MANCHESTER CITY COUNCIL
REPORT FOR RESOLUTION
COMMITTEE THE EXECUTIVE
DATE 13TH APRIL 2005
SUBJECT SITE FOR NEW HIGH SCHOOL IN EAST MANCHESTER
REPORT OF CHIEF EXECUTIVE
PURPOSE OF REPORT
To determine a preferred site option for the location of the proposed East Manchester High
School in Beswick following consultation with local residents.
The Executive is asked to:
Note the feedback received from resident consultation conducted in January 2005.
Approve the proposed location of the development of the East Manchester High School
contained within Option „C‟ (See Appendix 2).
FINANCIAL CONSEQUENCES FOR THE REVENUE BUDGET
FINANCIAL CONSEQUENCES FOR THE CAPITAL BUDGET
None directly from this report. The future financial consequences in relation to the proposed High
School will be the subject of ongoing discussions with the DfES and details of site assembly
requirements and investment needs will be the subject of a future report.
CONTACT OFFICERS TELEPHONE E MAIL ADDRESS
Tom Russell 223 1155 firstname.lastname@example.org
Michelle Bailey 234 1480 email@example.com
Steve Edwards 223 1166 firstname.lastname@example.org
New East Manchester “A New Town in a City” Regeneration Framework March 2001
Housing Market Renewal Area Development Framework (Abridged Version) – East Manchester,
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Planning Applications and Consents Reference nos. 066334/OO/NORTH2/02,
067602/FO/NORTH2/03, 067649/FO/NORTH3/03Report to Executive Committee dated 22 Jan
2003 “New East Manchester Progress and Key Issues”
Report to Executive Committee dated 8 Jan 2001 “New East Manchester Limited, Regeneration
Framework and Progress on Initial Projects”
Report to Executive Committee dated 19 Jan 2005 “Endorsement of the draft Beswick
Neighbourhood Plan and South Beswick Redevelopment, proposed City of Manchester (Bell
Crescent, Beswick) Compulsory Purchase Order 2005
New East Manchester “Education Investment Strategy” 2003
Copies of the above documents are held at the Housing Market Renewal Office, Elizabeth House,
Off Victoria Street, Openshaw, M11.
ANTI EQUAL ENVIRONMENT
YES YES YES
EMPLOYMENT HUMAN RIGHTS
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1.1 The Regeneration Framework for East Manchester “A new Town in the City” was published in
March 2001, after extensive consultation with local residents, key agencies and Members. It
was prepared by New East Manchester Limited (NEM) and formally adopted by the Council
in 8th Jan 2001. The Framework sets out the broad strategic direction for the long-term
regeneration of East Manchester. It is consciously holistic in nature, addressing housing,
economic development, education, environmental and transport issues in an integrated
manner. NEM and all other agencies recognise that integrated action – tackling these issues
together, seeing and addressing the linkages between them – is a pre-condition of
1.2 The fundamental objective, is that East Manchester will once again become a place where
people choose to live, work and invest; competitive with other parts of the City and
conurbation; and thereby reconnected with and able to participate in the economic and social
success of Manchester.
1.3 The Regeneration Framework sets out the key aims for the regeneration programme in East
Manchester over the next 15–20 years. These include doubling of the population from
30,000 to 60,000, the development of some 12,000 new homes primarily for sale, and
improvements to a further 7,000 existing homes. However, the Framework was not intended
to provide the focus necessary to deal with the detail of specific challenges facing the
communities in East Manchester. This is being achieved through the establishment of a
rolling programme of neighbourhood planning, which provides focused attention on discrete
neighbourhoods encompassing the whole of the East Manchester area. The Beswick Area
is one of fourteen residential areas in East Manchester identified by the Regeneration
1.4 The Regeneration Framework identifies the need for a local Secondary School in East
Manchester and made clear that the improvement of education provision is a priority for New
East Manchester. Beswick was identified as an appropriate location in the Regeneration
2 THE BESWICK NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN
2.1 The Beswick Neighbourhood Plan (Appendix 1) was considered by the Executive at their
meeting on 19 January 2005 and approved subject to the consideration of retaining the
Seven Stars and the Co-operative Building in the south-west corner of the site and further
consideration and approval of the detailed location of the High School site.
3 NEW HIGH SCHOOL
3.1 New East Manchester Ltd published an Education Investment Strategy for East Manchester
in 2003. This recognises the pivotal role education plays in sustainable regeneration and the
need for future planning of capital investment in school facilities to meet the educational
needs of the future population. As part of this a thorough analysis of population projections
linked to the housing development programme was carried out. It is anticipated that planned
redevelopment in East Manchester will generate the need for 900 high school places as the
housing programme develops. In order to meet this demand and in line with the strategic
Regeneration Framework, a site for a potential new high school was allocated in Beswick, as
part of the draft Neighbourhood Plan.
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3.2 Earlier this year the Government announced a new funding regime – Building Schools for the
Future – and Manchester submitted a bid that will provide the capital to develop the new high
school in Beswick. The bid has received „in principle‟ approval and a final business case is
3.3 The school as originally planned in the Regeneration Framework would have been a 5 form
entry high school for 750 pupils with associated playing fields with room to expand to a 6
form entry school as the population increased.
3.4 The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) has changed the requirements for the
amount of sports, play and circulation space for children on a school site. The DfES has also
recently published the Building Schools for the Future Exemplar Designs. These indicate the
need for high quality play, leisure and sports space within the school environs.
3.5 For these reasons, the area of land that was originally set aside for the school on the
Neighbourhood Plan is no longer adequate. It is now necessary to extend the area for school
playing fields to identify an acceptable site to secure DfES funding.
4 CITY POLICY CONTEXT
4.1 The Regeneration Framework for East Manchester takes account of the views expressed
during three months extensive consultation with the community and a wide range of
interested stakeholders and organisations. It identifies a number of principles, which support
the need for housing renewal and regeneration. Included in these principles is the need to
create strong sustainable communities.
4.2 The UDP for the City of Manchester was adopted in July 1995. The UDP supports the
creation of new development opportunities to improve the quality and choice of housing and
upgrade the local environment. The Plan has been subject to partial reviews since adoption,
the most recent of which concerned the East Manchester part of the Plan. The East
Manchester Alterations to the UDP give expression to the land use elements of the
Regeneration Framework for East Manchester. The Alterations were progressed in
accordance with the procedures set down in the Town and Country Planning (Development
Plan) (England) Regulations 1999. This process culminated in a UDP Inquiry that was held
on 8th May 2003 and the subsequent adoption of the East Manchester modifications to the
Unitary Development Plan on 25th November 2003. The East Manchester Regeneration
Framework is thus now formally underpinned by the amended UDP.
4.3 The Community Strategy identifies the need to sustain communities and enable them to
realise their economic and social potential by removing areas of unfit housing and improving
the range of housing quality and choice.
4.4 The Corporate Housing Strategy plays a key role as a catalyst and contributes to the
Council‟s wider regeneration agenda. It sits firmly with the Council‟s community strategy and
its related emerging neighbourhood renewal strategy and it identifies extending housing
quality and choice as a key objective. The creation of new development opportunities will
help to achieve this as will the improvement of the local environment.
4.5 The New East Manchester „Education Investment Strategy‟ was endorsed by the Schools
Organisation Committee on the 5th May 2004. The Strategy recognises that without a
significant rise in educational standards and attainment, the New East Manchester
regeneration targets for comprehensive physical, social and economic renaissance will not be
realised. The Strategy outlines the plan for a new high school in Beswick which would act as
a key anchor to the area‟s regeneration. The Strategy argues that approval for a new high
school in East Manchester is a necessary pre-condition for the successful renewal of the
area and the achievement of high educational standards for its residents.
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5 PLANNING APPLICATION AND CPO PROCESS
5.1 An application (ref. 066334/OO/NORTH2/02) seeking Outline Planning Permission for 1,100
dwellings, 2 schools and mixed-use retail and business developments in the land to be
redeveloped was accepted on 9 August 2002, and approved on 6 March 2003. The outline
planning permission granted general approval for the principle of the phased development of
the site identified in the planning application. Detailed matters relating to means of access,
the siting, design and external appearance of the proposed buildings and the landscaping of
the site were left reserved. Further planning applications relating to reserved matters will be
required to be submitted, and planning permission granted, prior to the actual development of
6 HIGH SCHOOL SITE SIZE REQUIREMENTS
6.1 DfES Building Bulletin BB98: Briefing Framework for Secondary School Projects became
applicable as guidance for Secondary School designs in April 2004. It replaces BB82, and
for an average secondary school means a minimum increase of 7% in site size on the
previous guidance. DfES recommends a further increase of between 4% and 10% in site
size on BB82 standards so that the „individual priorities‟ of schools can be met.
6.2 DfES BB98 guidance for High Schools without specialisms of 900 pupils indicates a minimum
site size of 60,830m2 and a maximum of 74,655m2.
6.3 This does not include an allowance for:
(i) Additional space for facilities to support a specialism (it is certain that the New High School
would need to have specialist status);
Extended schools provision/co-location of services (eg the relocation of Beswick Library as
part of the new High School is under consideration). A key aspiration of Building Schools for
the Future and the City‟s Education Vision relates to the delivery of Extended Schools
providing an access point for the delivery of services for children and their families, as well as
pre and after school clubs and holiday schemes. The anticipated space requirement for the
library is 700m2.
(ii) Sixth form or post 16 provision
DfES has indicated that sites at the minimum size are unlikely to be approved as they do not
allow for future expansion or development. The DfES has also recently published Exemplar
Designs for High Schools which aims to provide the highest quality learning environments for
children using exemplar designs and new technology. To deliver a site of minimum
proportions would undermine these aspirations.
At this stage it is not possible to be clear on the requirements of sixth form/post 16 provision.
However, it should be noted that a sixth form centre with 180 places would generate a
requirement for additional extended sports pitches and outdoor spaces of 9,306m 2. DfES
count the provision of synthetic football pitches and multi use games areas as double. The
current outline proposals include a synthetic adult football pitch of 8,250m 2 and a multi use
games area of 1,650m2 providing a total of 9,900m2. The provision of these synthetic
surfaces would allow for the development of sixth form/ post 16 provision if required.
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6.4 The proposals for the new High School for East Manchester envisage a 900 place school.
Even if a 750 place school was to be considered, there would need to be scope for
expansion, specialism and extended school/service co-location to be accommodated.
Given that the minimum and maximum site requirements for a 750 place school without a
specialism are 53,075m2 and 65,138m2 respectively, a site size which is between 65,000 and
70,000m2 is essential to allow for such developments.
6.5 The sports pitches and outdoor spaces provide the minimum required for the curriculum
delivery and circulation space. The DfES would not readily agree to a reduction in these. Any
reduction would also be opposed by Sports England who have signed up to the removal of
unused surplus sports pitches in the area on the understanding that the facilities provide by
the new school would be shared use with the wider East Manchester community.
7 OPTION FOR THE EXPANSION OF THE SITE
7.1 Following consideration of the amended regulations regarding the size of site required for the
High School, the options for identified an expanded site within Beswick were identified. The
new proposed site included land south of the „Green Route‟ which had been previously
allocated as new housing within the Neighbourhood Plan and existing housing in the area
bounded by Bordan Street, Barmouth Street, Campion Walk and Albert Street.
7.2 The area south of the proposed „Green Route‟ had previously been earmarked for new
housing development by preferred developers Gleeson. The expansion of the site to include
this part of the site will result in a net loss of approximately 100 new housing units as
compared to the site originally earmarked.
7.3 The area of additional existing housing affected by the expansion to the north west of the site
contains 79 residential properties. 45 of these properties are owned and managed by
Guinness Trust, 3 by Family Housing Association, 3 by North British Housing Association, 1
Manchester City Council property, 13 privately tenanted, 14 owner occupiers.
8 CONSULTATION PROCESS
8.1 Residents within the properties affected by the necessary expansion of the site as listed
above received a letter in September 2004 explaining the reasons for the proposed
expansion. This letter was followed by a Drop In event for all Beswick residents held on 27 th
and 28th September 2004 for resident‟s views on changes to the Neighbourhood Plan which
incorporated other changes apart from those at the school site. Concerns were expressed by
a number of affected residents at this time regarding the process of identifying an expanded
site and in particular the lack of a range of options to consider.
8.2 Following the Drop In event, a further letter was sent to residents affected by the expansion
which offered one-to-one home visits to discuss future housing needs.
8.3 Due to these concerns, a number of clarification meetings were held between a number of
resident representatives, New East Manchester and elected members to discuss the issues.
8.4 The decision was taken in December 2004 to undertake further work on a number of options
for the site for consultation with Beswick residents. It was agreed that a dedicated Beswick
„Neighbourhood Update‟ (newsletter) (Appendix 3) be produced, with details of 4 options for
the site. The „Neighbourhood Update‟ was delivered to each household across the Beswick
neighbourhood on the 26th January 2005 and a „Drop In‟ event was held on the 31 st January
to provide more detail on the proposed site options and to assist in answering questions from
residents. A Feedback Form formed part of the newsletter which asked residents for their
views on each option and asked for their preferred option.
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9 OPTIONS FOR THE SITE
9.1 SITE REQUIREMENTS
9.2 Each option is able to deliver the site in terms of the minimum requirements from the BB98
regulations. There are a number of facilities which must be provided within the site including
habitat areas, hard and soft areas and a variety of adult and junior sports pitches. Due to the
advanced nature of the design of the Neighbourhood Plan in Beswick, each of the options
have taken account of the „Green Route‟ which provides a new west to east route and safe
pedestrian and cycle provision across Beswick. As the key for each option details (Appendix
2), the main school building is identified as letter „A‟ and the sports/community facility building
as „B‟ on the plans.
9.3 The provision of 2,337 m2 for land subject to Charitable Trust was also essential in each
option to reprovide a site for recreational purposes which is affected by the redevelopment on
the Ashton Old Road frontage which was highlighted in an Executive Committee Report on
7th July 2004.
9.4 The 4 site options also affect proposals for new retail provision on Grey Mare Lane and the
potential size and location of this provision varies in each option. The „Beswick Retail
Strategy‟ is currently being finalised however, each of the options deliver sufficient flexibility
for maximising the opportunities in relation to new retail provision for the Beswick area.
9.5 „Key facts‟ relating to each of the 4 options such as the size of the site, the ability to provide
new homes as compared to other options and the number of houses to be demolished as
compared to other options, were highlighted within the newsletter to assist residents in
comparing the options to arrive at a preferred site location. The feedback from residents is
summarised below and a full report is attached at Appendix 4.
9.6 OPTION A
9.6.1 The size of the Option A site is 67,900 sq m which is within the range as prescribed by BB98
as between the minimum site size of 60,830m2 and a maximum of 74,655m2.
9.6.2 This option would require the demolition of a total of 192 homes however, the large majority
of these homes were previously identified as required for the original site. The additional
properties affected are those as outlined in Section 7 above.
9.6.3 The provision of 111 new homes in the south section of the area will be possible in this
9.6.4 The Charitable Trust land would be situated in the south section of the area, adjacent to the
school playing fields.
9.7 OPTION B
9.7.1 The size of Option B site is 74,000 sqm which is equal in Option D as the largest site
proposed and would be close to the maximum site size required of 74,655 m2.
9.7.2 This option also maximizes the ability to provide 135 new homes in the area. This is due to
the redesign of the „Sports/Community building‟ which has been repositioned on to Grey
Mare Lane, providing a strong „Education Gateway‟ to the new Green Route and
opportunities to share the Grey Mare Lane frontage between this building and the retail
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9.7.3 This option would require the demolition of a total of 192 homes however, the large majority
of these homes were previously identified as required for the original site. The additional
properties affected are those as outlined in Section 7 above.
9.7.4 The Charitable Trust site would either be situated in the south section of Bradford Park or on
land directly in front of the Grange Resource Centre.
9.8 OPTION C
9.8.1 The size of the Option C site is 67,500 sq m which is the smallest of the 4 options but is
within the range as prescribed by BB98 as between the minimum site size of 60,830m2 and a
maximum of 74,655m2.
9.8.2 This option also maximises the ability to provide 135 new homes in the area and as Option B
would require the siting of the Charitable Trust site to be in the south section of Bradford Park
of on land directly in front of the Grange Resource Centre.
9.8.3 This option would require the demolition of a total of 157 homes. The area of existing
housing in the area bounded by Albert Street, Barmouth Street and Jobling Street would be
9.8.4 This option also maximizes the ability to provide 135 new homes in the area.
9.9 OPTION D
9.9.1 Option D is equal to B in size in providing the largest site at 74,000 sqm which is towards the
maximum site required by the BB98 regulations. 113 existing homes would be required for
demolition which is the lowest number of the 4 options and would retain existing housing
bounded by Albert Street, Barmouth Street and Bordan Street.
9.9.2 This option would require a substantial reduction in the numbers of new homes provided as a
total of only 30 new homes would be able to be provided due to the size of the site and the
extend of retention of existing homes.
10 FEEDBACK FROM CONSULTATION PROCESS
10.1 Following the distribution of the dedicated „Neighbourhood Update‟ (newsletter), 60
completed Feedback Forms were returned. This equates to a 3% return rate from across the
Beswick neighbourhood. Further activity to increase this low percentage of returns was
considered however it was agreed that progress should be made on a decision as soon as
possible and that it was the nature of the issue that those potentially directly affected would
be inclined to respond as apposed to those indirectly affected.
10.2 The totals for each option were as follows:
Option No of Returns % of the total return
A 9 14%
B 11 17%
C 30 47%
D 6 10%
NP 7 11%
NP – No Preference
Total No of Returns was 63 as some had more than one option choice.
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10.3 Whilst there was a low overall response to the consultation across the neighbourhood, there
was a return rate of 31% from the properties affected by the expansion of the site in the north
west corner (area bounded by Albert Street, Bordan Street & Bordan Street). Of these
residents, 57% expressed a preference for Option C which would retain the properties in this
10.4 There was a general theme running through the replies of those who chose Option C in that
they felt that there was a settled and established community of many years standing which
they did not want demolished. The money spent on a facelift scheme and other
improvements were also given as a reason for choosing this option. In addition it was felt that
this option allowed as much new build as the others options, but without a loss to the school
10.5 Those who chose the second most popular Option B in general felt happy about the
developments and that Beswick needed the improvements.
11 SOCIAL, ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS
11.1 The proposals for the new High School are integral to the Beswick Neighbourhood Plan. The
transformation of the neighbourhood is holistic and complete; creating a well designed, well
managed, mixed use neighbourhood capable of retaining its residents and attracting new
residents. All of these actions will take place within a context of wider works intended to
regenerate the whole of East Manchester; regeneration activities across each discrete
neighbourhood mutually supporting and reinforcing each other.
11.2 The creation of a successful and sustainable community in Beswick with high quality good
primary and high schools, quality housing, shops and community facilities, good access to
employment opportunities at Central Park and the City Centre for example, and well
designed and maintained open spaces, will set the standard for future developments across
East Manchester. Beswick will be a safe place, with an inclusive and diverse community,
who live in a high quality environment and enjoying excellent services. The prominence of the
Beswick neighbourhood, surrounded on all sides by important transport links provides a
unique opportunity to act as a gateway to East Manchester and restore pride and prestige to
11 1 12 SUMMARY
12.1 Of the options outlined above, there is a clear majority both across the wider Beswick area
and within the area affected by the school proposals, for Option C. Whilst this is the smallest
land-take of the four options, it is within the guidance for schools of this size and type.
Option B and D offer significantly greater scope for the design of the school and its potential
future expansion, this can only be achieved by either an increase in the number of properties
to be acquired and demolished and/or a significant reduction in the programme of new
housing development in Beswick. NEM and the City Council have previously indicated their
wish to contain the disruption and cost associated with demolition of existing properties in
East Manchester to the minimum level necessary to deliver the objectives of sustainable
economic, social and physical improvement of the area.
12.2 On balance, therefore, given that the new High School can be accommodated within the site
identified in Option C, officers consider that this is the site which should be adopted.
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13 CONCLUSIONS / RECOMMENDATIONS
13.1 The Beswick Neighbourhood Plan was formulating following detailed consultation with
residents and other key stakeholders. The original plan identified a site for the proposed
development of a new high quality school for East Manchester. However, following changes
to DfES guidance and a submission to the „Building Schools for the Future‟ programme, the
size of the site required to meet present day school standards meant that the Neighbourhood
Plan had to be altered.
13.2 Following the recent consultations with Beswick residents in January this year, feedback
identified a preference for the site location defined as Option „C‟.
13.3 This site not only meets the site size requirements laid down in updated DfES guidance but
offers the opportunity to retain a number of existing homes located within the area bounded
by Albert Street, Bordan Street, Jobling Street and Campion Walk.
13.4 It is intended that, subject to the approval of necessary funding and site assembly
requirements, the school will be developed to be opened in time for the academic year of
13.5 It is therefore recommended that Executive approve the location of the proposed High School
defined at Option „C‟ (Appendix 2).
13.6 A further report will be tabled at Executive detailing site assembly requirements and
investment needs at the earliest opportunity.
14 IMPLICATIONS FOR KEY COUNCIL POLICIES
14.1 The implications of this report for the Council‟s Environmental policies are that the High
School development will result in, the physical environment being greatly improved to give a
new high quality environment with innovative use of public spaces and the development
being of the highest quality of design and construction thus providing for the long-term
sustainability of the area.
14.2 The implications for the Council‟s equal opportunities policies are that the new educational
environment created will be accessible for all sections of the community.
14.3 The implications for the Council‟s policies for combating poverty and disadvantage are the
improvements will address social exclusion and enhance the quality of life for the residents
by improving both the overall social conditions, educational and employment opportunities in
14.4 The implications of this report for the Council‟s policies on employment are a substantial
improvement in the educational opportunities within the area and the development
investment which will attract local employment opportunities for local people building on work
already carried out by the NEM and NDC teams working in the area.
14.5 The proposals are consistent with the City‟s regeneration strategy for New East Manchester.
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Neighbourhood Plan (Illustrated Map) approved on 19 January 2005 subject to revisions
Options A to D for the School Site
Copies of Beswick Neighbourhood Update January 2005
Feedback from Consultation Process
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