Old industrial heartlands to be revamped

Former industrial areas, like Wigan Flashes, will be overhauled by the Carbon Landscape project
Former industrial areas, like Wigan Flashes, will be overhauled by the Carbon Landscape project

Work is gathering pace on a pioneering environmental initiative to restore some of Wigan and Leigh’s former industrial heartlands.

Earlier this year a £2million Heritage Lottery Fund grant was secured for the Carbon Landscape project, led by Manchester University’s School of Environment, Education and Development.

In the borough, researchers and ground workers will be focusing on areas along a corridor such as Amberswood, Wigan Flashes, Pennington Flash and Hope Carr.

Now a co-ordinator and several placements, working out of Three Sisters recreaton area at Ashton are in place and making a start on the ground.

Anna Hetterley, recently installed as project manager, said: “We have been recruiting for some new members of the team.

“I took up my post at the start of April so we are just getting going.

“The project covers quite a wide area, between Wigan, Warrington and Salford and some of the main things we will be looking to do is restore elements of the carbon landscape and reconnect them with the communities who live alongside then, while improving access.”

Not only will the environmental officers be concentrating on former coalfield land but locations which once lent themselves to peat extraction, from an even earlier age.

“The restoration of such habitats brings about major benefits in terms of carbon restoration and climate change,” she added.

If there are any community or residents groups who would like to get involved with the project then they can call Ann’s on 01942 726214 or e-mail ahetterley@lancswt.org.uk