Report recommends public consultation on Penarth's St Paul's church building
A REPORT will be presented to the Vale of Glamorgan Cabinet next week, recommending that a public consultation is carried out before any plans are made for the future of St Paul's Church.
Residents of St Augustine's ward will be given the opportunity to voice their opinions about the future use of the council-owned church, should the recommendation - put forward by cabinet member for leisure and sports development Cllr Gwyn John - be approved.
It means the future of two local sporting clubs remains uncertain.
Penarth Amatuer Boxing Club had hoped to return to the building - their home of 36 years before they were forced to leave on health and safety grounds in February 2011.
And Penarth Gymnastics Club had hoped to move in too, after vacating their home of 17 years at Penarth Pier Pavilion so that the Penarth Arts and Crafts Ltd renovation project could start at the pavilion.
The two clubs have endured a rollercoaster two years, waiting to find out whether they would be allowed to use the site - the designated recipient of £800,000 Section 106 money agreed between Penarth Heights developer Crest Nicholson and the Vale Council, 'to provide or enhance community facilities within the vicinity of the Penarth Heights site'.
As recently as February the clubs - which between them cater for up to 400 Penarthians a week - were told by the former Conservative-led council administration that they would be given a permanent home at the old church on Arcot Street, with £250,000 included in the Capital Programme to make the building habitable again.
But cabinet member for planning in the new Labour-led council and local ward councillor Lis Burnett said she was 'hugely pleased' that the cabinet now plans to talk to the local community.
"The local people deserve to have their say," she said.
"This area badly needs a community facility."