Plans by a London firm to build new holiday homes and a marina in a conservation area on Ynys Môn are being compared to the drowning of Capel Celyn near Bala in 1965.

"Tryweryn Môn" is what Councillor Bob Llewelyn Jones is calling the threat to Newry beach and promenade near Holyhead.

Conygar Investment Company PLC - known as Conygar Holyhead Limited - has submitted a new planning application to Ynys Môn Council, for what the company describes as the 'Holyhead Waterfront Regeneration Scheme'.

The National Wales: Views of Newry beach from Mackenzie beach on Ynys Môn on Views of Newry beach from Mackenzie beach on Ynys Môn on

The National Wales: An artist's impression of the proposed development. Source: Ynys Môn Council & Conygar LtdAn artist's impression of the proposed development. Source: Ynys Môn Council & Conygar Ltd

The original planning application, which was granted in 2014, ran out in February 2021.

But according to Coun. Llewelyn Jones, who represents the Parc and Mynydd ward, Conygar's new bid is "worse than the one they had previously put in".

“In the first one they promised to build a hotel (and create work) but that has now disappeared. The whole story is a disgrace, to be honest. Newry Beach is so beautiful – it’s a conservation area," said Coun Llewelyn Jones.

The National Wales: Newry BeachNewry Beach

There is no date as yet for the new application to be discussed by the council’s Planning Committee.

"But it's coming soon I'm sure," said Coun. Llewelyn Jones, who has opposed the scheme since it was first introduced eight years ago.

"Conygar wants to build some 300 apartments - holiday homes and so forth - on the beach,” said the councillor.

The National Wales: An artist's impression of the proposed development. Source: Ynys Môn Council & ConygarAn artist's impression of the proposed development. Source: Ynys Môn Council & Conygar

And while 5,000 people had signed a petition opposing the original plan, Coun. Llewelyn Jones said: "officers gave permission that was completely against what local people wanted.

“This is similar to Tryweryn, but as everyone knows, Liverpool and the Westminster government gave that permission.

“Well this is Môn’s Tryweryn, in that they have let local people down and given permission for all these flats to be built. ”

The National Wales: Campaigners protesting near the beachCampaigners protesting near the beach

Terry Looker is a member of the Save Newry Beach campaign group, which has presented Ynys Môn Council with a 120 page document opposing Conygar's plans.

He says campaigners have asked to speak at the Planning Committee meeting when the new application is eventually discussed.

"That's what we're waiting for now," said Terry Looker. "We're focusing our efforts on persuading the Council to reject this application."

The people of Holyhead and visitors to the area get great satisfaction from using Newry beach. While wheelchair users regularly use the promenade, Mr Looker said.

"If this scheme goes ahead then we won't have a beach to sit on and have a picnic.

“There will be no paddling or anywhere to go crabbing. And this is important - many people living in deprived communities in Holyhead can't afford to pay to take the bus to the nearby beach at Trearddur. ”

If Conygar's planning application goes ahead, Terry Looker argues: "Then there will just be concrete and a marina - and building another marina in Holyhead is crazy."

According to Mr Looker: "Conygar only wants to get this planning permission in order to build a block of flats.

"Developers all over the world use marinas as a Trojan Horse to build luxury apartments.”

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Mr Looker argues that Holyhead doesn't need another marina and expensive apartments that are unaffordable for local people.

"There are four blocks of flats on the other side of Holyhead - at Trinity Court - overlooking the marina there,” he said. “They were built in 2007 and it took them a long time to sell those flats.

“Many of them have only recently been sold, and cheaply, because the developer went bust."

Councillor Keith Roberts is a member of Holyhead Town Council and used to represent the area before the boundaries changed. He was also brought up in a house overlooking Newry Beach, he said: "Whatever is developed there has to be in tune with the area and must make good jobs available for local people without destroying the environment. Care needs to be taken over that.”

Are there any concerns locally about losing access to the beach etc if Conygar were to secure planning permission?

Coun. Roberts said: "There is only one way for vehicles to get in and out of Newry without going through the town of Holyhead itself. And in terms of construction, that would lead to an increase in traffic in a residential area.

“Therefore, traffic flow is a big and important issue, and how to manage that in the long term would have to be worked out.”

The National Wales: An artist's impression of the proposed development. Source: Ynys Môn & ConygarAn artist's impression of the proposed development. Source: Ynys Môn & Conygar

Councillor Glyn Haynes also represents the Parc and Mynydd ward on Ynys Môn County Council. As vice chairman of the Planning Committee, he was careful not to disclose his opinion before the matter was formally discussed.

But in terms of his constituents, he said, there are "mixed" feelings about Conygar's planning application.

"I've talked to a lot of people about this,” said Coun. Haynes. “Those who live there (Newry beach) are mostly against it, but not everyone is. And many - but not all - young people would welcome the development.”

Our sister title, Corgi Cymru, has approached Conygar for comment.

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