Bury and Prestwich Walk-In Centres to Close

Bury’s NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) met on Wednesday (18 January 2017) to consider the outcome of its own ‘consultation’ on the future of our two Walk-In Centre (Bury and Prestwich).

The result of the public engagement undertaken included over 1,000 survey completed by residents:
90% thought that the Walk-In Centres serve a purpose not otherwise provided in Bury.
83.5% disagree or strongly disagree with a decision to not renew the Walk-In Centres.

The CCG recognised that the largest number of objections and concerns were regarding the Prestwich Walk-In Centre, rather than the Moorgate Centre. Only one petition was received by the CCG objecting to the closures, which had been organised by the local Lib Dems in Prestwich.


Our view, given in a statement by Group Leader Councillor Tim Pickstone on Wednesday was:
“Everyone knows there is a crisis in NHS emergency care and that our local A&E departments cannot cope with existing volumes. Everyone who I speak to tells me how difficult it is to get GP appointments.”

“By going ahead with the closing of the Prestwich and Bury Walk-In Centres, Bury CCG are not only ignoring the clearly stated views of local people in their own consultation, but they’re also ignoring common sense. With this decision we’re not just losing two much loved and well used local services, we’re making our local A&Es worse.”

You can read the full report of the CCG here.

Lib Dem Group Response to GMSF

Bury Council’s Liberal Democrat Group has submitted its formal response, and objection, in the consultation on the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework.

The full response is below, with the key points being:

– We do not want to see any building on green belt land, certainly not before brownfield sites and existing planning permissions have been used first and empty houses have been brought back into use.

– We object specificially to the use of large sections of green belt land for thousands of houses.

– We believe that the share of green belt to be lost in Bury is unfair and inappropriate (20% lost in Bury compared to 8% across Greater Manchester. 48/49% of green belt lost in Prestwich and Whitefield/Unsworth).

– We do not believe that our Motorway network has the capacity to cope with significant new housing and specifically could not cope with the proposed massive ‘Northern Gateway’ employment site on the M62 next to Whitefield.

– We do not believe that our Highways Network has the capacity to cope with so many new homes in Bury – specificially the A56 is already full, and about to be made single land through Prestwich.

– We do not believe that the Metrolink system currently has the capacity for so many new homes in Bury – it is already full to capacity at many times in the day.

– We are concerned that we already have to live in an area with high air pollution from the M60, and the plans will make this worse.

Screenshot 2016-10-25 09.11.52

– As Holyrood Ward councillors we wanted to specifically to object to the proposals in the Northern Gateway to build 3,200 new houses around Simister and Bowlee. The plans would destroy the special character, and community of both villages, the site is poorly located for transport links and public transport and the green ‘break’ between Prestwich/Middleton/Whitefield and Heywood would be completely lost.

– Similarly we do not believe the Heywodo Road, or the Mount Road/Sandgate Road/Polefield Road areas have the capacity to deal with any major new developments either in Simister or across the Sandgate Road bridge over the motorway.

– We do believe in furhter investment in public transport, particularly further extension of the Metrolink network, but would oppose the wholesale building of new motorways.

Read our full submission here, which includes 37 pages of comments received from members of the public.

Walk-In Centre Decision Tomorrow

Bury’s NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is meeting tomorrow (Wednesday 18 January 2017) to determine the fate of the two Walk-In Centres in Bury (Bury and Prestwich).


The report which will be considered by the Board Members, recommends ‘Option 1’, which is to go ahead with the closures. The result of the ‘public engagement’ undertaken by the CCG shows that 85% of respondents either disagreed or strongly disagreed with the proposals. The reports explains that the majority of concerns and objections were from the Prestwich area.

Only one petition was received by the CCG objecting to the closures, which had been organised by the local Lib Dems in Prestwich.

We’ll let you know what happens, but it doesn’t look good….




Cervical Cancer Prevention Week: 22nd-28th January



A proven way to prevent cervical cancer is to have cervical screening to find pre-cancers before they can turn into invasive cancer. This is called a smear test and every woman over the age of 25 who is†registered at a GP is†invited to have one every 3 years; if youíre younger you can still make a request through your GP.


Cervical screening prevents 75% of cervical cancers from developing which is why three quarters of women attend screenings when invited. Getting that final quarter of women that donít currently turn up for testing is the goal for Cervical Cancer Prevention Week.

Everyday in the UK 9 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and 3 wom†en lose their lives to it.

There are brilliant charities like Joís Trust and Eve Appeal doing fantastic work to help change those statistics; here are some of their tips on what you can do to make sure fewer women die from cervical cancer ñ

  • Be aware of the signs and symptoms of the disease.
  • Promptly attend your cervical screening when invited. For most women, the best protection is regular screening
  • For girls and young women to know where their cervix is ñ a survey conducted by The Eve Appeal showed that 45% of women were unable to accurately label the cervix on a diagram!
  • Everyone ñ (yes, men too!) to know how to prevent it and ways to support our life-saving research and awareness raising campaigns.

Cervical Cancer Prevention Week runs every January; the 2017 dates are 22-28 January.

Help Heaton Park Community Orchard

Heaton Park already has an Orchard, but it is in a very poor state. At the moment it’s overgrown, there’s too many weeds and a only few apple trees. So our friends at EAT Pennines are going to revitalise it and use it for our community, underprivileged kids and to offer training courses. They will clear the weeds, grown new trees and have even promised to grow Blackthorn, whose berries are used for sloe gin. To achieve this, they’ve started a Crowdfunding page and aim to raise £12,580.


They already have over 12% of their target but need much more. If you can help with a donation it will be really appreciated. In addition to being able to see “the fruits” of you donation, you’ll also get a reward. For example, an £80 donation gets you a luxury EAT Pennines hamper and 20% off in The Stables and Pavilion cafes for one year. To find out more, you can read about their appeal here.

(Information thanks to Incredibly Edible Prestwich and District.)

Whitefield Police Station to Close as a Public Counter

Greater Manchester Police have announced the outcome of their review of Public Enquiry Counter Services.

Ten public enquiry counters will close: Altrincham, Chadderton, Fred Perry House (Stockport Council), Horwich, Hyde, Leigh, Middleton, Pendleton, Whitefield and Wythenshawe. 11 of the 12 remaining counters will see reductions in opening hours: Ashton, Bolton, Bury, Central Park, Cheadle Heath, Longsight, Oldham, Rochdale, Stretford, Swinton and Wigan to 8am-8pm Monday to Friday and 10am-6pm on Saturday and Sundays. The Manchester City Centre PEC will remain open on a 24/7 basis.


GMP do stress that members of the public will still be able to visit those Police stations for pre-arranged appointments. They will also review the existing delivery of neighbourhood clinics/meeting. Early in 2017 GMP will provide access to an online loss reporting system where members of the public can report any lost property online. Provision will also be made for the use of yellow phones currently located outside police stations to be enhanced at each of the PECs due to close.

Public Consultation on Children and Young Peoples’ Services

Bury Council’s Director of Public Health is leading a consultation on the future of children and young people’s services in the Borough.

Bury Council and NHS Bury Clinical Commissioning Group are working together to explore options to improve services and experiences for children, young people and their families in Bury. They need our help to shape the future of our provision and ensure all our children and young people have happy healthy childhoods leading to a happy, healthy adulthood.


(Click on the image above to watch a short video from Bury’s Director of Public Health.)

The work focuses on better integrating and aligning children and young people’s services in Bury in order to improve outcomes, improve children and young people’s experiences, reduce duplication and plug gaps. We want a future system that builds on the strengths in families and communities and puts children, young people and their parents/carers in the driving seat.

As they embark on this piece of work they want to hear from as many people as possible. This will be the first phase of on-going engagement and communication to inform and influence our plans.

To share your views, please click on the following link
http://ift.tt/2jy6I2v and scroll down to the survey.

There are a number of events which take place in January 2017 – more details here.

One Week to have your say on Green Belt proposals

Just before Christmas Greater Manchester councils added a few weeks more to the consultation on the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework – the new deadline is 16 January 2017.

We only have a few days left to get our voices hear before so much of our precious Green Belt land will be lost for ever.

Please: Sign the Petition – and remind your friends, family and neighbours.
And even send in your own personal response to the consultation – more information on how you can do this below.

The GMSF sets out how Greater Manchester Councils plan to provide the land to build an extra 227,000 houses over the next 25 years. (To put that in context the whole of the Borough of Bury currently has just over 75,000 houses…)

Across Greater Manchester, just 8.2% of Green Belt land is proposed to be destroyed. Bury fares very badly, and if these plans go ahead 20% of our precious green belt land would be lost. In Prestwich a shocking 46.7% of green belt land will be lost. In the Whitefield/Unsworth area 49.1% of green belt land will be lost.

The proposals include:
In the Whitefield/Unsworth/Prestwich areas:
A ‘Northen Gateway’proposal – for a new development ‘bigger than Trafford Park’ on both sides of the M62. This includes 3,300 houses to the south of the motorway (all the green belt land currently around Simister and Bowlee)
600 houses to the north of the M60 near Mode Hill Lane in Whitefield
A massive industrial employment development North of the M62.

Screenshot 2016-10-25 09.11.52

In the Bury/Radcliffe area and to the north of Bury:
3,400 new houses in land between Bury and Radcliffe around Elton Reservoir
1,250 new homes north and south of Walshaw Road between Bury and Tottington
As well as smaller developments at Gin Hall, Holcombe Brook and Seedfield


The Labour Party in Bury made a very clear commitment in it’s Local Government Manifesto:
“Bury Labour Group will defend the greenbelt and do all we can to stop development of this precious resource.” They are now letting people down by abandoning their previous promise, with the Council Leader signing up to the proposals.

The Lib Dems in Bury are totally opposed to this wholesale destruction of our Green Belt land. We DO need more homes, but we should use brownfield sites, empty houses and existing unbuilt planning permissions FIRST without destroying our precious countryside.

As well as signing the petition, it would be great if as many people as possible could send in their own personal objections. Details of how to do this are here.

The Save Bury’s Green Belt Campaign have done this excellent guide to how to object here.