Mayfield Park – the 6.5-acre space that has been described as a “beautifully designed and safe urban oasis” and has already been touted as a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” – is part of a £1.4 billion development project in the city centre to transform the under-loved urban area between Manchester Piccadilly station and Mancunian Way, running along the River Medlock.
For years, regeneration plans for the forgotten corner of the city centre have failed to get off the ground, but the breakthrough finally came with the formation of a joint public-private venture in 2016 comprising of Manchester City Council, Transport for Greater Manchester, developer LCR and regeneration specialist U+I.
This is known as The Mayfield Partnership.
Over the next 10 to 15 years, the project is expected to continue to mature, with two skyscrapers and thousands of homes, offices and commercial spaces also planned for the site.
Planning for the first phase of the Mayfield regeneration scheme – the park, two commercial buildings and a multi-storey car park – was approved in February, and the project received a further boost when it was awarded £23 million from the government’s ‘Getting Building Fund’.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he wants the UK to “build, build, build” its way out of the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis going forward.
The scheme one of the largest in the UK and city leaders have hailed the start of construction as a historic moment for Manchester.
Sir Richard Leese – Leader of Manchester City Council – said: “There are some development projects that have such transformational potential that we await their beginning with great anticipation.
“Mayfield is most definitely one of them.
“This part of the city centre has been under-used for decades and it’s brilliant that we can now celebrate the first shovels going in the ground on the new city park and a green sanctuary at the heart of our city – followed closely by significant investment in new commercial space and new homes.
“Mayfield is a project of exceptional ambition.
“And ambition is the very tonic we need as we navigate our way out of the COVID-19 pandemic towards economic recovery – in part through high-quality, impactful investment in our city, such as this.”
Andy Burnham – Mayor of Greater Manchester – added: “I’m so pleased to see ground broken on the Mayfield Park development.
“If we needed a reminder of the importance of accessible green spaces and the benefits they can bring for our mental and physical wellbeing, this year certainly brought one.
“A new public park can give a real lift to this part of Manchester, creating important new community assets and jobs. As part of a much wider vision for the city centre, it can help to boost our economic recovery and transform urban space for the people who live, work, and do business here.”
The maintenance of the park is to be carried out by The Mayfield Partnership.
The partnership’s ambition is to “ensure Mayfield Park becomes an exemplar urban public green space that endures as a safe, stimulating and sustainable place for everyone in the city long into the future”.
A Friends of Mayfield Park group will also be launched early next year to “ensure full community involvement and wide public engagement in the delivery of the park and kickstart meanwhile activities with local groups and charities as work progresses on site”.
It is hoped the majority of the park will be built within two years and could be open by early 2023.
Phil Foden’s bond with Elderly City fan with dementia only gets more wholesome
Among the City fans flying high after the Manchester derby, 84-year-old Barry Carr was undoubtedly one those most bowled over on the day, as he was once again invited to Phil Foden‘s box to watch the game.
As you can see, Barry was invited back to watch the derby and treated to a 6-3 blockbuster, where he got to spend more time with Foden as well as meeting ex-player turned pundit Micah Richards.
One of the best bits is when he calls Erling Haaland “the big one”. You’re not wrong there, Barry!
The lifelong fan City fan was over the moon with the result and even more excited when he realised his favourite Foden had netted his own hattrick against against their historic rivals.
Following the game, the two share a lovely embrace and talk about the game, with Foden describing his game as a “dream come true”. We dare say Barry felt the same.
We’re not crying, you are…
While he struggles with his memory, most of time spent watching City vs United would have been quite different, as they were long-considered ‘the noisy neighbours’. Safe to say things have changed over the past decade.
‘Significant risk’ of UK gas shortages this winter, regulator warns
Energy regulator Ofgem has warned that the UK faces a ‘significant risk’ of gas shortages this winter.
According to reports in The Times, the regulator has unveiled concerns that the country could face blackouts over the coming months thanks to an undersupply of gas to Europe caused by Russia’s war with Ukraine.
Warning that a “gas supply emergency” could be looming ahead, the energy regulator has said that some gas-fired power plants could see their supplies cut off, which in turn would stop generators from producing electricity.
The alert comes just days before an expected update from the National Grid on the likelihood of countrywide power cuts this winter.
Responsing to arequest from SSE, which owns several gas power stations, Ofgem outlined what is set to be a huge issue of concern given that the UK relies on large gas plants to produce the biggest share of its electricity supply.
The regulator also pointed to rules that could see power plants penalised as a result of shortages, warning of a worst-case scenario that would see the “potential insolvency of gas-fired generators” caused by rules that require plants to pay huge charges if they fail to deliver on promised quotas.
Adding that the issue must be addressed to prevent a “significant impact on the safety and security of the electricity and/or gas systems”, the regulator echoed concerns now widespread in Europe as its comments followed a similar statement made by the International Energy Agency (IEA) this morning.
Europeans are already being told they must lower their thermostats and boilers in preparation in case gas supplies are cut off, with Paris-based agency IEA warning today that the EU must focus on getting underground gas reserve levels to 90% of capacity in case of a complete Russian supply shut-off.
Preparation are already being made in Europe with the German government having approved a set of energy-saving measures for the winter to limit use in public buildings. In France, meanwhile, companies have already been warned they may face energy rationing this winter.
Whilst the UK government is yet to announce any energey saving measures, Ofgem has said that it expect s“this winter to be more challenging than last year” and that it is taking “reasonable regulatory steps to mitigate and reduce the risks”.