More Development Approved in Middlewich, Despite Lack Of Bypass Funding

Planning has been approved for the new ‘MA6NITUDE’ industrial site at Midpoint 18 in Middlewich, despite warnings from councillors about worsening congestion. 

Residents and councillors in Middlewich have voiced concerns regarding congestion and air quality after the expansion of Midpoint 18 business park was given the green light, despite there still being no guarantee of the Middlewich Eastern bypass being built.

Traffic congestion in Middlewich is a big problem and a much debated issue. Middlewich sits just west of Junction 18 of the M6, making it a major diversion point when accidents, frequently, occur.

The total cost of the project currently stands at £56.9 million, £46.8 million of which has be secured through Government. It is hoped the project will be completed by 2021, opening up hundreds of acres of new economic land and creating thousands of jobs, some however doubt the progress of the project and criticise Cheshire East Council’s efforts.

In response to the ‘MA6NITUDE‘ development being approved Middlewich Town Council Candidate and Community Campaigner David Williams said: “We have been let down by Middlewich First again. Failing to object to development with absolutely no guarantee of the bypass being built. In fact money from this development can be diverted into other projects. Time for change, we can’t go on like this.”

The 70 acre expansion of ‘MA6NITUDE’ is to be built along the proposed route of the Middlewich Eastern Bypass, Something Middlewich Labour Councillor Jonathon Parry believes defeats the object of a bypass: “The problem it creates is that it turns the bypass into an industrial estate. If there are too many junctions a bypass ceases to be a bypass because traffic cannot flow freely.

 

“This will only be if they have to revert to the original route though. The new proposed route so far has no developments planned, but I am certain there will be if that route gets approved and receives planning permission.”

The new bypass route would see traffic diverted around Middlewich from the Salt Cellar Roundabout on Holmes Chapel Road, from the M6. Traffic would then be taken east, crossing Cledford Lane, continuing South and joining Booth Lane past the British Salt works.

This would ease heavy traffic off the narrow roads of Middlewich town centre, roads which struggle to take the constant flow of heavy goods vehicles coming straight off the M6.

One of the worst affected areas of Middlewich is Nantwich Road, where a very low aqueduct stretches over the narrow road. Residents on this street have to deal with numerous HGVs trying to get down the road everyday, then turning in the road damaging people property.

The image above shows damage caused by a lorry reversing into Julie McKay’s wall. I spoke to Julie last year about the issue; “I think it’s just one of those things, the road isn’t designed very well, the signs aren’t in the right places. I don’t know what the answer is, i don’t see why with some of these drivers they can’t start fining them.”

Congestion in Middlewich is a serious issue and one that residents vent about daily on the Middlewich Community Group.

One resident called the traffic “an absolute joke” and said “Something needs to be done before there is a serious collision”.

 

 

More information on the plans for the Middlewich Eastern Bypass can be found on the Cheshire East Website.

 

Community Praises Town’s First 5k Race

Last Sunday saw Middlewich’s first ever 5k race and family fun run get off to a great start.

The event, organised by RunMiddlewich and sponsored by Revelation Properties, saw 200 runners take to the Middlewich towpaths for the first time.

The route started at the Big Lock pub, taking runners up to the three locks, back down the canal to Croxton Park, before finishing with 2 laps of the Cricket Club.

As well as the 5k, a family fun run saw 70 children and their parents run 3 laps of Middlewich Cricket Club, with support from Fuzzy Ed from the Harvester.

All runners were presented with a medal and a goodie bag. Special prizes were presented to the top three males and females with additional prizes being awarded for age group winners.

Darren Roberts, Chairman of RunMiddlewich and Race Director said: “What a fantastic event for Middlewich and RunMiddlewich. It was amazing to see so many people enjoying the race and so many happy faces crossing the line. I’m so proud of my team who have worked incredibly hard to make it happen.

“I would like to say a huge thanks to all the sponsors, volunteers, runners and supporters, the event wouldn’t be possible without you. Everybody involved did Middlewich proud and luckily the rain didn’t put anybody off.”

Two of the children, Ruben and Elena, competed in the fun run as part of their challenge to run 100km in 2018 to raise money for Warrington & Halton Hospital. RunMiddlewich’s event takes them up to 70km in total.

Firefighters from Middlewich Fire Station were among those running.

For one runner, Glen Ramsey, this was more than just a 5k race. This was his first 5k race since being diagnosed with bowel cancer.

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Darren, 5th from left, set up RunMiddlewich in 2015 with friend Stuart Eustace with the simple purpose of getting people out running while making friends. Since then the club has gone from strength to strength with as many as 60 people turning up to run on a Tuesday evening.

Last month, the club won a Middlewich Oscar for services to sports and leisure in the community.

Find out more about the club at: http://www.runmiddlewich.club/

 

Middlewich Cider and Perry Festival 2017

The Middlewich Cider and Perry Festival is returning to the Royal British Legion this spring with an array of real ciders, perry and fruit wines. 

The annual event, hosted by Middlewich and District Round Table, is returning for a third year on Saturday April 1st, 7pm until 11pm.

Entry is £5, including your glass, and each half pint of cider is £1.

Tickets are available from Chisholm’s Newsagents, Wheelock Street and the Royal British Legion, Lewin Street.

Profits from the event will go to help fund life changing surgery for Martin Tomlinson from Winsford.

Mr Tomlinson suffers from Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a condition which causes a connective tissue defect causing joints to be unstable and dislocate.

Surgery is available for Mr Tomlinson but only in Barcelona due to its complex nature, the process will see the fusion of his skull to the top 2 vertebrate of his spine.

More information is available on Martin’s You Caring page where you can also make a donation to the fantastic cause.

Speaking about the fundraising event, Mr Tomlinson said: “I’m totally overwhelmed by the support of everybody especially Darren and you guys at The Middlewich Round Table.

“There’s information on my fundraising page about my condition and whats going to happen in 5 weeks time.”

The festival is one of many fund raising events organised by Middlewich Round Table including the Middlewich Beer Festival in October.

The Royal British Legion bar will also be open until 11:30pm.

The official cider and wine list is soon to be published.

£350m Metrolink Extension Causes Concerns For Coronation Street

New plans have been given the green light to allow Metrolink to extend it’s existing network to provide services to the Trafford Centre.  ITV say the new line will throw production of their flagship soap into chaos.

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Transport for Greater Manchester has been given the green light to extend it’s current Metrolink network to provide services to the Trafford Centre. Construction is expected to start as early as Christmas 2016 with the first trams being operational by 2020.

The 3.4 mile long line, starting from Pomona, will have 6 news stops starting with Warfside for Old Trafford, Imperial War Museum North, Village, Parkway, EventCity and the Trafford Centre. The map below shows the approved route and the proximity of the coronation Street set to the line.

Speaking about the recent announcement, a spokesperson for ITV told me the only statement they can currently issue is as follows:  “We are disappointed that the Secretary of State has green lit the new Trafford Park tram route despite the fact there was a viable approved alternative route.  The order includes a number of specific planning conditions intended to address our concerns which we will now study in detail.”

An alternative route was proposed which would have seen the line bypass MediaCity, although TfGM say this route would not offer the same level of benefit as the approved one.

The plans are part of a 1.5bn scheme to eventually see the network triple in size. In recent years the network has been extended to Manchester Airport and MediaCityUK. Additionally, a new city zone line has been under construction this year linking St Peter’s Square to Exchange Square.

A recent study was carried out in Manchester to find out where people wanted the network to expand to next. Amongst the answers there were some obvious choices such as services to Middleton and Stockport, plans that local MPs have been lobbying in favour of for some time now. But a few people even suggested extending to services to places such as Glossop, Wigan and Chester using the existing heavy rail used by Northern and Transpennine. This is the new tram-train idea currently being examined by Metrolink.

These future visions for Metrolink were part of the Manchester Devolution, deal agreed with George Osborne in 2014. TfGM say the Trafford Park extension has been in the pipeline for many years now and once complete, will transform the way people travel through the city.  When the project was given the go ahead in October people took to social media to express their mixed reactions….

 

 

 

Acknowledgements: Images:

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Pomona_Metrolink_Station_(4).JPG

http://s0.geograph.org.uk/geophotos/04/20/46/4204618_51d3ac17.jpg

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/4a/Trafford_Park.png

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/79/Rovers_Return_Inn_Feb_2015.jpg

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/ae/No_3001_Manchester_Metrolink_tram.jpg

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f4/Trafford_park_kelloggs_bridge.jpg

http://s0.geograph.org.uk/geophotos/04/80/08/4800872_7b713dde.jpg

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Trafford-arial.jpg

CAMRA – Manchester’s Best Drinking Spots for the Real Ale Lover

Navigating your way around busy city centers can be difficult enough, but when the time comes to find a place to sit down and have a decent pint, where do you find the best pub? 

The most important point to remember here is that looks can be deceiving. you will see flocks of people flooding into the newest looking bars in town looking for their tipple but the fact is you are more likely to find the best pint of proper real ale behind the doors of the oldest looking building in town.

When it comes to brewing , experience will always work in your favor. the oldest, listed buildings in Manchester can often be the home to the regions longest serving brewers. A good example of this is the Britons Protection in Deansgate, a grade-II-listed building, yet still serving some of the best beer in town.

The map below guides you around the city center listing some of the best drinking spots in town, all given the thumbs up by CAMRA themselves.

 

Persistent Rain Fall Brings Floods To Salford

City Centers may not be places you think would be at risk of flooding. But the Manchester Borough of Salford has a long history of it’s streets turning to rivers.

In recent years our emergency services are quick to respond and are on hand to provide relief to flood stricken areas. Salford is no exception, last august flood warnings were issued to lower areas of the river Irwell including Salford and Trafford. This followed day of persistent heavy rain causing chaos across Northern England.

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A spokesperson for Manchester fire and Rescue Service said over 300 calls were received from residents unable to leave their homes due to streets being flooded and cars being swept away.

In The December 2015 floods around 1,100 homes were without power with people in Bury and Rochdale being the worst hit. These 2015 floods were the first for Salford since the end of the second world war. This timeline shows the floods through Salford’s history.

Certain areas of Manchester are more at risk than others. The biggest danger surrounds areas around the River Irwell. The map below shows areas affected.

 

Manchester’s Best Christmas events of 2016

Manchester is well known as ‘The Christmas Capital’ of the UK, and with the festive season fast approaching there is something for everyone in store. From celebrities switching on the lights to mulled wine at the world famous markets there certainly will be Christmas spirit in the air in Manchester.

Manchester’s Christmas Light Switch-On

Christmas in Manchester this year kicks off on November 4th with the famous light switch on in Albert Square. The event is attended by thousands every year and features a star studded line up. X Factor star Louisa Johnson will take to to stage as well a John Thomson, known for his role in Cold Feet. The 10 second countdown will see comedian and actor Paddy McGuinness and Coronation Street star Brooke Vincent push the big button, illuminating Manchester.

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A firework spectacular follows the switch on and the Town Hall’s famous ‘Zippy Santa’ will once again sit overlooking the festivities in the Square.

The event is free to attend offering live music, fireworks, and entertainment thought. The official festivities start at 7:30pm although people are advised to arrive early as the area will be sealed off once Albert Square is full.

You can find out more about the light switch on on Visit Manchester.

Manchester’s Christmas Markets

Manchester’s world famous European Christmas markets will once again spread across the city center this month, starting November 10th and lasting until December 21st.

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Every year the markets attract tourists from all over the Europe, securing Manchester’s name as The Christmas Capital. The authentic chalet’s will span across 10 sites through the city this year, offering a wide range of beer, wine, food, gifts and more from all around the world. There will be live music from various artists around the city and the much loved Windmill Bar will return to Cathedral Gardens, the perfect place to put your feet up after a long day shopping and enjoy a glass of mulled wine.

People are getting into the festive spirit now as they look forward the Christmas descending on Manchester once again.

The markets this year will span across 10 sites: Albert Square, Market Street, Exchange Square, Corn Exchange, Exchange Street, New Cathedral Street, King Street, St Ann’s Square, Brazennose Street and Cathedral Gardens.

The main site at Albert Square will be open from 10.00am daily until 9.00pm. You can find out more about the markets on Visit Manchester.

Manchester Ice

Along side the Christmas markets this year, there will be a new addition. A brand new ice rink coming to Cathedral Gardens between November 4th and January 8th.

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London Road Fire Station will be transformed into a winter wonderland this Christmas as the Christmas markets return again but this year sees a new ice skating rink open to the public. Families can enjoy ice skating around the historic site full of festive cheer. Visitors can indulge in street food, music, art gallery, bars and hundreds of shopping stalls.

Tickets are available on the door or you can book in advance on the website.

There are many more festive events happening around the city this Christmas including festive shopping at the Arndale center, The Trafford Center and The Lowry Outlet. Mark these key dates in your diary as Christmas in Manchester is not to be missed.