Campaigners set up petition to demand company restores Welsh name for holiday park
A petition has been set up demanding that the owners of a holiday park change it back to the original name after renaming it in English.
Glan y Môr a mile north of Aberystwyth is to be called Aber Bay. Owners Allens Caravans Estates who bought the site in 2017 said that the previous “tarnished” name was associated with previous ownership, and that they had decided to change it to start from a clean slate.
But a petition said that the name had been changed by the owners, who are registered in Solihull in England, to one “that doesn’t even make sense to the area” and called on the owners to change it back. Glan-y-Môr remains the historic name for the area, it said.
It comes after Welsh language campaign group Cymdeithas yr Iaith called on the Welsh government to intervene to stop Welsh place names from being arbitrarily renamed.
“The new names are frequently replacing old and historic names that are woven into the fabric of our communities,” Cymdeithas yr Iaith chairman Jeff Smith said.
“As we understand it, the holiday park has been known as Glan y Môr for over a century and this is a descriptive and well-known name.
“Cymdeithas yr Iaith want to see a sustainable tourism sector in Wales that works with and supports local communities, language and culture.
‘We therefore see the renaming as a step in the wrong direction and would urge the owners of the holiday park to abandon the renaming proposals.
“The very fact that the owners of the holiday park are allowed to anglicise the original name underlines the need for legislation to protect Welsh language place names.
“After years of delay, we need to see action from the Welsh Government on this.”
A spokesperson for Allens Caravans, which took over the site in 2017, said that they did not feel that the new name would “detract from Welsh connections. Quite the opposite.”
“Glan Y Môr did not in previous years have a good reputation and despite our best endeavors to market the park to new customers, we were met with complaints and issues prior to our ownership, something that tarnished the name and in turn was detrimental to moving forward with such a significant redevelopment,” they said.
The firm added that they were spending £5m to redevelop the site with a new clubhouse and facilities.
The name now appears on Google Maps as Aber Bay Holiday Park (aka Glan Y Môr).
In 2017 the Senedd rejected Plaid Cymru legislation that would protect the names of houses and farms, fields, natural features and landscapes.
All the opposition groups at the time – Plaid Cymru, UKIP and the Conservatives – supported the proposal, but Labour opposed and the vote was lost by 28 against to 25 for.
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