TWO politicians have criticised Wrexham Council's decision to close a village school.

Members of the authority's executive board today backed proposals to shut Ysgol Pontfadog in the Ceiriog Valley from September 2019.

It will mean pupils at the English-medium school will be sent to the dual-stream Ysgol Cynddelw two miles down the road.

The unanimous decision has been described as 'apalling' by Clwyd South MP Susan Elan Jones, as well as being attacked by the constituency's AM Ken Skates.

Ms Jones said: "Today Wrexham Council’s executive board chose to ignore the views of pretty much everyone who lives in the Ceiriog Valley.

"A huge number of people took part in the council’s consultation process and local campaigners are right to be furious. Ysgol Pontfadog should not be closed.

"If local residents now feel that their interests would be best served outside Wrexham County Borough Council area by becoming part of another local authority area I will back them totally."

Meanwhile, Mr Skates has countered claims by the council's lead member for education Cllr Phil Wynn, who said at the meeting that he had not responded to the consultation into the plans.

He said: "The council asked for people’s opinions on their proposals and the people of the Ceiriog Valley responded in their numbers and have made their feelings quite clear.

"I have made repeated representations to Wrexham Council on behalf of my constituents and completely understand their frustration."

Cllr Wynn issued a statement after the meeting in which he said he 'took no pleasure' in making the decision and understood the feelings of the local community.

However, he added that he believed it would ensure that the sustainability of education in the Ceiriog Valley.

He said: "No-one goes in to local government with the aim of closing down schools, and I appreciate the strong feelings of those in the community who have opposed the closure throughout this process.

“However, as I noted at the meeting, my position means I have a duty of care to all 12,000 plus pupils across all of Wrexham’s primary schools and not just those at Ysgol Pontfadog, and I also have to take into consideration the continued viability of the delivery of all schooling and education services in Wrexham.

“That is why I had to recommend the decision I did at executive board today, and put forward the report I did.

“I am also confident, after a lengthy public engagement process, that all views were taken into account and my hope is all interested parties will now come together to work on delivering a positive educational outcome for all of the children living in the Ceriog Valley - and to hopefully find a new use for the Ysgol Pontfadog site, which will add to the vibrancy of the village thereby addressing the genuine concerns of many of the responders to the Statutory Notice.”