Andrew R T Davies , Conservative Leader in the Welsh Assembly and AM for South Wales Central (which includes Penarth) – has today said the Vale of Glamorgan Council now has “no excuse” not to go ahead with plans for the long-awaited by-pass for the village of Dinas Powys.
Earlier this year, Cllr Lis Burnett (Labour St Augustines) – the Deputy Leader of the Vale of Glamorgan Council – had written to the Andrew R T Davies claiming the by-pass scheme was “not required” – and suggested that “walking” or “cycling ” schemes should be introduced instead .
Another Penarth Vale councillor Peter King (Labour Cornerswell) who – like Cllr Burnett is one of the 5 remaining members of the Labour-controlled Vale Council’s ‘cabinet’ – said the Dinas Powys By Pass project was not feasible because “no [Welsh Government] funding is currently available or likely to become available in the foreseeable future”.
However both Burnett and King have now been blown out of the water by the Welsh Government’s Cabinet Secretary for the Economy and Infrastructure – the well-regarded Ken Skates – who says he will “happily” play a part in delivering a Dinas Powys by-pass.
In a statement welcomed by Andrew R T Davies. Ken Skates has now gone on record in the National Assembly in describing the bottleneck at Dinas Powys as a “unique issue” and says that he has asked Welsh Government officials to work closely with the Vale Council to find a solution that can be fully funded.
Andrew R T Davies, who along with Vale MP Alun Cairns and other local campaigners has long campaigned for a by-pass, said Mr Skates’s comments showed there was a willingness to go ahead with the project and Vale Council now has “no excuse”.
Mr Davies said, “Despite long and justified calls from residents, the Vale Council have always refused to build a Dinas Powys by-pass on the grounds of lack of funding. As well as suggesting the problems could be solved by a few cycle paths, they have constantly passed the buck and blamed lack of funding from the Welsh Government for not giving the project the green light. As recently as August, they claimed this funding was not likely to be forthcoming in the foreseeable future, and I am pleased that Ken Skates has contradicted them.”
The Conservative Assembly leader says “There is now no reason for the Council not to pursue the project and set the ball rolling. The Welsh Government have, to their credit, shown they are happy to look at finding a fully funded solution.
Davies says “Any inaction from the [Vale] Council from here on in will be down to a general unwillingness to go ahead with the project . That will be unacceptable to local residents.”