I’ve taken a couple of photos from the lane just passed my house at the top end of Lord Derby Rd. They show all the greenbelt fields involved in the Bowlacre Farm/road, West Park and Lord Derby Rd area. The Apethorn Lane area of GREENBELT continues on the other side of Stockport Rd.


Looking over Woodley towards the Airport from Lord Derby Road. All the green area is part of this plan.


Middle section taken from Lord Derby Rd towards Bowlacre Farm and Stockport Rd.
All this green area is part of the plan.


Looking left across the fields at the rear of West Park and The Dingle. All this land is included in the plan.
You can just see the new houses being built on the old college site off Stockport Rd.

I have lived on Lord Derby Rd for 30 years and these views and lanes are what brought our family to live here. We also have fields going up behind us to the top of Werneth Low across from the Hare & Hounds.
Beautiful but these steep sloping fields have springs, culverts and streams running down and under them.
Around 15 years ago we discovered how an unscrupulous builder knew of these springs/culverts and built our house over the top of one. This did not show on our deeds or on any maps of the area.
One night after very heavy rainfall we were watching TV when we noticed something out of the corner of our eyes. Water was flowing under our Patio doors and spreading across our dining room. Being open plan we grabbed as many towels as we could and tried to stop the tide.
We looked in the back and there was a huge geysher type expulsion of water going about 10 foot in the air. Then it was coming down the tiered garden to the patio and then through our house.
We had to call the fire brigade who pumped the water away through our garage, which was flooded too.
Next day we discovered the culvert that the builder had built over had burst and become visible where the soil was washed away.
We repaired what we could, had a new grid installed and crossed our fingers when it rained. Luckily our insurance paid for new carpets and furniture.
A few years later it did it again, twice in a very short period of time. By now, 3 carpets later we were told we would become uninsurable if we didn’t get it sorted.
I did some research and found there were approx 15 houses around Gee Cross that had this same problem, one of them was Councillor John Bell. I found out that the council owns all the land involved and had diverted the culvert at the side of Mr Bells house on Arnold Road.
So I contacted him and asked for his help. Eventually the council paid for a 20 foot deep soak away to be built in the field behind our house. They built a manhole and laid a 3 or 4 inch pipe to our boundary fence. We then had to pay £1300 to have the pipe extended to our patio, where the builder had laid a pipe ( unbeknown to us) under our patio, a manhole was built and joined the pipe that then went under our house and down the front garden. We never have found out where this pipe goes to after that, as there are no plans for it.
So from personal experience I know that all the surface water off the Low rolls over all these fields, which eventually soak it up, as do the trees in Bowlacre Clough. These trees have Tree Preservation Orders on them too.
So what will happen if they build around 600 5 bed detached houses in the fields in the photos? Will they all suffer flooding as we do and as some houses on the newer Orchard Rise do?

Then there is the access problem. Lord Derby Rd goes down to one lane at the top and there is a big drop and stream where it starts so widening of the road isn’t an option.
Bowlacre road is narrow at the end where these house will be. No scope to widen it. So if the access is from Stockport Rd, will it be through the new houses on the college site or another main entrance nearby. As you will know, the traffic on this road is already at capacity most of the day. The road is always dug up in Bredbury so it takes ages to get to the M60 that way. If you go the other way via Hyde the M67 is always at a standstill and if you go towards Hattersley they plan on building the Garden Village along the road from Alder school to the train line before Hattersley starts. All chocca block now.
Then the doctors, dentists, schools and Hospital are all full and it’s hard for the existing residents to be seen.

As well as all these points, what will happen to all the wildlife when all these trees have been felled and all the fields have been built on. There won’t be any green fields stopping urban sprawl between the Stockport borough of Woodley right through Gee Cross to Hattersley. Both Tameside borough. Except for Werneth Country Park land.

I do appreciate that new houses need to be built but not large, luxury detached houses that are the plan in our area. Those are not going to help young people get on the housing ladder and are too expensive for most local people. The only winners there are the builders.

Hope this helps,
Carol Horsfield.

2 thoughts on “Bowlacre”

  1. Its simply shocking that anyone in their right mind would even consider building on such a beautiful area. Its simply going to destroy Gee Cross and extend Woodley to Gee Cross. I wonder if council tax in Woodley is cheaper.

  2. We are experiencing the same threat to the beautiful
    countryside behind our house,on Tatton Gardens in Woodley.
    The field behind us and the field on the left side of the
    bridleway on Hillside road have been measured up by surveyors
    ( on behalf of the vendors) and Habitat surveyors (on behalf
    of the council)As this is all designated Green Belt,what can be
    Any advice gratefully received.

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