Festival will help greenbelt plan fight
AMUSIC festival will be held to raise awareness about controversial plans to build on the green belt across Greater Manchester.
The first Greenbelt Groove festival will take place at the Hopwood Arms pub in Middleton on Saturday, July 15.
Organisers say all profits from the event, which will feature nearly a dozen live acts, will go towards a campaign established to fight the contentious Greater Manchester Spatial Framework.
A number of protests have been held across the region against the proposals, which could see 225,000 new homes built over the next 20 years, many on green belt land.
Earlier this year almost 1,500 protesters gathered in Albert Square in Manchester during an event organised by the Save Greater Manchester’s Greenbelt group.
Those behind the plan say house building targets will not be able to be met without redrawing the green belt boundary.
Festival organiser Kallum Nolan, from Middleton, says the idea is to raise awareness of the campaign with music fans.
Campaigners are calling on brownfield land to be used for housing before any greenbelt sites are considered for development.
Kallum said: “I have been following the plans anyway but then I came across a mate in the pub who was telling me about it.
“But you speak to a lot of people and they don’t have any idea about it.
“When they find out a bit more about it they are often shocked.
“There’s a real sense of social injustice about it.
“I thought at least in Middleton we can raise awareness of it with a bit of an all dayer.”
The festival has been organised with local campaign group Save Our Slattocks, which is part of the overarching Greater Manchester group.
The group is campaigning against the plan in Rochdale and Middleton and in particular the Slattocks area near to the Hopwood Arms.
Up and coming Middleton group Scuttlers will headline the festival, with performances from other local bands including Son Primo, Beggar’s Belief, Twin Gates and The Recreation.
Profits from the event will go to the Save Greater Manchester’s Greenbelt group.
After being elected, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham pledged to ‘radically rewrite’ the controversial plan.
He has tasked Mayor of Salford Paul Dennett with overseeing the rewrite.
Tickets for the festival are available on Skiddle priced at £7.
Middleton band Scuttlers, who are headlining the Greenbelt Groove festival