Cymdeithas Ddinesig Abertawe

Chairman's Report to the AGM for the 17 months to February 2018

I must first apologise on behalf of the committee, for the delay in convening our Annual General Meeting.

It was with great sadness that we heard of the loss to cancer of Roy Kneath, one of our committee members. He was a much respected and well-known figure across Swansea and will be sorely missed. In spite of his illness he had managed to attend our tour of the Glynn Vivian Gallery in July with his daughter and was in good cheer.

The Executive on your behalf, continues to be involved in a wide variety of issues which will impact the City as well as providing our support to other like-minded interest groups. These include the Swansea Built Heritage Group and The Friends of Hafod/Morfa Copperworks.

In response to the "Swansea City Area: Strategic Framework" document issued in February 2106, relating to the redevelopment of the St. David's and the Civic Centre sites we canvassed the membership for their concerns. These were included in a more detailed response to the consultation process in March 2017.

The City has appointed Rivington Land as their development partners for the major elements of the proposed redevelopment, the critical information that we have repeatedly sought, has not been made public. These issues continued to be pursued by Committee members at the information sessions in December 2016 and February 2017.

Although the outline concept of the St. David's and LC car park redevelopment have been approved by the Council, consultations and detailed planning applications are to follow. We are to continue to press our concerns.

In addition to the City Area Strategy, consultation and planning application responses on behalf of the Society have been developed and submitted in respect of:-

    1.  The "Westway Improvement Scheme"

    2.  The Cross Lane student accommodation scheme on the Kingsway

    3.  The Castle Square development proposals.

    4.  The Special Planning Guidance consultation for H.M.O.'s

    5.  The student accommodation project on the former Unigate site

    6.  Plot A1, SA1 student accommodation scheme

    7.  The redevelopment of the Castle Cinema building

    8.  The planning application relating to the Mansion house

    9.  Proposals for commercialising Castle Square

The Blue Plaque Scheme with Civic Society support has over the past year continued to recognise important aspects of Swansea and its people with sixteen individuals now recognised by plaques. Further plaques are planned, but with the retirement of Richard Porch the organiser in the Council, there has been a small delay.

For those who were able to attend the Society's organised tour of the Glynn Vivian Gallery following its lengthy redevelopment, it proved to be a most interesting and informative visit. Our thanks go to the gallery management for their time and consideration. We will be seeking to organise a further event(s) for the coming year.

The Swansea Civic Society was a member of the now defunct Civic Trust Cymru. A new Wales wide organisation is being developed, provisionally called "Pride in Place". Once fully developed we will review the benefit which may arise from future membership.

Finally, I would stress that the Civic Society only exists through the hard work and commitment of its members. It is important that we encourage more people to join us and to get involved at a time when a number of major projects are imminent, which will impact our futures for years to come.

John Steevens

Chair to the Executive

March 2018


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