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Wind farm protester's seat battle  

Could the wind of change be blowing in the Afan Valley?

In recent years Glyncorrwg Ward has witnessed countless campaigns against controversial proposals to site wind farms there.

Just before last Christmas, Neath Port Talbot planning officers advised councillors to throw out Eco2’s proposal to put four giant turbines on Mynydd Corrwg Fechan overlooking Glyncorrwg.

At 125 metres, they would have been some of the biggest in Wales, around 34 metres taller than those already in place at Ffynnon Oer in the same valley.

Local Labour politicians including AM Brian Gibbons and MP Hywel Francis came out in support of Glyncorrwg Action Group who protested against the plans.

Now its chairman, Lindsay Milsom, faces a campaign of a different kind – to get elected as the area’s councillor.

And like the massive wind turbines earmarked for the village, the task might, at first glance, look like a tall order.

In 2004 sitting Labour Councillor Glyn Rawlings polled nearly 200 votes more than his Ratepayer rival Stuart Glanrhyd Ackery.

But Ratepayer candidate Lindsay Milsom, who has worked at Corus for 38 years, believes he is offering voters a choice.

“We pride ourselves on being democratic, but only on a few occasions do we ever get a chance to exercise that right,” he said. “I hope that I can give the people of Glyncorrwg the ability to overcome the prejudices and dogma of years and years of Labour domination and indoctrination.

“The children of Glyncorrwg represent the future of the community.

“Their school is indeed the heart of our community. I would like to give that heart get a new coat of paint to begin with.

“Tourism in the valley should also be placed in higher esteem by the borough, as it too will be a boon to our community in the future.”

Sitting Councillor Glyn Rawlings said: “There is a growing confidence in the area with new houses being built all the time.

“Glyncorrwg is a great place to live with a good community spirit and the new investment coming into the village is a clear sign of that.

“We have a lot of older people who need more suitable accommodation so they can remain close to the family and friends when their housing needs change.

“This would, in turn, free up a lot of the current housing stock so that young people who have grown up in Glyncorrwg can find somewhere to live here more easily.

“The one drawback is that there are lots of derelict buildings that have been left to fall into rack and ruin.

“They can make the area look unattractive and I will continue to work the local authority, and the buildings’ owners, to clean them up and get rid of the blight they make on our community.”

South Wales Evening Post

17 April 2008

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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