Plans for a controversial religious Jewish boundary in a wealthy area south of Manchester have been quietly withdrawn after almost 1,000 complaints.
The planned eruv around Hale and Hale Barns, incorporating some areas of Timperley and Altrincham, would have involved almost 100 six-metre high steel poles to form a 12-mile area.
However, the Hale Eruv Project Trust admitted defeat this week, blaming Jewish representatives behind the proposals for the bad publicity, after Trafford Council registered almost 1,000 objections, with only 100 messages of support.
While there is already an eruv in Greater Manchester, which incorporates large Orthodox populations around Prestwich and Cheetham Hill, the community in and around Hale is predominantly secular or Modern Orthodox.
Proponents had said the Hale eruv would allow observant Jews to push or carry certain items outside their homes on Shabbat, arguing that this would include those in wheelchairs.
Manchester Jewish Representative Council chairman Jonny Wineberg said that the project’s failure stemmed from a lack of community engagement, adding: “It is unfortunate that the breadth of community engagement needed to successfully move the eruv project in Hale forward was not achieved.”
A group set up to campaign against the Hale Eruv said consultation over the plans had been “very limited” and “appears to be only with other faith leaders; no consultation has been made with the non-believers in the ward”. They added that the “majority” of Jews living in the area were also against the plans.
A spokesperson for the Hale Eruv Project Trust said: “In the interests of communal unity the trustees of the Hale Eruv project have, after careful consideration, decided not to proceed with their current planning application.”