A multi-million pound scheme to transform one of Trafford’s most famous and popular public parks has moved a step closer.

A planning application has been submitted for the wide-scale transformation of Stretford’s Longford Park – the borough’s largest at 54 acres.

The park is in a designated conservation area, which was owned by John and Enriqueta Rylands who lived at Longford Hall and who also built Stretford Public Hall.

The plans, submitted to Trafford council, include the proposed development of a new learning, training and volunteering hub and improved sport and recreational facilities incorporating a new BMX course.

Along with partners the One Trafford Partnership, the council is also planning the redesign of built and landscaped heritage features such as the former hall site and gardens, a revamped Pets’ Corner, the re-opening of Longford Brook, plus new footpaths, seating and lighting.

The proposals have been developed in conjunction with consultants The Environment Partnership (TEP), The Friends of Longford Park, City of Trees and the One Trafford Partnership.

A public consultation took place last year asking residents what they thought of the current plans for Longford Park.

Coun Liz Patel, Trafford’s executive member for economy and regeneration, said: “We have some amazing parks in Trafford and they are all extremely important to local communities. Parks provide welcome green spaces in our neighbourhoods, helping to keep people healthy and active and providing a space for nature.

“I am delighted that the planning application for this impressive project has been submitted. These plans will transform Longford Park and make it an even more incredible space for thousands of local residents and visitors now and in the future. Thank you to everyone who has worked so hard and contributed to this project.”

In 2020, Trafford Council was awarded a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £120,000 towards the masterplan and lottery bid, with further match funding from the council. A second-stage application is close to being submitted to the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the outcome of which will be announced later this year.