Local Green Spaces

Congleton Neighbourhood Plan Working Group has identified a number of areas that it believes should be protected with a Local Green Space designation in the emerging Congleton Neighbourhood Plan.

The Local Green Space designation is a way to protect green areas or open spaces against development where they are of particular importance to local communities. The Congleton Neighbourhood Plan can only consider spaces within the Congleton Town boundary and not in the adjoining parishes.

The Locality Local Green Space Designation guidance (Locality guidance) states that the following areas should be considered when thinking about areas for designation:

·        Informal green spaces
·        Village Greens
·        Allotments
·        Cemeteries
·        Highway verges
·        Parks and gardens
·        Footpaths and cycle routes
·        Country parks
·        Rural footpaths and nature trails
·        Canal towpaths, river courses and meres
·        Sports pitches, golf courses and bowling greens
·        Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems and other landscaped areas.

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) Guidance says that the designation should only be used:
·  Where the green space is in reasonably close proximity to the community it serves
·  Where the green area is proven to be special to a local community and holds a particular local significance, for example because of its beauty, historic significance, recreational value (including as a playing field), tranquillity or richness of its wildlife
· Where the green area concerned is local in character and is not an extensive tract of land.

The questions on the next page list the sites which the group believes are of value and should be a designated green space. We welcome you to give us your views on whether or not you think the space should be designated. There is space to add comments after each site to justify your answer if needed.
If you think other spaces should be considered, please add these at the end of the questionniare.

Thank you
- Congleton Neighbourhood Plan Team

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* 1. Astbury Mere Country Park- In the heart of West Heath, a former sand quarry, the site encompasses 14 ha of open space, 10 minutes walk from the town centre, local in character but extensive (14ha), enclosed area.

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* 2. Back Lane Playing Fields- To the west of the town, Congleton’s largest green space, offering a range of sports pitches, secure changing and shower facilities.

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* 3. Bankyfields Crescent- On the eastern edge of the town overlooking Astbury Mere Country Park. A very important wildlife area and key piece of green space for eastern Congleton.

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* 4. Beech Close- West of the town, central to two housing estates, a prominent green area with trees and footpaths.

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* 5. Biddulph Valley Way- An important local amenity for walkers, cyclists and horse riders to the east of the town. Managed by Cheshire East Ranger Service.

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* 6. Blackshaw Close- Immediately adjacent to the Congleton to Manchester railway line. Rich in wildlife and well used by walkers, a large green buffer between the railway and Henshall Hall estate.

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* 7. Chestnut Drive/Laburnam Close- West of the town centre, central to two housing estates, a prominent green space with trees and pathways.

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* 8. Bromley Farm Play Area and Community Centre- In the heart of Bromley Farm housing estate, to the east of the town, much loved and restored park.

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* 9. Congleton Cricket Ground, West Street- A multi sports club in the heart of the community with cricket and crown green bowls. Local in character and not extensive.

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* 10. Congleton Moss- Part of the Dane-in-Shaw Pasture SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), accessed from the Biddulph Valley Way. An SSSI with nationally important grassland, privately owned farm land with public access.

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* 11. Congleton Park- Town centre location with formal planting and woodland adjacent to the Dane. Much loved park where many town events and concerts are held.

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* 12. Congleton Tennis Courts- Based on West Street, one of the oldest clubs in the country (1890) – local in character and not extensive.

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* 13. Dane Valley into western Congleton- Connects as a green corridor through the strategic sites to the north of the town into the town centre with potential to provide important pedestrian links from the new development into the town centre – The Council of British Archaeology (CBA) recommended this area for inclusion as part of the River Dane Area of Special County Landscape Value.

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* 14. Derwent Drive- South east of the town centre, a prominent green space.

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* 15. Forge Wood- Near the centre of town, just off Clayton By-Pass and Rood Hill. Green space walk leading to woods and farm land at the back of Barn Road.

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* 16. Galloway Play Area- A major play area for housing in the north of Congleton, a major recreational area.

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* 17. Hankinson Field- Playing fields in the centre of the town. Rich in wildlife and well used by walkers and runners. A green buffer between the Leisure Centre and Congleton Park.

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* 18. Hillfield- At the top of Congleton Park Wood, a large green open space popular for walkers and access to Congleton Park.

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* 19. Hornby Drive Play Area- A smaller play area for housing in the west, includes full play areas for all ages and a large grassed area.

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* 20. Howey Lane Cemetery- Local in character and not extensive.

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* 21. Howey Lane/Priesty Fields Allotment- Serves the centre of the town. Local and not extensive, no area given.

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* 22. Howty Brook Valley, Lamberts Lane and associated land- Part urban fringe agricultural land containing high and medium habitat distinctiveness with important footpaths and bridleways. South of the town centre with links to Astbury Mere and Golf Course. Heavily used footpaths and bridleways with the historic Priesty Fields route between Newbould Astbury Church and St. Peter's Church, Stoney Lane and Lamberts Lane. Historic sunken lanes of medieval origin. Significant wildlife habitat value in the Howty Valley and along Lamberts Lane.

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* 23. Isis Close- South east of the town centre, a prominent green space in the Derwent Drive housing estate.

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* 24. Kensington Play Area Buglawton- On the outskirts of Buglawton housing estate, a small play area with a larger adjacent green space.

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* 25. Land off Bridgewater Close- At the back of Morley’s, bounded by the canal and the Henshall Hall housing estate. Joins the east of the town to the Canal and Dane-in-Shaw Meadow. Open space with clumps of trees, popular walking route.

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* 26. Lawton Street/High Street Community Garden- Well used garden, also used for community events such as Remembrance Day.

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* 27. Lower Heath Play Area- A major play area for housing in the north of Congleton, including; a mini pitch, basketball court and full play area for all ages.

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* 28. Mardale Close- North east of the town centre, central to Buglawton housing, a prominent green space with trees and paths running through.

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* 29. Margaret’s Place /Antrobus Street Gardens- In the heart of the community, a key area for rest and recreation by residents shopping in the town centre as well as a fitness station.

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* 30. Maskery Place- On the edge of the town before entering Lower Heath, a green space for Lower Heath leading to Congleton park.

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* 31. Mill Pool Brook House Lane- On the edge of the small rural community of Bath Vale and Timbersbrook, well used by walkers and runners, local in character and not extensive. Privately owned with public access.

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* 32. Moody Street Gardens- In the heart of the town, local in character and not extensive.

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* 33. Mossley Cricket Ground, off Moss Road- To the south east of the town centre, founded in 1967 in a rural location.

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* 34. Quinta Playing Fields, Ullswater Road- A major play area for housing west of Congleton including a mini pitch and full play area.

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* 35. Seven Close- A prominent green with Thames Drive housing estate. Local in character and not extensive – 797sqm – CE.

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* 36. St. John's Road- Located to the north east of the town, immediately adjacent to the St. John's Road housing estate. Includes; football playing fields, a large play area, as well as a youth shelter with footpaths leading to Havannah Village.

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* 37. St. John's Road Scout Hut- Adjacent to the St. John's housing estate, providing a gateway to footpaths into the open countryside, green space and scout hut.

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* 38. Tamar Close- South east of the town centre, central to the housing developments of Derwent Drive and Daven Road. A prominent green within Derwent Drive housing estate with trees and paths.

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* 39. Thames Close- South east of the town centre off Thames Drive, a prominent green space in the Thames Drive housing estate.

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* 40. Timbersbrook Valley- Steeply sloping valley sides mainly agricultural land surrounded by existing or proposed housing. Some public rights of way and several access points from adjoining housing areas. Heavily used for informal recreation with significant areas of medium value habitat distinctiveness and whole area recommended for inclusion within the Area of Special Local Environmental Value in the CBA report- private with a network of public rights of way.

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* 41. West Road Play Area- A major play area in the west of Congleton, includes the Garden of Reflection.

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* 42. Windsor Place- West of the town centre, a prominent green space in the Bromley Farm housing estate.

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* 43. Please add any addiotnal information/ comments on the areas above or additional areas within the Congleton Boundary which you believe should be added.

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* 44. So that this information can be used as part of the consultation exercise, the Neighbourhood Plan team would be grateful if you could add the following details:

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