Co-op decides to ‘Progress’ Supermarket plans.

On Friday Mike Ash-Edwards emailed to say that the Co-op have decided to progress their plans for a supermarket at the PontcannaPine/Dairy site, following a decision by their Regional Board.

– Opening hours everyday including Sundays of  7am – 10pm

– They intend to seek permission for ‘Off-Sales’ of alcohol

– The Co-op will be trying to get a lottery licence

– Deliveries will be 9.30am – 6pm

– They have not yet decided if they will sell newspapers

This is exactly the same plan they presented at the start of the meeting with their team in Chapter.

Thank you to those who wrote letters, signed the petitions and came to the meetings.

Please continue to support your local businesses, you can choose where you shop and who you support. These businesses are a valuable part of our great community and we hope that people will continue to shop with them.

Community Picnic, Sunday 21 July

community picnic2People’s Park/Parc Pawb are organising a ‘People’s Community Picnic’ In Llandaff Fields from 3-6pm on Sunday 21 July – All welcome!

There will be:
– People eating picnic food !
– Bowling Demo
– Community Tennis
– Hula-Hooping
– Story-telling with Francis Maxey
– Probably other sports brought by picnicing people

Plus the opportunity to find out more about the Llandaff Fields Private Members Sports & Community Club plans.

Where: It will be in the area next to the children’s playground between the two rugby posts near the car park. This is also a great opportunity to celebrate the lovely parklands of Cardiff, and show how many people use them – and that they should be kept for everyone’s use – as they were originally intended.

Also to meet your neighbours and local community, similar to the recent highly successful Mini-Womad where 100s came along and enjoying the sun, activities and music.

If you wish to help out or perhaps bring something special or a stand please contact the organisers, please email Nerys Lloyd-Pierce:

Thank you/Diolch. (Welsh translation of this post following soon)

07/07/13 UPDATE: Meeting with Co-op team about their Pontcanna Supermarket

UPDATE 07/07/13: Many thanks to everyone who signed and helped to create our 1210 SIGNATURE petition, a real community effort. The Coop said that this and our Representation to the Co-op letter and Review of revised developer’s traffic report191012 plus Coop member’s letters would be presented to the Cymru/Wales Regional Board meeting on 03/07. They said they would update us with the results from this meeting ‘in due course’ – watch this space…meetingThanks to all who attended the Co-op meeting last Thursday, and also to the Co-op team for giving everyone an opportunity ask questions and share their views and Alan for being a great chair. The Co-op were very clear on their plans, and we’ve outlined those below. CO-OP_LeafletIn response to some aspects of their proposed store we have started a petition survey. We have until Tuesday 2nd to record people’s views – the surveys are in some of the local shops and you can download a blank copy of here: Co-op 2013 PETITION if you wish to get some signatures. We have also created an information leaflet which you can download it HERE. Petitions can be returned to local stores with petitions or to 31/35 Severn Grove, by 5pm Tuesday July 2 at latest. If you wish to survey a street or area please email us. Thank you. ADDITION TO FIRST POST Mike Ash-Edwards from the Coop has said that any Coop members who have concerns about these plans can email him and he will present your letters to the regional board on Weds: pls email: To read a copy of a Coop member’s letter please click HERE, deadline for letters is Monday. UPDATE: The CO-OP have confirmed they are planning to put a CONVENIENCE SUPERMARKET on the Dairy/Pontcanna Pine site. What will the supermarket will look like? • A supermarket store which will trade 7 days a week, 7.00am – 10.00pm. • Retailing bread, meat, fruit, vegetables, household products, alcohol and will probably also be a lottery outlet. • Conversion of existing building into 2000 square feet store sales area with 1000 square feet storage inside the building space. • At this time, they are only proposing to rent the existing Dairy building for 15 years, but not the remainder of the site. • No confirmed delivery plan, they’re considering their vans reversing in/out of  of the space to the left building, over the pavement near the Severn Grove junction. What will happen next? They have undertaken some initial research around traffic and trade, and will present their proposal to their Cymru/Wales Regional Board on July 3 2013. They need their board’s approval to proceed. Most people at the consultation meeting (20/06) felt their information wasn’t correct, and didn’t reflect what it’s like to live & work in Pontcanna. As the Co-op stated that: 1. NO-ONE WOULD DRIVE TO THE STORE So the Co-op supermarket would not add to the existing traffic, parking and congestion issues in any way at all. 2. THE STORE WOULD NOT TAKE ANY TRADE AWAY FROM LOCAL BUSINESSES The Co-op supermarket will supply bread, meat, fruit, vegetables, household products, alcohol and probably be a lottery outlet, but will take no trade away from existing – many family run – businesses and stores. 3. AT THE MEETING ON 20/06 THEY DID NOT HAVE A CONFIRMED DELIVERY MANAGEMENT PLAN At the meeting the Co-op had specific data and plans for many aspects of the store but no specific delivery management plan for their delivery lorries. Why are we doing a petition? We need more time to undertake surveys to provide the board with more additional, accurate information. We’d like to present the board with a petition on July 3 showing that a large number of people in Pontcanna don’t agree with their initial research. Also that we are willing to commision and pay for surveys to provide additional data to assist their decision-making at the next board meeting in September. Please sign the petition and share with your neighbours and friends in the area. We need all petitions by 5pm Tuesday July 2, at the latest – please email us with any queries you have. Many thanks – The Pontcanna Hub team.

Now… CO-OP confirm plans for store at Dairy/Pontcanna Pine!


Mike (Co-op) with Alan Lane at meeting where they stated they had no store plans for the Dairy

The Co-op contacted us in the last few days with the news that they have reversed their decision about occupying a convenience store at the Dairy/Pontcanna Pine site.

Members of the Co-op Development Team will speak to us at on Thursday 20th June, 7.00pm at a meeting in Chapter Arts Centre, First Space Room (to your right as you come in the main entrance).

Please come along and hear what they have to say and find out why their plans are now considered viable, and how they will address our concerns. There is only space for 60, so please could you let us know if you are going to come along (all larger spaces were booked for this date). Please email us at We are aiming to video the meeting and post on the website also. Co-op have emailed us this statement:



 The Co-operative Group is in discussions to open a food store in the site of a former dairy in the Pontcanna area of Cardiff.

The Kings Road building is currently vacant, and was the focus of speculation last year that The Co-operative Food was intending to open there. At that time The Co-operative had no plans to locate a store there, as the developer’s proposals for a new building on the site would have been unsuitable.

However, the existing building already has planning consent which would allow it to be used for retail, and The Co-operative is now in discussions with the owner about opening a convenience store.

Mike Ash-Edwards, Regional Secretary for The Co-operative Group in Wales, said: “We are mindful of the concerns local people had about previous plans for the site, and we will be consulting with the local community to address these. Our aim is to open a small convenience store, that will enhance the area and complement the existing shops.”

“The dairy building is covered by a Lawful Development Certificate, issued by Cardiff Council in 2008, which allows it to be used for retail. That means that if The Co-operative doesn’t open a store on this site then another retailer will. We feel strongly that a Co-operative food store, with its commitment to ethical trading, such as Fairtrade, and its support for local community groups and charities, will be an asset to the local community.”

The new store would have a sales area of around 2,000 sq ft, and would create around 20 new jobs.”


We are very surprised and disappointed that a convenience store is being considered again despite all the arguments against it, some of which formed the basis for planning refusal of the last scheme. (Click here to see previous post with video of Mike from Co-op)

We understand that this time flats above it are not being proposed, just a conversion of the current building. We do not know if this is the final proposal for the Dairy/Pontcanna Pine or a stepping stone towards a combined store and flats scheme similar to before. We do not have further details at present and so we want to find out more. We are holding the public meeting on Thursday, 20 June at 7pm so the Co-op team can explain their scheme and be available for Q&A. We want to understand how their plans address all previous concerns and issues, including:

  • Traffic congestion caused by delivery vehicles and customers on a very tight corner and narrow streets including conflict with pedestrians and cyclists
  • Parking problems around the proposed store and on adjacent streets
  • Noisy deliveries, at early and late hours
  • Large refuse containers on public pavements
  • Inadequate disabled access
  • Building signage and exterior treatment unsuitable for a Conservation Area
  • A large convenience store with late opening hours in a dense, residential area.
  • Direct competition with, and taking business from, the local independent shops that contribute to Pontcanna’s vitality and character.

     We also want to know:

  • why they changed their mind – a different offer from the owners or a change in policy?
  • if they are buying, leasing or renting the site or building, if so for how long?
  • precisely what are they proposing for the building and the site?
  • What additional studies have been undertaken to justify their new proposals?
  • why an additional store is needed in the area with Tescos etc so close?
  • what they are likely to sell eg alcohol, flowers, vegetables, meat, bread?
  • and a proposed timeline for the development.

We are sending this list to the Co-op so we can be sure they can answer them for us. But we would like other queries we have not thought of to be raised at the meeting. We hope to see you at the meeting, if you are unable to attend and wish to comment please do so as a reply to this post. Thank  you.

Llandaff Fields protest meeting


A public meeting was held on Tuesday June 4th at the Wallich Centre, Cathedral Road. The venue was full to capacity with 100 people and 25+ people being turned away, see below for the Wales Online article.

TY7A7400Thanks to everyone for attending, showing your support and contributing to the discussions – if you wish to be kept up to date on the developments please email Nerys at As yet these are only proposed plans, when final plans are submitted we will post details on the site.

TY7A7054Also thanks to everyone who facilitated and Nigel Pugh for his fantastic photos which really capture the spirit of the event. Click here to see them and spot if you are in there.

Update on the Llandaff Fields event, it has been moved to 1 September, please contact Nerys if you wish to help out – we can’t do it without a team.

Opposition to building a new community and sports centre on Llandaff Fields has intensified after an architect’s plan suggested the venue could hold up to 600 people in one room. Cardiff Civic Society says the scheme would desecrate the park and has urged Cardiff council to reject it.

As yet, however, no planning application has been made. An umbrella group that says it represents 32 sport and community organisations wants the centre to be built on the site of dilapidated changing rooms, close to an existing bowls pavilion.

The Llandaff Fields Community and Sports Trust has produced a leaflet seeking to enlist further support.

But Nerys Lloyd-Pierce, who chairs Cardiff Civic Society, said the scale of the project appeared to be significantly bigger than had earlier been thought. A plan produced for the Trust by Cardiff architects Pentan Partnership shows that one room in the venue would have the capacity for 300 people seated and 600 standing.

Ms Lloyd-Pierce said: “The proposals show a licensed venue capable of accommodating 600 people. This indicates that the community element of the project is a red herring, and this is in reality a commercial enterprise.

“Putting such a development in the park would clearly be very attractive to the developers as it enables them to run a money-making venture on publicly-owned land – which will cost them very little.”

Martyn Williams, who chairs the Trust, responded: “After consulting with our stakeholders – charities, societies, and sports clubs – the proposals have been much reduced, since there is a high degree of duplication on facility requirements.

“The number of changing rooms has been reduced. There is no 600 capacity room – it has a 300 capacity function room which can be partitioned into three smaller meeting or play group rooms. The licensed bar will only be open when booked for functions or events and on weekends, primarily Saturdays, for the sports clubs. The Trust is being registered as a not for profit company limited by guarantee. It is definitely not a money making venture.”

Mr Williams has stated previously that the centre would be available to all for classes, conferences and fundraising activities.

He added: “The Trust has been joined by Cardiff Metropolitan University, which will bring educational community programmes to the park, as well as first class sporting facilities. From the outset we have not considered the use of any green space.”

When details of the scheme emerged last month, a Cardiff council spokeswoman denied that the development represented the privatisation of a public amenity, saying the project was at an early discussion stage.

She added: “Any proposals would be subject to the statutory planning process which includes provisions for consultation.”

Action Meeting to protect Llandaff Fields

Please come to the public meeting on Tuesday June 4th, 7.00 -9.00pm at the Wallich Centre, Cathedral Road Cardiff CF11 9JF, opposite the shops.LlandaffFieldsPeoplesHub.03[5]

Llandaff Fields People’s Hub has been launched in response to a development threat to this area of much-loved and well-used parkland. A plan to build a large, privatised development (at tennis courts area) with access road, parking, enclosed 3G pitch and a bar has met with HUGE opposition from park users.

Llandaff Fields People’s Hub aims to protect the fields, maintaining sporting activities such as rugby, bowls and tennis, and replacing the changing rooms. 

We aim to promote recreational use of the park for all ages and abilities, while protecting the fields from development and privatisation.  The Church Commissioners gave the park to the people of Cardiff for sport and recreation, not for development and individual gain.” said Councillor Iona Gordon, trustee of the Hub.

“In the last 40 years West Cardiff citizens have lost more than a third of our central parkland to creeping development, much of which has taken place in recent years, and it has to stop.  Llandaff Fields must be protected for the health and wellbeing of the people, and for the benefit of generations to come. Green space cannot be plundered  on our watch.”  said Nerys Lloyd-Pierce the Chair of the Llandaf Fields People’s Hub.

200px-Llandaff_Fields_pathAt the meeting we will review the proposals and discuss how we can protect Llandaff fields. More information Nerys Lloyd-Pierce: 07701 007 128 or Iona Gordon: 029  204 5213.

To read more the history and facilities at LLandaff fields please click here.


New ‘Rubbish’ Development at Conway Road Garage Site

New plans for a development of eight 3-storey houses on the site of Conway Road Garage have been submitted to the Council


  • Any development so close to the junction of Conway Road with Cathedral Road is unacceptable from the point of road safety, also causing more traffic jams than there are already!
  • The development would also have an negative effect on the nearby properties and area, in particular with the many rubbish bags on the streets.
  • Development of this scale on this site would set a precedent for infill development in a Conservation Area.

If you wish to object to this planning application please do so as soon as possible. The closing date for objections is Monday 11th March – and the quantity of letters counts! The plans and detailed descriptions are available for consultation at the City Hall. The plans are also available on line via the Council web site:

Click here  to see the proposed Conway Garage groundfloor housing plan

Objections to the proposals should be sent as soon as possible to the Council Planning department giving the reference number and reasons for objection.

Application number: 13/00242/DCI Land at 81A Conway Road (Conway Garage) f.a.o. Richard Cole/ Phil Williams

Email objections to Or write to: Development Management, f.a.o. Richard Cole/ Phil Williams, City Development, City Hall, Cardiff, CF10 3ND

 The planners are influenced by the number of objections and they can amend plans or reject them if the proposals conflict with the Council Planning Guidelines. Please write immediately or email and register your objections.

For reference only – below is a sample letter of objection from a resident of Conway Road, followed by some points raised by a resident of Penhill Road. We suggest you write your own letter including the points you feel are valid and any personal responses.


 A new planning application has been submitted to build 8 3 storey houses on the Conway Garage site. This is a significantly bigger development than previous plans and represents a threat not merely to the immediate houses but would establish a damaging precedent about development within the Conservation Area. The properties most directly affected would be those immediately adjacent on Conway Road, Penhill and the new properties at Cwrt Penhill.

 However the knock-on effect on parking and traffic will be damaging to Conway Road generally as well as the wider Conservation Area.  The creation of 8 new family houses with only a single parking space each, and only 2 visitor spaces for the development, will inevitably increase parking pressure on Conway Road and Penhill. The movement of vehicles to  and from the site via the very narrow lane access will exacerbate the traffic conflicts in Conway Road at busy times as well as posing a threat to pedestrians and in particular children walking along Conway Road.

 The narrow access means that the developer intends that rubbish from the 8 houses will be deposited on the Conway Road pavement not merely creating a hazard but damaging the appearance and amenity of the street. 

The 3-storey houses will cause a major loss of privacy to the adjacent gardens and houses as well as cutting out light to several properties and are in clear breach of the Council 2011 policy regarding Infill Sites: Supplementary Planning Guidance (April 2011).

1. Insufficient parking:

The developers have allocated 10 parking spaces for the eight 3-bedroom houses (one per house, plus two (total) visitor spaces). I believe that this is inadequate and will lead to the “overspill” of cars being parked on Conway Road and the adjacent roads. As you know, there is little spare capacity for parking on these roads. Looking at the plans, there is no scope for any more parking on the development, so that is not a solution. 

2. Traffic congestion:

Similar to above, eight 3-bedroom houses will bring additional traffic to streets that are already congested, and to all intents-and-purposes single-track rat-runs with cars parked on both sides. This would exacerbate the existing traffic conflicts at busy times.  The narrow width of the lane with houses on either side also makes it difficult for cars to see each other, and for pedestrians on the pavement to see the cars.

3. Setting a precedent for new development in Conservation Area:

This development would set a precedent for building on infill in the Conservation Area, threatening the character of the area. The plans do appear to be in clear breach of the Council 2011 policy regarding Infill Sites: Supplementary Planning Guidance (April 2011) in a number of ways, principally not being ‘subservient’ to the surrounding properties (being 3 storey). 

4. Access to the development and the impact on refuse collection / deliveries

Access to the development would be via the lane, which is less than ten feet wide at the entrance, and with a very tight turn onto Conway Road. Consequently, I believe that delivery vehicles would struggle to access the development, and would “double park” on Conway Road to off-load. Similarly, refuse collection lorries would be unable to access the development, and the eight properties would leave their refuse on the street, on the corner of Conway Road and the lane for collection. At that area, the pavement is already narrow with the trees and the surface uneven with tree roots coming through: this could cause a problem for pedestrians, especially with prams and children, in addition to damaging the appearance and amenity of the street. In addition, it strikes me that it would be challenging getting the plant vehicles and building materials on and off site during the build.

Riding School at Pontcanna Fields ‘to close’

horse2Since this post and the huge media campaign and show of support (thanks) the riding school closure is being reviewed by the council and an alternative solution being sought.
Thanks to those who asked us to post this news: the staff at the council-run Cardiff Riding School, at Pontcanna Fields say they have been told it will close within 3 months.
If you wish to protest about this there is a council meeting on 31 January at 3.30pm in City Hall. The school are hoping as many people will come to the meeting and support them – please attend if you can.

30 workers were apparently told on Wednesday that the 30-acre site in Pontcanna Fields would shut by 1 April. The 43-year-old school has 50 horses, and one member of staff feared many would have to be put down because they would be impossible to re-home. The school offers riding for children and adults and specialises in providing riding for disabled people. One staff member told the BBC:

horse3“Our main clients are young schoolchildren. We also have lots of disabled people. We teach them four or five days a week – they really enjoy it; often they relate to animals better. 

We don’t know what will happen to the horses here. I think they will have to be put down because it will be difficult to find homes for them.”

Cardiff council refused to confirm the closure, although a budget statement is expected at a council meeting on Thursday. More of this article here.

Developer defeated again…

PrintPontcanna Pine/Dairy Update: We are very very pleased 🙂 to report that the Council Planning Committee has again REFUSED planning permission for the convenience store and 8 flats scheme proposed for the Pontcanna Pine site. We don’t know what the developers’ next move will be – We are sure the saga isn’t completely over yet – but the vote against the development was unanimous on grounds of the traffic and parking issues.

Thank you so much for all your tireless support, petitioning, and letter writing over such a long time – it has really helped to demonstrate that this was a completely unacceptable scheme for this location. We would again like to thank Mike from the Cooperative for coming to our meeting, and communicating with the Press and the Council, that the developers’ statement that the Co-op were currently interested in placing a supermarket on this site – were fictitious.

We end this post with a question from a supporter, if you have any thoughts/suggestions on this (we do!) please email us: “Has anyone thought about the community buying it / leasing it long term on a co-op type basis?”

Best wishes & Happy 2013! – The Pontcanna Pine team

Below are some of the 40+ responses to our email, thank you:

“Brilliant news.  So good to have won for once – people power – hurrah!”

“Unanimous – wow! I’m quite ready for more letter writing, knocking on doors too, if the saga isn’t over.”

“Good news. It’s probably not the end but hopefully the unanimous vote will tell them something.”

“Thank you so much for all the teams efforts. Grateful residents of Kings Road.”

“Fantastic news! Though as you say, it may not be over yet…”

“Congratulations to you and the team for all the hard work in achieving this stage as a success victory.”

“Brilliant brilliant news!!!!!!

 Well done everyone!!!!

 Glass of wine to celebrate.”

“On behalf of Cardiff Civic Society – congratulations!”

“Hooray! Llandaff fields development next??”

 “This is fabulous news !!!! I will now celebrate with marmite on toast and my cup of tea.”

 “I’m so delighted to hear this news! Each day I drive through this area, I think how crazy it would be to put more development there. The junction is already a dangerous place at times!” 

“Congratulations. A lovely early Christmas gift to us all.”

 “Horray! But you are right we need to keep our noses to the ground as no doubt there will be future developments.”