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Thursday, 20 December, 2001, 15:43 GMT
'Tip' school plan approved
Ysgol John Bright school in Llandudno
A bid to move Ysgol John Bright has been approved
Plans to build a new school on the site of a former waste tip in Llandudno, north Wales have been approved by councillors - despite health fears from parents.

Ysgol John Bright will be relocated to a new site which was formerly home to a waste tip and a gas works.
Glebelands
The Glebelands site is earmarked for the school

But local AM Gareth Jones and the Children's Commissioner for Wales, Peter Clarke, had expressed severe reservations about the new site.

At the meeting on Thursday, councillors were given assurances that levels of toxic gases on the site were well within the government guidelines.

The Welsh Assembly has already approved a public finance initiative for Conwy County Council to build a new school by selling the existing site to a supermarket chain.

The application was considered so sensitive that the planning committee handed the responsibilty for the decision to the full council.

'Poor state'

The one thing that almost all parties agree on is that the old Ysgol John Bright is no longer suitable for pupils and staff - it is in a poor state of repair and has inadequate facilities.

The dispute is over where to relocate it.
Children's Commissioner Peter Clarke
Children's Commissioner Peter Clarke

Friends of the Earth Cymru has said that despite assurances the area will be cleaned up it could still pose a health risk to children.

The Children's Commissioner for Wales intervened after government research in August found a slighter higher risk of birth defects in children living within two kilometers of landfill sites.

But Conwy County Council gave the go-ahead for work to proceed.

Many parents had earlier said they are prepared to listen to the authority if it can assure them that the site will be safe.

However, the children's rights group Rebecca - Children's Right to a Safe Environment - claimed a full risk assessment has not been carried out on the proposals.

See also:

20 Dec 01 | Wales
D-day on 'tip' school plan
28 Aug 00 | Scotland
Villagers dig in over waste store
16 Jul 01 | Scotland
New waste law sparks concern
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