Campaigners call for help to fight developer's plans

First published in News by

CAMPAIGNERS who successfully fought a proposal to develop land in Barry have appealed for others to front the fight after the developer resubmitted its application.

Friends of Weycock Cross campaign leaders Frank and Debra Cleland, of Nant Talwg Way, Barry, spearheaded the drive to stop Taylor Wimpey’s proposal, in May 2013, to build 200 dwellings at Weycock Cross.

The group was set up by residents worried of the impact on the town, affecting traffic congestion, putting schools under pressure and the overall environmental impact.

The proposals involve building on Green Farm, the area of land between Pontypridd Road and the Cwm Ciddy public house.

The company has now re-submitted its application to build homes and associated works on land south of Weycock Cross.

But the Vale Council planners turned down the original scheme, following officer recommendations in January this year only for the developer to appeal and then withdraw its appeal in April this year – saying it still had its sights set on Barry.

Vale MP Alun Cairns, who also got involved in the original campaign, welcomed the original appeal withdrawal, but in April this year urged people not to be complacent and said: “We need to guard ourselves against the possibility of a further planning application being submitted.”

Following the new application, Debra said: “We’ve taken the decision that we want somebody to take on the fight and we will be willing to assist them.

“We had a feeling they would re-submit their plans – they are slightly revised.”

Vale councillor, Ian Johnson, said it was important the right type of houses are built in the right place.

He said: “In Barry, for example, there is a need for smaller houses to help people downsize and avoid the bedroom tax, and adapted housing for older people.

“Labour’s Local Development Plan wants us to build almost 10,000 houses across the county between now and 2026, despite Welsh Government housing projections being for barely half that.

“Even with that amount of over-development, this site at Green Farm is not included in the draft LDP.

“Our greenfield sites are very precious and we all know the traffic problems that already exist in Barry.”

He added that the Vale Council should make it clear that they intend to reduce the number of houses in the LDP so that the amount built more closely reflects local need.

A Taylor Wimpey spokesman said: “We can confirm we have resubmitted our application for residential development on land at Weycock Cross, Barry.

“There remains a significant need for additional high-quality new homes – both affordable and private – in the local area and we believe that our application for development at Weycock Cross can assist in meeting this demand in the future.”

Friends of Weycock Cross can be found on Facebook.

Help and new members are welcome.

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