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Bid to make temporary traveller camp in Holywell permanent

Published date: 17 February 2017 |
Published by: Amy Sargeson 
Read more articles by Amy Sargeson  Email reporter


A plan has been submitted to keep a travellers site permanently.

Leonard Hamilton, who lives on Dollar Park on Bagillt Road, Holywell, has put forward an application to remove conditions of planning consent granted last year.

In January 2016 the Leader reported that Flinshire Council’s planning officers had given temporary permission for the gipsy camp and approval was made for the site to stay for another five years.

It has been located at the Bagillt Road site on the south side of the A5026 since 2011 and contains seven gipsy pitches.

In a meeting held last year, Holywell councillor Gareth Roberts said: “I’m certainly not happy to recommend approval and there was a time when I felt an alternative was suitable – but we have to have regard to planning policy.

“This five years would allow us to get the local development policy progressed where hopefully it will be adopted and there is every hope that we would have a number of pitches available by that time. In the circumstances, we have to say, this is the realistic option.”

Mr Hamilton has now submitted an application to remove condition one of the planning permission which was approved April 8, 2016.

This condition refers to the site having permission to be used as a gipsy camp for a limited period of five years. If the council confirms there is a suitable alternative site for Dollar Park, planning permission will cease within six months of the date of that written notice.

It also states at the end of the five year period, the site “shall cease and all caravans, structures, materials and equipment” should be removed within 28 days of the date.

The Dollar Park resident, who lives on the camp with his wife Kathleen, has also requested to scrap condition two which states that the seven pitches on the site should only be occupied by seven families who lived there at the time the application was approved.

Mr Hamilton has requested the second condition should actually read as the following: “the site shall not be occupied by any persons other than gipsies and travellers as defined in Welsh Government Circular 30/2007 ‘Planning for Gipsy and Traveller Caravan Sites’.”

This is so a different family who are travellers can move onto the site.

Allan Thomas, who lives on Bagillt Road, has written to Holywell Town Council about Mr Hamilton’s application. He said: “I object to the planning application and request that all local councillors call the application in.

“For condition two, Flintshire Council’s reason was that the site is in the open countryside and the need for gipsy traveller sites outweighs other planning conditions.

“Fundamental and significant changes are being proposed which will have far-reaching consequences for the adjacent residents and permanent long term implications for the town of Holywell.”

Mr Hamilton has questioned whether condition one of the consent was necessary as he believes the council have provided “insufficient pitches in the first temporary period of the planning permissions”.

He said: “It is clear from the council’s report and the previous appeal decision that the council continues to have an unmet need for pitches.

“The families who occupy the site do not have any prospects for alternative accommodation, as most of them have been living on the site for 16 years and will be then be forced to assume a transient roadside or similar existence with dislocation to their family, health-care and education arrangements.”

Holywell town councillors will be discussing Mr Hamilton’s appeal on Tuesday at their monthly meeting in the Holywell Council chamber.

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