VALE PLANNING COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER LABOUR’S COSMESTON WAKEBOARD SCHEME

An artistic impression of one of the 2 steel pylons which would suspend the overhead cable over the main Eastern Lake at Cosmeston Country Park

The controversial overhead-cable wake-boarding scheme  – which the former Labour administration in the Vale of Glamorgan Council wanted to install at Cosmeston Country Park – has today been “called-in” to be debated by the full planning committee of the newly-elected Conservative Vale Council.

Cllr Kevin Mahoney (Independent Sully) has called-in Labour’s Cosmeston wakeboard scheme

Until this morning the planning application for the scheme was – as reported by PDN earlier today – set to be decided only by a staff planning officer of the Vale Council,  on a so-called “delegated” basis  – rather than being debated in a full meeting of the planning committee.

However this morning Cllr Kevin Mahoney (Independent Sully) acted to ensure the scheme will now be discussed by the full planning committee of the newly elected Vale of Glamorgan Council by “calling in” the scheme .

The full Vale Planning Committee has yet to meet following the May 4th elections and no agenda for the first meeting of the new planning committee has yet been published.

On December 14th 2016 Cllr Lis Burnett (Labour)   – then deputy leader of the Vale Council – had sought to minimise the impact of the wakeboarding scheme and quell public fears

On December 14th last year the controversial wakeboarding scheme was being pushed as a commercial venture by Cllr Lis Burnett (Labour Stanwell), the former Deputy Leader of the Labour administration – despite a 10,000-signature petition being presented by local people who want Cosmeston Country Park left as it is . [See http://tinyurl.com/y7ym57j2 ]

Many thought that, as Labour has lost control of the Vale Council, the scheme would be dropped by the incoming Conservative-led administration – but evidently the Vale Council’s planning department had received an application from a potential commercial franchisee to set up  a “new wakeboarding sporting facility at Cosmeston Lakes Country Park”  and its staff officers had been all set to decide for themselves whether or not to approve the plan –  without any reference to the full Vale Planning Committee.

The scheme includes the “New installation of electric cable wakeboarding system equipment and a mechanical store, new installation of male changing facilities and the Wake Park Reception; conversion of park’s store room to house a female changing area at Cosmeston visitor centre.”

A map shows that the cable ride would run alongside the main causeway between the two lakes

Two steel pylons would be erected at each end of the wakeboard run (marked red on the map above) connected by an endless loop of cable .

The endless cable would have a rope and handle attached to it  which wakeboarders would hold on to,  so as to be drawn along the surface of the water at planing speeds. Various floating jump-ramps and features will be anchored in the water .

Up to 50 wakeboarders a day would use Cosmeston Country Park’s tranquil freshwater wildlife lake for their sport.

The wakeboarding site – on the Western side of Cosmeston’s Eastern lake – is confirmed as being  within the Cosmeston Lakes Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and the  Local Nature Reserve (LNR).

However – the consultants say –  given the small scale and scope of the proposed development, those habitats and species present or potentially present within and around the site are not considered to pose ‘in principle’ constraints to the proposals.

The consultants say that whilst the wakeboarding system would be “partially located within a statutorily protected site” , its ” qualifying features could be sufficiently protected from any adverse impacts arising from the proposed development through the implementation of appropriate avoidance and mitigation measures during the construction and operational phases.”

The resident swans at Cosmeston Country Park already appear to have made it clear what they think  about the controversial wakeboarding scheme

The application report says Cosmeston Lakes Country Park is home to “numerous waterfowl[ i.e. swans and ducks]  and woodland species including kingfishers,  barn owls,  fieldfare,   redwing  and firecrest .

The report also notes that the “lakes and associated habitats are also recognised for their importance to a wintering bird assemblage- and because of that “precautionary working measures and sensitive clearance” would be required during construction,

What would be known as “The Cosmeston Wake Park” will require:-

  • The installation of two cable system pylons on the southern and northern banks of the Eastern lake, secured in position using ground level anchor points
  •  Installation of a pontoon at the start position, secured to the bank and lake bed
    using wooden posts
  •  Installation of floating park features to be tethered in position with anchors lines to
    anchor that site on the lake floor
  • Installation of a 6 square metre shipping container behind the southern pylon to house the power supply and controlling equipment for the wakeboarding cable system
  •  Siting of reception and changing areas within existing areas of hardstanding
    adjacent to the Cosmeston Lakes Visitor Centre

Critics say the new Conservative administration in the Vale of Glamorgan Council will now need to get its ducks in a row on the Cosmeston wakeboard scheme

The “Wake Park” would operate “from late March to end of October” and ” during daylight hours only”.

The application says “There is no reason, in ecological terms why detailed planning permission should be refused. The scheme is therefore commended to Vale of Glamorgan County Council as an ecologically sensitive response to the implementation of new recreational facilities within Cosmeston Lakes SSSI/LNR/Country Park.”

 

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27 Responses to VALE PLANNING COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER LABOUR’S COSMESTON WAKEBOARD SCHEME

  1. BigPooPski says:

    All we need now is some fast food outlet’s and it will be perfect

    • Philip Rapier says:

      I am deeply touched by Councillor Penrose heart rending pledge to help both Education and the People of Sully and Lavernock as quoted below.
      “Personally, I only want what is best for the residents of my ward of Sully and Lavernock and for the residents the Vale of Glamorgan overall.”
      Let’s wake up and smell the innocent creatures corpses created by the water board destruction of Wildlife then and START BY CALLING IN THIS VILE PLAN that will destroy one of our most precious Education resources.
      Just 150 people objected at Portishead Bristoi and they succeeded in getting these aquatic vandals THROWN OUT DESPITE OFFICERS RECOMMENDATION TO APPROVE.
      BBC WEBSITE 13 August 2015
      “Portishead Marina wakeboarding plan rejected”
      Proposals for a water sports centre at Portishead Marina near Bristol have been turned down, despite planners recommending its approval.
      Nearly 150 people had objected to the plans, which would have seen activities including wakeboarding.
      The decision was applauded by members of the public as North Somerset Council rejected the application.
      Marina bosses argued it would generate more tourism, while residents said it amounted to a “funfair”.

  2. Chris David says:

    Are those Mute Swans- or councillors burying their heads? Call it in- dump it and radically change the planning dept. Goldsworthy and crew at not working in the public interest. This is a test for the new council- show you’re working in the interest of your employers- us the public.

  3. PR says:

    It’s fine, people can now see that the Tories are no different from Labour when it comes to talking other people’s views into consideration.

    Shame that cosmeston is going to be turned into just another park though, no peace and quiet there once this is installed, the park and ride appears, the weddings begin and the extra traffic from the new housing clogs up the road.

  4. Yvonne Penny says:

    So sad, there are not many areas where one can sit quietly and what of the wildlife? It will be destroyed.

  5. Penny says:

    I’m sure Cllr Penrose won’t be in favour of the commercialisation of Cosmeston. He has form in that respect.

    • Justina Broughton says:

      The Center Parcs issue you mean? That was never adequately explained. I’m sure that in this new era of openness and transparency the “cabinet” will want to get to the bottom of it.

  6. Lucie says:

    Will all this affect the wildlife at our beautiful lake’s….

  7. Joe blow says:

    Hard to swallow, considering the lengths that the Vale make you go through to go windsurfing on the lake.

  8. Councillor Michael Garland says:

    The Vale Council have failed to consult appropriately on this application. There has been no notification to the Vale Councillors or Sully and Lavernock Community Council, whose Ward is where part of the facility, the main access and car parking is located in.
    I have asked our Vale Councillors to ‘call it in’ to the Planning Committee. We will have to wait and see.

  9. Councillor Michael Garland says:

    Councillor Kevin Mahoney has just informed me that he has ‘called in’ the application to the Planning Committee. Well done Kevin. Much appreciated

    • NewsNet says:

      The main PDN story has now been updated to take into account Cllr Mahoney’s decision to “call-in” the scheme.

    • Robert says:

      Well done Councillor Mahoney. Ms Burnett may even start spitting feathers. Now we have to get rid of the Penarth head monstrosity.

      • Tony Harris says:

        I agree with you and and the sooner the concrete obscenity is demolished the better. I asked for this and more in my ‘manifesto’ when I stood as an Independent in Stanwell and we know what happened there. Penarth voted overwhelmingly for a Labour Town Council and even Ms Burnett got elected despite a less than glorious reign in St Augustines. You reap what you sow.

    • Jean Bispham says:

      Thanks Kevin and thank you to Mike Garland as well.
      This needs to be thoroughly discussed.

  10. BluesMan says:

    I’m sure one of the councillors will call it in! There will be uproar if that goes ahead its a silly idea!

  11. Chris David says:

    Well done Kevin. Throw it out and then get to work on the planning dept.

  12. Anne Greagsby says:

    Last time a petition to save Cosmeston got 28,713 signatures and was presented to the Vale council. Lis Burnett replied saying it would be consulted on as a planning application. Hardly ideal. The VoG council own Cosmeston so could say NO immediately. Anyway another petition started here… URGENT – Please sign the petition to Demand the Vale council to reject wake-boarding at Cosmeston Park http://www.thepetitionsite.com/tell-a-friend/37140058

    • Hang Ten says:

      Perhaps someone could start a petition in support of the wake boarding proposals

  13. Councillor Michael Garland says:

    The Vale Council take no notice of petitions., but may be mindful of scores of comments from individuals. You can easily comment on this Application, on line, via the Vale Council Planning website section. Anyone can comment/object, it doesn’t matter if you don’t live in the locality.
    Please object and save Cosmeston Lakes Country Park and its inhabitants from destruction,

  14. snoggerdog says:

    saw a firecrest just near the seabanks entrance to the park a couple of weeks ago also see a tree creeper up that path quite often.

  15. Chris David says:

    Snogger- defo a Firecrest and not a Goldcrest? Firecrest is fantastic. I’ve signed the A Greasy posted petition and posted it on FB. Maybe the new council wont be so arrogant and dictatorial.

  16. Mary Edwards says:

    The proposed commercialisation of Cosmeston Country Park is appalling. It is contrary to the spirit of a country park, where nature can be enjoyed (and safeguarded) in peace and tranquillity. Why should all this be sacrificed to the relentless pursuit of profit? This proposal must be rejected.

  17. Bob says:

    Have they actually thought about this.
    As a keen wakeboarder the idea of one local to Cardiff would be amazing, but with a cable park you would also need the following.
    Changing rooms and showers,
    Ski/wakeboard /wetsuit/jacket storage
    Club room.
    Exit points around the lake
    Rescue boat on the lake
    Viewing seating area.
    Also repairs to the cable only certain number in the uk
    Looking at all the successful parks in uk
    Sheffield cable ski
    JB ski
    Boxend. For example
    These wake parks have a family vibe and they are busy
    I can’t see how this would be Accomplished in Cosmeston
    Also all these parks are open late and have flood lights, how will they make the profit when it’s open day time only when people are working and kids in school except for holidays, the cost to run this would be viable.
    Along with events and sponsors that bring in the profit that are key to the whole thing working
    Also failed to say all wake board parks have music, I can’t see this going down well.

    The windsurf, sailing clubs and paddleboarers used to use Cosmestom but they have stopped all that, which I don’t understand as that supported local retailers and clubs and got people and kids started on the water and interested.
    I thought the watersports would be all together at the bay when the original plans came out including a wake park.

  18. Chris David says:

    Thank you Bob. Take note Kevin, interested parties and the imperious VoG planning dept.

  19. CelticMan says:

    This is what we are letting ourselves in for:

    http://www.foxlake.co.uk/wakeboarding/

    Enjoy 😫

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