Officers opposed to shortlisted travellers' site
A DECISION by Swansea Council to shortlist a field in Llansamlet for a second travellers' site was opposed by some of its own officers, a report leaked to the Post has revealed.
The site in question is off junction 44 of the M4, on a field bordered by Peniel Green Road, Gwernllwynchwyth Road and the Swansea Vale "spine road".
In the council report from April this year, under a section headed Economic Development, officers said: "The site slopes steeply to the north, is highly visible to the main entrance to Swansea Vale, is dissected by high voltage cables and has no service connections.
"Its development for high quality permanent commercial land use is part of an ongoing strategy for the future regeneration of the Swansea Vale area. Its use for a permanent travellers site should be resisted."
It was one of five sites short-listed earlier this year by a council task and finish group, comprising officers and councillors. Various criteria were used in this process.
The other four sites were at the old greyhound stadium, Cockett; the rear of Parc Melyn Mynach and the proposed cemetery, both in Gorseinon; and Milford Way in Penderry.
The shortlist emerged from a list of 19 potential second travellers' sites in Swansea.
Nine of the 19 sites had objections under the Economic Development heading, including two of the five eventually shortlisted: the greyhound stadium and the aforementioned Llansamlet site. Llansamlet is meanwhile home to Swansea's authorised travellers' site at Pantyblwyd Road, which is full.
Councils must provide adequate accommodation for travellers and a report has said a second site is needed.
No final decisions have been made about where the second site is to be located, and the process by which the shortlist was arrived at is the subject of two independent reviews.
A council spokesman said the task and finish group had considered 1,006 sites "against set criteria".
He added: "Any sites taken forward for consideration need to meet these criteria. We will be launching a full public consultation which will give the public every opportunity to comment on the proposals."