West Pennine Moors declared an “SSSI”

Holcombe Moor above Ramsbottom has been confirmed by Natural England as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) following a public consultation.

The area is known for being a diverse mosaic of upland habitats, bogs, heathlands, woodlands and grasslands. These habitats support often rare breeding birds and a number of nationally Rare and Scarce plant species.

Land owners and occupiers, in particular livestock farmers, will now require consent before undertaking some operations in the SSSI area.

For more details, visit: www.naturalengland.org.uk

Manchester Arena Attack – Bury Vigil

To share our sympathy and our thoughts with everyone affected by the Manchester Arena attack, Bury Council are hosting a vigil at 6pm to 7pm this evening (Wednesday 24 May) at Whitehead Gardens (underneath the Clock Tower next to Bury Town Hall) Knowsley Street, Bury.

The vigil will be led by the Mayor of Bury, Cllr Dorothy Gunther, together with the Leader and Interim Chief Executive of Bury Council.

Representatives from all faiths and the local community are invited to come together to show their support for those whose lives have been affected by this tragedy.

A book of condolence has been set up at Bury Town Hall, which anyone can sign and leave messages between 9am and 5pm on weekdays. A digital book of condolence is at www.manchester.gov.uk

We hope you will be able to join us at the vigil and show our unity at this difficult time.

Fundraising for Bury Hospice

We were delighted to be able to join local residents at a fundraiser for Bury Hospice on 24 March at Ramsbottom Cricket Club.

The ‘Lancashire Night’ fundraiser, organised by the Ramsbottom Support Group for Bury Hospice was a tremendous success and raised £2,300 for the Hospice.

Our thanks go to the organisers, especially Yvonne Wright of Shuttleworth, for all their hard work and effort.

Update on Crime in Ramsbottom

Last night we had a meeting with Police Inspector Russell Magnall, who is responsible for the Ramsbottom, Tottington and North Manor township. The meeting followed concerns expressed by residents about crime in our town.  We also asked Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner, who is responsible for Policing in Crime, to respond to us about these concerns.

In particular, we asked about reported crime rates for Ramsbottom which record the following number of offences in our town by year:

2011 – 902

2012 – 879

2013 – 704

2014 – 647

2015 – 775

2016 – 880

The figures show that whilst recorded crime fell for 4 years, it has increased over the last two years back to 2011/12 levels.

Inspector Magnall reassured us that recorded crime continues to be at low levels and that the bulk of the increase in recorded crime from 2014 onwards is predominantly due to a change in how crime is recorded by GMP. In 2014 the National Crime Recording Standards were introduced and many incidents which had not previously been recorded as crimes, now had an automatic registration as a crime as soon as a report is made to 999.

We know that every crime can have terrible effects on victims and Greater Manchester Police and the Police & Crime Commissioner always need to put effort into reducing crime. Even one criminal can have a devastating effect on an area.  There have been several spates of burglaries across Ramsbottom.  A total of 9 local burglars were caught in the autumn of 2016 thanks to the hard work of GMP officers.  All have recently been sentenced and imprisoned.

GMP remind us that crime levels generally in Ramsbottom are very low compared to other areas around Bury and indeed, they tell us that Bury is the safest borough to live in Greater Manchester.   Radcliffe, for example, had approaching 4,000 crimes reported in 2016 – well over 4 times that of Ramsbottom.

GMP Officers are using more forms of technology (hand-held IT devices) and are much more mobile – being more innovative despite funding pressures.

As Councillors we will continue to impress on GMP and the GMPCC the need to ensure that we receive the same level of attention as do other areas.

Ramsbottom … one of the best places to live in Britain … ‘The Sunday Times’

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Ramsbottom Chocolate Festival

Ramsbottom has been named among the ‘Best Places to Live in Britain’ by The Sunday Times.

The accolade comes in Part two of ‘The Sunday Times Best Places to Live’ guide, which is published on Sunday March 19 2017.

They have considered a wide range of factors, from jobs, exam results and broadband speed to culture, crime levels, community spirit and local shops, transport links and property in order to compile the definitive top locations in Britain.

The Sunday Times Best Places to Live: North West

Place County
Alston Cumbria
Ancoats Manchester
Baltic Triangle Liverpool
Chorlton-cum-Hardy Greater Manchester
Clitheroe Lancashire
Kendal Cumbria
Kirkby Lonsdale Cumbria
Knutsford Cheshire
Lymm Cheshire
Ramsbottom Greater Manchester
Saddleworth Greater Manchester
West Kirby Merseyside

NB: The above table does not represent the ranking order for the region

‘The Sunday Times Best Places to Live in Britain’ Part 2 is the second in a two-part series. This weekend it reveals the best places to live in the Southwest, East, London, Scotland and the Northwest, as well as the overall best place to live in the UK. Last weekend it revealed the top places in North and North East, Midlands, Northern Ireland, South East and Wales.

Commenting on ‘The Sunday Times Best Places to Live’, Home Editor Helen Davies said: “This is the fifth year we have compiled the list, and this year’s is even bigger and better – the guide is more personal, more detailed and more comprehensive than ever before. The list weighs up everything from considering the likely impact of the local plan, to whether the post office is still open, the range of housing, and the quality of the coffee. Numbers on a spreadsheet can only tell us so much, so we carefully balance statistics with our writers’ decades of knowledge and expertise to create the definitive list of the best places to live in the UK.”

Councillor Ian Bevan commented “Ramsbottom has quite rightly become the top “foodie” town in the north west over the last few years. We have a tremendous number of good restaurants, gastro-pubs, tea rooms and independent shops selling a whole range of food.   We have events such as the Ramsbottom Chocolate Festival that put our town on the map.  In addition, we have the surrounding pennine hills, good housing and transport links and we cannot forget our top asset, our local residents, who are friendly and go out of their way to help their family, friends and neighbours.”

Chocolate Festival Update

Ramsbottom Chocolate Festival

Ramsbottom Chocolate Festival

Today we facilitated an urgent high level meeting with the Chocolate Festival organisers, Gregg and Terri Fletcher, senior Council Officers, senior GM Police and Fire Service officers at Bury Town Hall.

It was a very positive meeting, and all present confirmed their commitment to making sure that the Chocolate Festival goes ahead in Ramsbottom town centre, subject to assurances on public safety and the relevant paperwork having been completed.

A further follow up meeting has been arranged to try and finalise specific details.

This is obviously good news and we will do all that we can over the next few weeks to ensure that the organisers are given the help and support needed to have a successful and enjoyable Chocolate Festival.

Nuttall Park Lantern Parade – Sat 29 October

halloween1Saturday 29th October, 3:00pm until 6:00pm

Nuttall Park Lantern Parade : Nuttall Park,  Nuttall Hall Road,  Ramsbottom, BL0 0AS

There’s plenty of spooky fun to be had at Nuttall Park’s annual Lantern Parade!

Get into the spirit of Halloween with Nuttall Park.

Starting at 3pm, the ever-popular Lantern Parade begins with fun Halloween games, arts and crafts, followed by an illuminating walk around the park.

Cllr Ian Bevan and children at a recent Lantern Parade

Cllr Ian Bevan and children at a recent Lantern Parade