Firms urged to block Rec plan

Standish Rec
Standish Rec

A residents’ group opposed to plans to install a car park on a Wigan recreation area is calling on support from local businesses.

Proposals to transform Standish Rec have proved controversial in the village with two campaign groups and a neighbourhood forum in dispute.

If businesses continue to push for a car park on our Rec they seriously risk losing the goodwill of many Standish people

Don’t Wreck Our Rec spokesman

The Don’t Wreck Our Rec (DWOR) collective hopes to convince business owners to oppose the plans for the green space.

Representatives have written to firms within the village saying business needs “must be balanced with the wider needs of Standish people.”

The open letter reads: “If businesses continue to push for a car park on our Rec they seriously risk losing the goodwill of many Standish people.  

“Any business gains from a car park on our Rec are likely to be more than offset by that loss of goodwill.  

“It would be hard for people to forgive the reduction of precious green space and the disregard for the wellbeing of our primary school children.”

The changes to the Rec have been proposed by neighbourhood forum Standish Voice (SV) following a public consultation.

SV representatives say recent village surveys suggest there is a need for extra parking provision in the village.

They are backing a transformation of the Rec that will see it become part children’s play-area and part car park.

The plan will be included in a wider neighbourhood blueprint set to be presented to the council and later subject to a referendum.

However, the proposal has also triggered opposition from the Friends of Standish Rec group that is campaigning to keep the facility as it is.

The open letter from DWOR adds: “We believe thriving local businesses are an important part of the fabric of Standish and we know many of you believe more car parking is essential to help your businesses prosper.  

“However, your needs must be balanced with the wider needs of Standish people.  

“These are the same people who form much of your customer base.”

SV, the the village’s designated neighbourhood forum, argues the split car park and play park option satisfies both the need for greater parking provision in the village while adding facilities for youngsters to enjoy. Representatives say the Rec in its current form is not an attractive environment for children to play.

A previous statement from the group read: “Our initial 2015 survey on life in Standish showed that the vast majority of people wanted a new park in the heart of the village and that parking was one of the biggest challenges residents and businesses wanted us to tackle.”

Another campaign group, the Friends of Standish Rec, say the site is a popular location with youngsters and there is not a parking problem within the village with the current provision adequate for local businesses.

The Friends group has applied for the Rec to be granted village green status. village’s designated neighbourhood forum, argues the split car park and play park option satisfies both the need for greater parking provision in the village while adding facilities for youngsters to enjoy. Representatives say the Rec in its current form is not an attractive environment for children to play.

A previous statement from the group read: “Our initial 2015 survey on life in Standish showed that the vast majority of people wanted a new park in the heart of the village and that parking was one of the biggest challenges residents and businesses wanted us to tackle.”

Another campaign group, the Friends of Standish Rec, say the site is a popular location with youngsters and there is not a parking problem within the village with the current provision adequate for local businesses.

The Friends group has applied for the Rec to be granted village green status.