Sunday, 15 January 2012

Developments in Chorlton Centre

You may have recently heard that the Council has proposed to replace Chorlton Leisure Centre (Chorlton Baths) and Chorlton Library with a new joint service centre ( The Council is proposing to build a new Joint Service Centre, which is expected to cost around £5.7million and be located in Chorlton District Centre, in order to save approximately £190,000-a-year in running costs.

Chorlton Liberal Democrats have welcomed these proposals which are long overdue. Chorlton Library and Leisure Centre are both very popular and well used but are outdated and need investment to match our community’s needs in the 21st Century. I have asked Council bosses for an assurance that that our Leisure Centre and Library won’t be closed until the new ones open. I have also asked the Council to outline where they plan to site the new centre, and to consider integrating ‘Green’ and high energy efficiency standards into plans at this stage as this is important for sustainability and another area where savings can be made. I will be joining my colleagues, Matt Gallagher and John Leech MP, in calling for a proper public consultation on these plans so local residents wishes are integrated into the plans. You can read the Council’s report on the proposals at

You may also have heard about the plans to redevelop the Chorlton Precinct and Car Park site ( Plans have still not been submitted for approval and I understand it may still be three months before they are. This is because NHS Manchester still has to confirm their involvement in the project. Like many local people I am concerned that the redevelopment will see a new supermarket built on the site which could harm local independent shops. A few years ago the Council held a consultation about the future of Chorlton District Centre, which said that 2/3 of local residents don’t want an additional supermarket in Chorlton. I will be working with my Chorlton Liberal Democrat colleagues, Matt and John, to ensure that any redevelopment helps protect, promote and enhance Chorlton Independent Shops and brings back free parking. We will also be calling for the Council to make a determined effort to Consult widely on the proposals so that the local community's needs and wishes are central to any redevelopment; and so that a new supermarket is not thrust upon us. Having grown up in Chorlton and as a shareholder in the Busy Bee Toy Shop co-op I know how valuable our local shops are and don’t want to see the Council make a mistake which could harm Chorlton Centre.

Please get in touch with me (; 07947240568) if you have any concerns, comments or questions.

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