Saturday, 13 October 2018

Greater Manchester Spatial Framework 2nd draft delayed

The second draft of the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework (GMSF - the development plan of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA)) has been delayed for the second time. Official population estimates have fallen which could mean that less households will be needed in the GMSF plan.

                                        Key points from the latest GMSF news release:

- The Government intend to apply a new formula to housing growth
- The GMCA seek urgent clarity from government on housing figures
- The second draft plan will be put before each council and local ward councillors will have a      say on it
 - The public will be fully involved

Greater Manchester's lead for housing, homeslessness and infrastructure, Paul Dennett, said"For the GMSF to be a success we have to ensure that the Greater Manchester public are fully involved in this process"  - this is good news and something the Civic Society will be monitoring carefully.

Read the full news release HERE

Monday, 8 October 2018

Social Evening Thursday 11th October 2018

The society's annual social and speaker evening will take place this Thursday - everyone is welcome - you don't have to be a member of the society to attend. Doors open 7.15pm

                       Topic: Why Become a Councillor? (at the age of 19?)
                       Speaker: Councillor Thomas Dowse
                       Venue: Marple Library 11th October 7.30 - 9.30pm
                       Refreshsments from 7.15 - complimentary glass of wine and nibbles

We have had councillors to speak at previous speaker meetings: Cllr Wright, Cllr Bispham, Cllr Baker. But the reason for asking Cllr Dowse to speak at this years social evening is because of his (young) age.

Cllr Tom Dowse - Marple South and High Lane
Many people tell us we need to attract younger people to the society but they don't tell us how to do it! So what attracts young people to want to make a difference, have a say and influence where they live? Perhaps Tom Dowse will have some answers as he became a councillor at just 19 years of age. He has taken on an enormous responsibility. So what led him along this path when still in full time education at Manchester University? Come along to what promises to be a fascinating insight into what drives young people into areas normally reserved for, shall we say, the more mature!

This is an open meeting, free of charge, and all are welcome - you don't have to be a member to join us at 7.15pm for a glass of wine and nibbles - we look forward to seeing you.

Next year we hope to find a group of 'younger' people to start a new and fresh section of the society and run it their way, perhaps with facebook and other social media and maybe meet in the local pub after school or work. We know younger people care passionately about Marple - so, if this idea floats your boat, please get in touch - if it doesn't, definitely get in touch and tell us what will.

Monday, 1 October 2018

Committee Meeting Minutes 25th September 2018

Committee Meeting minutes for 25th september 2018 can be viewed HERE

Friday, 28 September 2018

Marple Area Committee Meeting 26th September 2018

A report on the Marple Area Committee meeting that took place on 26th September 2018 can be viewed HERE

Future Marple Area Committee Dates

7th November 2018
12th December 2018
30th January 2019
6th March 2019
10th April 2019

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Marple Wharf - will not be determined at the September Marple Area Committee Meeting

The Marple Wharf planning application will not come to the September Marple Area Committee meeting for determination.
Marple Wharf Warehouse - Canal & River Trust
are determined to turn it into a residential property

It is expected to come to the next Marple Area Committee on the 7th November 2018 (there is no meeting in October).

We will continue to monitor the situation and confirm progress of the application to Area Committee as soon as we know.

Monday, 17 September 2018

Cobden Edge Cross

On Sunday 16th September a group of the Marple community braved the mist and rain to walk up from Linnet Clough to the new cross for a service of dedication, celebration and thanksgiving for the new "Cobden Cross". Marple Civic Society is one of the many local donors that has enabled the cross to be replaced by the council of churches in Marple, Compstall, Marple Bridge and Mellor. 

The New cross of solid French Oak sat in a stainless steel cradle, that replaces the old cross that had rotted and broken, now stands as a symbol of the christian community in the area.

As the cross was dedicated the mist slowly rolled back and by the time the congregation was leaving the sun came out. This great land mark now fully restored has a guaranteed life of 500 years.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Neighborhood Forum AGM - Saturday 15th September

The Marple Neighbourhood Forum AGM will take place on Saturday 15th September 2018 at the United Reformed Church on Hibbert Lane, starting at 10am and finishing at 12 noon.

After the AGM business there will be an open forum to discuss the six key themes of the Plan. These themes are included in the draft Neighbourhood Plan which is currently out for consultation and there are several ways in which you can respond. 

Further details about the AGM and how to respond to the Neighbourhood Plan consultation are explained in the latest Neighbourhood Plan newsletter - see HERE.

The AGM is a public meeting, free of charge and everyone is welcome.

Thursday, 6 September 2018

Marple Wharf - the day of judgement - 26th September 2018

Finally, after almost 10 years, the fate of Marple Wharf is likely to be decided on Wednesday 26th September 2018 at the Marple Area Committee meeting. 

The community of Marple and those who really care for Marple Wharf have more than 'done their bit' to work with Canal & River Trust (CRT) to find an acceptable scheme for this important canal heritage site - but to no avail. CRT refused to budge - all negotiations ended in 'No Change'

Now, we can only put our trust in our councillors to do what they are elected to do i.e. vote on the planning application and give their reasons for their decision to their electorate. We therefore trust that all councillors will use their vote and that the decision is made by them in Marple - not shunted off to a planning committee that has little knowledge of, and no passion for Marple and Marple Wharf. 

Canal & River Trust will turn the warehouse
 into a big dwelling house

Recently, the application has been held up yet again because, this time, the highways engineers were not happy with the access arrangement. In order to satisfy them, CRT's developer, H2O Urban, have had to alter the already unsatisfactory parking arrangement. The result is an even more confusing parking scheme and the loss of one visitor parking space (only two spaces remain). This demonstrates, yet again, that the site is too small for the development that is being crammed into it. See the civic society's response to this latest amendment HERE.

If you have not yet responded to the Marple Wharf planning application, or wish to send further comments, it isn't too late to do so. You can view previous responses HERE & HERE Please feel free to use our responses to help you to write your own if you wish.

We will confirm details of Marple Area Committee once the agenda is released one week in advance of the meeting. Confirmation will appear on our website when it is known and members emailed accordingly. The venue for the Area Committee meeting is Marple Senior Citizens Hall in the Memorial Park and it will start at 6pm.

Attending the meeting is the last thing you can do for Marple Wharf. Although public speaking will not be allowed, your presence will speak volumes to those making the decision.

Monday, 20 August 2018

Marple Neighbourhood Plan Consultation

Marple Neighbourhood Plan is out for Public Consultation

Since Marple Neighbourhood Forum was formed in April 2016 its members have been working hard on the development of a plan for Marple. "Our Marple Plan" is now at the stage where it is ready for Public Consultation and the Forum needs as many local people as possible to get involved by reading and commenting on the draft plan.

The draft document identifies a wide range of issues that the Forum thinks should be covered in the Plan but there are six key issues that seem to be most critical and these are prioritised in the public consultation survey:

Six key issues for Marple:
- Do we want another supermarket in Marple, and if so, what sort?
- What about pedestrian access across Stockport Road and traffic in general?
- Are we doing enough to promote our natural and built heritage, including for tourism?
- Do we want to create new, high quality facilities in Memorial Park?
- Should we prioritise the opportunities for community hubs around our two stations?
- What should we do about Goyt Mill and what are our options for residential or industrial use?

How Marple People can get involved:
The draft Marple Neighbourhood Plan is available to read via this link
Please take the time to read the plan, then complete the survey and submit your comments

The on-line Marple Neighbourhood Plan survey is available via this link
There is an opportunity to make comments at the end of the survey but if you would like to go into more detail with your response please email further comments to:

The  Marple Neighbourhood Forum's AGM is at 10am on Saturday 15th September at the United Reformed Church on Hibbert Lane. Everyone is welcome. There is no need to book, just turn up.

Marple Neighbourhood Plan

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

Marple Area Committee Meeting 8th August 2018

A report on the Marple Area Committee Meeting that took place on 8th August 2018 can be viewed HERE

Future Marple Area Committee Dates

26th September 2018
7th November 2018
12th December 2018
30th January 2019
6th March 2019
10th April 2019

Friday, 27 July 2018

Planning Workshop - Making a Difference

The second of two planning workshops will take place this Tuesday 31st July 2018 (see details below). Come along and find out how you can respond and influence planning for the good of Marple. You don't have to have attended the first workshop to come to the second one and written information on both workshops will be available for everyone after the meeting.

The first workshop covered the 'Mechanics of Planning'; the second will focus on how the public can be effective in influencing planning decisions both at the consultation stage when policies are being written and with individual planning applications.

The aim of these workshops is to demystify planning and planning jargon and give you the 'know how' to get involved and make a difference.

We do hope you will join us

Planning - Making a Difference

Tuesday, 31st July 2018
In Marple Library  2-15 - 4.30pm
Registration and light refreshments served at 2pm

These workshops are free of charge and everyone is welcome 
you don't have to be a member of the civic society - just come along 
no booking required - further details HERE

This is the first time we have arranged this type of workshop. If it's successful and what people want we can arrange further workshops on topics and issues important to you.

Monday, 23 July 2018

Free Defibrillator Seminar delivered to Marple Residents

Photos by Arthur Procter
The Defibrillator and Cardiac Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) seminar that took place last Thursday was a great success. Thirty five or more people attended and warmly applauded Phil Cooke for establishing three local defibrillators in the Greater Marple Area.  Although there are numerous defibrillators in the town, the one situated on the wall of the Regent Cinema on Stockport Road is available for use 24 hours per day. Others in dentists, doctors, supermarkets etc are only available when the premises are open - but heart attacks can happen anytime. That's why the civic society was keen to work with Phil to get a 24 hour community defibrillator installed in Marple town cente. Mark Whittaker joined in too and this became a real community project.

The seminar was delivered by one of the many volunteers from Community Heartbeat. Alan is a retired first aid worker and trainer and had the knack of relaxing the audience and getting them to join in.

If you are able to spread the word of where the defibrillator is located, by putting a poster on your website, in a shop or anywhere else on public view, that would be really helpful in spreading the word.

Knowing where there is a 24 hour defibrillator when it is needed could save a life.

See more photos HERE

Alan, from Community Heartbeat demonstrating Cardiac Pulmonary Resuscitation

Friday, 20 July 2018

Marple Area Committee Meeting 11th July 2018

A report on the Marple Area Committee Meeting that took place on 11th July 2018 can be viewed HERE

Future Marple Area Committee Dates

8th August 2018
26th September 2018
7th November 2018
12th December 2018
30th January 2019
6th March 2019
10th April 2019

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Thursday, 12 July 2018

Free Defibrillator Training - 19th July 2018 - Places still available

A quick reminder that training has been arranged with Comunity Heartbeat Trust so that people can learn how to use the recently installed defibrillator in Marple Town Centre at the front of the Regent Cinema on Stockport Road.

 Everyone is welcome to attend this free seminar and you don't need any special skills to attend.

The seminar can take 50 people and there are still a few places available - if you haven't yet booked onto the seminar there is still time to do so. The more people who know how to use the defibrillator the more chance we have of saving lives of those who have a Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Do come along........

Booking is essential - see details below

Details of the Seminar:
Marple Library - 19th July - 6.30pm (for approx one and a half hours)
Marple Memorial Park, Marple
Please confirm your attendance by email to:

Thursday, 5 July 2018

Committee Meeting Minutes 26th June 2018

Committee meeting minutes for 26th June 2018 can be viewed HERE

Friday, 15 June 2018

Free Defibrillator Training Seminar in Marple Library

Now that the 24 hour defibrillator has been installed in Marple Town Centre at the front of the Regent Cinema on Stockport Road, it is important that people know how to use it.

Training has been arranged with Comunity Heartbeat Trust so that people can learn how to use the defibrillator and find out how it works. Everyone is welcome to attend this free seminar and you don't need any special skills to attend. 

There are 50 places available and everyone is welcome. The more people who know how to use the defibrillator the more chance we have of saving lives of those who have a Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Do come along........

Details of the Seminar:
Marple Library - 19th July - 6.30pm (for approx one and a half hours)
Marple Memorial Park, Marple
Please confirm your attendance by email to:

Saturday, 26 May 2018

24 hour defibrillator installed in Marple at the Regent Cinema

We are delighted that a 24 hour defibrillator connected to the ambulance service is now in situ on the front wall of the Regent Cinema on Stockport Road in the centre of Marple. It comes with full instructions for use and the phone number of the ambulance service. 

The use of a defibrillator in the case of Sudden Cardiac Arrest increases the survival rate and every second and minute matters. The Automated External Defibrillator (AED) analyses the patients heart rhythm and determines if a shock from the defibirillator is required - if it isn't, the AED will not shock the patient. So it can be used safely by non medical people. However, training will be organised very soon for community workers and residents and we will let you know when we have details.

After successfully installing a life-saving defibrillator in Marple Bridge and Compstall, Phil Cooke, Chairman of Marple Bridge Association (MBA), turned his attention to Marple. He approached Marple Civic Society who made a successful bid to Marple Area Committee for £1000 towards the £2000 funding needed to install a defibrillator in Marple. The civic society also pledged £200 and undertook to pay the £126 annual running costs for 5 years.

Marple's 24 hour defibrillator - Regent Cinema
 thanks to electrician Mike Beese for installation support
Finding a suitable location wasn't easy so after protracted discussions with several local businesses and consideration of several sites from Rose Hill to Possett Bridge we were delighted when the owners of the Regent Cinema readily agreed to have the defibrillator attached to the front wall of the cinema - it is an excellent location; prominent and easily accessible in the centre of town.

Raising the funding was surprisingly quick and easy. Within a couple of days of an appeal on The Marple Website the funding was secured thanks to some very generous local people.

Here is a summary of the funding for the Town Centre Defibrillator:

Total Installation costs - £2,000
Annual Maintenance costs for 5 years - £126 x 5 = £630

Installation Costs:
Marple Area Committee Flexibility Funding    - £1,000
Marple Civic Society                                       - £200
GT Landscapes and Construction Ltd            - £100
The Marple Website                                        - £50
Stephanie Lorusso                                          - £650
                                                               Total - £2,000

Maintenance cost for 5 years:
Shop Local Club Card                                                 - £50
1st Julian Wadden Commission contribution              - £122
Balance by Marple Civic Society and Julian Wadden - £458
                                                                            Total - £630

Further details of the project and funding sources on The Marple Website - see HERE

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Members' Privacy Policy

On May 25th new regulation is coming into effect to make sure companies and charities are protecting their customers and members' information which they hold on databases. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is intended to protect us all from being exploited when we give organisations our personal data. The Civic Society has always had a policy for processing and protecting personal data but this is an opportunity to update our process and bring it in line with the new regulation.

If you are content with the information that we hold, how we process it and how we currently contact you then you do not need to do anything. Because of the civic society's position as a membership organisation we do not need you to grant consent for your information to be used and you do not need to reply or complete any forms.

For detailed information on how the society handles and protects your personal data, how you can change it and how we contact you and for what purposes, see our privacy policy for members HERE

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Planning Workshop - The Mechanics of Planning

The first of two planning workshops will take place this coming Tuesday, 22nd May (see details below), we hope you will come along. If you think planning is 'above your head and out of reach' worry not - you are not on your own and these workshops are designed for 'beginners' - assuming you have no prior                               planning knowledge.

With so many planning issues areound at the moment, and all the planning jargon that goes with it, many people don't feel they can actually have any influence so don't get involved. The aim of these workshops is to demystify planning and give you the 'know how' to get stuck in and make a difference.


Tuesday, 22nd May 2018
In Marple Library - 2-15 - 4.30pm
Registration and light refreshments served at 2pm

These workshops are free of charge and everyone is welcome 
(you don't have to be a member of the civic society - just come along - no booking required)
further details HERE

This is the first time we have arranged this type of workshop. If it's successful and what people want we can arrange further workshops on topics and issues important to you.

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Committee Meeting Minutes 24th April 2018

Committee meeting minutes for 24th April 2018 can be viewed HERE

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Marple Area Committee Meeting 18th April 2018

A report on the Marple Area Committee Meeting that took place on 18th April 2018 can be viewed HERE

Future Marple Area Committee Dates
6th June 2018
11th July 2018
8th August 2018
26th September 2018
7th November 2018
12th December 2018
30th January 2019
6th March 2019
10th April 2019

Monday, 23 April 2018

Marple Wharf: Canal & River Trust's Developers criticise the civic society's response to their dense housing scheme at Marple Wharf

Canal & River Trust's (CRT) Developer, H20 Urban, has critised the society's response to their Planning Application for Marple Wharf. The society has objected again to the planning application and recommended refusal. View our latest response HERE - we now need you to respond (even if you responded                           to the original application)

Marple wharf
In response to our objections, H20 has sent further comments to the council's Planning Department with minimal amendments in the hope of getting the application through planning. But every time they attempt to solve one problem they create another - quite simply, the scheme represents over development of a small but highly important heritage site that is precious to the people of Marple.

H20 criticised our comments about:

- The Heritage -  they argue we have exagerated the harm to the heritage and that there is       no need to consider any public access to it

- Permitted distances between existing surrounding houses and their proposed new houses   they argue that flouting Stockport Council's required distances is 'ok in this case'

- Refuse bins - they argue that residents walking up to 50m (53 yards) to dump their rubbish      in communal skips is ok

We have lost count over the last 9 years of the number of times CRT said they would submit an application and somehow suggested the community was holding it up. This application was submitted last year and due to be decided in October 2017 - we are still waiting - the current estimate is that it will be decided in June at Marple Area Committee, but only if they feel confident it will be recommended for approval by the planning officer.

It is important that this application is judged by our councillors, those who represent us, know the community's views and understand the importance of the site to Marple's heritage. It is also important that the Local Authority (Stockport Council) know the people's views because this is a consideration taken  into account by officers when assessing the application and making a recommendation to our councillors (who should decide if planning permission is granted or refused).

If you value Marple Wharf remember: Public opinion really matters
if you have responded once - please consider responding again
if you've not yet responded - respond now - your response could rescue Marple Wharf

Link to Planning Application - see HERE

Feel free to use the society's responses to help you write your own response - in your own words if you can - it isn't too late to respond (even though the statutory consultation date has passed)

Be sure to state that your response is to planning applications: DC/067000 & DC/067001

Send your response to:
- by email:
- by post: Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council 
   Growth - Development - (Planning Application Response)
   Stopford House, Piccadily, Stockport, SK1 3XE

See the society's latest response HERE
See the society's original response HERE

CRT/H20 comments in response to the society's 1st letter of objection:
Re: Heritage Issues: CRT/H20 comments see HERE
Re: Refuse Strategy: CRT/H20 comments see HERE
Re: Separation distances: CRT/H2O comments see HERE

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

AGM and Speaker Meeting Tuesday 20th March 2018

The society's 56th AGM took place on Tuesday 20th March 2018 in Marple Library.

Chairman Gillian Postill reported another busy year.  Her report focussed on planning matters including the society's response to the consultations on the National Planning Policy Framework (done through the national body for the civic movement, Civic Voice), the Greater Manchester Spacial Framework (GMSF), the Stockport East Multi Modal Study (SEMMMS) and Stockport's own Local Plan.  Finally she mentioned Marple's Neighbourhood Plan to which the society is an affiliated member working on town centre issues. She went on to announce the forthcoming planning workshops the society is organising in May and July this year.

Treasurer Gordon Johnson reported that the society is in a sound financial position showing a small financial surplus. On behalf of the membership secretary he reported a stable membership of 350 at year end.

The business meeting was followed by a very interesting talk from Paul Hartley, Conservation Officer for Stockport MBC about how conservation can benefit Marple.

Full minutes of the AGM can be seen HERE

The society'a accounts for the year ending 31st December 2017 can be seen HERE

The chairman's report can be seen HERE

All photos Arthur Procter - more photos HERE

Friday, 16 March 2018

AGM and Speaker Meeting 2018

We hope you will join us for the society's 56th AGM and speaker meeting this Tuesday 20th March 2018 in Marple Library.

AGM and Speaker Meeting
Tuesday 20th March at 3.00pm - 5.00pm
in Marple Library
Refreshments served from 2.40pm

Members wishing to stand for committee or to nominate another member can obtain nomination forms by contacting Gillian Postill:

Light refreshments will be served from 2.40pm prior to the business meeting at 3-00pm

Our speaker is Paul Hartley from Stockport MBC who will speak about conservation and how it might help us better care for Marple.

We hope to see you at the meeting - family, friends and neighbours are welcome too (N.B. only members can vote for election of officers and committee members).

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Marple Town Centre Regeneration Scheme

In response to a wholly unsatisfactory traffic scheme by Stockport Council in 2013 the civic society arranged an alternative community town study in 2015 by Phil Jones Associates. You can view the study HERE

Workshops & Phil Jones Associates Study of Marple
A Neighbourhood Plan Forum was then set up to take forward positive regeneration of Marple Town Centre and address other planning issues in Marple - a Neighbourhood Plan is a means of local people being more involved in shaping where they live.

The civic society is an affiliated community group on the Neighbourhood Forum and is a member of the Neighbourhood Plan Town Team.

It has been a tortuous route to get to where we are.
You can view the summary timeline HERE

The council recently commissioned Atkins, their consultants, to carry out another Marple town centre study/traffic count. The council's traffic engineers still harbour desires to widen the junction at Hollins Lane including a two stage pedestrian crossing and converting the roundabout at Littlewood's butchers into a traffic lighted junction, reminiscent of their scheme in 2013.

Marple deserves better, much better. Through the Neighbourhood Plan we will continue to work with the Phil Jones Associates Study for the positive regeneration of Marple. This approach would unite Marple and turn it into a people friendly town rather than a congested, traffic dominated one.
Stockport Council's Vision for Marple - 2013 scheme - see HERE

2008 - The Hollins junction came under threat for the first time

2013 - The council's 2nd attempt to widen the Hollins  with the addition of traffic lights to replace the roundabout at Littlewoods butchers

2018 - These junctions are threatened again following the SMBC Atkin's transport study:
-  Hollins Lane/Stockport Road
-  Hibbert Lane/Stockport Road
-  Church Ln/Hibbert Ln 
-  Stockport Road/Station Road/Cross Lane

An alternative Vision - this is how Marple could look
Artists impression - view west along Stockport Road towards Hollins Lane

This sort of approach would unite the town centre which is currently 'divided' by the barrier effect of Stockport Road and : 
   - help to reduce traffic congestion 
   - create a people-friendly town and reduce the dominance of traffic
   - ensure all shops are easily accessible on foot from one shop to another
   - provide easy access to community facilities and civic amenities
   - ensure the town is safe, convenient and pleasant for everyone, whether on foot,                      cycle, bus or car
   - reconcile traffic movements with quality public spaces in the town centre