Welcome to the November edition of our on line newsletter.
There is news of an initiative by the National Assembly to designate Colwyn Bay as a strategic Regeneration Area. Under this proposal we are promised a new coordinated approach with targeted regeneration funds to address deprivation, economic opportunity, affordable housing, transport links, and local skills supply. If this sounds familiar it is because we heard it in relation to the first regeneration program first floated 4 years ago. In fact the same objectives are incorporated into the Bay Life initiative. Perhaps we should reserve judgement yet again! and hope that we will see real action to address the urgent and growing regeneration needs of Colwyn Bay.
REGENERATION AND COLWYN BAY PIER
Colwyn Bay pier is now closed and in receivership which is sad after the efforts of the previous owner at regeneration. The structure is dilapidated and an eyesore to the extent that this Society believes immediate action is needed to address the situation. Many local people hold the pier in affection and would like to see it restored to it’s former glory or redeveloped in a way complimentary to the proposed seafront regeneration. The pier is an integral feature of the promenade and we believe it could and should be incorporated into the regeneration program. If no way can be found to fully or partially restore the pier then it should be demolished. This would be an action of last resort but we believe all other options should be explored. This might include the possibility of setting up of a trust to take ownership of the pier. To this end perhaps a public meeting could be convened to gauge public opinion. Possibly the Town Council could take the lead role in convening a meeting.
In the August 2008 newsletter we voiced opposition to the demolition of Victorian houses in the conservation area of Merton Place. We now understand demolition will be delayed because of the economic down turn. The Council have stipulated that the building phase should immediately follow demolition. This means demolition and then leaving the site until the property market improves should not happen. Of course this is only a temporary reprieve but it’s an ill wind as they say.
A telephone company is seeking planning permission to erect phone masts in Rhos on Sea and Old Colwyn. There is opposition by residents whose homes are adversely affected and have formed an action group to better express their opposition. We support the objections on the grounds that they are too close to homes detracting from local visual amenity and blighting houses.
Telephone masts are said to have adverse health effects on children and one mast location is next to a school. These contentions though unproven remain in the public perception and in consequence add to the of blight of properties.
It seems as though the planning process is exploited by the telephone companies to get the necessary planning permission in the shortest time possible thus restricting the ability of the community to raise objections. It appears that as few people as possible are notified of the proposals prior to planning consideration. We believe the planning process should give more time for reaction.
TRAFFIC CONGESTION, PRINCESS DRIVE
In the August 2008 newsletter we reported on a satisfactory outcome to our representations to deal with traffic congestion on Princess Drive. We now have details of the council’s arrangements to alleviate this by restricting parking. There is to be no parking at any time on the railway side of the Drive and restricted to two hours only on the opposite side.
PARKING ON STATION ROAD
It is pleasing to report that following our campaign to ease parking restrictions the less onerous parking times are now in operation. (August 2008 newsletter refers)
In our August 2008 newsletter we referred to our concerns about the location of Colwyn Bay Post Office. This is still an ongoing issue. We also reported that planning permission had been granted to expand the Rhos on Sea golf club house. We understand the two year development plan will include a full size swimming pool open to the public, conference facilities, and additional residential accommodation. These will be very welcome additions to local amenities.
Work on the offshore wind farm continues and it is now possible to see the extent of the development. In this connection we believe the Conwy Council have rejected the first planning application by Npower to build a transformer station where the wind farm power lines come ashore.
The nominations for the scheme have now closed and short list of 9 nominations has been selected. In due course all members will be sent the list and reasons for each nomination. You will then be invited to vote. The short list is
Wynne Gardens, Old Colwyn,
Fairy Glen, Old Colwyn,
Queens Gardens, Conwy Road,
Capel Court, Rhos on Sea,
Penrhos School Site,
Welsh Mountain Zoo,
Stafford House, Penrhos Rd,
Beach Road Gardens, Old Colwyn,
Hawden Road, Property Renovation
Gordon Palliser administers the award scheme and voting forms can be obtained from him, telephone 01492 549405.
It is with sadness that we mark the passing last summer of Audrey Lee a founding member of the Civic Society. Audrey with her husband John gave long and unstinting service to this Society. She will be greatly missed by her many friends in the society.
We extend our sympathy to John and his family.