An update from Tonia Antoniazzi - Craig Cefn Parc Primary school, The Greyhound Llanrhidian, M4, & Penllergaer Redwood
The problem with Brexit - apart from Theresa May’s calamitous handing of the situation, pulling the meaningful vote in Parliament and crossing her own red lines in negotiations with Europe - is that it dominates political discussion, squeezing out other important issues from the headlines. We should be talking about issues like state pension inequality or the roll out of universal credit. Hidden by the humiliating headlines of the last two weeks generated by recent parliamentary fiascoes there have been important developments on several issues in Gower.
On Friday 14th December I had a meeting in my constituency office with Cllr Rob Stewart, Leader of Swansea City Council. At the meeting Cllr Stewart confirmed that the Council intend to continue with the proposal to close Craig Cefn Parc Primary school following the consultation that closed in October. This is potentially disastrous news for the parents and residents who have been fighting to keep the school open but there is still a lot to fight for. I expressed my deep concern about the consequences of closing the Primary school will have on the community and I will be speaking again with parents and campaigners to the full Swansea Council meeting on Thursday. I firmly believe that closing the school is the wrong decision and risks tearing the heart out this unique Welsh village. I urge the council to think outside the box for potential future solutions.
I also expressed my disgust that a 200-year-old redwood in Penllergaer woods had been felled by developers clearing land for the housing development nearby. I have urged to Cllr Rob Stewart and the council to be robust in their investigation into this incident, and to use all tools available to punish those responsible if blame is proven.
Many residents in Llanrhidian and Oldwalls were devastated to hear of the decision to close the Greyhound Inn. This is an incredibly difficult time for pubs but there is never a good time to lose such a valuable community asset and such a famous Gower landmark. I recently met Stuart Morgan, a businessman from Loughor who wanted to form a working group with local publicans and the Campaign for Real Ale to see how we can protect Gower pubs. I will be announcing more about it in the new year but if you've got any suggestions that you'd like me to take forward to protect Gower pubs, please get in touch. I’ve had several residents contact me to raise their concerns regarding the closure of the pub and the future usage of the land. Please contact me via email with your comments about the plans and I will be happy to reflect those in my submission to the planning department.
I was dismayed to see another tweet from South Wales Police on Sunday saying that they were responding to yet another incident at Junction 47 on the M4. This area is clearly an accident black spot and something must be done to reduce the number of accidents on the stretch of road between Penllergaer and LLangyfelach. I will be writing to the new Deputy Minister for Economy & Transport at Welsh Government, Lee Waters AM to ask what can be done to investigate why there is a such high frequency of road traffic collisions in the area and what can be done to reduce them.
I will be holding my final surgery of the year this Thursday in my constituency office between 1pm and 2pm. I’m currently in the process of confirming venues for 2019 surgeries and details will be published on the website as soon as they are finalised. My office will be closed from the 24th December to the 2nd January but if you have any urgent queries please email or leave a voicemail which my staff and I will be checking daily.
Have a lovely Christmas and a happy New Year and hope to see many of you in 2019!