Monday, 3 December 2012

Green Party Leader, Natalie Bennett in Manchester supporting the Alexandra Park campaigners

The group are fighting Manchester City Council whose plans to ‘improve’ the park involve cutting down over 250 trees. 

Natalie will be at Alexandra Park TODAY (December 3rd) at 3pm talking to the protesters and the press. If you can make it along to support the action, do so. 


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Monday, 19 November 2012

Manchester Economics: Steady State and Circular

There seems to be a couple of thing s happening this week well worth looking at.

On Wednesday November 21st from 1.30pm to 4pm Manchester Environmental Education Network (MEEN) will hold its Greater Manchester ESD Forum. The main speaker will be Alan Turney from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. Since its inception in 2010, the Foundation has been working in education to inspire an generation to re-think, re-design and build a positive future through the vision of a circular economy. For more information visit the MEEN website

(Image from Future Proof Kilkenny).

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Friday, 17 August 2012

MMU and Me: We have a problem

This is a personal opinion and does not reflect the views of Hulme Green Party or Manchester Green Party.

It seems that these are the last days of Hulme’s Birley Fields. Though full planning permission for the proposed campus is yet to be granted to Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) the organisation has fenced off the fields and begun digging up some of the plant-life.

The reality of MMU’s actions has stirred an angry reaction in the Hulme community with talk of occupying the green space in protest.
MMU is touting itself as one of the greenest universities in the country and I expect the new 7 building campus will push it up the People and Planet’s‘Green university’ list.

As part of the ‘Save Birley Fields’ campaign, we argued that the fields, which have grown naturally from derelict land over the past 30 years, are teeming with biodiversity  and as the most intense area of green space in Hulme, was of great benefit to the community.

MMU have argued that it was just a ‘brownfield site’For myself I only see trees, bushes and wild flowers.

There are arguments backwards and forwards on the benefits the new campus will bring to the neighbourhood but MMU is already primarily based in Hulme which as a consequence already has oneof the highest student densities (p17) in the city. Along the quarter of a mile from Oxford Road to the landmark Hulme Bridge, the buildings are almost exclusively MMU related or student accommodation. The new campus would extend this.

My main issue is not with the main academic building as promoted nicely on the MMU website. It’s that of the 7 buildings in the proposal, 5 of them are 10 storey student accommodation blocks that will take up the majority of the green space.

The protests against the original planning permission got surprising little coverage in the local press despite
  • It being a major local election issue for Hulme
  • Local campaigners attempting to engage the MMU to negotiate on the size of the campus and to deal with the clear additional problems the new campus would bring to the area
  • A reportfrom MMU’s own researchers criticizing the quality of consultation with the local community.

During this period ironically MMU was awarded a contract from the government to train ‘community champions’.

In its behaviour MMU are little different to Barclays Bank
Ultimately they say the case for the campus as proposed, is an economic argument.

For Hulme, I can’t see it. MMU seems to have enough of Hulme already and this is a lot to lose for very little gain.

So it seems likely that the new Eco-campus will be built on the Birley Fields grasslands when the majority of that space can be saved. The MMU, as its doing already, will use it as a marketing ploy to attract new students.

But an Eco-campus built on wild urban meadow and that damages a community is a lie.

So I have a marketing message of my own.

Congratulations to the students who have passed their 2012 A-Levels, it’s a difficult step to get over.

So now you are looking at University places.

MMU has some good facilities and some great people work there. BUT if within your selection criteria are a University’s environmental credentials, I can’t recommend MMU.

Go somewhere more honest and more prepared to work with the community its based in.

Deyika Nzeribe.
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Friday, 20 July 2012

Hulme Adult Education Centre Closes

We take a moment for Hulme Adult Education Centre. 
Friday July 20th 2012 is the Centre’s last day with the office closing and staff moving to Greenheys in Moss Side. The decision to close the Centre was taken by Manchester City Council in 2011, as part of its cost-cutting budget.

The Adult Education Centre, which moved into the Library building in the early 90’s was a valuable community asset providing offer a large range of courses aimed at improving lives, getting people into work, volunteering and improving job skills.

The Centre was also the space where local people help gathered and created works that were part of the character of the area.

A well-known example of this was the ‘Mapping Our Lives’ project by residents of Hulme and Moss Side which went on to win a NIACE national award for ‘Adult Learners of the Year’ in the 90s and was an exhibition within the library.

The other is the 10 year old84 foot long Hulme Mural, which was created between 2000 and 2002 by the "Hulme Urban Potters" a group composed of students and tutors from the Hulme Adult Education Centre.  It chronicles the history of the community from Roman Times to the present day.

The moving of the Education Centre means that Hulme is likely to lose the service for good. In the 1960s, when the original Centre was demolished despite protests from the community, Adult Education eventually returned to the ward. There are no plans for this to happen from the Council.

The loss means the only community service left in the building is the library, which is due to be moved by December 2012. Despite concerns and sustained enquiries, the new home for the library has still not been announced and the Council refuses to say what it has planned for the building itself and the mural.
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Wednesday, 4 July 2012

STOP THE BLOCK (at the Gamecock)

With more planning applications being sought for student accommodation, Hulme Greens are supporting the Hulme Residents Association in preventing an 11 story block being built on the site of the Gamecock pub. 

A meeting for residents is planned on Thursday July 5th (see below) to discuss it.

The deadline for submitting objections to the development to Manchester City Council is Friday July 13th.

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Sunday, 6 May 2012

Hulme Local Elections 2012 Results and Response

We, the Hulme Green Team would like to thank everyone voted for us this year.

We also would like to thank everyone who put in time, creative input, proofed, leafleted, were on the streets, commented and advised us. It was a great effort.

But we came second.

And that being the case we congratulate Labour’s Amina Lone on her re-election as councillor for the Hulme ward.

The results

Hulme Ward: Turnout 16.98%

Other Names
Description (if any)
James Andrew Micheal
Liberal Democrats - For A Greener Britain
The Conservative Party Candidate
Labour Party Candidate
Green Party

We held our proportion of the vote in Hulme, against a Labour victory in Manchester which saw all Lib Dem councillors standing lose their seats.

The Greens as a party beat the Conservatives into third place for the first time in Manchester and were not far behind the Lib Dems.

If you’re a Lib Dem supporter, it’s not been a good few months, have a look at our policies, have a look at our leader Caroline Lucas.

For Hulme and the electoral process, it has not been a good poll. The turnout was 16.98% which extremely low and the second worst in the city.

83% of Hulme residents didn’t votePolitics is either not reaching residents or its not relevant.

Hulme Green Party will listen and work to address our community concerns as well as working harder to make its message heard.
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Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Hulme Green Party Events April 11th – 17th 2012

Wednesday 11th April, 6.00-7.30pm

Young People and the local elections: Election Hustings hosted by Manchester Foyer at 61 Booth Street West, with Deyika Nzeribe our Hulme candidate

More information from St. Vincent's Housing Association on 0161 276 1000

Wednesday 11th April 11pm- 1am

Deyika will be part of a panel talking about local Manchester issues,

Listen online at Peace FM’s the Search Engine.

Thursday 12th April, 8.30pm

Green Drinks at Kim-by-the-Sea, Old Birley Street.

We will be being social and talking politics.

(Planning meeting from 6.30-8.30pm

Saturday April 14th, 2012

1pm workshop start; finish at 3.45pm

A light lunch will be provided from 12.15

Southern Voices Workshop

Struggles for Justice: Hidden Stories, Learning from the Arab Spring, Our Role in the Struggle

Venue: Hulme Hall, Claremont Resource Centre, Rolls Crescent, Hulme , Manchester , M15 5FS

Tuesday April 17th (from 7pm)

Manchester Climate Monthly is hosting a pre-election “hustings”. It’s on the question Is Manchester City Council taking the right action on climate change?, and it’s at the Friends Meeting House (behind the Central Library. It’s free!

The Manchester Green Party Speaker will be on the panel.

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Monday, 5 March 2012

Remembering Gayle O'Donovan – A Public Celebration: Friday March 9th 2012

Gayle O’Donovan, local activist, neighbour and friend to many, died unexpectedly on January 21st 2012.

Whilst Gayle's funeral happened in Limerick a couple of weeks ago and numerous have written tributes, many people have expressed support for having a public event in Manchester - to celebrate her life and times.

A Public Celebration will be held on Friday 9th March 2012 from 7pm at the OK Café, in Hulme.

There will be food served (from 7pm with the event starting at 8pm) and people can hang out at the venue afterwards and have a drink.

All are welcome.

How you can help

There will be a large amount of space in the evening for people to share their stories. If you have a particular item that reminds you of a time you had with Gayle, then please bring it with you. I would also like to collate a modest pamphlet of photographs of Gayle and her history.

If you have any photos or other materials that can contribute or are able to lend a hand, please get in touch

Thank you

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Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Deputy Green Party Leader visits Manchester

Deputy Green Party Leader, Adrian Ramsay, will be visiting Manchester on Thursday February 23rd ahead of the Spring Conference in Liverpool.

From 4.00 – 5.00pm, Adrian will be at the Friends Meeting House

(6 Mount Street, Manchester).

He will

  • Make a short statement
  • Take question and answers from the public

If you would like to attend, please arrive by 4pm.

From 6.00 – 7.00pm, Adrian will be at Manchester University Student Union (Room 6, Top Floor) talking to Manchester Young Greens.

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Sunday, 22 January 2012

Gayle O'Donovan: Tribute Page

Died: Saturday January 21st 2012

This page is to express our thoughts and and memories of Gayle.
She touched many of us.

You can leave messages below.

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Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Southern Voices: Another Perspective

The upcoming workshop on Saturday (January 21st), ‘Climate Violence, History and Resistance’, looking at climate change, is being viewed with some interest. The event in Hulme, run by local network Southern Voices, critiques the commonly promoted framework of climate change understanding and its Western outlook.

Southern Voices, describe themselves as a network of people committed to bringing the knowledge and understanding of Southern and Black people to the global issues that are central to education and present-day concerns.

It’s focus is the relationship and issues affecting the countries of the South and the North and it aims to bring southern voices to fora where these issues are analysed, debated, policy decided and knowledge negotiated but where southern perspectives are seldom heard.

In fact, the workshop is the first of a series events where the main focus is Justice:

Jan 21 - ‘Climate violence’ with Kooj Chuhan at Hulme Hall

Feb 18 - ‘Climate justice: ideas into action’ with Caroline Downey, Bridge5Mill in Beswick

Mar 10 - ‘Corruption’ with Susan Chieni and ‘Cooperatives and Fair Trade’ with Yemi Adetona

Mar 31 - ‘Hidden Stories’ with Jaya Graves

Apr 14 - ‘Our role’ - justice, democracy and modern movements.

Southern Voices organisers, Jaya Graves and Dave Cooke, describe the programme as ‘opportunities for people from the South or with Southern roots to voice their experiences, ideas and analysis on critical global issues. This is so often missing in the media and the development of policy and practice. Listen to and engage with the South!’

Jaya/ Dave additionally says ‘The workshops will include presentations but also opportunity to discuss and examine the issues with other participants.’

To book onto any of the events email Dave Cooke at

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Friday, 6 January 2012

A Northern View: The Ghosts of London

The ghost bike at the junction at Kings Cross station marks the place where Min Joo Lee (Deep Lee to her friends) died on her way to college. It was October 3rd, her first day back at Central St Martin’s. (picture from

She was one of the 16 cyclists killed during 2011 on the roads of London, which started with the death of Gary Mason, former British Boxing champion on January 6th 2011.

Min Joo’s death was marked by a vigil in which her friends spoke and all the cyclists killed that year were commemorated. It was one of the growing number of events and actions to highlight the increasing number of cyclists Killed or involved in Serious Incidents (KSI) on the streets of London. These include the ghost bike memorials, the newly created Tour du Danger, cycle safety projects and pressure groups. Several activists have created maps of London danger points for cyclists. Other maps are here, here and here.

While its accepted that accidents happen, the number of KSIs in London is viewed as being unacceptably high by campaigners.

Transport for London (TfL), which has statutory responsibility for traffic and road safety, produces statistics on collisions involving cyclists. According to the TfL’s ‘Cycle Safety End of Year Review 2011’, ‘In 2010, the number of KSIs while cycling fell by18 per cent, when compared with the 1994/98 baseline, indicating that cycling is becoming relatively safer’, followed by a graph showing the stats per year from 1994 to 2010. That graph, however, also seems to show that cycle-related collisions from 1997 show a decrease year on year to a low point in 2005. Since 2005, collisions have risen annually to its current point in 2010. The actual figures are to be found at TfL’s Road Safety Unit. In its fact sheet on cycling it can plainly be seen that when comparing from 2005, 2010 KSI’s have risen by 20% (to 467) and total collisions (slight, serious and fatal) by 27% (to 4007).

This difference in perspective is a significant area of concern for campaigners especially when it comes to the actions of TfL and there have been calls for TfL to face corporate manslaughter charges. Activist’s publicising of London’s 10 deadliest junctions for cyclists was to underline a fact outlined in TfL’s own ‘Cycle Safety Action Plan’ (page 14), ‘Data shows that 79% of casualties were injured at, or within 20 metres of a junction, highlighting the vulnerability of cyclists in these locations.’

Campaigners have repeatedly stressed the dangerous junctions and implied that TfL’s lack of action was a potential contributing factor in cyclist’s deaths. A suggested reason for a lack of action in this area has been TfL’s competing priority of maintaining traffic flow.

The other big factors in the number of cycle deaths are larger vehicles (HGVs, trucks and lorries). In 2010, these vehicles were involved in over 50% of fatalities (page 16). Though a recent article suggests the death figures for 2011 will be higher, a report into cycle deaths between 1992 and 2006 states that an average of 43% of these incidents involved HGVs. The researchers go on to suggest HGVs be banned from London roads to save lives.

Larger vehicles have significant ‘blind-spots’, which cyclists often fall victim to. At junctions, this is often fatal, especially to women riders. pointed out that a suppressed TfL study draws attention to the fact women are more likely to be killed by lorries, because ‘they tend to obey red lights and wait at junctions, in the driver’s blind spot.’ The article also suggests advice on how to avoid accidents around larger vehicles.

TfL’s ‘complex view’ of larger vehicles worried campaigners who have complained about TfL’s lorry safety poster and are fighting the government’s moves to introduce longer lorries.

The backdrop to this is an increase in cycling numbers in London, by over 150% between 2000 and 2010. There has been some analysis of the reasons for this and not least of these are TfL’s push to increase the number of cyclists on the roads of London, supported by corporate sponsors, Barclays and Sky.

While TfL is taking some action for cycle safety, there is scepticism as to whether it will meet its own stated Cycle Safety Plan objective to ‘ensure the future growth in cycling in London is accompanied by a reduced rate of cycling casualties’ any time soon.

Min Joo’s death has spurred TfL into changing the King Cross Junction, and campaigners are planning direct action at Kings Cross on Monday January 9th, from 6pm – 7pm.

The statistics suggest that TfL should clearly be focusing its safety efforts on London junctions and on larger vehicles. Common sense suggests that this a higher priority than ‘maintaining traffic flow’ especially when trying to encourage more people to take up cycling.

Unfortunately the way things are going, many more ghost bike memorials are expected to be seen on the streets of London before it becomes a safer place for cyclists.
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