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Tenby: Five Arches car park set to become permanent

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THE FIVE ARCHES car park in Tenby is set to become permanent after members of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park were minded to approve an application.

The Park’s Development Management Committee met today (Mar 14) to discuss the car park becoming permanent but were faced with a recommendation of refusal from officers.

Officers were of the opinion that the town already has sufficient car parking spaces and a park and ride service.

However, members of the committee felt that the car park could only be of ‘benefit’ to the town describing the ‘huge amount of support’ for it from the public.

The application, submitted by Five Arches Car Park Ltd, will now be subject to a cooling off period and will come back to the next meeting of the Committee for final determination.

Since the garage on the site closed down, temporary car parking orders have been in place from 2011, and the application would also bring an uplift to the state of the car park and new pay machines.

Speaking in support of the application, Tenby Town Council Clerk Andrew Davies told the committee: “This car park is a valuable asset to the town and has had no adverse impact. We agree with reducing the traffic in the centre of Tenby and this car park is an asset towards achieving that goal as it is within easy walking distance of the Town centre.

“Since initial temporary consent was given for the car park, residents parking permits have increased. This car park is located close to the centre and a number of hotels and they welcome its availability.

“The additional car park has eased congestion and the Town Council believes it would be better to utilise and upgrade this rather than allow it to be left vacant.”

The agent for the application, Mr Giles Birt added: “I am very familiar with the parking issues and this is why we want to invest in this site and it would benefit from resurfacing. There have been no instances of the car park causing congestion and revenue has increased year on year.

“Tenby is one of the most visited towns and the use of this car park has proved its need. The site has significantly improved traffic management and it supports all employment sites in the town. It has also been used for the Ironman event and mobile banks.”

Cllr Phil Baker said: “There is a great amount of on-street parking and this car park is used extremely well. I would hate to see the site surrounded by boarding whilst we wait for a client for the site to be found and many people still use their cars to get in to the town.”

Tenby Cllr Mike Williams added that the car park had been an ‘outstanding success’ over the last six years saying: “There is a huge amount of support for this, people park in the car park with easy access to the town and this can only be for the benefit of Tenby.”

Mr Ted Sangster called for a bit of common sense, stating that if it was refused the site would be empty for a certain amount of time until a buyer was found for it.

Mrs Julie James considered whether or not another temporary parking arrangement could be made to allow for the site to be included in the new Local Development Plan is brought out but members were told that would not be ready until late 2019.

Cllr Mike Evans added: “This area has been a game changer for hard working people, this car park has transformed businesses with parking on the doorstep. There has been an uplift in Tenby and its people.

“This site also protects employment and it has been used for car parking for many more years. The Park and ride is being undermined; that runs for seven hours a day from 11am to 6pm, Tenby is open for more than seven hours a day. Traffic congestion has been improved in the area and it is also vital to events.

“The need has been demonstrated, Tenby needs visitors and this is aiding this. I propose that we pass this and allow the owners of the site to invest in it.”

When it was put to the vote, thirteen voted in favour of approval, with two voting against and one abstention.

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Pembrokeshire County Council Cabinet endorses STEP Fusion application

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PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL’S Cabinet have today endorsed proposals from Cllr Paul Miller (Cabinet Member for Economic Development) to further progress the nomination of a Pembrokeshire site to host a Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP) fusion power station in the county.

Working with the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), the proposed site is adjacent to the existing energy facilities on the South Shore of the Haven waterway.

If approved, the facility will initially host research with the ultimate aim of developing this technology which could offer a virtually limitless source of clean electricity by copying the processes that power the sun.

Cllr Paul Miller, Cabinet Member for Economic Development said: “I am pleased my Cabinet colleagues endorsed this important programme of work. The Haven Waterway has provided livelihoods, underpinned by fossil fuels, for thousands of Pembrokeshire families, mine included, for more than 50 years. It’s my job to help ensure the waterway continues to provide high skilled, engineering, science and technology jobs for the next generation of this county – and so linked to our focus on climate change (and in addition to our existing multi-million pound commitments to supporting wind, wave and tidal clean power generation) my team have been exploring whether we can also support the development of clean, green fusion technology.

“It’s very early days in the UK Atomic Energy Authority’s site selection process but we’ll provide regular updates as things progress.”

•       STEP is an ambitious programme to design and build a prototype fusion power plant;
•       It is a UKAEA programme, currently with £222m funding from the UK Government to produce a concept design by 2024: https://step.ukaea.uk/

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Re-opening of indoor hospitality and attractions at Milford Waterfront

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RESTAURANTS and indoor visitor attractions in Milford Waterfront are welcoming the return of indoor services from today.

The re-opening of indoor dining allows all restaurants at Milford Waterfront to seat customers indoors. As well as all restaurants on the Waterfront now being able to offer this service, the brand-new Foam Domes overlooking the Milford Haven Waterway are able to open, with bookings being taken from the 19th May.

Indoor visitor attractions are also allowed to re-open. This includes the Waterfront Gallery, which is open today and Phoenix Bowl & Pirate Pete’s Adventure Play which is making preparations to open from Wednesday 19th May. Also, Milford Museum, which has had a new rendered exterior finish, is preparing to open for the end of May.

Lucy Wonnacott, Marketing Manager for Milford Waterfront commented: “We are delighted to see the re-opening of indoor hospitality and visitor attractions here at Milford Waterfront. Each business has their own safety and social distancing measures in place and we kindly ask that you respect and adhere to these for your own safety, and that of others. We hope you enjoy your visit to Milford Waterfront and stay safe!”

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Newly elected Member of the Senedd completes first week in the role

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FOLLOWING on from the Welsh Parliamentary elections, the newly elected member for Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, Samuel Kurtz MS, has reflected on his first week in his new role.

The election saw Samuel receive 11,240 votes from across the constituency, the largest number of votes for any Welsh Conservative candidate in the constituency for a Senedd election. It was a closely fought campaign which was conducted respecting Covid-19 restrictions.

Commenting after a busy first week, Sam said:

“It has certainly been a whirlwind. From the moment that the results were announced last Friday my feet haven’t touched the ground.

“After speaking with a number of local and national media outlets, I managed to spend some time with loved ones before heading up to the Senedd early on Monday morning to be sworn in.

“As a Welsh speaker, I was delighted to swear my oath bilingually and will ensure that I continue to do so when speaking in the chamber.

“I’m in the process of recruiting my staff and getting both my Senedd and Constituency office set up to ensure that I can continue the good work of my predecessor, Angela Burns, in standing up for the interest of all my constituents whether they voted for me or not.

“On Wednesday, we elected the Llywydd and Deputy Llywydd as well as confirming Mark Drakeford as the First Minister. As one of 19 new members across the chamber and nine Welsh Conservatives, the coming weeks will be spent learning the ropes and procedures in Cardiff Bay. Over the course of the campaign, I have picked up a several issues and pieces of  casework from across the constituency and will be ensuring that the constituency work is always my priority.

“As we emerge from the Covid restrictions and society begins to open back up I am looking forward to getting to every corner of the constituency, meeting more businesses and individuals.

“I am planning in making use of both modern and traditional methods of connecting with constituents, from email newsletters, social media platforms and virtual surgeries to doorstep surgeries and face to face meetings, to ensure I provide a strong voice in Cardiff Bay for this beautiful part of the country.”

Samuel is contactable via email on Samuel.kurtz@senedd.wales

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