A SPECIAL meeting is in the pipeline for Saddleworth Parish Council as they prepare a response to plans for development and building in the area.
Residents and businesses across Greater Manchester are currently being asked to have their say on a ‘Spatial Framework’ to identify housing and business needs over the next 20 years.
The 10 Greater Manchester councils are working together to develop the vision, and have set out options outlining the number of homes and employment sites needed across the city.
The consultation period runs until 11 January, 2016 and will be used to gather information about existing suitable development sites from landowners, residents and councillors.
Any sites identified will be assessed to see if they are suitable, available and achievable and comply with the policies being developed for the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework.
And Saddleworth Parish Councillors are determined to have their input about sites in the area and protect local green spaces.
Cllr Mike Buckley said: “There are various options, starting with almost 300 new houses being built in of Oldham each year for the next 20 years, with 10 per cent in Saddleworth.
“The second option looks at about 650 new houses being built while the third option is around 900 houses, so that’s a lot of development.
“This could have a massive impact on Saddleworth and we could see greenbelt sites being redesignated and used for development.”
Cllr Alan Belmore added: “It is important we make a robust response to this and against overdevelopment in the area.
“We need affordable housing, like the new homes at Queensway in Greenfield, and houses for young people but in the right numbers and places.
“The numbers we are talking about are very large and bigger than we have seen for more than 100 years in this area.”
And Parish Council chairman Neil Allsopp said: “It is crucial we have a say in this for the future of Saddleworth and next generations.”
Local groups, community associations and residents are also encouraged to have a say in the consultation. To take part or to learn more about Greater Manchester’s Spatial Framework visit http://www.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk/gmsf
Copies are also available in libraries across Oldham and at the Civic Hall in Uppermill.