Chorlton Community Land Trust has its roots in a meeting of local residents held in late 2017. This was in response to a proposal by Manchester Metropolitan University to sell the land at Ryebank Fields for executive homes.
The core group, became Chorlton Community Led Housing Group and attracted members with a range of expertise and the energy to drive forward the Ryebank Fields discussion with a range of stakeholders.
From the outset there has been a strong commitment to community participation and involvement and there have been meetings, workshops, surveys and conversations across our membership of over 250 people.
The formation in April 2019 of the Chorlton Community Land Trust (a not-for-profit Community Benefit Society) created the potential of widening the vision to other projects. This came into sharp focus when it emerged in late 2019 that the Co-operative Group were planning to sell the funeralcare site on Manchester Road, which put the historic building under threat.
In response, Chorlton CLT setup the Stayin’ Alive campaign and submitted a community-led proposal with a developer to save the historic former cinema, which was the scene of the Bee Gees first ever live performance, from demolition. By raising investment directly from the community and partnering with a developer who shares our vision for the building, we want to give it a new lease of life as the heart of Chorlton and its community.
Following our initial bid, The Co-operative Group has given the CLT some time to firm up our plans for the site which we’re in the process of finalising with the hope that we can go out to the community in the Autumn to draw-down the pledged investments they committed too.