Objection to Council Proposal to Build New St Julie's School in Woolton Wood Green Space
There is no pressing need to rebuild St Julies new school on Woolton Wood green space, a much loved area used by the whole of the community, churches, schools and voluntary groups, especially when there are alternative sites available such as the vacant Sunflower Centre Speke Road and its additional land, which could be used for student decant during rebuilding on the current St Julie site, or for a new build of the school.
Woolton Wood is protected by Woolton Conservation Area, and Calderstones / Woolton Green Wedge policies and conserves a high biodiversity area which is part of the Liverpool green lungs and contributes to the health and welfare of all the community.
We would ask you not to build on part of this irreplaceable community asset – once it is built upon the green space is gone forever.
When the Friends of Woolton Wood ( part of Woolton Village Residents Association ) started work in Woolton Wood and Camp hill some 20 years ago, the site was plagued by drunkards, drug takers, gang conflict, dumping, cross country bikes, and quads racing across the grass making the park unusable and unsafe to many members of the community, especially children.
Collectively the community gradually took ownership of the open space, clearing up the mess using unpaid volunteers, and improving site safety. New steel entry gates were installed in partnership with the city council and Merseyside Police to keep unwanted vehicles (often unlicensed and uninsured) out of the park.
Gradually residents and visitors from all over Liverpool began to use the Park as it should be – a community resource for the health, welfare and benefit of all the community both near and far.
The Friends group formed working partnerships with The Mersey Forest, The Conservation Volunteers, Glendale Liverpool, Merseyside Police, Council security, and Council staff to improve the park and make it a welcoming environment resulting in Green Flag status being awarded. Further development took place with the WVRA creating the Liverpool Bumblebee Haven Project in partnership with the Mersey Forest, and Veolia Environmental trust, the results of which were recognised in a presentation lunch at the House of Lords two years ago for the work carried out.
To date Woolton Village Residents Association ( Friends of Woolton Wood ) have planted over 2000 trees, and sown some 8 million wildflower seeds to improve biodiversity and support Bumblebees, Butterflies, Moths, wild birds and mammals. Grant funding has been provided by the Mersey Forest and Veolia Environmental Trust to enable this work to be carried out.
Whilst members have some sympathy with the Mayor Anderson being under such financial pressure in balancing the books due to government budget cuts, we consider this is not the way to go about things chopping sections off an irreplaceable protected green space site.
The Mayors change of mind in not building St Julies new school on the old Palmerston school site in Beaconsfield Road means that both the Palmerston school site and Lower Lea school site can go for sale as he stated for housing development should planning permission be granted.
We can see no reason why the sale of both school sites on Beaconsfield Rd could not readily offset the planned returns from the sale of the existing St Julies site at Speke Rd for housing development, which would be lost if St Julies school was rebuilt on its existing site.
Finding an alternate site to rebuild St Julies School, would enable maximum council returns to be made from the sales of the Palmerston site, the Lower Lea site, and St Julie’s existing site for housing development.
Keeping Woolton Wood and Camphill protected green space safe from development means our children and grandchildren can enjoy the health/welfare benefits as we do.
- Mayor's Office, Municipal Buildings, Dale Street, Liverpool, L2 2DH
Joe Anderson, Mayor of Liverpool
I object to a new St Julies School being built on Woolton Wood protected green space, part of the Woolton Conservation area, and Calderstones / Woolton Green Wedges, and ask the council not to proceed with this option.
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