Revised application for new Saddleworth School in Diggle approved unanimously by Oldham Council

A unanimous vote by Oldham Council’s planning committee has given the green light for a new Saddleworth School to be built in Diggle.

Matthew Milburn, headteacher at Saddleworth School, speaking in favour of a move to Diggle

A previous application was approved by the cross-party planning committee in 2016 but was overturned after a judicial review in 2017.

Almost two years later, all four parts of a revised application, submitted by applicant Interserve, have been approved at an extraordinary meeting on February 28.

The parts were (a) to demolish existing buildings on the WH Shaw site, excluding the listed building; (b) to demolish the link bridge attached to the Grade II listed building; (c) to build a new school, sports pitches, playing fields and areas for play and parking; and (d) to provide an off-site parental drop-off area, plus two residents’ parking areas, highways alterations and works to the access road to the former factory site.

Speakers spoke in favour of all four applications and there was one objector to part (d) while planning officers said the social, economic and educational benefits of the application outweigh any significant harm.

Members of Oldham’s planning committee voted unanimously in favour of all parts of the application.

Saddleworth Parish Council’s planning committee had previously recommended all parts of the application for approval after their special meeting earlier in February.

4 Replies to “Revised application for new Saddleworth School in Diggle approved unanimously by Oldham Council”

  1. This was a foregone conclusion from the time, now some 8 or so years ago, when OMBC made a tacit arrangement to exchange the present school site with the consortium who bought and owns the Dobcross Loomworks site. Rebuilding the school in Uppermill has therefore, from the outset, never had a fair hearing by OMBC. The sad result is that vital commercial lifeblood for the ongoing prosperity of businesses in Uppermill (the capital of Saddleworth) is to be lost forever. Another step in the ongoing change of 1970s Uppermill from a proper working village into a dormitory village and a shallow tourist trap. I am an Uppermill resident and hold no remit on behalf of the Diggle resistance group. A bad decision for Saddleworth as a whole.

  2. What a horrible looking building, such a shame. It’s just like the prefab they are building in Greenfield. You’ll maybe get 20-30 years out of it.

  3. A sad day… Another very poor decision that will further ruin the beauty of Saddleworth. I really feel for the Diggle community and for those whose properties have (or had) views over Diggle.
    The fact remains that this COMMERCIAL decision was inevitable and benefits the few. Had the decision been taken from the outset to rebuild the school on its current site then the current school pupils would have already been enjoying new facilities, plus Uppermill would still be enjoying the benefit of increased traffic to its shops. Britain, a nation of shop-keepers remember! First the monster that is Tesco was needlessly built to drain local shops, now this. Turning Uppermill into Stalybridge does not seem to be a great move.
    Generations will look back this and question why was such a beautiful area ruined – local, leftist Councils with zero ability to negotiate a good deal for the people whilst pretending it benefits the masses. Utterly shameful.

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