Storm over events licence proposals

CONCERNED: Cllr Steffan Wiliam claimed the proposal for a premises licence at the former Butlins site in Barry has left residents and traders, such as Costa Rafti (left), worried

CONCERNED: Cllr Steffan Wiliam claimed the proposal for a premises licence at the former Butlins site in Barry has left residents and traders, such as Costa Rafti (left), worried

First published in News

PROPOSALS for an events licence for the former Barry Butlins site have left some residents and traders feeling it would rock the boat.

Following the end of a recent consultation carried out by the applicant, the Vale of Glamorgan Council, Nell’s Point residents have expressed concerns that noise, feet away from their homes, would be unbearable. The licence, a 'Premises Licence', would be for 9am-10.30pm, seven days a week, for occasional use.

Traders who have long wanted to feel the economic benefit brought by massive crowds, have also waded in saying the newly-created space near the car park – funded by the Barry Area Regeneration Board programme – would see them reap little reward with visitors not wanting to walk off site to buy food and drinks.

Nell’s Point resident Andy Green said: “There is concern about it – not events, but the different type of events and what it is really suitable for.”

He said a car rally would be fine, but late night music would prove disruptive for families in their homes and, although they frequently heard the funfair it was at a suitable distance from their homes.

Trader Costa Rafti, of the Royal Cafe, Barry Island, said events held closer to the businesses last summer had had a welcome benefit.

He said: “The site between the bandstand and the crazy golf park benefited everyone, since it was much further away from residents’ homes, but right next to shops and food outlets. In contrast, this new proposal helps no-one and hurts everyone.”

Vale Baruc Plaid councillor Steffan Wiliam said the proposal had caused terrible worry for residents who have come to their ward representatives with deep concerns.

He said: “It has all the disadvantages and none of the advantages of the site used on the Island last summer. It is so close to people’s homes, that the loud noise would deafen and torture residents. It’s also so far away from traders that local businesses are unlikely to benefit.

“This gratuitous and redundant proposal is an attempt to paper over the failures of Labour’s poor economic record.

“Against our advice, an excellent events site on the Waterfront was scrapped by the council and designated for housing. Their procrastination last year also lost us a golden opportunity to regenerate the Island. This was compounded when their bid for funding was so poor it failed at the first hurdle to get the £15m regeneration money that should have been easily secured.

“This is a purely political proposal in order to justify the money wasted on building a temporary car park on top of what was already a car park.”

He added: “They should withdraw this application and concentrate on delivering quality events at the existing site. There is a way of enhancing the area and developing the economy sustainably, but it means the Labour cabinet must work with Plaid Cymru, local business and the community.”

A Vale Council spokeswoman said the authority had not yet examined the consultation responses.

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