Anger over play­ground re­moval

Llanelli Star - - Letters - Oliver Rod­er­ick @Ol­Rodle­gacy oliver.rod­er­[email protected]­di­awales.co.uk 01792 545522

PEO­PLE in Kidwelly are fu­ri­ous af­ter the county coun­cil dis­man­tled a chil­dren’s play park amid claims no-one wanted to look af­ter it.

Kidwelly Town Coun­cil­lor An­drew Jenk­ins wrote on Face­book that he and fel­low coun­cil­lors were told the play equip­ment at Parc Pen­dre was to be re­placed as part of a new park in a new hous­ing es­tate in the area. But, on Twit­ter, the county coun­cil con­firmed there were no plans to re­place the equip­ment once re­moved.

Res­i­dent Karen Evans said: “It’s not only Parc Pen­dre kids that use it – half of Kidwelly uses it. Peo­ple who shop in the Co-op take the chil­dren there, and school chil­dren, [and even] hol­i­day­mak­ers also use it. I can’t un­der­stand why it is be­ing taken away when so many peo­ple use it.”

Fel­low town coun­cil­lor Chris Pe­ters-Bond said: “It is bit­terly dis­ap­point­ing to see that Car­marthen­shire Coun­cil has taken the de­ci­sion to re­move the park equip­ment from the play­ground, and to do this with­out in­form­ing the lo­cal com­mu­nity. The first res­i­dents knew of the re­moval was when work­men were seen cut­ting up play equip­ment.

“With more than 100 homes in the vicin­ity of the park, and the county coun­cil propos­ing to de­velop fur­ther coun­cil hous­ing nearby, it is also dis­ap­point­ing that they seem to have changed their minds on pro­vid­ing a new play­ground to re­place the much-loved but neglected equip­ment in the park as part of their de­vel­op­ment plans.”

Car­marthen­shire Coun­cil has said the play­ground was to be decommissi­oned as there was “no in­ter­est” shown in tak­ing over its man­age­ment.

Coun­cil­lor David Jenk­ins, ex­ec­u­tive board mem­ber for re­sources, said: “The play­ground at Parc Pen­dre had been of­fered to Kidwelly Town Coun­cil as part of our Com­mu­nity As­set Trans­fer Pro­gramme how­ever no in­ter­est was shown.

“Sub­se­quently we are fol­low­ing the pro­to­col as laid out in the pro­gramme, and in ac­cor­dance with an ex­ec­u­tive board de­ci­sion on Fe­bru­ary 26, 2018, to de­com­mis­sion the fa­cil­ity.

“The Com­mu­nity As­set Trans­fer Pro­gramme in­volved dis­cus­sions and meet­ings with com­mu­nity and town coun­cils, sport­ing and com­mu­nity groups to en­cour­age lo­cal man­age­ment of fa­cil­i­ties. No­tices were placed at the Parc Pen­dre play­ground in April ad­vis­ing of the re­moval of equip­ment.”

Kidwelly Town Coun­cil has re­futed the county coun­cil’s claims that “no in­ter­est was shown”.

Clerk Vir­ginia O’Reilly said: “Un­der the Com­mu­nity As­set Trans­fer Pro­gramme Kidwelly Town Coun­cil has al­ready taken over the run­ning and main­te­nance of four play ar­eas to pre­vent their clo­sure.

“How­ever, Parc Pen­dre play area lies at the en­trance to a pro­posed hous­ing de­vel­op­ment which has out­line plan­ning per­mis­sion. The park would be de­mol­ished if the de­vel­op­ment were to go ahead.

“The coun­cil care­fully con­sid­ered whether it were vi­able to take over a park which had a lim­ited fu­ture. To say that Kidwelly Town Coun­cil had shown no in­ter­est was not at all ac­cu­rate and does not re­flect the com­mit­ment the coun­cil has to pro­vid­ing fa­cil­i­ties for the com­mu­nity.”

Parc Pen­dre in Kidwelly af­ter coun­cil work­ers be­gan dis­man­tling equip­ment.

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