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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 October, 2003, 09:49 GMT 10:49 UK
Aid sought to stem migration
Tregaron
Tregaron was traditionally a meeting place for drovers going to London
A small town suffering under the trend of youngsters leaving to study or work in the city is being considered for grants help to keep them there.

Tregaron - population just 1,000 - is "a typical small Welsh market town feeling the brunt of outward migration" it is claimed.

But on Tuesday Ceredigion Council approved a bid for the money for the Tregaron area to try to make it more attractive to businesses and visitors.

The 120,000 would go towards setting up a Town Scheme Partnership (TSP) for Tregaron, and the nearby villages of Llanddewi Brefi and Llangeitho.

It is thought the money could provide an important role in the regeneration of the area which, in common with other communities, has seen an increase in vandalism and drug taking.

Council officers are keen for the project to go ahead after seeing how historic regeneration is boosting nearby Cardigan's economy.

This is an excellent opportunity for Tregaron, Llangeitho and Llanddewi Brefi and could play a very important role in the regeneration and general uplifting of the town and two villages
Rosemary Rhys

Cadw, the Welsh historic monuments body, has told Ceredigion council it can go ahead with a bid, including a conservation plan which it has to submit by 20 November.

If successful, Cadw will contribute 60,000 over three years and the money will be matched by the local authority.

The regeneration project could the start as early as next April.

Extra funding from the Welsh Development Agency, the Wales Tourist Board and the Welsh assembly, through its Communities First scheme ,would be expected to follow.

The scheme would allow people to access up to 70% grants to restore Tregaron's historic buildings.

The town was where drovers traditionally met before they started on their journeys to markets in London.

'Uplifting'

"Its location on the edge of the Cambrian Mountains provides tremendous potential for tourism," said council planning officer, Rosemary Rhys.

"This is an excellent opportunity for Tregaron, Llangeitho and Llanddewi Brefi, and could play a very important role in the regeneration and general uplifting of the town and two villages."

Ms Rhys said like most Ceredigion towns Tregaron suffers from an outward migration of its young, well-educated youth to college or the bright lights of Cardiff.

"Many people are concerned that houses are being purchased by incomers or bought up for investment purposes," she added.

"There seems to be a fear that vandalism and drug taking are on the increase and the lack of employment opportunities is exacerbating the situation."

Dafydd Morse of Curiad Caron, a community and tourism group promoting the Tregaron area, welcomed the move.

"Tregaron is a typical small Welsh market town feeling the brunt of outward migration," he said.




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