COUNCILLORS have slammed their own council for not telling them what was happening with plans for a Gypsy and Traveller transit site in the county.

As well as their complaint about a lack of transparency, members of Denbighshire County Council’s communities committee voted down a number of preferred sites.

Prior to the meeting on Thursday, October 24, the council revealed a list of possible locations for a proposed Gypsy and Traveller transit site. They included three in Rhuallt – near Holywell Road, the former school field and the B5429 – as well as two plots off Henllan Road on the outskirts of Denbigh.

Members of the communities committee, which oversees Local Development Plan decisions, were asked to comment on how the final site would be chosen, however they were angry about how they found out about the plans and what they said was a lack of consultation.

They also voted to ask the council to withdraw the list of sites, though the vote is not binding.

Upper Denbigh and Henllan county councillor Geraint Lloyd-Williams said there was poor communication to both councillors and nearby residents.

“These two sites have a tenant at the moment and that man rang me distraught, he knew nothing about it,” he said.

“Why was it just announced because it was going out to the press and the public? Why wasn’t he spoken to?”

Officers said that while they do consult with ward councillors they would not do so with tenants until a decision was made to avoid upset.

Cllr Glenn Swingler, who also represents the Upper Denbigh ward where the two plots were suggested, said he is “very disappointed” that there has been no consultation with Gypsy and Traveller groups themselves over the proposed location.

“It’s a transit site and you want to put it on the Denbigh to Henllan road which is way off the transit route,” he said. “They will not use that site.

“We’re going to go through a whole lot of work without consulting anybody. There has been no consultation on this at all.”

Tremeirchion county councillor, Christine Marston, whose ward includes the Rhuallt sites, said the village does not have the amenities or public services to cater for the nomadic communities.

“Rhuallt is a small rural community, it’s a village with no amenities, no shops, no doctors, no main sewage or gas,” she said. “Such services can be found in St Asaph or Rhuddlan.”

She added that, due to limited public transport and an oversubscribed local school, the transit site would prove “devastating” for the small community she represents.

Councillors voted to recommend that the sites be withdrawn when the issue comes before the Denbighshire County Council cabinet.