Posted: Tue 19th Sep 2023

Updated: Tue 19th Sep

British Legion Club blames Conwy Council for going into liquidation

North Wales news and information
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Sep 19th, 2023

A 100-year-old British Legion club has gone into liquidation and claims it is because a council has been ‘too slow’ to sign the paperwork on a planning agreement.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service reported in June how the British Legion was granted planning permission to replace a bowling green and allotments with 12 homes at its building at 31 Coed Pella Road.

The British Legion said the sale of the land to developers and the relocation of the allotments would allow the club to continue.

Without the tens of thousands of pounds raised by the sale, the club was threatened with liquidation, meaning the 100-year-old club would close, six staff would lose their jobs, and the club’s manager and her family would lose their home.

The application was passed subject to a 106 agreement being agreed, appearing to save the club from folding.

A section 106 agreement is a condition agreed by developers and the council and often relates to a minimum number of affordable housing being agreed upon or a community asset being built, such as a playground.

But the club says a 106 agreement offer has not emerged from the council, and consequently the land has not been sold to raise the £20,000 the club needs to survive. The land would have sold for in the region of quarter of a million pounds.

The council said discussions are ongoing with the developer around the requirements for the provision of affordable housing and other matters.

Club president Merfyn Thomas says the club with 400 members will now go into liquidation and blames Conwy for being too slow to process the agreement.

“We got planning permission, but the contractor required the 106 agreement before they could pay us,” he said.

“We were not able to complete the contract until the developer had got the agreement. Three months down the line, they still haven’t got the agreement.

“We haven’t got any more money so we’ve gone into liquidation, which has meant six members of staff have lost their jobs and the loss of accommodation for the manageress and her family.

“We were told by professional surveyors and structural engineers that a 106 agreement shouldn’t take more than three days, and we are still waiting three months later. I’m disgusted by the lack of professional approach to this.

“We’ve gone into liquidation, end of story. Even if we got the 106 agreement today, we are unable to pay our bills because we’ve got no money.

“It is also down to the total inability of Conwy County Council. We haven’t got the money to pay our debtors.”

He added: “We’ve wasted three months waiting for this 106 agreement. Talking to a number of our members, they are not impressed by Conwy County Council.”

A Conwy County Council spokeswoman commented: “Discussions are ongoing with the developer around the requirements for the provision of affordable housing and other matters. Once this has been resolved, the application can be progressed.”

By Richard Evans – Local Democracy Reporter

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