Save Birley Fields Barbecue
On Sunday 1st August, Residents from Hulme and students from MMU teamed up with Manchester Climate Action for a community barbecue on green and leafy Birley Fields. There was live music, stalls, and a ceilidh dance. The event, lasting over seven hours, was attended by over 200 people from the local community and was a great demonstration of the ecological and social value of Birley Fields to the local community.
Residents and Students from MMU Putting up marquees for the event:
Local residents have began collecting a petition to oppose the development of the site as they believe that MMU’s three month consultation in 2009 was misleading and did not ask the community how they would like to use the space, and only projected the benefits of a new campus.
Local bands providing the afternoons entertainment
Michelle Flower, from the Save Birley Fields Campaign group commented, “In MMU’s consultation, the university forgot to tell local residents of plans to build a 400 storey car park and the traffic and congestion problems of the new campus were glossed over. Also – MMU and the Council planners are totally ignoring the health benefits of having mature trees and greenery in an inner city area.”
Recent news from the North West Development agency (NWDA), reported in the M.E.N, shows that millions of pounds have been axed from landmark schemes, including £8.5m for the new Birley Fields campus. Local residents are now highly dubious about whether the proposed community and environmental benefits will be included in the plans due to these funding problems.
Fun times on Birley Fields!
Patrick Sudlow, from the Save Birley Fields Campaign group said, “Whilst MMU’s green plans for the site are very laudable, we now seriously doubt how they will deliver a lot of the environmental plans that have been laid out by the architects. At the time of a recession, aspects such as renewable energy and grey water filtration systems will be the first to go. MMU vice-chancellor John Brooks has already admitted as much, and the so-called ‘three zeros campus’ idea has been downgraded from a commitment to an‘ambition’.”
MMU students holding a banner: save the local green space!
The barbecue was held in conjunction with Manchester Climate Action, which was also raising awareness about the forthcoming climate camp, to be held in Edinburgh on August 21 st – 24th, with the Royal Bank of Scotland being the main focus for this year’s activity.
For more information about climate camp please go to www.climatecamp.org.uk or manchesterclimateaction.wordpress.com
Its not only residents that enjoy Birley Fields……..
NO Borders Birley Fields May Day event
Watch the Video of the Day here: watch?v=LSXiYMvB_DA
No Borders created an autonomous bloc on the Mayday trade union march with the slogan ‘you cannot represent us’ to counterbalance what they anticipated as the complete dominance of electoral politics on May 1st in Manchester. This was followed by an event on Birley Fields in Hulme which was recieved by an overwhelmingly positive response from Hulme residents showing the great value of the land for the area. Below is the No Borders Report of the event.
Kids and Families enjoying the May Day fun
At the same time as the march, some people had been setting up marquees and a soundsystem on Birley Fields, Hulme. The Fields are due for development by Manchester Metropolitan University and Hulme residents have set up a campaign to save them. A speaker from the campaign described them on the day as ‘the green lungs for the working people of the area’.
Nothing Like a good ol’ BBQ
With the rain staying away unexpectedly, the site quickly filled up towards the afternoon with over 200 people coming and going throughout the day. Music started at 3pm with a set by Attila the Stockbroker and David Rovics who kindly passed by on the way to their Bradford gig. They were followed by a diverse range of performers and bands from reggae via punk to folk until it got dark. An open-mic speakers corner between the acts saw people from various campaigns talk about government cuts to service and politics away from the ballot box.
A bicycle trailer sound system provides entertainment for the community
The day ended with some impromptu fireworks and a great team-effort to restore Birley Fields to its original state. We are considering a similar event for May Day next year, so be sure to get involved..
For More information about no Borders Go to: http://nobordersmanchester.blogspot.com