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Tiers Cross: Housing estate to be demolished and replaced

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A HOUSING development in Tiers Cross, which has reached the end of its usable life, is to be demolished and replaced with new housing to better meet local families’ needs.
That was the decision made by Cabinet Member for Housing Pat Davies at an Executive Board decision meeting last Thursday (Jun 13).

Tudor Place is a small estate of houses on the edge of Tiers Cross. It is unique in that it is the sole estate where all properties are still in Council stock and none have been sold under the Right to Buy.

The houses are of a prefabricated design pioneered in the years following the end of the Second World War. 26,000 of them were built across the UK to meet the need for rural housing stock during the 40s and early 50s.

Part of the Emergency Factory Made housing programme, the homes’ frame is made from concrete columns reinforced with tubing recycled from the canvas tilt frames of military trucks. A series of shiplap style concrete panels, tied back to the columns, form the external envelope.

At the time they were built, the houses were intended to last for around 30 years. They are now long past their end-dates.

The astronomical costs of their upkeep were noted as long ago as 1983 when the price of Airey Houses’ maintenance was the subject of a parliamentary debate.

In order to upgrade the properties to meet the Halifax certificate standard extensive work to each of the properties would be required with estimated totals for each property of £99,000.

Refurbishing and upgrading similar properties in England has proven similarly expensive. Pricy cosmetic changes made at high cost in the mid-1980s in order to lengthen the properties’ lives have run into the same problem as that confronting PCC at Tudor Place; namely that the steel tubing used in the properties’ support has corroded.

Representatives from Housing and Building Maintenance met with the residents from the estate to explore the option of redeveloping the site.

Residents raised concerns and requested a follow-up meeting to explore options for the site’s development.

While architectural drawings were being arranged, inspectors from the Building Maintenance department inspected the structure of the properties namely the steel pillars and found that there was significant rusting at the base of the pillars.

Matters will now move forward through the normal planning process.

While the estate is being redeveloped, residents will move to other County Council properties and, in the case of three households, to ateb homes nearby.

Had the Council been able to refit the properties, it would have incurred the costs of storage of residents’ furniture and other property; arrangements have been made to meet those costs.

By law, where the Council requires its tenants to give up their properties in similar circumstances, it must pay compensation. The Council will pay £5,900 at the time the development is finalised and residents return to their home

Taking into account the length of time required for the planning process, requisite surveys, design, and building of the new house, the schedule is for completion of the rebuild in under two years.

The Council will also meet the school transport costs of the families affected.

One resident told The Herald that while they would miss their old house, they were happy with the proposed location of their temporary accommodation and their family was looking forward to returning to a new home in the village.

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Residents invited to a Pembroke Tunnel drop-in event

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NETWORK RAIL is inviting residents to a drop-in event to find out more about essential maintenance work at Pembroke Tunnel, west Wales, which will improve the resilience and reliability of the railway for passengers.
The work includes essential vegetation management and rock netting in the area with work taking place for a week in December before the main work takes place in January and February.
Ahead of the work residents are invited to a drop-in event on Monday 18 November from 3pm to 6.30pm at the Dutton Suite, Pembroke Leisure Centre, Bush, Pembroke, SA71 4RJ.
No appointments are necessary and members of the project team will be on hand to answer any questions.
Then between Saturday 14 and Friday 20 December Network Rail will carry out drilling work overnight to install rock anchors at the top of the railway cutting as Network Rail prepare for the main phase of the works.
That will then take place between Sunday 19 January 2020 and Saturday 8 February 2020 where engineers will work day and night to install rock anchors and bolts before installing the rock netting across the railway cutting using road rail vehicles and specialist machinery.
Michael Pinkerton, scheme project manager for Wales and Borders, said:
“We would like to thank residents in advance for their patience and understanding as we carry out this work at Pembroke Tunnel.
“All this planned essential work forms part of our commitment to maintain a safe and reliable railway that is fit for use now and in the future. We are working closely with our partners to keep disruption to the local community to a minimum and encourage anyone wishing to find out more about this work to come along to our drop-in event later.”

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“We have a duty to win” says Crabb at campaign launch

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STEPHEN CRABB has launched his 2019 General Election campaign, highlighting the ‘duty and responsibility’ the Party has to win.
The Welsh Conservative candidate is hoping to be re-elected on December 12, having served as MP for the last 14 years.
At the launch at Martha’s Vineyard on Milford Marina, Stephen addressed a crowd of supporters with a promise to continue being a strong voice for Preseli Pembrokeshire in Westminster.
Stephen Crabb has consistently been one of the hardest working Welsh MPs with a strong track record of standing up for the local community.
Speaking at the campaign launch, Stephen said: “This General Election will be the most important for many years.
“We face a choice between the Conservatives who have a clear plan to unblock Brexit and improve Britain – or a coalition of opposition parties under Jeremy Corbyn, who want more years of delay and division.
“That is not in our national interest nor is it in the best interests of Pembrokeshire. The Conservative Party has a serious duty and responsibility to go out and win this election.
“Over the last 14 years I have fought tirelessly for local people and local businesses and if re-elected, I will continue to work hard to give Pembrokeshire a strong voice in Parliament.”
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Christmas shopping misery for west Wales rail users

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RAIL USERS in west Wales face festive misery due to engineering works which will close the Carmarthen to Milford Haven link for almost a month.

The line will be closed from this Sunday, until the Sunday before Christmas, at a time when many take the train to Swansea and Cardiff shopping for gifts for friends and family.

Signs have already been posted at railway stations confirming the delays.

Trains will be replaced by buses; rail officials have said.

A spokesman from Network Rail said: “Due to essential maintenance work, rail replacement bus services will run between Carmarthen and Milford Haven from Monday, November 18 until Sunday, December 22.

“Pembroke dock and Fishguard services are also affected on Sunday November 24.

“On all other days of operation, the train services will continue to stop at Whitland, Clynderwen and Clarbeston Road, Fishguard and Goodwick, Fishguard Harbour and stations to Pembroke Dock.

“We apologise for any inconvenience.”

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