CONCERNS plans to resurrect the scrapped Circuit of Wales in Ebbw Vale will include a new casino in the area have been denied.

The proposed £425 million racetrack was scrapped in October last year following concerns around the amount of public investment which would be required to get the scheme under way - despite the Welsh Government having already forked over £9.3 million to the developer.

And, speaking in the Senedd yesterday during a debate around a damning report into the Welsh Government's handing of the scheme, Plaid Cymru AM Adam Price said he was concerned by reports US-based real estate developers Rocksteady Partners are currently in talks around resurrecting the project - with their proposals including a casino at the site.

Mr Price asked economy and transport secretary Ken Skates to comment on reports the Welsh Government is considering supporting the scheme in exchange for an equity stake in the project.

He said: "Is the Welsh Government seriously saying that it's open to any proposal that would have it, and therefore the Welsh public, holding an equity stake in a casino in one of the poorest parts of Wales? That is entirely unacceptable that even that could be entertained as a proposition."

But, responding to Mr Price, Mr Skates said: "Let me put on record that we are not open whatsoever to the presence of a casino in one of the most deprived parts of the United Kingdom."

Although he confirmed Rocksteady Partners is in talks around the scheme, Mr Skates said this "is not the only proposal that is being considered".

A spokesman for the Cardiff Capital Region (CCR), which is considering the future of the site in Ebbw Vale, said: “We are aware there has been expressions of interest by a new backer relating to this site. The CCR has always said it would consider any proposal to develop this site if it was suitable to do so and the investment was deemed viable.”

The report released in May said the Welsh Government had made a number of "inexplicable decisions" around the project.

Although AMs were vocal in their criticisms of the failings outlined in the report, Mr Skates said it was ultimately determined the scheme "did not represent good value for money for Welsh taxpayers".

He added changes to the way such schemes are assessed were being put in place as a result of lessons learned from the long-running saga, and some elements would be used as case studies in internal training in the future.

Rocksteady Partners has been contacted for comment.