Baglan site for proposed new prison site is a flooding zone, claims councillor

Source: http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/local-news/baglan-site-proposed-new-prison-12809053

Aberavon Councillor Anthony Taylor claims the site of the proposed prison in Baglan is a flood risk

A Port Talbot councillor claims the site of a proposed prison in Baglan is a designated flood zone.

Aberavon councillor Anthony Taylor says the location where the category C prison is expected to be built “could have been somewhere more appropriate,” saying it is too close to schools, housing developments and Neath Port Talbot Hospital.

He also says the prison, which chief executive of Neath Port Talbot Council Steven Phillips told members will be built at the Panasonic building on the Baglan Industrial Estate , is thought to be a designated flood zone.

He added that he welcomed the prospect of the 200 long-term jobs and the 1,000 jobs to build the prison, but was unconvinced by the choice of location.

His comments follow the announcement of four new jails across the country from Justice Secretary Liz Truss last week as the Government steps up its drive to reform the crisis-hit prison system.

“The area supposedly ear-marked for this development is close to a local comprehensive school, close to a new housing development and close to Neath Port Talbot Hospital,” Mr Taylor said.

“We know that any new jobs are always welcome and I am not opposed per se to the prison coming here, but the site could have been more appropriate.

“This news coming on the back of the signing off of the Swansea City Deal scheme is quite odd. We were promised that this deal would bring new high tech jobs but the very same week, the prison is announced.

“I know that this proposal will have to go through a rigorous evaluation and planning process. The site supposedly proposed is a designated flood zone and Natural Resources Wales will also have an input. I remain unconvinced that this site is the most suitable.”

The Post contacted Natural Resources Wales for a comment but they did not respond at time of going to press.