of land. In our motion, reproduced in full below, we not only show that the selloff would lose money but also give new or continued uses for land currently being included in the great sell off.
Of particular concern to us all are the proposals to spend £5.5 million to relocate the Riding for the Disabled to Clark Gardens when all they want is a 25-year lease which would enable them to upgrade their existing premises for £250.000 which they would raise themselves. The second financial concern is the move of Calder Kids for almost £2 million when their premises could have been put right for about £100,000.
The Council is going to lose money, at least £2,000,000, destroy the local environment, cut down 105 trees and the only profit for this will come to the shareholders of Redrow. This is a programme for a Labour council for the few and not the many.
We have also found a solution for every piece of the land which will save the Council money and get even more people to use this very successful park by adding to the offer it can make to the people of Liverpool.
Campaigners will leave for the High Court in a coach from the Car Park on Calderstones Road, Calderstones Park at 08.00 on both Monday 5th and Tuesday 6th November
The Lib Dem motion on Calderstones Park will be considered on November 14th at the rising of the normal Full Council at Liverpool Town Hall
Harthill and Calderstones Park
Council notes that more than 45,000 local people have signed a petition to oppose the sale of the Harthill Estate section of Harthill & Calderstones Park to Redrow Homes.
It welcomes the fact that Riverside and Wavertree Constituency Labour Parties and other Labour councillors have now joined the Liberal Democrats and Green Parties to oppose this move.
It believes that any possible financial advantages to be gained from a sale will be outweighed by a reduction in both the physical and amenity environments of Liverpool.
It notes that both Harthill and Beechleys (“the Sites”) are subject to the terms of the Overarching Agreement dated 16th February 2015 made between LCC, Redrew and LMH. As a result, the Council is contractually bound to dispose of the sites to Redrow, subject to there being an implementable planning consent and the land value being agreed, and breach of this would be unlawful and could result in a claim for breach of contract.
It further notes that the Council has now been locked into an agreement with Redrow where any profit from the land sale would be minimal and might even incur a loss.
It requests the Elected Mayor therefore to attempt to renegotiate the agreement of 16th February with a view to:
- Withdrawing the land from sale;
- Develop the former Beechley House as two bedroomed apartments with a priority for sale being given to residents within one mile of the Park to enable them to vacate nearby large family homes to be occupied by families with children;
- Look at the possibility of developing part of the Beechley House land for more two bedroomed apartments;
- Give Beechley Riding for the Disabled a 25 years lease on the land and buildings that they currently occupy subject to them getting grants within 2 years to improve the stables and their environs to the standards that would be deemed acceptable to the Council and starting to implement such works;
- Work with the miniature railway group to secure grants to develop, on their existing site, an improved and sustainable model railway system and review the possibility of them acquiring the buildings and space vacated by Calder Kids;
- Use the buildings and land vacated by Calder Kids for local community purposes if the miniature railway is unable to proceed with an expansion;
- Discuss with the Local Green Space Groups such as LOGS CIC and Friends of the Harthill & Calderstones Park the possibility of them taking over and managing the woodland and nature trail areas
Cllr Richard Kemp CBE Cllr Andrew Makinson