Newsletter, June 2021

A brief summary of what’s in our June 2021 newsletter…

A reminder that the annual Saddleworth in Bloom competition is back! Judging is at the end of July, so you don’t have long to get your entry in. We also update you on what we’re doing to try to remedy the chronic parking problem at Dovestone Reservoir. Plus, more about SPC’s pledge to be carbon-neutral by 2030.

More on Dovestone parking and access problems

Saddleworth’s enviable position makes it one of the finest areas in the country to live. We also attract many welcome visitors to our green and open spaces, and to our villages. Visitors to the area support our local economy and provide jobs and opportunities for local people.

At SPC we recognise that access to green, open spaces is a basic human need, providing mental and physical health benefits to all irrespective of where they live. It is of particular benefit to those with less access, those living in greater levels of deprivation and those who are less able to afford to travel.

However… as we pointed out in our last newsletter, the stunning Dovestone reservoir suffers from chronic parking problems including illegal and inconsiderate parking. On top of this, there are public transport issues for those without transport, or the disabled, wanting to visit our beautiful countryside and villages.

There is an urgent need to restore a regular direct Manchester via Oldham to Greenfield (Clarence Hotel) bus service to alleviate car travel to the area.

As far as car parking is concerned, we believe that turning cars back before they get to the immediate area of Dovestone will drastically help reduce the problem of overcrowding at times of very high use e.g. sunny summer weekends.

A successful measure already in place

Temporary signage has been introduced at busy times to indicate when the car parking at the reservoir is full. So far it’s proved very effective, however rental costs mean it can only be maintained some of the time.

Talking to the various stakeholders involved

SPC is contacting the appropriate officers at Oldham Borough Council to formally request that they carry out a feasibility study to install permanent signage on the routes towards Dovestone Reservoir to indicate when the car park is full. The feasibility study should also consider the option of making the existing “Road Closed Due to Snow” signs dual purpose, either by repurposing them for the summer months, or by using the existing infrastructure and power supply to support new signs.

We are also writing to Transport for Greater Manchester requesting that any opportunities to improve bus access to Dovestone reservoir under the new franchising arrangements be taken while also writing to the RSPB, United Utilities and Peak District national Park Authority to request them to support this argument.

We will bring you updates once we receive responses from the above.

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Saddleworth Parish Council Carbon Purchasing Policy

For several years now we’ve been doing our utmost to ensure that our premises, purchases and activities are as environmentally-friendly as possible. In fact we’ve pledged that by 2030 SPC will be carbon-neutral.

We’re planning to identify key purchases in our procurement which are critical to reducing our carbon footprint so we can ensure that our purchasing becomes zero-carbon. Anything that isn’t currently zero-carbon but which could easily become carbon-neutral will be highlighted. Where goods or services can’t easily become zero-carbon, we plan to ensure that any emissions through these are offset by other zero-carbon purchases.

Any new purchasing contract we sign must satisfy the following criteria:

  • Ask suppliers to provide their products / services on a carbon-neutral basis
  • Request a copy of their environmental policy
  • Where goods or services can’t be supplied on a carbon neutral basis, suppliers should supply information on the carbon footprint so we can ensure that other carbon-neutral purchases can offset any emissions

When considering the purchase of any goods or services, it is imperative that the process must include a clear indication of what the carbon footprint of that purchase is. New purchasing decisions should be clearly compatible with the aim of the Council being carbon neutral by 2030.

Energy use

A primary aspect of a zero-carbon approach is our current energy supply. By 2030, and preferably much sooner, we wish to transfer to a carbon-neutral approach. SPC will therefore not sign any new energy contract which does not deliver carbon neutrality.

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A blooming reminder to… get your blooming entries in for Saddleworth in Bloom!

A quick reminder that you’ve only got a month to get your entries in for the 2021 Saddleworth in Bloom competition! This year’s contest is even more significant as, due to Covid, last year’s Saddleworth in Bloom competition had to be cancelled.

Do you have a blooming garden or pub? Or even a blooming window box?

We are looking for entries for the “best blooming garden” or “best blooming pub”, as part of our annual celebration of the finest gardens across the district.

Entries are also open for the best container, and the gardens will be judged in three categories: small, medium and large.

Don’t miss the blooming July deadline!

Judging will take place at the end of July, and entries should be submitted by calling 01457 876665 or emailing