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Controversial coastal path housing scheme gets passed

22 Mar 2024 3 minute read
The Upper Cosmeston Farm site

Martin Shipton

Residents and environmentalists failed in their bid to stop more than 500 homes being built on the Wales Heritage Coast path in the Vale of Glamorgan.

Members of the council’s planning committee decided to grant planning permission for the development of 576 homes between Penarth and Sully.

A petition with more than 5,000 signatures objecting to the development was submitted to the Welsh Government, but it was disregarded on the basis that it was a local planning issue. The land to be built on is, in any case, owned by the government.


Objectors say the project is in contravention of the Welsh Government’s own environmental laws and in contradiction to the Wellbeing of Future Generations Act. They also point out that the project would go ahead on land allocated to the South Wales Metro.

In addition they say that the issue of land contamination has not been addressed in the planning application.

At the planning committee meeting, Independent councillor Kevin Mahoney noted the lack of “social infrastructure” on the site: He said: “Doctors, dentists, secondary school places – there are none . Every single facility is overflowing. There are no extra doctors, no extra dentists. We then go on to transport and the road infrastructure. But what infrastructure? There is one road – Lavernock Road, falling to pieces as are all the others in the county. We know full well that they just can’t take any more traffic “


Tory Cllr Anthony Ernest said the site had been free for people to roam on, but that amenity would be lost once the land was built on. He said: ”I think this is a massive overdevelopment by what I call the greedy Welsh Government who are short of money to spend on unsuitable projects elsewhere in Wales.

They’re trying to get 50% affordable housing, then put the site on the market already with agents to see where they can get enough money coming in to meet that budget. I don’t think they will. I have to say that I’m totally opposed to this scheme, as a matter of principle, despite the apparent benefits that it would be supposed to bring.”

But Labour councillor Mark Wilson supported the scheme, saying there was a great need for housing in the area, with a huge demand for low cost and social housing. He said that according to the council’s analysis, there was a need for 801 social-rented homes, and 231 low cost ownership homes in Penarth.

Members of the committee voted by 10-2 in favour of granting permission to the scheme.

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3 months ago

Sounds and feels so wrong to build on this Greenfield site.

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