PLANS for a major re-development at Penygroes Ð including the provision of a new school, doctorÕs surgery and care home Ð are still on course, Llandybie community councillors have been told.

The claim came from local councillor Kevin Edwards during a discussion on whether a long-closed footpath across the former Emlyn Colliery Tip would soon be re-opened for members of the public.

Technical officer Brian James said the county councilÕs area footpaths officer had been told that re-development of the land would not take place for some time.

But Cllr Edwards maintained the landowners Ð who were party to a Section 106 agreement - did not want the footpath re-opened as clearance of the old colliery site could be starting Òwithin the next six weeksÓ.

He added: ÒThe landowners are still happy to build a new surgery there as was the case three years ago.

ÒMy understanding is that this re-development would include 97 houses, a new doctorÕs surgery, a new school and care home.

ÒBoth owners are not prepared to allow any access across there. They tell me they donÕt want the footpath to go ahead as they are worried about contaminated waste being dumped there.Ó And Cllr Edwards stated that health chiefs would prefer a new surgery at Penygroes rather than being based in Òthe monstrosity and nonsenseÓ of a health centre earmarked for Cross Hands.

But Cllr Peter Roberts argued that councillors had heard it all before. "We've been promised so much and been to numerous exhibitions in the past only to have been let down time and time again,Ó he told colleagues.

ÒConsidering that economic conditions are hardly conducive to building a major development such as this I think we should go ahead with this footpath.Ó And Cllr Llinos Hindley said the local authorityÕs footpaths officer was keen to see the right of way re-opened as it had been closed for so many years.

It was agreed to prepare a report for the councilÕs next meeting on June 29.