Monday 31 August 2009

Watling Gate

The Campaign to save the Sale Hotel has widened its activity to include other significant or cherished buildings in the Borough which are under threat. There are a number of buildings already Listed which are in a such a poor state of repair that their demolition seems likely. One such building is Watling Gate, actually owned by Trafford MBC. Despite its being a Listed building Trafford Council is prepared to see it crumble. The Campaign to Save the Sale Hotel has put its weight behind rescuing Watling Gate., as you can see from this film.

Save Our Heritage Campaign!

Whilst we have been working on the Save the Sale Hotel campaign, it has come to our attention that there are several other buildings in desperate need of our help. One of these is the building known as Watling Gate, which is in Timperley.

The house was built in 1904 as the residence of the Newton Family at a cost of £2,500 and was surrounded by approximately 25 acres of park land. Most of the land was sold for housing development in the 1920s, with only the house and a small plot of land retained in the family. Lt. Col. CE Newton bequeathed the house and land to the newly created Altrincham Borough Council in around 1937. The house is a listed building and was in use until 2006 but since then appears to have had little or no maintenance and this listed building would seem to have been left to fall apart. The council wishes to sell the building, contrary to the wishes of the Lt. Col Newton. Residents have raised concerns with the council but to no avail to date. We need your help to urge the council to retain Watling Gate for the local people and to maintain the building adequately.

Please contact the following local councillors:

Jane Brophy 07711 454 566

Matthew Colledge 0161 980 1792

Neil Taylor 07734 598073 or
0161 980 6522

Many thanks once again for your support in protecting our local heritage!

Friday 28 August 2009


At four o’clock today, Friday, 28.08.09, the Campaign Team met with councillors of Trafford Council, representatives of Sale Civic Society, The Friends of Walkden Gardens, local residents and Paul Goggins MP.

The discussions ranged over the prospects for a viable future for the old building, post-listing, the record of the local authority in protecting existing listed buildings in the borough, and the Save the Sale Hotel ‘story so far.’

The Campaign Team was able to find out some of the points of the discussion which were raised at the earlier meeting with the developers and from which the Campaign Team had been excluded.

One of the prospects raised at this meeting resonated with earlier suggestions by leaders of the campaign, that the Sale Hotel should become an educational facility, possibly an annexe of Sale Grammar School. This seems to have several advantages over its use as a commercial business. Firstly, it would therefore be in the public sector and immune to some degree from having to turn a profit. Secondly, its use for the purpose of education would tend to preclude very late hours and consequently would tend to be more acceptable to near neighbours. Thirdly, the ceiling heights of the building would lend its use to the performing arts. Fourthly, it would provide a more economical and more carbon friendly alternative to bussing students from the Sale Grammar site to Claremont Road, as is presently the case.

The Campaign Team drew to everyone’s attention to the fact that the Sale Hotel has not been maintained recently and that there were some slates missing from the roof. Fears were expressed that the building would rapidly deteriorate if rain water was able to penetrate the fabric of the building. There was some discussion about whether the owner could be legally compelled to make repairs, but the view was expressed that effectively it was not possible. The Campaign Team made mention that Trafford MBC actually owned a number of listed buildings which were in an extremely poor state of repair. One of the members the Campaign Team pointed out to the councillors present at the meeting that Trafford MBC would look very silly if they attempted to criticise the owner of the Sale Hotel for failing to make small repairs, if the Council were unwilling to address their own responsibilities in this regard.

The mobile telephone installation, which made use of the tower of the Sale Hotel has been decommissioned. There was a suggestion that planning permission had been sought of Trafford Council to lay new mobile telephone facilities to the car park of the Sale Hotel, possibly implying that the site would still operate mobile telephone communications.

The Campaign Team raised the question why Trafford MBC had not appointed a Heritage Champion, consistent with the practice of many other local councils.

The Campaign Team raised important questions of principle about the near demolition of the Sale Hotel. Why had the Heritage Protection Bill been withdrawn from the forthcoming parliamentary session ? Paul Goggins offered to pursue this with the Secretary of State for CMS. Why had Trafford MBC failed to inform many of those interested parties in the borough that a notice to demolish the building had been received. None of the groups and societies, for example, Sale Civic Society had been informed. Few residents had been informed. The councillors representing Trafford MBC at this meeting were unable to say why there had been a lack of consultation.

Thursday 27 August 2009

The Grade 2 Listing

The Campaign Team received an e-mail from English Heritage, this afternoon, 27.08.09, stating the revised recommendation that the Sale Hotel be designated a Grade 2 Listed Building. The recommendation acknowledges the strength of local support for the old building. The Campaign Team wishes to thank Paul Goggins MP for his support in getting us this far and Victoria Frankland for her support with Facebook. But although we can claim victory in this round, there is still a long way to go in securing the future of the Sale Hotel. The overwhelming support we have received from local businesses and residents of Sale and Sale Moor will be crucial in establishing a viably economic future for the building. But let's take a short breather and enjoy this moment!

Tuesday 25 August 2009

Listen to our campaign story so far!

We outline action taken to date including the blog, facebook and the petition.

Whilst there is currently a building protection notice in force, the building has yet to be formally listed and so there is only temporary protection at present. To preserve the building it will need to become a listed building and this decision lies in the hands of the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. You can help by urging the Department of Culture, Media and Sport to list THE WHOLE OF the building without any further delay.

Phone: 0207 211 6200

Friday 21 August 2009

‘Development; a misused word’, by Urban Critic of Sale

Recent posts raise some interesting questions about developers and development. Generally, the word ‘develop’ carries the meaning of ‘improvement.’ ‘To develop’ means something like ‘to improve’. And yet the activity of those who have ‘developed’ urban sites, particularly in Sale, in recent times, have been anything but improvements. The Campaigners who trudged around the area collecting signatures for the Paper Petition, found that a frequent complaint against Trafford Council was precisely this; that the Council had permitted the demolition of an old building, and the Planning Department had subsequently approved its replacement by worse. It’s almost as if Trafford Planning Department and the Committee of Councillors who are supposed to direct the officials, are incapable of recognising what is attractive. The ‘development’ opposite Sale Station was frequently cited by signatories of the petition as an ‘eyesore.’ The best thing one could say about it is that it’s a bit ‘Soviet’. To make matters worse, it does not appear to have been constructed with a view to maintaining an attractive exterior.
The wooden panels seem to be showing deterioration. Whereas some panels
 have retained some semblance of colour, others, which are presumably exposed to more severe weather have gone that funny grey colour which garden furniture acquires, if you don’t give it a lick of teak oil once in a while. Very disappointing. Is it any wonder that the people of Sale have opposed the demolition of the good old Sale Hotel and given a ‘thumbs down’ to the mediocre modern?

Thursday 20 August 2009

Still no new news on the Listing

Letter from the Listing Review Officer, Heritage Protection Branch to Markus of the Save the Sale Hotel Campaign Team:

Sale Hotel, 131 Marsland Road, Sale, Trafford, Greater Manchester
Thank you for your e-mail of 17 August 2009, in which you ask for an update on the listed status of the Sale Hotel. Following the initial decision that the Hotel should not be listed the Secretary of State is currently carrying out a review of that decision. This resulted from the submission of significant new evidence as to the architectural and historic merit of the building. In undertaking that review the Secretary of State is further consulting English Heritage and taking into account evidence provided by other interested parties.
You may know that Trafford Council have used their powers under section 3 of the 1990 Act to serve a Building Preservation Notice (BPN) on the owners of the Hotel. The BPN was dated 06 August 2009 and has the effect of treating the building as though it were listed for a period of 6 months. This will allow additional time in which to carefully consider any significant new evidence submitted for the review of the original decision.
The outcome of the review will be either that the Secretary of State has decided to reaffirm the original decision, or that the Secretary of State has decided that the earlier decision should be overturned. I will contact you again when that decision has been made. It is not possible, at present, for me to predict when the decision may be made.
I was not involved in the making of the original decision.
Yours sincerely
Listing Review Officer, Heritage Protection Branch"

Wednesday 19 August 2009

Paul Goggins response to our update from yesterday

"Just to clear up any misunderstanding it might be helpful if I explain the purpose of yesterday’s meeting between the developers, local politicians and planning officials. Given all the recent events and the likely listing of the Sale Hotel the developer was keen to have an early meeting with me and local councillors. We thought it would be helpful if senior planning officers were also present.

The purpose was not to negotiate any secret deals but to gain a better understanding of the new challenges and opportunities that will present themselves once the Listing has taken place. We found the developers to be constructive in their approach - but they now have the task of giving the Sale Hotel a new purpose.

Given the fact that the original house has been added to and extended over the years they were keen to get a better understanding of what is non negotiable in terms of demolition and what may be possible. Clearly the old house and the tower must stay as well as any other parts of the building covered by the Listing.

There is no intention of excluding members of the public from discussions about the future of the Sale Hotel. The developer did not want to engage in public dialogue at this stage as there are no specific proposals under consideration and the formal Listing has not yet been made. In hindsight – and given the constructive nature of yesterday’s discussions – if the developers had been in agreement there would not in my view have been any difficulty in extending an invitation to members of the campaign group and it was good that George Cogswell joined us at the end.

Any decisions taken will need to reflect the formal Listing decision which is not yet made. And any planning application will be subject to full public consultation.

We have established a good team spirit in responding to the urgent need to protect the Sale Hotel and we have succeeded in stopping the bulldozers. But we all now have a responsibility to make sure that the building and the site can be put to good use rather than be left derelict and subject to vandalism. Living accommodation is one possibility but there may be other potential uses and it is important that all options are considered. One thing which is absolutely ruled out by the terms of the sale agreement entered in to by the developers is the use of the property as a pub or nightclub.

Given that two weeks ago none of us even knew the developers, yesterday’s discussion was a first step in trying to find a way forward that suits everyone. They made it clear that as proposals emerge they will be happy to meet and consult. In any future meetings we will make sure that representatives of the group are present and able to participate fully in the discussion.

Pending the formal decision to List we have achieved the first part of our campaign to save the Sale Hotel – congratulations again to all those who have given time to the campaign and to those who signed the petition. The second part is to find a future use for the building which is affordable and suitable. That is a task that everyone will have a say in.


Tuesday 18 August 2009

We weren't invited to the meeting!!!

The Campaign Team is alarmed that a meeting took place late this afternoon, 18.08.09, at the site of the Sale Hotel, which included the developers, employees of Trafford MBC, local councillors, and the Member of Parliament for Wythenshawe and Sale East, Paul Goggins, BUT NO MEMBERS OF THE CAMPAIGN TO SAVE THE SALE HOTEL.

By chance, George Cogswell, of the Campaign Team, was passing by and was able to report a few observations, including the identity of those present.

There was discussion about the demolition of part of the Sale Hotel, by the developers.

No member of this meeting has been willing to disclose the content of the meeting, and no-one has given an explanation why the Campaign Team was not invited.

The Campaign Team is already disappointed with the performance of the Council on a number of points.

The Campaign Team was supported by 1500 signatories of the paper petition, 1700 members of the Facebook, Save the Sale Hotel group, and nearly 800 signatories of the 10 Downing Street petition.

The Campaign Team wishes it to be known that the inefficiency and lack of public consultation very nearly caused the demolition of the Sale Hotel and it is not apparent that there has been any change in Trafford Council's policy as a result. The Campaign Team invites all those supporters of ‘Save the Sale Hotel’ to register immediately dissatisfaction with the continuing mismanagement of this important matter.

Friday 14 August 2009

Tell Us Your Story!

Many people have fond memories of the Sale Hotel. Here's your chance to share your stories and pictures - just mail us your memories to

We look forward to hearing from you.


We've distributed updates to the following shops, firstly to thank everyone who signed the paper petition – such amazing support within a week, secondly to urge people to contact the Department of Culture, Media and Sport and finally to ask people to sign the online petition, which currently has over 620 signatures - thank you to everyone who has signed the petitions.
If you haven't already signed the electronic one, there's still a couple of days left to do so.

The following shops are displaying the update and contact details:

Sale Moor
Cafe Moorish, Sale Moor
Heskeths Butchers, Sale Moor
Hugalls Chemist, Sale Moor
Pick N Pay, Sale Moor
Taylors Butchers, Sale Moor
Trios Cafe, Sale Moor
Wayne’s Fruit and Veg, Sale Moor

Marsland Road
Cartridge World, Marsland Road
Rooneys newsagents and deli, Marsland Road

North Parade shops
Mai’s pharmacy, North Parade

Sale centre
The Fish Plaice, Fishmonger, Claremont Road
Jacks DIY, Hope Road, Sale

Monday 10 August 2009

Contact the Department of Culture, Media and Sport!

We have tried to find out from English Heritage what the timescale is for formally listing the building. We have been told that the matter is currently with the Department of Culture, Media and Sport and that they are unaware of any set timescales. So please now contact the Department of Culture, Media and Sport to urge them to list the building as soon as possible and to ask when they intend on doing this:
Phone: 0207 211 6200

Friday 7 August 2009

Important meeting cancelled.

A meeting requested by Paul Goggins MP with Campaign Leaders and the owner/developer and scheduled for 27.08.09, has been cancelled today by the developer.   The Save the Sale Hotel Campaign Leaders are very disappointed by this move because they genuinely wish to involve local residents and stakeholders in the future of the building.  This meeting would have given everyone the opportunity to discuss the prospects for the site. 

Campaign Leaders have been unable to make contact with the owner/developer, despite several attempts.  It is regarded as unhelpful that nothing has been disclosed about the owner/developer’s original intentions for the site of the building, or his plans now that the Sale Hotel has acquired legal protection. The cancellation of this meeting is thought to be even more detrimental to real attempts of progress by the Campaign Team.  

The Messenger is running a poll following yesterday's decision to issue a Building Protection Notice.

Sale Hotel to be saved

"THE MP for Sale East has hailed the news that the Sale Hotel is to be saved, as a victory for local people.

Earlier this week Paul Goggins submitted a 1,500 name petition to the Secretary of State at the Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS), urging him to overturn an earlier decision not to list the landmark building..."

Please show your support to protect the building.

Thursday 6 August 2009

We have a preservation order!

We have a preservation order!

Trafford Council granted a building preservation notice this evening. This is fantastic news as it grants temporary protection to the building. We are grateful to Trafford Council for this intervention. We now need to convince English Heritage that the building should become listed so that the building can be fully protected. Your sustained support has been vital in getting this far.

Together we have made a difference.

In order to get this building listed, we need to ensure English Heritage is aware of the amount of local support for this building. We are grateful to the 66 people who have already written to English Heritage in support of the Sale Hotel. To anyone who has not already done so and would like to continue to support our campaign, we would be so grateful if you would contact English Heritage on 0161 424 1400 or by email:

If you haven't signed the 10 Downing Street Petition yet please do it now:

Pine Antiques to rip out all the old pine that's left.

Workmen from Pine Antiques of Poynton, Cheshire were removing items from the Sale Hotel this morning. Members of our Campaign Team saw wooden coving, dating from the early history of the building being removed and stacked in the back of a van.

Please contact Trafford Council and demand that they issue a Building Preservation Notice immediately.
Telephone: 0161 912 3149

Wednesday 5 August 2009

Introducing! The company who will demolish our building...

For any inquiries:

Cheshire Demolition

72 Moss Lane
Macclesfield, SK11 7TT
Tel: 01625 424433

Please don't forget contact Trafford Council and demand that they issue a Building Preservation Notice immediately.

Telephone: 0161 912 3149

A company called Cheshire Demolition are erecting security barriers around the Sale Hotel!

This morning (Wed. 5 August) a company called Cheshire Demolition are erecting security barriers around the Sale Hotel and the electricity supply to the building has already been disconnected. This strongly suggests that demolition of the building is imminent.

Are the Council not prepared to take any steps to protect this building at least until the DCMS has made a final decision on the question of listing of the building?

Please contact Trafford Council and demand that they issue a Building Preservation Notice immediately.
Telephone: 0161 912 3149

Tuesday 4 August 2009

We need your help!

Dear Friends,

By now you will be aware that the demolition of the Sale Hotel is imminent. The Campaign Team has made reasonable efforts to consult with the developers, but there is no evidence that they have been taken seriously. The response by Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council, who have the legal power to stop the demolition, has been one of inactivity and apathy.
We know we have the community on our side; in seven days, more than 1500 people signed the paper petition. The online petition, started only yesterday, has more than 250 signatories.
We are now calling for volunteers to come forward and help distribute leaflets and undertake other lightweight communication roles, because so far, we have managed with very few activists. In order to keep the community informed, we need more help.
If you are willing to assist with some of this work, and make a real contribution to the cause, please send an e-mail to

Thank you,

Workmen dug a hole to cut off the power to the Sale Hotel!

Workmen dug a hole at the Sale Hotel today, to cut off the power to the building. It can be only a short while before the demolition begins. If you haven't signed the 10 Downing Street Petition yet please do it now:

And please contact Trafford Council and demand that they issue a Building Preservation Notice immediately.

Planning and Building Control
Trafford Council
PO Box 96
Waterside House
Greater Manchester
M33 7ZF

Telephone: 0161 912 3149
Fax: 0161 912 3128

Monday 3 August 2009

George Cogswell speaks about the campaign to save the Sale Hotel

Please sign our online petition to save the Sale Hotel (click)!

Sign the online petition!

After the very successful petition for the attention of the Rt.Hon. Ben Bradshaw, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Olivia has now started an online petition for 10 Downing Street.

Olivia's Email:

Hi all,

Some of you know will know of the Sale Hotel but some might not. If you don't, have a look at

The pub went downhill in the last couple of years and closed quite recently and was sold to a guy who wants to demolish the building. We are trying to get Trafford Council to preserve the building as it is a key part of the history of Sale and was part of Sale Botanical Gardens which originally surrounded the area. It is seeming to be quite a difficult job.

Please could you sign this online petition that will go straight to the Prime Minister, we have until the 17th August. If you have signed the paper one too that doesn't matter as its going to a different person, and if you know of anyone that also could sign please forward this email.

Sorry if you have already received this message on facebook.

Thank you!!


Thank you Sale and Sale Moor!

1510 signatures

In just 7 days we have obtained 1510 signatures for our petition...and there are still a couple of forms to come in. Thank you so much for your overwhelming support. We are also grateful to all the shops who kindly allowed us to place the petition forms with them over the past week. We have taken the petition to Paul Goggins, MP, who will pass this onto Ben Bradshaw, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. Mr Bradshaw has the power to choose to make the Sale Hotel a listed building and it is this that the petition asks him to do. We hope he will listen to the views of our community.

We only had a week to collect signatures for the petition because we only have 28 days to appeal against the decision not to list the Sale Hotel as a protected building. But to get this amount of signatures in such a short time is a strong indication of our local public opinion.