Thursday 12th September 2002, a public meeting was held at St. Thomas Church
The meeting was organised by a steering committee with the intention of forming
a residents association for the improved environment of Mow Cop. There had been
a few meetings by the steering committee in order to draft a constitution for
the committee and also to begin action to obtain custodianship of the the waste
ground opposite St. Thomas Church.
The piece of land in question was owned once by George Harding who had a shop
there, however due to the layout of the road at the junction of the Church it
was becoming dangerous, so the council made a compulsory purchase of the land
and demolished the buildings with a view to road improvements.
30 years later planning permission was being saught to build a chip shop on
the land, this is when the people of Mow Cop said no. A petition was set up
in opposition to building work in the nearby local shop "Castle Stores"
which was well supported. A public meeting was called and members of the council
attended; there was an initial success and planning permission was refused.
Due to the massive local support that this dispute had generated, group of locals
decided to see if a residents association could be formed, a steering committee
was gathered which is where I pick up the story.
The meeting was chaired
initially by Chris Budd and would have the following objectives.
- The update the residents
as to where we were with regard the disputed land.
- The elect a committee
- To see what other
areas for improvement there might be
- And to propose a constitution
There were several guests
in attendance including Rob Bateman of Newcastle-under-Lyme Housing
and PC Matt Lovatt, Mow Cop's new Local Community Beat Officer.
Once the talking was over a committee was elected and the public meeting bought
to a close, the committee remained and roles were within the committee were
Hopefully by the next
committee meeting on October 10th we will have more information concerning
the wasted land opposite St. Thomas Church.
None of the above would
have been possible if it were not for the help of Noshin Flynn from Newcastle
CVS who talked to the steering committee and helped to write our draft constitution,
we hope Noshin and Newcastle CVS will continue to help in this way and continue
to offer advice.