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New plans submitted for flats at historic Cardiff pub

21 Jun 2023 4 minute read
The Roath Park Pub. Photo via Google

Ted Peskett, local democracy reporter

New plans for flats at a former Cardiff pub which propose to keep its façade have been described as  “massively preferable” to the original proposal for the historic building by a local councillor.

The Roath Park pub, dating back to 1886, on the corner of City Road and Kincraig Street, has been the subject of multiple plans for demolition over the past few years.

Campaigners opposed to the most recent plans for the building’s demolition were given a glimmer of hope after local councillors said they’d had positive conversations with its owner.

The latest plan submitted to Cardiff Council proposes to keep part of the outward appearance of the building and demolish another part of it which would be replaced with a three-storey structure.

Cardiff Council ward member for Plasnewydd, Cllr Dan De’Ath said: “We’re really pleased that a substantial part of the Victorian building will be retained as part of the proposed new development.

“Our campaign as local councillors alongside Cardiff Central MP, Jo Stevens, to save the building attracted a huge amount of support and hundreds and hundreds of signatures on our various petitions and we’d like to thank everyone for these support.

“Whilst the historic building will look a bit different to the way it does now, if these plans are approved, I think this is massively preferable to having the historic building knocked down and a large block of unattractive modern apartments built in its place.”

20 flats

The current plan, which was validated by Cardiff Council on June 12, is for the majority of the building to be used as 20 flats with commercial uses on part of the ground floor and basement.

Cardiff Civic Society was more sceptical about the updated plans, with its chair, Nerys Lloyd-Pierce, saying: “Facadism, or the practice of leaving the historical front of the building, and putting a modern complex behind it, has a pretty poor reputation.

“The heart and soul of the original building is lost as a consequence.

“You only need look at Guildford Crescent to see how a row of attractive, interesting buildings, housing lively and vibrant businesses, has now been reduced to a meaningless shell.

“Context is everything, and facadism destroys that.”

Plans submitted by the owner of The Roath Park building in 2020 proposed its demolition so that a seven-storey block of flats could be put there instead.

These were withdrawn and a new application was later put in solely for the demolition of the old pub.

The council gave prior approval for the demolition of the building in October 2021.

Since this decision, local councillors have explored alternative uses for the building and encouraged members of the public to come forward with proposals ad ideas.

They also held conversations with the building’s owner to encourage alternatives to demolition.

Angles

Another council ward member for Plasnewydd, Cllr Peter Wong, said he and his colleagues searched “far and wide for people who could advise and who would have an interest” in the building.

He added: “We have looked at so many angles… to see whether it could be viable as a community space.

“Unfortunately, no one came forward with a viable proposal.”

Some of the ideas for the build which were looked at included a creative arts centre and a community share.

Cllr Wong, who said he used to go to The Roath Park when it was still open as a pub, said: “The biggest lesson to be learnt is if you want local pubs and if you want local facilities, use them or you will lose them.”


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Stephen George
Stephen George
11 months ago

‘Use them or lose them’! So it’s *our* fault that the price of beer has skyrocketed and that developers want to turn a quick buck rather than respect local history and communities. Thank god he’s a socialist Labour Councillor or I might just think he’s a Thatcherite!

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