In a passionate letter to the South Wales Echo, published 30 June, Alun Michael MP has called on Cardiff Council to scrap its plans to site the new east Cardiff English medium secondary school on the Rumney Recreation Ground. It follows on from the local MP’s high-profile visit to the Llanrumney Festival where, to the delight of festival goers, Mr. Michael wore a ‘Save Rumney Rec’ t-shirt where he delivered a speech against any further development on the parkland. Read Alun Michael’s letter in full below.
On Saturday I joined the people of Llanrumney on the Rumney Recreation Ground to celebrate the Llanrumney Festival. Forty years ago, when I was a youth worker in Llanrumney, we used to take Llanrumney youngsters to the very same parkland for games of football and baseball and in the decades since then I have represented local people as an elected representative, first as a councillor and then as their MP. That’s why I am very proud to stand with the people of Llanrumney and Rumney today as we campaign to preserve the Rumney Recreation Ground for future generations. It’s a fight which is supported by the wider community, particularly in St. Mellons and Trowbridge. The campaign to save what is really the Roath Park of East Cardiff is cross-party and only Liberal Democrat and Plaid Cymru councillors seem oblivious of the injustice of their plans. The weekend’s festival would not have been possible without the dedication and imagination of the Llanrumney Community Forum and in particular its Chair Linda Bartlett. There was a wonderful atmosphere with families and people of all ages enjoying the sunshine and enjoying each other’s company. But it wouldn’t have been possible either without this wonderful “village green” which provides the “green lungs” of East Cardiff. There will be strong opposition to any planning application to build on Rumney Rec and there is massive support for it being designated formally as a “Village Green”. But why do we have to have those battles when the council can win plaudits by simply withdrawing the scheme to destroy the Rec and instead put their energy into preparing plans to put the new school on the education land that is already in their ownership? Nobody who was present at the weekend to listen to festival goers and soak up the community atmosphere could fail to be convinced.
Alun Michael MP