School Council Report – Gwern Y Domen Visit 12.01.17

On Thursday 12th January the school council had the opportunity to interview a group of people called ‘Friends of Gwern Y Domen.’ The group came together in 2015 to raise awareness of the Greenfields of Gwern Y Domen and to fight to protect the land from development. We understand that people need houses and that there is a shortage of houses for local people so we asked the group why building on the Gwern Y Domen would be a bad thing?

They argue that the Gwern Y Domen site is a beautiful area. There is a farm and a footpath which is open to the public. It is an ideal place for leisure activities like dog walking and horse riding. Photographers also use it. It is also an area that houses rare and endangered species. There is a rare type of flower called a Pink Ballerina Wax Cap which is so rare it is nearly extinct. On the farm, there are bats roosting and hedgehogs living.

The people of Rudry and Caerphilly petitioned to stop the housing development going ahead. They got 2-3 thousand signatures and they also raised money to help inform the community and gain support from the public. Originally 1200 houses were planned but this has been reduced to 618 and there will still be some areas of greenery.

However, the group argue there will still be a huge impact on the environment. There could be higher risk of flooding, more pollution and traffic congestion, Caerphilly already suffers from bad traffic jams and extra cars will make the roads busier and more dangerous.

School council members have decided they would like to be involved in a project to raise some awareness of the work ‘Friends of Gwern Y Domen’ do and so will be drawing some of the endangered species in the area and creating a leaflet for children of Rhydri Primary School to learn more.

Callan, Ellie, Joseph and Katie

Rhydri Primary School, School Council members