Monday, 7 February 2011

Community fields campaigner says 'Yes for Wales'

A well-known campaigner for playing fields in Wales has joined the growing ranks of the "Yes for Wales" campaign.

Lynne Hayes, of Herbert Jennings Avenue, Acton, Wrexham, was the founder of the Save Open Spaces campaign after seeing a school playing field in her neighbourhood sold for housing more than a decade ago.

She said:
"I have campaigned for over 10 years to save playing fields and I'm pleased to note that Wales leads the way when it comes to playing field protection.

"Dai Lloyd, Plaid Cymru AM, introduced a Measure on the selling off of playing fields. It placed a duty on local authorities to consider the impact that selling any playing fields could have on the communities around them before proceeding with a sale.

"This means that local residents, sports clubs etc all have their say in the consultation process. This is a great leap forward"

She added that the Assembly then went a stage further in defending public playing fields:
"That's thanks to Assembly Member Lisa Francis's measure, which ensures that any proposed sell-off of playing fields as small as a junior football pitch has to be approved by the Sports Council for Wales. In England only sell-offs of adult pitches have to be approved, so her measure will save smaller playing fields. It will also ensure that Wales has an accurate record of our playing field losses."

She said she was supporting law-making powers for the Assembly because there was so much work to be done in the planning area:
"The Assembly has responded to pressure from communities across Wales. However, there are loopholes in Planning Policy Wales that allow councils to sell off parts of playing fields even though a particular community may have a huge deficit in playing field provision. This has to stop and the loopholes must be closed. I am hoping that a 'yes' vote from the people of Wales will allow our planning policies to be changed and strengthened so that we can protect our playing fields for both present and future generations.

"Once a playing field has gone, it has gone forever and we must not lose sight of this fact.

"Once Wales can make its own laws, I intend to visit the Welsh Assembly to lobby our AMs to bring about the changes that are so desperately needed to protect our playing fields forever."

More on Save Open Spaces here


Richmond Hotel said...

I note that the hard work of former AM Lisa Francis in this area has been conveniently written out by Plaid.

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

Lisa who? It was Dai Lloyd's measure, and incidentally the campaign that is being led by Lynne Hayes of Fields in Trust, and Lynne is not a member of Plaid Cymru! So sorry, no hijacking by us, we support what we think is right.

Plaid Whitegate said...

I have spoken to Lynne Hayes, who freely admits to a "blonde moment", in mixing Assembly Measures up (check her blog). The contribution of Tory AM Lisa Francis is now there for all to see.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if Ms Hayes would have been so keen in her support had she realised how keen Plaid Wrexham would be to erode playing fields in Gwersyllt?

Anonymous said...

Not a green playing field its an old tip, a brownfield site which is often waterlogged. Why don't you read the Planning report on the application so you don't have to make things up as you go along.