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Simister Village Treble Challenge

by timpickstone on 20 October, 2008

Simister Village Community Association are pleased to announce that the village has been three times lucky with its applications for grants to transform both the Simister Wetlands and a parcel of wasteland to become a local green haven for walkers, wildlife and a memorial garden.

Residents in partnership with Bury Metro and the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers (BTCV) aim to restore and breathe new life into the Wetlands that has, of late, become neglected and also to create a garden with paths and seating with plants to attract birds, butterflies and other species of insects.

The Association meets regularly to improve the quality of life for local residents. Chairman, Michael Slater said “An issue that has arisen is the disappointing state of the Wetlands and there is now a need to develop it as a place to visit as well as encouraging wildlife to the area. This is really important as we sit close by to the notorious Simister Junction 18 where the M60, M62 and M66 converge and standing traffic is a daily fact of life bringing more pollution from vehicle exhausts than almost anywhere in the North West so trees and green space are really important to our community environment.” The Community Association sent off three bids for approval with all three projects getting the green light. These bids were – Big Lottery, Breathing Spaces have awarded £9,618 to alleviate draining problems and to reinstate some of the paths. Greening Greater Manchester have awarded £8,995 to improve other sections of the paths, clear out the existing pond to encourage aquatic creatures and birdlife as well as creating wildlife spaces with a selection of wild flowers. The final application was a bid of £5,672 to create the Memorial Garden in memory of Gerald Leahiff, known as ‘Mr Simister’ a respected member of the community who died just over a year ago. Other contributions will include volunteer support from BTCV, from Bury Metro, and the support and volunteer labour from Simister residents and any others who feel they would like to be associated with such an endeavour.

The Committee are hoping that all those interested will join us in working parties on Saturday 25th October and Sunday 2nd November meeting by the pond at 10.00 am. Work has started on the Wetland paths but has been hampered by inclement weather whilst work on the Memorial Garden will commence in the spring of 2009 at the optimum time for planting. Michael Slater said “Clinching the third grant has been the icing on the cake and shows exactly how communities can work together to create a greener and better place to live. “

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