Today I feel jubilant at the news that Haslam Park will not be built upon to house a new school.

I grew up directly facing the park on Melbourne Road and would frequently use the park as a child as I know so many young people and families still do so today.

I now live within 30 minutes walk of the Rivington Estate and I can’t tell you what a lifeline this was during the various lockdowns we had over the past two years or so. I have three young sons, who find it difficult to avert their gaze from a screen on any given day and so having such a beautiful open space on our doorstep to entice them outside is incredibly important.

Of course, with a growing town we need to ensure our schools have the capacity to deal with the increase in demand. However, we must be more considerate about where we build and not take the approach that just any green field will do.

If anything, we need more green spaces so generations to come have access to the great outdoors and the town doesn’t become one grey, concrete mass. We at least owe that to our children.

Ryan Quick