The minutes of the Spotland & Falinge Area Forum held on Thursday 8th February 2018 were approved as a correct record subject to the following request being included:
‘What is the process for registering land with Fields inTrust’?
The following updates were provided:
1. Proposal to Scrap Meanwood School Fencing
It was explained that the Conservation Officer has provided details of an organisation that deals with the scrapping of old wrought iron fencing. However although contact had been made with the organisation no response had been received.
Following a discussion, where a range of options were put forward for the future use of the fencing, it was agreed that the Township and Engagement Officer should progress the scrapping of the fencing. It was also agreed that any monies received from the scrappage should be given to Meanwood School to support school funds.
However, the Chair concluded that although this item had been discussed many times and agreement had been reached about the way forward with the fencing, it was stressed that should anyone have a worthy cause for the fencing please inform the Township and Engagement Officer as soon as possible.
2. Footpath opposite Preston Street
It was reported that the footpath in question is not the Council’s responsibility as the land is privately owned. However the Township and Engagement Officer agreed to visit the site to understand the problem that had been reported.
3. Footpath on Ings Lane – area around the bins near to the play area is in need of attention
The Township and Engagement Officer had visited the site and in his opinion did not think the footway was in that bad of a condition. However he had sent the request for improvement to Highways.
Following discussion it was agreed that the Ward Councillors would request that this repair be included on the footway maintenance schedule that is currently being compiled.
4. Footpath adjacent to Passmonds Garage
It was reported that this is not a public right of way and is therefore not the responsibility of the Council.
5. Future of open spaces in the Ward – Falinge Park, Ings Lane and Denehurst Park
It was reported that Denehurst Park and Falinge Park are protected with restrictive covenants.
A deed of understanding and release to transfer land at Ings Lane to Lenny Barn was made by the Council in 2012. A copy was sent to the Charity Commission for their attention and title to the land is available from the Land Registry.
The following matters were raised:
1.A representative from Vintage Worx attended the meeting to raise concerns regarding a recent article on Rochdale Online concerning Vintage Worx’s application to manage Falinge Park via the Community Asset Transfer Facility. In practical terms if this application was agreed it would mean that Falinge Park would be transferred to Vintage Worx’s on a long lease with safeguards to protect the park going forward.
The representative present was concerned that the article was inaccurate, in that Vintage Worx was not a private organisation; it was a charitable not for profit organisation. It was explained that all Vintage Worx wanted to do was to safeguard the future of the park, as funding for parks was becoming less and less. Because of Vintage Worx’s charitable position they would be able to apply to funding streams that the local authority could not. Vintage Worx had been present in the park since 2006 and had provided many community projects.
In response the resident who had initiated the press release stated that it was not his intentions to criticise Vintage Worx’s Community Asset Transfer application or the work the group undertook in the park. However the main focus of his article was the concerns he had about the lack of openness and transparency on behalf of the Council and local Councillors regarding future plans for the park.
2.A resident asked what safeguards are in place to protect the Ings Lane play area open space.
The Township and Engagement Officer agreed to investigate this further.