Here is the text of a leaflet that will be handed out by Marple in Action at the Area Committee tonight. A statement from MiA will also be read out at the meeting and this will be published on-line afterwards.
At the August area committee meeting, the Councillors offered to arrange an extraordinary meeting to allow the public to learn the facts and ask questions of the Principal and Governors of CAMSCF. We understand that the Principal and Governors yesterday declined to attend, but to be honest we never really expected them to accept. The issuing of a second statement by Lawrie Grant Chair of the Governors on Monday is, we believe going to be their only response to the public.
Last week we learnt that the format of the meeting had changed to a series of presentations to debate the issue of a supermarket on Hibbert Lane campus.
You will appreciate that this is not what the meeting was originally called for and as Marple in Action’s message is clear – a supermarket on Hibbert Lane campus is unacceptable, it is against the Council’s own planning strategy and would be devastating for Marple in many ways. We are not here to debate this.
Whilst we have empathy for the situation in which the College finds itself and understand that the Governors are constitutionally bound to seek ‘best value’ when offloading the Hibbert Lane campus, we would urge them to consider again the options.
In taking the course of action they currently intend they are setting themselves against the Council and forcing SMBC into an appeals process that will ultimately be costly to all the ratepayers in Stockport. The Governors, in their latest statement seem to be abdicating any responsibility for their actions by indicating that the supermarket developers, their lawyers, consultants and the Council must make the decision [fight it out!], but we wouldn’t be in this situation if it wasn’t for their actions.
There has been a school on Hibbert Lane for generations and Marple folk don’t want to see that end. There must be compromise that is acceptable to the community, businesses, students, staff and Governors.
The legacy of a supermarket on Hibbert Lane is one that many people find hard to stomach.
Marple in Action shall continue to fight against the proposal for a supermarket, although our attentions shall be focussed on the soon to be submitted planning application. If you can offer any assistance please contact Marple in Action.www.marple-in-action.org.uk
Action Helpline 07790 419494