Demolition of former Pontllanfraith Comprehensive School delayed amid leisure centre uncertainty
News | Niall Griffiths - Local Democracy Reporting Service | Published: 10:10, Thursday January 3rd, 2019.
Demolition of the former Pontllanfraith Comprehensive School has been delayed with the local authority still considering the future of the site.
Contractors have agreed to Caerphilly County Borough Council’s request to hold off on their interest until the end of March 2019.
Pontllanfraith Comprehensive closed in 2016 and merged with Oakdale Comprehensive to form Islwyn High School, which opened last year.
Up to 165 homes have been earmarked for the 19-acre Pontllanfraith site, though this has also been put on hold amid uncertainty over the future of the leisure centre.
The facility is one of several in the borough that could close after plans to restructure leisure services were approved in November.
The sports and active recreation strategy has proven controversial, with residents, councillors and national politicians marching against the proposals prior to their approval.
Neighbourhood services cabinet member Councillor Nigel George, in response to a question from Independent councillor Kevin Etheridge, said no meetings have taken place in relation to the sale of the site.
“There have been a number of options discussed in relation to the development of a children’s centre on the lower part of the school site but to date no decision has been made,” he added.
Cllr Etheridge also enquired about the future of Cefn Fforest leisure centre, another facility at risk of closure under the new strategy.
During the consultation process it was revealed that a third party had expressed interest in taking over the running of the centre.
The council said it would be “commercially sensitive” to reveal the identity of the interested third party.
A meeting and site visit took place in September but Cllr George said: “As the future of Cefn Fforest leisure has not yet been discussed, then no further discussions have taken place with the third party at this stage.”