CONTROVERSIAL plans to increase the number of children at a Cwmbran nursery by almost 50 per cent have been refused by the council.

Little Darlings on Llantarnam Road will not be allowed to increase its capacity, despite increasing demand.

The nursery received planning permission in 1995, which allowed 42 children under the age of five to attend the nursery.

They had applied to increase this number to 62 “in order to meet increased demand, including primary school age children to provide ‘wrap around’ care before and/or after school”.


But concerns over parking from both the highways department at the council and local residents meant the planning committee refused the application.

Paul Wheeldon of the council’s highways department said: “I have to take into account how the site operates currently and whether there is sufficient capacity to accommodate turning movements and car parking associated with the existing use and to consider the effect of the proposal on highway safety. 

“The existing car parking spaces fronting the site spaces are on most days full so there is no spare capacity to accommodate additional staff.

“I am aware that there are existing issues at this site where there is currently insufficient room available for the number of cars that go to the site to pick up and drop off without parking on double yellow lines, in the turning head, across tactile crossing points, on street or in the car park off Oakfield Road. 

“The increase in the number of children by 50 percent is likely to increase significantly the number of cars that visit the site which will make worse an already unsatisfactory situation and be detrimental to highway safety.”

This view was echoed by 44 residents who objected to the proposals.

Concerns were raised over street parking and ongoing traffic issues and the nearby car park being constantly full.

The site has seven car parking spaces, with an in and out drop-off area, but there are no plans to increase this.

The increase in pupil numbers would have created two additional staff positions, however highways noted there was nowhere for these extra staff to park.

Cllr David Thomas said that the recommendation from the officers to reject the application was correct.

He said: “Officers have got it spot on from a safety point of view.”