Celebrities back campaign to save nature reserve from being developed into a holiday village
Singer Dafydd Iwan is amongst the celebrities who have signed a letter calling for the First Minister to intervene to save a nature reserve from being developed into a holiday village.
A number of television presenters, including Iolo Williams, Carol Vordeman and Joanna Lumley are also backing the campaign to save Penrhos Coastal Park in Holyhead.
Land and Lakes, a company based in Cumbria, secured planning permission from Anglesey County Council in November 2013 to build up to 500 holiday chalets in Penrhos. The nature reserve was listed an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) back in 1967. It’s also a conservation area and parts of it are a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).
Parts of the ancient woodland date back to the 1700s and is full of a variety of flora, fauna and wildlife. Red squirrels, bats, badgers, foxes and insects are amongst the many native species who live there.
The development threatens 27 acres of native woodland.
Local woman Hilary Paterson-Jones leads the campaign to Save Penrhos Coastal Park. She has always maintained that she will tie herself to a tree when the bulldozers come in.
Speaking with Nation.Cymru this morning Hilary said: “I think it’s a dreadful thing that the people of Holyhead have to resort to this. It’s beyond belief – one side of Holy Island has been concreted over by Stena, and now we’re under threat from Penrhos being concreted over.”
In late August of this year, Penrhos Coastal Park was voted UK’s favourite park in the annual public vote by independent charity Fields in Trust. This was the first time ever for a Welsh park to claim the top spot.
Hilary Paterson-Jones says the park is popular with locals and tourists alike: “I took the dogs for a walk this morning at 7am and there was already about 20 cars there.
“There were people walking and all you could hear were the birds singing – it was beautiful and heavenly. Everyone has their worries at the moment, with the cost of living and everything. But when you go there for a walk they just melt away.”
Campaigners are also delighted to have the backing of Carolyn Thomas MS for North Wales.
The Welsh Labour politician is arranging for the letter to be presented to the First Minister in person, hopefully before Christmas.
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