Row brewing over new gypsy and traveller site planned for Wrexham

Reporter:

Phil robinson

COMMUNITY leaders are preparing to fight plans for a new gipsy and traveller site in Wrexham.

The Local Development Plan (LDP), a blueprint for land use across the borough over the next decade, has just been unveiled to the public for the first time and one of its most controversial proposals is to allocate extra sites for gipsy and traveller accommodation.

A research group commissioned by the council said there is a need for a further 15 pitches by 2013 and a another 12 pitches by 2021.

Councillors will get the chance to discuss the LDP for the first time at the planning committee meeting on Monday.

A report by Wrexham Council chief planning officer Lawrence Isted says that following an assessment of 700 potential locations throughout the borough, the plan safeguards land for a new gipsy and traveller site in either Brymbo, Chirk or next to the existing site on Ruthin Road, Wrexham.

Brymbo councillor Paul Rogers said: “The site in mind here is in Coed-y-Felin next to St Mary’s Church. I believe it is completely unsuitable for any kind of residential development because it has severe highways problems and traffic entering and leaving the site would have problems as the road is quite dangerous.

“Schools in the area are also approaching capacity.”

Cllr Ian Roberts, who represents Chirk North, said the site suggested in his area is off the Halton roundabout of the A483, close to the McDonald’s restaurant.

“In my view this would be a totally unsuitable use for it,” he said.

“The value of this piece of land to the borough in economic terms seems to outweigh its use for any kind of residential use.

“It would be much more beneficial using it to create jobs. I think it is odd that a few years ago the Planning Inspectorate took this site out of the list for light industrial use and said it should be used for open space.”

Coedpoeth councillor Gareth Griffiths, whose ward includes the present Ruthin Road site, said: “While I acknowledge the council is under an obligation to provide another 15 spaces for gipsies and travellers, I would oppose extending the existing site as it is not practicable.

“The A525 is extremely busy and to double the size of the current site seems risky at best and could create a rat-run for motorists.

“Incidents of anti-social behaviour at the current site, which is well managed by Wrexham Council, have declined.

“I would not want to see a return to the situation of the illegal site at Croesnewydd when incidents of anti-social behaviour were numerous.

“I think the load should be spread across the county borough.”COMMUNITY leaders are preparing to fight plans for a new gipsy and traveller site in Wrexham.

The Local Development Plan (LDP), a blueprint for land use across the borough over the next decade, has just been unveiled to the public for the first time and one of its most controversial proposals is to allocate extra sites for gipsy and traveller accommodation.

A research group commissioned by the council said there is a need for a further 15 pitches by 2013 and a another 12 pitches by 2021.

Councillors will get the chance to discuss the LDP for the first time at the planning committee meeting on Monday.

A report by Wrexham Council chief planning officer Lawrence Isted says that following an assessment of 700 potential locations throughout the borough, the plan safeguards land for a new gipsy and traveller site in either Brymbo, Chirk or next to the existing site on Ruthin Road, Wrexham.

Brymbo councillor Paul Rogers said: “The site in mind here is in Coed-y-Felin next to St Mary’s Church. I believe it is completely unsuitable for any kind of residential development because it has severe highways problems and traffic entering and leaving the site would have problems as the road is quite dangerous.

“Schools in the area are also approaching capacity.”

Cllr Ian Roberts, who represents Chirk North, said the site suggested in his area is off the Halton roundabout of the A483, close to the McDonald’s restaurant.

“In my view this would be a totally unsuitable use for it,” he said.

“The value of this piece of land to the borough in economic terms seems to outweigh its use for any kind of residential use.

“It would be much more beneficial using it to create jobs. I think it is odd that a few years ago the Planning Inspectorate took this site out of the list for light industrial use and said it should be used for open space.”

Coedpoeth councillor Gareth Griffiths, whose ward includes the present Ruthin Road site, said: “While I acknowledge the council is under an obligation to provide another 15 spaces for gipsies and travellers, I would oppose extending the existing site as it is not practicable.

“The A525 is extremely busy and to double the size of the current site seems risky at best and could create a rat-run for motorists.

“Incidents of anti-social behaviour at the current site, which is well managed by Wrexham Council, have declined.

“I would not want to see a return to the situation of the illegal site at Croesnewydd when incidents of anti-social behaviour were numerous.

“I think the load should be spread across the county borough.”

See full story in the Leader

Leave your comment

Share your opinions on

Characters left: 1500

Most Read