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Salford MP pleads for Eric Pickles help to block legal appeal against ‘Say No To Green Lane’ campaign

By Phil Jones

A campaign against the planned ‘Green Lane Eco Park’ in Eccles is being backed by a Manchester MP by encouraging senior figures to defend a legal challenge.

Plans for the proposed incinerator and recycling development were refused in August after a 12-day public inquiry.

But developers Sky Properties are now seeking a judicial review and Hazel Blears MP urged the secretary of state for communities and local government, Eric Pickles MP, to block the appeal.

She said: “I am very concerned to ensure that this latest legal action is resisted as robustly as possible.

“News of the appeal was a devastating blow to local people who campaigned so effectively and mobilised the whole community.

“We must work closely with the community, city council and Mr Pickles to oppose this latest appeal.

“It will then be really important for us to come up with a beneficial use for the site which will be supported by the whole community.”

The Salford and Eccles MP’s plea to Mr Pickles comes after meeting members of the ‘Say No To Green Lane’ group and council planners.

Were the plans to be approved an incinerator would be built in the heart of Patricroft, close to houses and a children’s playground.

But residents are fearful of the visual impact of the incinerator, possible health implications, increased traffic, and noise and smells from the site.

August’s inquiry saw the inspector, John Woodcock, find in favour of Salford City Council, which had originally refused the plans.

And Councillor Derek Antrobus, assistant mayor for strategic planning, said: “We are sticking to our guns. The inspector made the right decision.

“I have been assured that we will have the council’s full backing. I have asked in no uncertain terms that the strongest possible case is prepared to rebut Sky’s challenge.

“Salford City Council has defended its decision to refuse planning permission for this development following an appeal. The government inspector subsequently agreed with the city council’s position.

“This is a legal challenge to that decision and the City Council will continue to support the decision of the inspector.”

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