PENARTH TOWN PRECEPT MAY RISE AGAIN – TO PAY FOR WORKS AT THE KYMIN

Robbed from the people of Penarth – The Kymin – a tangled history going back to 1680

The Labour-run Penarth Town Council is –  yet again – planning to increase the precept it charges to local residents as part of their Council Tax bills  – this time to pay for maintenance and development at The Kymin.

However the Town Council doesn’t actually own The Kymin: it’s the property of the Labour-run Vale of Glamorgan Council – which leases the house and the surrounding land to Penarth Council on a rolling 12 months’ lease.

The green, green grass of The Kymin – taken from the people of Penarth and rented back to them

The cost of major maintenance works at The Kymin should be paid for by the Vale of Glamorgan Council as the landlords – but the Labour-run council keeps pleading poverty and won’t pay up.

The chronology of the issue runs something like this:-

1250 : The present “Kymin” was originally a farmstead called “Worbeys Fote”

1680: There is a “Kimmin Farm” on the site (now known as “The Kymin”). The strange name is a Norse or Celtic reference to the mouth of a stream. 

1790: A new farmhouse – called “The Kymin” is now is established . The property comprises a farmhouse grasslabnd and woodland and a freshwater stream.

1841: The Kymin is the home of a  retired Irish army captain (38th Regiment) John Minchin and his wife Charlotte. He dies in  1853 .

1875 : The house was rebuilt and becomes the home of James Sidney Batchelor J. P. a timber merchant/commission agent from Newport, Monmouthshire who is one of the 6 Batchelor brothers – three of whom live in Penarth. The freehold belongs to the Earl of Plymouth.

The Kymin and Penarth Head in 1927

1947: Penarth Urban District Council Council acquires the Kymin estate under a  compulsory purchase order for £4,500 with a view to opening it as a “public pleasure ground”. The purchase is funded from the rates charged to the local residents of Penarth . The house itself is let to private tenants.

1952 Penarth UDC  leases the ground floor of Kymin House to an aviation firm – Simmonds Aerocessories Ltd. Later the firm takes of the entire house and the private tenants leave the building.

1952 Penarth Presbyterian Church holds a “summer fayre”  on the lawn of the Kymin – the first of many events to be held in the grounds by local organisations . Penarth UDC’s Parks Department uses part of the grounds for propagating seeds .

1959 Penarth UDC considers building a brand new public swimming pool at the Kymin to replace the one on the Esplanade/Bridgeman Road – but dwecides against it “for the time being ”    

1960 : A number of developers make offers for the land to build flats on the site – along with a lido, an hotel and a “boating lake“. All are refused

1964: The Kymin House is allocated as living accommodation to the Clerk of the Penarth UDC – who is already occupying part of the premises. The deal is that the Clerk must pay out of his own pocket for any conversion work carried out.

1968: ( or around this date) Penarth UDC obtains planning permission to “develop a recreation centre at the Kymin, including new swimming baths“.

1969: Penarth UDC  has negotiations with the Earl of Plymouth to obtain release from a restrictive covenant on the site. However the “recreation centre” is never developed.

1974: Penarth UDC is wound up under local government re-organisation. The deeds of the Kymin are handed over to the new South Glamorgan County Council – even though the Penarth Council bought the Kymin outright with a rates precept taxed from the people of Penarth .

1982: Penarth  Town Council enters a “rolling lease”  with South Glamorgan County Council so that it can  carry on using what is morally Penarth Council’s own property. This lease obliges Penarth Town Council to carry out minor maintenance but leaves the larger county council responsible for major works.

1996: South Glamorgan County Council goes out of existence . The freehold of the Kymin  is passed to the Vale of Glamorgan Council – which refuses – and continues to refuse  – to transfer the deeds of the Kymin back to Penarth – even though the people of Penarth paid £4,500 for the house and grounds in 1947 .

Floodlit outdoor gyms are common in the USA. In 2014 the then Mayor of Penarth Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell) suggested such a floodlit facility be set up at the Kymin.

2014: The then Mayor of  Penarth, Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell), proposes setting up a floodlit “outdoor gymnasium and an indoor gym” at the Kymin – an idea he said he had been “banging on about” since the election of the Labour administration in Penarth in 2012.

A gymnasium he says, is something which would “benefit the town, benefit the people of Penarth and was something we need”.  The idea is not progressed.

A BBC film crew along with 70 year old vintage vehicles – sets up to film Evelyn Waugh’s Decline and Fall at the Kymin, Penarth starring Eva Longoria .

The house and grounds today are estimated to be worth £3,000,000.

2017:  Penarth Town Council holds a “rolling 12 month lease” on the property at a peppercorn rent but wants to acquire the freehold . However, as an interim measure, Penarth Council is hoping to negotiate a longer term lease of around 99 years which would be enough to justify taking out a Public Works Loan towards the cost of  maintaining and developing the building –  including upgrading the toilets and kitchens.

Taking out such a loan would mean the Penarth Town Council increasing – yet again – the precept it charges to local residents as part of their Council Tax bills.

Meanwhile the Vale of Glamorgan Council steadfastly refuses to transfer the ownership of the Kymin back to the people of Penarth – from whom it has been – in effect – stolen.

 

 

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PENARTH COUNCIL SUPPORTS PLAN FOR ULTRA-MODERN CLIFF PARADE HOUSE

The proposed new house to be built on the site of No.8 Cliff Parade, Penarth

Penarth Town Council’s planning committee has given its approval to a scheme to build a completely new ultra modern house in one of the most prominent positions on Penarth’s sea front.

The proposal is to demolish an existing house at No.8  Cliff Parade (last priced at £850,000) , and replace it with a completely new two-storey detached house with flat-roof terrace.

The existing £850,000 detached house No 8 Cliff Parade would be demolished

Both the existing No.8 and the proposed new house will stand just a few yards from the cliff edge – separated from it by only a narrow public footpath and grassed verge. Primary living space and master bedroom in the new house will be on the first floor. The kitchen will be on the ground floor.

Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell)

In the chair Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell) said the present house at 8 Cliff Walk “is not really of any great architectural merit “- but he thought the proposed new house reflected the other modernist building across the road [referring to Sea Roads  which is soon to be the home of footballer Joe Ledley – a house which  can’t actually be seen very well from Cliff Parade] . 

Cllr Thomas thought the proposed new house had a “similar kind of feel about it” to Sea Roads .

Cllr Clive Williams (Independent Plymouth Ward)

Cllr Clive Williams (Independent Plymouth Ward) said “In my opinion this is a bold ambitious, acceptable design which makes a statement on this site – which is in a very prominent position”.  He said he wished to move approval.

Cllr Anthony Ernest (Conservative Plymouth Ward) said “The problem I have with this is   that it’s replacing a relatively modern house. This is in a very prominent position – the last house on the left as you come up Cliff Parade and my feeling is that it’s going to stand out “. He said it was in the “rectangular and square mode” and felt it was a pity that it would not match in with  housing on that side .

Penarth Town Cllr Anthony Ernest

Cllr Ernest said that the other modernistic house “Sea Roads” [which stands opposite] was  “down in a dip – you really don’t see it at all. This house “ he said [referring to the proposed new dwelling] you would most definitely see”  . He urged “a degree of soft landscaping to take the hard edges  off the building” .

It was established that the site of the new house would be outside the architecturally sensitive Penarth Conservation Area.

Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustines)

Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustines) said he completely disagreed with Cllr Ernest. The original house at 8 Cliff Walk had been completed as a “very nice Swedish- style  dark-wood clad building – and, with apologies to the current owners , it is now hideous. It’s painted white, it’s got a Victorian style conservatory on it. It looks absolutely  dreadful”.

Cllr Roberts admitted that he had previously criticised the “well-known” architect of the new building – Chris Loyn – “for the development proposal at the Headlands. ”  On this occasion however Cllr Roberts said  “I don’t disagree with him . A radical design there [meaning Cliff Parade]  would be an absolute asset to the town . It replaces an eyesore with what is a striking-looking building. ”

Cllr Gwyn Roberts said he thought the boundary walls of the new No 8 Cliff Parade should not be “overly dominant” – a condition now attached to the council’s recommendation

Cllr Roberts said his only reservation was that the existing wooden fence was to be replaced by white rendered walls  – and he would not want those walls to be too high because pedestrians would be walking past it and “the footpath would be lower than the garden of the house”. Other than that, he seconded  Cllr Williams’s motion .

Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell)

Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell)  sought clarification about the structure on top of the flat roof of the house – was it a “roof garden?” he asked. It was established it was a “roof terrace”.  

Cllr Wilson thought the new house would be an improvement upon the existing building but had reservations about its  proposed height . “It’s going up by o.6 metres – effectively 2 feet. It’s a bit higher than I would like, but nevertheless overall I would support it   “

Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward)

Cllr Martin Turner (Labour Plymouth Ward) said “We’ve not come across any reasons why it shouldn’t go ahead. Whether we like it as a design or not , I don’t think there are any planning rules that are going to be broken” . He supported the application.

Cllr Neil Thomas in the chair confirmed that the design was a matter of taste and not a matter for the planning committee . “It certainly will be a statement building on the cliff top there, in a prominent position – but that, I believe, would be an asset.”

Cllr Rhiannon Birch (Labour Cornerswell)

Cllr Rhiannon Birch asked whether the quoted height of the building was to the roof or to the railings surrounding the “roof terrace”.

The Town Clerk Emma Boylen said it was to the roof of the dwelling. Cllr Thomas said it was to the top of the “lift shaft”.

Cllr Birch said she would not be supporting the proposal  – and as a result a vote was called for in which all councillors voted “for” except for Cllr Birch, who abstained.

The application is therefore being supported by Penarth Town Council with the proviso that the boundary walls are not “overly dominant”.

 

 

 

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CLLR LIS BURNETT QUITS ST AUGUSTINE’S WARD TO STAND IN STANWELL

 

Cllr Lis Burnett (Labour St Augustines) Deputy Leader of the Vale of Glamorgan Council is not to stand for election to the Vale in St Augustines in May –  but is to contest a seat in Stanwell Ward

The Labour Party has finally confirmed reports which have been circulating for months that Cllr Lis Burnett (Labour St Augustine’s) – the Deputy Leader of the Vale of Glamorgan Council –  is not to seek re-election as a Vale councillor for St Augustine’s Ward.

Lis Burnett was first elected to represent the St. Augustine’s Ward on the Vale of Glamorgan Council in May 2004 but subsequently lost her seat. She was eventually re-elected as a Vale Councillor for St Augustines Ward in 2012 – topping the poll with  887 votes.

In the 2012 election Cllr Gwyn Roberts and Cllr Lis Burnett (both Labour St Augustines) share a cuppa  and a campaign photo-call. Both won St Augustine’s seats on the Vale of Glamorgan Council but neither is now seeking to continue to represent St Augustines Ward on the Vale Council  – although Cllr Roberts will be standing for re-election to Penarth Town Council

In 2012 she had campaigned alongside Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour)  who won the other Vale seat for St Augustines – polling  781 votes , but PDN council sources say it’s understood that the close co-operation which had marked their campaign did not endure the duration of the five-year council term.

A former Penarth Mayor, Cllr Roberts is not seeking re-election to the Vale Council in May  although colleagues say he is standing again for election in St Augustine’s Ward for Penarth Town Council. The Labour Party has not yet released its list of candidates for Penarth Town Council for May’s elections.

Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustines) & Cllr Lis Burnett (Labour St Augustines) confronting St Augustine’s Ward residents in a public meeting on the Paget Road Skateboard project in 2014 .

Cllr Burnett had advocated the installation of a controversial skateboard park in the Paget Road children’s play area in St Augustine’s Ward – a scheme which ran into vociferous opposition from local residents and eventually had to be withdrawn.

A Vale of Glamorgan Council erected padlocked barriers to prevent people accessing the Penarth Head Viewing platform whilst is surveyed the cracks

Cllr Burnett was also associated with the installation – without any public consultation – of heavily-criticised £100,000 Penarth Headland Viewing Point on the summit of Penarth Head .  The stark,  reinforced concrete and brick edifice  had to be temporarily closed to the public for a survey when cracks appeared in the walls.

It was also admitted that  recesses for “information plaques”  were wrongly aligned towards local homes instead of points of interest across the channel . They still are.

Last-minute planting had to be carried out in an attempt to “soften” the appearance of a building which the public compared to a Wehrmacht gun-emplacement.

St Paul’s Church – the Boxing and Gym Clubs former HQ – is owned by the Vale Council . Now empty, it’s facing demolition to make way for social housing

In the 2012 Elections Cllr Burnett had promised that the old St Paul’s Church in Arcot St – within the St Augustine’s Ward –  would be brought back into use.

The Vale Council carried out a public referendum in the St Augustines Ward in which local residents voted overwhelmingly in favour of Penarth Boxing Club being allowed to resume their use of St Paul’s.

The results of the Vale Council’s public referendum on St Paul’s Church, Penarth were ignored

The Vale Council ignored the result of its own referendum . Now the building is likely to be demolished to make way for social housing

Labour councillor Janice Birch has represented the Stanwell Ward on both the Vale and Penarth Councils

Cllr Burnett is now to stand for election to the Vale Council in Penarth’s Stanwell Ward where she will  attempt to succeed veteran Vale Cllr Janice Birch who is retiring at the end of the current term, prior to May’s council elections.

Cllr Janice Birch – now aged 82 –  has had a remarkably long and successful career in local government both on the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Penarth Town Council and consistently attracted a strong vote and a large and loyal personal following in Stanwell Ward over many years.

She was Mayor of Penarth in 1981/82. In her early years she was known as a powerful  advocate for CND and has also campaigned strongly for gender equality and women’s rights.

It’s also been confirmed that Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell) – is seeking re-election to his existing Stanwell Ward seat.

Penarth Council meetings are often enlivened by witty repartee between husband and wife Cllr Mark Wilson and Cllr Rhiannon Birch – seen here at last year’s Summer Festival Downhill Derby

During the current council term Cllr Wilson married Cllr Janice Birch’s daughter, Rhiannon Birch who – like Cllr Wilson – is a twin hatted councillor serving on both the Vale of Glamorgan and Penarth Town Council. She represents Cornerswell Ward whereas Cllr Wilson represents Stanwell Ward.

Apart from STANWELL Ward ( as detailed above) the rest of Labour’s Penarth candidates for the Vale Council are:-

CORNERSWELL:  Peter King (will be standing with Rhiannon Birch – see above) . He is currently a member of the 5-strong ruling ‘cabinet’ of the Vale of Glamorgan Council and is in charge of Transport. His ward includes Windsor Road, Cogan – part of which which is so polluted with traffic fumes it’s designated as an Air Quality Management Area.

ST AUGUSTINE’S:  There was a clean sheet for Labour to fill here following the departure of Cllr Lis Burnett and Cllr Gwyn Roberts. The new candidates are:-

  1. Neil Thomas:  a member Penarth Town Council representing Cornerswell since 2012, He is now hoping to win a salaried seat on the Vale of Glamorgan Council whilst retaining a Penarth Town Council seat.  His employment background, he says, “lies in the fields of Social Services and Education” and in 2012 declared he was a member of the British Association of Social Workers.
  2. Ruba Sivagnanam ( a.k.a. Sivaruby Sivagnanam) is not a serving councillor but has been appointed a director of the Penarth Headland Link Company – the “not-for-profit” firm charged with reviving Labour’s defunct vanity project – the Penarth Head Link.   She  describes herself as a  “Public Policy Professional ” working as a “Senior Case Manager, Labour MP’s Office”. The un-named MP referred to is now known to be Stephen Doughty (Labour Cardiff South and Penarth) .

PLYMOUTH: In this ward there are two salaried seats on the Vale Council at stake but Labour is only putting up one candidate – a single mother of two, Angela Thomas  – who is from what she describes as, a “Labour working class background.” Little other biographical information is available.

 

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LAGOON WOULD CHANGE PENARTH’S TIDES, ERODE THE CLIFFS AND MUDDY THE WATER

The Penarth/Cardiff/ Newport Tidal Lagoon would feature massive walls obscuring the view from Penarth Pier and the Esplanade, 90 turbines which would eject powerful streams of water – somoe directed towards Penarth Head. High tides in Penarth will be lower than they are now – and the water will flow much mfaster and be a lot muddier than at present – Penarth Council has been told.

Penarth Town Council heard last night that the proposed Cardiff/Penarth Tidal lagoon will reduce the height of high tide, increase the height of low tide and create muddier and much faster-moving water off the Penarth foreshore.

The powerful streams of water coming from the underwater turbines will also increase coastal erosion and create strong currents off Penarth Head for ships, fishing boats and leisure craft entering and leaving Penarth Barrage locks – but so far there has been little or no consultation with small boat owners.

Tim Carter and Joanna Lane of Tidal Lagoon Power at Penarth Town Council last night

Penarth Council’s Leisure and Amenities Committee last night heard a presentation by Cardiff  Lagoon Development manager Joanna Lane and the firm’s Head of Environment Tim Carter.

Tidal Lagoon Power is to carry out three rounds of public consultations – starting in the Autumn of this year . It will then submit a Development Consent Order for the project midway through 2018 . There then follows a 15 month inquiry style process and the firm hopes to get approval in 2021 to begin building the project.

Tim Carter said the Environmental Impact Assessment would investigate how the proposed Lagoon would “change water flows in the Severn Estuary” – including the effects on over-wintering birds which feed in the estuary.

A cross section of the rock wall proposed for the Swansea Lagoon. The wall of the  Cardiff Lagoon would be far higher that proposed for Swansea Bay

[ PDN Note:  The massive rock-boulder walls of the Tidal Lagoon will obscure the sea view from Penarth Esplanade by – in effect – drawing a huge rock-armour curtain across the sea-front.From Esplanade level  – and from Penarth Pier –  it will no longer be possible to see Cardiff, Newport , the Severn Bridges, Bristol, Portishead , Clevedon or Weston Super Mare. Most of the Somerset coast will disappear behind the wall of solid rock and concrete. The massive wall will reach as far South as a point  due East of Whitcliffe Drive – although people standing on Cliff Walk might just-about be able to see  over the top of the lagoon walls – depending on their final height ]

Tim Carter of Tidal Lagoon Power

In his briefing to Penarth Councillors, Mr Carter acknowledged that “in terms of landscape and seascape, clearly it’s the construction of a very large infrastructure project in the Severn Estuary. It’s an important consideration in terms of changes in views, in terms of landscape character – and those will be a test” .

Mr Carter produced a map indicating a large area of the Severn Estuary from which it would be possible to see the Lagoon Wall – and said further “modelling” was being carried out to verify the extent of the visual impact.

Mr Carter said  “Clearly this is something which is going to be important for Penarth” and said the firm had identified various locations in Penarth including Penarth Sea Front, Paget Road and Lavernock. He said that local people would “want to get comment in on what are the important views for the community and from where they think important views should be recorded”  .

He said “photo montages” would then be developed to show what the completed lagoon would look like “from those locations”  .

Mr Carter said that the lagoon would be operating “out of phase” with the normal tide.  Initial predictions estimated a drop of 10 centimetres to 30 centimetres  the level of high water [ at the top of the tide] . He said the low water mark would be 10-30 cm higher than at present and low water would not be quite as low as it is now.

He said there would be faster water flows in the area of the lagoon because the Severn Estuary would be “narrowed” whilst flow-speeds would be increased. Mr Carter said that if flow speeds increased to a certain degree, the existing sediments  in the water  ” may be lifted”. [i.e. lifted from the sea bed]. There could be increased erosion and sedimentation both inside the lagoon and outside it. 

As far as the project as a whole was concerned, Mr Carter said much depended on the development of the smaller Swansea Tidal Lagoon. “Without Swansea” – he said – “Cardiff is unlikely to progress” .

Joanna Lane of Tidal Lagoon Power

Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell) queried figures quoted by Joanna Lane in the slide presentation. He asked whether the electricity generated would be 25,000,000 Megawatts or 25,000 Megawatts. He was told that the installed capacity would be “somewhere between1,800 to  2,800 Megawatts.

Cllr Wilson asked whether that figure was the amount generated  “per day?” . He was told that the figures related to the “installed capacity” – it was the “potential energy created” – it would not be the actual electricity generated “for much of the time [ i.e. the actual power generated would be – for most of the time –  a lot less].     

Cllr Wilson pressed the point and asked “Have you got any idea how much energy you will actually be generating?”.

Joanna Lane said the lagoon would be generating – every year – between 4 and 6Terrawatt Hours” which would be enough for 1,150,000 homes – but there were “lots of different ways” of calculating the estimates. CllrWilson said he understood the average person consumed 34.82 megawatts . Joanna Lane said the average household in Wales consumed  3,928 kWH [kilowatt hours] per year.

As a private company, she said,  the firm was privately financed to do the development work but once the lagoon was built, it was expecting to receive a “Contract for Difference” – much like a solar power “feed-in tariff” . It was essential that the UK Government and Treasury worked with the firm to establish what was the appropriate level of financial support. [ Power generated from the Lagoon would have to be subsidised by the taxpayer to a much higher level than nuclear power stations]  

Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell)

Cllr Wilson said he was also concerned about birds and noted that cranes from the West Country were now breeding here. He also asked what educational initiatives would be undertaken by the company .   Joanna Lane said the company did a lot of “outreach” with schools and colleges  and was working with Cardiff University on prehistoric landscapes.

Tim Carter said bird species like Redshank and Curlew were being fitted with very small GPS trackers top see how they used the Gwent Levels area. This would help to understand  food resources in the light of changes in the water levels.

Cllr Clive Williams (Independent Plymouth uth Ward)

Cllr Clive Williams (Independent Plymouth Ward)  said that government work he had once been involved with on Pendine Beach had ended up affecting beaches in Swansea, 30 miles away. Tidal forces,  he pointed out, were often unpredictable.

Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward)

Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward) said he was worried about the effect that changes in the tidal flow would have on Penarth Head – which was not protected. Tim Carter said predicting the effects of this would be part of the “coastal processes work” and the modelling being undertaken.

Cllr Anthony Ernest Conservative Plymouth Ward

Cllr Anthony Ernest (Conservative Plymouth Ward)   asked “Can you tel me the likely effect of the turbines on small craft, yachts, small fishing boats  and so on.?

Tim Carter said engineers were still looking at the “optimal design” of the turbine housing and the actual arrangement of the turbines themselves. “When water is coming out that effect will be  kilometres in terms of the power coming out”  . Mr Carter said the firm was looking at setting up a “marine users group” . He admitted that the problems of small craft was still something that needed to be understood –  so that the firm could see “what mitigation is possible”.

Joanna Lane said the company was also investigating any – what she called – “navigation risk issues” .

Cllr Ernest then asked about the proposed control mechanism and cabling which would feed the power generated  into the National Grid . Would there be overhead pylons? – he asked – “Visually that would not be acceptable”.

Tim Carter said National Grid had not yet specified where the “connection point” might be – but there was a connection point at Uskmouth Power station and there was an option to go across the Severn Estuary with an undersea cable  and connect at Avonmouth.

The Mayor of Penarth and Leader of the Council Mike Cuddy (Labour St Augustines)

The Mayor Cllr Mike Cuddy (Labour St Augustines )  asked about Penarth’s involvement in the major public inquiry which would be set up in the event of the project going ahead.

Joanna Lane said she believed Penarth Town Council would be a statutory consultee in the process.

Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell)

Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell) said the Westernmost turbines of the lagoon, nearest the land, appeared to be pointing straight at Penarth Head “which we know is fragile and liable to erosion” . He said ” a proposed Headland Link Walkway could be running past there as well – which could have a mitigating effect on the outflow of the turbines”. He asked whether there was scope for the Lagoon company to work with the Headland Link group to  “strengthen the proposal for the Walkway  so that it would act as a shield” .

Tim Carter said the starting point would be to look at the location of the turbines and possibly place them further out in the channel. If there were proposals for walkways that was something that could be assessed at the time .

Joanna Lane said the Lagoon Company had met with the Headland Walkway Group some time ago and was aware of the current “ambitions”  . “We are always keen to know where there are opportunities for us to work with local groups”

Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustines)

Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustine’s) presumed that the whole lagoon was emptied twice a day . He was  told there would be between 60 and 90 turbines in the turbine chamber  and queried why the turbines needed to be concentrated together “in one tiny part of the wall”. If they were distributed around the walk they would work more efficiently and get rid of the enormous flow off Penarth Head.

Cllr Roberts also noted there had been recent tidal surges in the Bristol Channel – where would the [tidal] water go? The same was true of river-water from the Barrage and coming down the rest of the channel – but he was convinced tidal power was a preferable option to nuclear power – if it could be made to work.

 

 

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SPRING – AND ELECTIONS – IN THE AIR AS PENARTH TOWN COUNCIL GETS GARDENING

The new pre-election herb garden being prepared in the front grounds of Penarth Town Council at West House. The new planters are all made from recycled materials

With Spring – and pending elections – in the air Penarth Town Council has embarked on a plethora of planting and “brightening up” schemes to give its properties a lift as part of  the “Penarth in Bloom” scheme.

Planting work has already been undertaken to create a new “herb garden” in the front grounds of the council’s HQ at West House and beds for “Penarth in Bloom” have been planted out.

The Pembroke Terrace play area – which is owned by Penarth Town Council – is to be “quickly brightened up” .

With the Vale of Glamorgan Council currently carrying out at £200,000 pre-election upgrade of its children’s play-areas in the town, Penarth Town Council is to “quickly brighten up ” the Pembroke Terrace play area which it owns.

The long-negelcted Arcot St/Queen’s Road Triangle which is used as a dog-toilet. Now – somewhat belatedly – Penarth Town Council is to plant some flowers there as part of “Penarth in Bloom”

Meanwhile the long-neglected Arcot Street “Triangle” in the St Augustine’s Ward  is now to be spruced-up and planted with flowers fior the first time in years – by the Town Council.

Only last month Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell)  had told councillors  that the Arcot St. Triangle was NOT the responsibility of Penarth Town Council – it was a matter for the Vale Council… but there now appears to have been a change of heart.

PDN sources say that Cllr Thomas may be standing for election to the Vale Council in St Augustine’s Ward in May’s council elections – but there’s no suggestion of any link between these developments.

Bulbs are being planted to produce floral displays at the Kymin’s “viewing platform”

Bulbs have also been planted at the entrance to The Kymin, the Kymin “viewing platform” area [not to be confused with the Vale Council’s rumbling edifice on Penarth Head]  and saplings are being planted in the woodland  area – which will go some way to replenish the mature trees which had to be felled last year.

As part of “Penarth in Bloom” Penarth Council is now inviting local residents to suggest other locations around the town which would benefit from having some floral displays.

A sawn-down 30-foot-long tree is amongst the fly-tipped rubbish on Dingle Road Station’s North platform

Meanwhile the town’s most obvious eyesore – the Dingle Road Station – remains overgrown with fly-tipping and even a felled tree littering the unused North-side platform. Robert Donaldson of the Friends of Dingle Park has been campaigning for months to get Network Rail –  or the council – or somebody – to carry out a long-overdue clean up.

Network Rail promised to do so and even set a date for the work last November – but didn’t turn up on the day they promised, and haven’t been seen since .

Robert Donaldson of the Friends of Dingle Park – and the brush-off letter he’s received from the Welsh Labour Government.  Mr Donaldson and his group are not about to give in

In desperation – having tried the Vale Council and Penarth Town Council – Mr Donaldson then wrote to the highest authority in Wales – none less than the Welsh Labour Government.

This week the Welsh Government replied to him telling him that – as “railway infrastructure” is a non-devolved matter, it’s all matter for the UK Government …and Network Rail.

Mr Donaldson, however, isn’t giving up and is to continue pressing the matter until he gets action  .

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POLICE ISSUE MORE PHOTOGRAPHS OF PENARTH GRAFFITI VANDALS

The latest pictures of a graffiti gang defacing property in Penarth. Anyone who recognises faces in the photos is asked to contact the police

South Wales Police have issued more infra-red night-time photographs of graffiti vandals mindlessly defacing private and public property in Penarth.

Police say they have already had an excellent response to the photographs they issued a few days ago of youths in a back lane off Redlands Road which has been subjected to a number of attacks by graffiti gangs.

The latest set of photographs were all taken at night by infra-red CCTV cameras . The areas of white on the photo are those which are emitting heat – which is why eyes appear to “glow” in the dark.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact the police quoting the same reference number as the earlier incidents 1700080812. Alternatively, Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Posted in Penarth Daily News | 10 Comments

LEAD-THIEVES STRIP COGAN PRIMARY SCHOOL ROOF – YET AGAIN

Cogan Primary School – once again the victim of lead thieves

A gang of lead thieves has – yet again – stripped a flat roof at Cogan Primary School – the second time the school has sustained such an attack

The latest raid happened late last night or in the early hours of this morning and  was discovered when the staff came on duty this morning.

The head teacher Susan Sibert says the gang went to the rear of the schoolo buildings and scaled a ladder to reach the lead waterproofing sections .

The last time it happened in April 2016 rainwater penetrated the stripped roof and damaged books and equipment

Police have issued an appeal to anyone who saw or heard anything suspicious in the vicinity last night or early this morning to call them on 101 quoting crime reference 1700099270. For anyone who wishes to give information anonymously the number to call is  0800 555 111.

Posted in Penarth Daily News | 2 Comments