22nd October 2020

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(our notes in red)

 There has been a great deal of rumour and misinformation on social media in particular about the planning permission that was granted on 14th September 2020 (under application ref. P2020/0195) for residential development on land South of Heol Y Glyn, Glynneath, that requires further explanation and clarification.

The level of rumour and misinformation and allegations against officers and councillors have called into question the council’s role in this application and as such a statement is necessary in this regard.

The site in question is allocated for residential development in the council’s Local Development Plan and has had historical planning permission for residential development dating back to the 1990s.

(the site is misrepresented on the Local Development Plan)

(the historic planning permission failed to take into account the complex nature and historical use of the site)

During and since the determination of the planning application, serious allegations have been directed at the council and shared online and via social media. They insinuate that there has historically been illegal tipping of asbestos and toxic waste on the site. 

(The site has been found contaminated twice with industrial contaminants, there are eyewitness reports by residents of barrels that potentially contain toxic waste being brought onto the site and buried. This information has been supplied to Natural Resources Wales, Neath-Port Talbot Council and Glynneath Town Council. The eyewitness report has not been investigated)

They also include serious and unsubstantiated allegations about the conduct of officers and councillors, stating that the Planning Department has colluded with the former site owners to hide contaminated land, which would constitute a breach of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

(Evidence of this breach has been provided to NPTC, no counter evidence has been offered to dispute the breach of the 1990 EPA - The facts presented to the council prove otherwise - see EGRAC report 1 - CLICK HERE)

We are now issuing this formal (whitewash) response to publicly clarify matters relating to the site.

The council takes its responsibilities with regards to ground contamination very seriously. The council is satisfied that it has not at any point contravened its duties under this legislation (No counter evidence has been provided by the council to contest a chain of events that clearly breaches the 1990 Environmental Protection Act - see EGRAC report 1 - CLICK HERE). Allegations that the council has colluded with a former owner to ‘hide’ contamination are false and malevolent. (The Council Leader is not in a position to make this statement, he is unable to provide evidence of the interactions between council employees and the developer during the entire course of the planning process)

The most recent planning permission for the site was issued following lengthy consideration by councillors on the Planning Committee, with expert planning and land contamination advice being provided. The advice took account of the extensive submissions expressing concern about contamination and its impacts, with representatives of the objectors presenting their views to the Planning Committee in line with the council’s Public Speaking Protocol. (see Cuddy Group Tipping Habits video for whitewashed information being presented to the Planning Committee by the Planning Department)

Every member of the planning committee was provided with this document - see EGRAC report 1 - CLICK HERE)

The merits of the planning application were therefore openly and extensively debated in public, and all matters relating to land contamination at the site were considered in significant detail (The Contaminated Land Officer mentioned the 2008 testing and identified that the testing was insufficient but there was no mention of what happened to the 2008 identified contamination after that.) This included any matters that might relate to the need to address any contamination that might have arisen from historical tipping, and the need to ensure the site is appropriately remediated for the proposed residential use.

In this respect, and noting the serious allegations made against the council, we would emphasise that both Natural Resources Wales and the council’s officers are satisfied that:

The levels of contamination at the site are not unusual or dangerous, and there are no reasonable grounds to conclude that the site could not be remediated through the conditions attached to the planning permission. 

The site has never been tested fully, the Contaminated Land Officer stated this in his presentation. The council were provided eyewitness reports of barrels potentially containing toxic waste being dumped at the site, the Council Leader has no basis with which to make the statement "The levels of contamination are not unusual or dangerous". 

In addition, the planning conditions imposed a formal mechanism to deal with ‘unexpected contamination’. Moreover, the development of the site will now be the catalyst for works which will ensure that any contamination at the site will be remediated in the near future. (

The developer was breaking the conditions in front of Neath-Port Talbot Councillors at the time of this statement. Three weeks later the council had to impose a banning order on the developer Enzo from working on the site because he was breaking the conditions. 

Officers will now continue to work with the prospective developers to ensure that all conditions relating to the identification and remediation of land, and subsequent verification of such works, are complied with.

At this time NPTC Councillors were working with the developer to break the conditions. NPTC were ignoring reports by locals about this and only put the banning order on the developer after it was reported to the NPTC that they were tipping in the neighbouring county of Powys by the Powys Contaminated Land Officer.

These very serious allegations about the conduct of officers and councillors (of all political parties), both in the past and current, are clearly based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the role of the planning process on remediating contaminated land. They are without substance and they will be robustly defended. (a conclusion based upon the whitewashed information presented, 5 months later Councillor Rob Jones resigned after a recording was released in which he told stories of his exploits breaching council rules)



It would seem the council leader has released a generic denial of wrong doing, it has no value and is a waste of council tax payer's money, On the 7 September, 17 (seventeen) NPTC Councillors were supplied with this document that is specific and to the point and includes documentary evidence that NPTC Broke the Environmental Protection Act. The Council Leader has also been supplied with this document.


The document offers NPTC the opportunity to refute the allegations which the council leader has failed to do with his statement. Our allegation that Neath-Port Talbot Council broke the 1990 Environmental Protection Act still stands until contrary documentary evidence is supplied.

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