Ebbw Vale racetrack, the £280 million Circuit of Wales, will face a four-day planning probe

South Wales Argus: Ebbw Vale racetrack, the £280 million Circuit of Wales, will face a four-day planning probe Ebbw Vale racetrack, the £280 million Circuit of Wales, will face a four-day planning probe

THE controversial £280 million Circuit of Wales project at Ebbw Vale will be the subject of a four-day planning inquiry in June.

Outline planning permission for the project, which could create several thousands of jobs, was awarded last summer and the Welsh Government has decided not to call in the application.

But it has announced that an inquiry will begin on June 24 though details, including where it will be held, have yet to be formally revealed.

The inquiry will focus on the Heads of the Valley Development Company Limited's wish to have access to hundreds of acres of the common land earmarked for the project, so it can begin enabling works such as putting in access roads, fences and other infrastructure.

The proposed use of common land north of Rassau, Ebbw Vale, to house the circuit has provoked the anger of environmental groups, with Gwent Wildlife Trust and the Open Spaces Society among the opponents of the project.

The latter's general secretary Kate Ashbrook said she is delighted at the prospect of an inquiry. The issue of the use and replacement of the common land has yet to be concluded, and she said: "We consider it is premature to start digging up the common until Welsh ministers have decided whether the scheme can go ahead. We are encouraged that the current works will be subject to independent scrutiny.

"We objected most strongly to this ugly and intrusive development on a substantial area of common land. We are pleased that, in the light of the objections, the planning inspectorate has resolved that there should be a public inquiry."

A Welsh Government spokesman said: "Official confirmation of the inquiry arrangements will be published in due course. The regulations state that a minimum of six weeks' notice must be given, so by May 13, a notice will appear in the press, on the (Welsh Government's) planning portal and on site, which will inform parties of all of the relevant information."

Comments (9)

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1:23pm Fri 11 Apr 14

-trigg- says...

I'm not against the proposed race track on any spurious environmental grounds but I can't help wondering if the money couldn't be better invested in other projects.
I'm not against the proposed race track on any spurious environmental grounds but I can't help wondering if the money couldn't be better invested in other projects. -trigg-
  • Score: 4

1:29pm Fri 11 Apr 14

OldSlugs says...

Thats killed this off. Where did this suddenly spring from? Last we heard on the planning process was that WAG were not interested in calling the planning in & left it to BGCBC. Now all of sudden they re interested in the planning again. The WAG are just trying to kill off the investment & then say 'not our fault'when there are no jobs created.
Thanks HOVDC nice try to bring a bit of hope & perhaps prosperity to one of the poorer parts of the country, but I think you've been shafted!
Thats killed this off. Where did this suddenly spring from? Last we heard on the planning process was that WAG were not interested in calling the planning in & left it to BGCBC. Now all of sudden they re interested in the planning again. The WAG are just trying to kill off the investment & then say 'not our fault'when there are no jobs created. Thanks HOVDC nice try to bring a bit of hope & perhaps prosperity to one of the poorer parts of the country, but I think you've been shafted! OldSlugs
  • Score: 4

3:13pm Fri 11 Apr 14

davidcp says...

It's not Lego, you can't build it without access etc!
It's not Lego, you can't build it without access etc! davidcp
  • Score: 2

3:54pm Fri 11 Apr 14

Mr Bump. says...

this is the most ludicrous idea i have ever heard of. There is no way that this should get the go ahead and it most certainly should not get a penny of public money.
this is the most ludicrous idea i have ever heard of. There is no way that this should get the go ahead and it most certainly should not get a penny of public money. Mr Bump.
  • Score: -3

5:07pm Fri 11 Apr 14

varteg1 says...

I will be tempted to attend any planning meeting form this, as I am concerned that Carl Sargent, in refusing the application for a small short term opencast operation in Varteg, has shown a high degree of hypocrisy in stating his so called 'government' were passing the matter over to BG council.

He stated that the 500 metre 'buffer' zone between workings and residences etc should be adhered to. Yet here we have a major earth moving project, which will mean much dust and fumes from plant being offhandedly given a green light.

Where the proposed opencast at Varteg would not only be of short term, it would also involve a restitution of the landscape, then be over, whereas this race track idea will also see disturbance of the landscape, but would, if successful, be a pain for local people forever more, as race-day noise, dust and fumes from high powered cars and motorcycles compete, not to forget the impact on the locality and environment of hundreds, if not more, visiting spectators turn out to watch the races week by week..
I won't mention the possibility of public money being pumped in to prime the project, that is a matter for the auditors of the Assembly to ponder over.
I will be tempted to attend any planning meeting form this, as I am concerned that Carl Sargent, in refusing the application for a small short term opencast operation in Varteg, has shown a high degree of hypocrisy in stating his so called 'government' were passing the matter over to BG council. He stated that the 500 metre 'buffer' zone between workings and residences etc should be adhered to. Yet here we have a major earth moving project, which will mean much dust and fumes from plant being offhandedly given a green light. Where the proposed opencast at Varteg would not only be of short term, it would also involve a restitution of the landscape, then be over, whereas this race track idea will also see disturbance of the landscape, but would, if successful, be a pain for local people forever more, as race-day noise, dust and fumes from high powered cars and motorcycles compete, not to forget the impact on the locality and environment of hundreds, if not more, visiting spectators turn out to watch the races week by week.. I won't mention the possibility of public money being pumped in to prime the project, that is a matter for the auditors of the Assembly to ponder over. varteg1
  • Score: 0

9:54pm Fri 11 Apr 14

Bobevans says...

At the moment all it has is outline planning consent. It cannot build anything until it gets detailed planning consent and that need full drawing and impact assessments. It is still a kite fling exercise at present. Most of the benefit of this track have been shot down in flames. The 6000 jobs is down to 600 and most are casual jobs. It is all about how much WAG money can they get
At the moment all it has is outline planning consent. It cannot build anything until it gets detailed planning consent and that need full drawing and impact assessments. It is still a kite fling exercise at present. Most of the benefit of this track have been shot down in flames. The 6000 jobs is down to 600 and most are casual jobs. It is all about how much WAG money can they get Bobevans
  • Score: 2

8:15am Sat 12 Apr 14

kenny john says...

As usual the environmentalsts kill the day, all because of a few frogs and peat, do they realise there is 150 miles of that type of landnorth of this scheme!! Go back to your posh homes in leafy monmouth and dont worry about the economy of the heads of the valleys and indeed south east wales!!
As usual the environmentalsts kill the day, all because of a few frogs and peat, do they realise there is 150 miles of that type of landnorth of this scheme!! Go back to your posh homes in leafy monmouth and dont worry about the economy of the heads of the valleys and indeed south east wales!! kenny john
  • Score: -1

12:21pm Sat 12 Apr 14

Mr Bump. says...

kenny john wrote:
As usual the environmentalsts kill the day, all because of a few frogs and peat, do they realise there is 150 miles of that type of landnorth of this scheme!! Go back to your posh homes in leafy monmouth and dont worry about the economy of the heads of the valleys and indeed south east wales!!
It's not the environmental issues that bother me. It's the Public money being spent on this silliness that's bothering me.
[quote][p][bold]kenny john[/bold] wrote: As usual the environmentalsts kill the day, all because of a few frogs and peat, do they realise there is 150 miles of that type of landnorth of this scheme!! Go back to your posh homes in leafy monmouth and dont worry about the economy of the heads of the valleys and indeed south east wales!![/p][/quote]It's not the environmental issues that bother me. It's the Public money being spent on this silliness that's bothering me. Mr Bump.
  • Score: 1

3:41pm Sun 13 Apr 14

Port0214 says...

The WAG have failed completely when it comes to inward investment, this project will be no different.

It would work if done correctly, access roads, facilities for spectators etc.

The level of employment it will create though is always debatable and this is always the case with such projects anyone who has been to Silverstone will tell you the access and facilities are awful when compared to circuits in other countries, it would be good for the area and the employment it would create, the problem is the WAG who are odds on to **** it up.
The WAG have failed completely when it comes to inward investment, this project will be no different. It would work if done correctly, access roads, facilities for spectators etc. The level of employment it will create though is always debatable and this is always the case with such projects anyone who has been to Silverstone will tell you the access and facilities are awful when compared to circuits in other countries, it would be good for the area and the employment it would create, the problem is the WAG who are odds on to **** it up. Port0214
  • Score: -1

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