Residents hit out at council over regeneration funding bid consultation

VIEWS: The Gibbonsdown Residents Board feels proper consulation has lacked  (5064257)

VIEWS: The Gibbonsdown Residents Board feels proper consulation has lacked (5064257)

First published in News

RESIDENTS on a Barry housing estate have slated the Vale Council – claiming it has not properly consulted over a regeneration funding bid.

The Gibbonsdown Residents Board, which has existed since 1985, said some council officers had not accepted some invitations to hear its views, and those passed onto them by fellow tenants, and were ignoring the community’s needs.

The Vale Council said it had consulted on its Gibbonsdown Environmental Improvement Strategy.

Board chairwoman Molly Conway said: “We are not trying to be controversial, but they booked a squash court at Holm View which three people turned up for him to explain it to.

“We did say you do need to convene a meeting. We are all elderly, but not stupid.”

The council document reported a summary of findings which included a “large amount of undefined open space” and talked about a “sense of place”.

Molly added: “We have given so much of our time. I don’t think it would be hard for someone to explain this jargon to us.”

She said solar panels, to help reduce family bills, appropriate road safety measures, and improved energy-efficient lighting would be more in keeping with need.

Babs Dyke, an estate resident of 46 years, said: “There hasn’t been any consultation. We are just being told what we need doing which we don’t agree with.”

A Vale Council spokesman said it had conducted a feasibility study for an environmental strategy focusing on the Gibbonsdown estate’s external environment rather than on wider regeneration issues and there had been extensive consultation with local residents.

He said: “An initial meeting with the local tenants’ group took place on January 16 and was followed by consultation sessions with residents on February, 5, 6 and 7.

“Meetings were held in the morning, afternoon and evening at accessible community venues in the east, west and centre of Gibbonsdown to ensure as many people as possible could attend. The meetings were publicised by a comprehensive leaflet drop.

“Over 50 suggestions were received, all of which will be considered.

“The findings of the consultation were presented to residents - only three residents attended the meeting - and senior managers of the housing section at a meeting on February 27.

“Residents were asked for their views on the work to date and a copy of the presentation was sent to the residents’ group.

“The council is committed to listening to the views of its residents and further consultation will be undertaken as the development of this scheme progresses.”

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