Agenda and minutes

Scrutiny Review Panel - Stockport’s Communal Corridors: Securing the safety, cleanliness and biodiversity - Wednesday, 10th January, 2024 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 2, Town Hall, Stockport. View directions


No. Item


Minutes pdf icon PDF 214 KB

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 5 December 2023.

Additional documents:


The Minutes (copies of which had been circulated) of the meeting held on 5 December 2023 were approved as a correct record.


Declarations of Interest

Councillors and officers to declare any interests which they have in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.

Additional documents:


Councillors and officers were invited to declare any interests which they had in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.


The following interest was declared: -


Personal interests





Rachel Wise


Agenda Item 3 – ‘Alleyway Greening’ – as an acquaintance of Daryl Falconer, Countryside Officer at Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council and Bridget Rogers from Reddish Together.



Alleyway Greening

To consider information presented by representatives of groups involved in greenspace projects.


Representatives of voluntary groups and stakeholders involved in greenspace projects have been invited to attend this Scrutiny Review meeting to share their achievements, knowledge and expertise in relation to greenspace projects.


The Panel is recommended to note and comment upon the information presented.


Officer contact: Sue Stevenson on 0161 474 4351 or email

Additional documents:


Representatives of voluntary groups and stakeholders involved in greenspace projects attended the meeting to share their achievements, knowledge and expertise in relation to greenspace projects.


Bridget Rogers from Reddish Together


Ms Rogers informed the Scrutiny Review that the ‘Reddish Together’ group been set up eight months previously to improve the local environment in Reddish. In that period the group had carried out two main projects. The first of those being a project to tidy the main square in Reddish which had involved replacing a barrier, regular litter picks and alleyway tidy-ups, particularly at the back of the charity shop, and clearing an area overgrown with brambles. The second project involved improvements to a disused toilet block, involving  clearing the area and installing a mural.


‘Reddish Together’ used social media to recruit volunteers and fundraised with the local community and local businesses in order to raise funds to carry out improvements in the local area. Future ambitions included partnering with local schools to undertake litter picks and to continue to work to improve the local area and attract business.


Norman Jones from Friends of Ladybrook Valley and Friends of Hesketh Park


Mr Jones stated that the Friends of Ladybrook Valley group had been operational for 25 years. There were approximately eight regular members. In relation to Ladybrook Valley, with the exception of tree planting, all other work was carried out by the ‘Friends of’ group. The group had made improvements to the pathway and had secured funding from the Merseyway River Trust to create a pond.


Mr Jones stated that he had also been a member of the Friends of Hesketh Park for approximately the past twelve years. The park had previously been neglected and the Friends group had made many improvements. The most recent Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) inspection had awarded the park a Category 5 distinction.


Mr Jones also had involvement with a volunteer group who had worked on land behind Cheadle Hulme Library. An orchard had been planted and an urban wildlife area created. Mr Jones reported that there had been some areas of disagreement with council officers who had wanted to mow the grass in the area. Mr Jones also worked with the Friends of Carr Wood, a group which had been set up for seven years. That group had recruited students and members of the Mersey River Trust to undertake bio-blitzes, the most recent of which had attracted 70 visitors and found several species.


Michaela Howell from Groundwork UK


Ms Howell informed the scrutiny review that Groundwork UK was a community and environmental charity which offered a wide-range of support and activities including improving skills, employment, energy advice, biodiversity and climate change. Groundwork UK had been commissioned by Stockport Council to create ‘eco-streets’ which involved brightening up alleyways and other small areas of land to create community gardens.


Recently Groundwork UK had been working in Brinnington, creating volunteer groups and supporting people with confidence and skills. That group was working on a memorial garden at Berwick Parade. Further work was taking place, alongside Resilient Cities, in Edgeley to develop a community response to flooding. Groundworks UK also worked with groups to help them to obtain grants from the Mayor’s fund.


Update from Council Officers


Council officers reported that council teams worked across the borough with over 90 ‘Friends of’ groups. The council ensured groups can undertake work which was covered under its liability insurance. It also carried out power tool training. The work undertaken by ‘Friends of’ groups was over and above that which was carried out contractually by Totally Local Company on behalf of the council and it added value in making the borough more vibrant, interesting and accessible to residents and visitors.


It was reported that the work carried out by council officers to protect voluntary workers could be labour intensive but it was important to have systems in place  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.