THE people of Llanelli continue to be treated with utter contempt by the owners of the Stradey Park Hotel.
That’s the view of the Furnace Action Committee, the group of volunteers set up to oppose the plan to house asylum seekers at the four-star hotel and spa.
“The arrogance of the hotel owners is astonishing,” Furnace Action Committee spokesman Robert Lloyd said.
“As we understand it, Stradey Park Hotel owners Gryphon Leisure Ltd (part of Sterling Woodrow) still have control of the site and have their own security team on site and are also using contractors to make changes to the interior of the hotel.
“Over the course of the last few weeks, we have witnessed a wholesale clear-out of beds and other furniture.
“Four-star quality double beds have simply been skipped. We have also seen baby highchairs heading for the dump.
Pics. Screenshot https://www.stradeyparkhotel.com/
“This action just reflects the contempt the owners have for the people of Llanelli.
“If they wanted to make any attempt to engage with the local community of Furnace and Llanelli, they could have made something of a peace offering by allowing local charities to collect and recycle furniture for needy families in the area.
“Instead, they are happy to scrap perfectly good furniture in the name of their craven pursuit for profit.
“Double beds are being replaced with single beds, so what does that tell you about the claimed plans to be using the hotel to house ‘families’.
“By definition, families also include children, so why scrap highchairs?
“The scrapping of such furniture is both puzzling and annoying.
“Plainly it is a waste of money, but they probably don’t care as, ultimately, the taxpayer will be footing the bill for the refurbishment of the hotel.
“It is a very cavalier way to behave and just another two fingers up to the community of Furnace and Llanelli.”
Meanwhile, Furnace Action Committee members are unhappy about the so-called public consultation exercise, a video presentation which went live online on August 22.
“It was all a farce,” said Mr Lloyd. “We had representatives of the Home Office, Clearsprings Ready Homes (who will operate the proposed asylum seeker site), the charity Migrant Help, and representatives of Dyfed-Powys Police and Carmarthenshire County Council.
“The only person who spoke any sense was Carmarthenshire County Council deputy chief executive Jake Morgan, who (while accepting the authority’s statutory responsibilities) reiterated the council’s continued opposition to the plan to use the Stradey Park Hotel.
“The ‘consultation’, organised by the Welsh Local Government Association, was nothing more than a ‘box-ticking exercise. They picked the questions they wanted to answer, many residents failed to get online to hear the speeches and there was no opportunity to open the debate for public discussion.
“Surprise, surprise, the recording of what was little more than a public information propaganda broadcast has now been deleted from YouTube.
“When we tried to contact the email address linked to the broadcast, the response we got was – ‘This inbox is now closed and is no longer being monitored. If you have any specific queries about asylum accommodation or support, please contact WSMPComms@wlga.gov.uk’
“So much for consultation, eh? It appears that consultation has a limited shelf life when it comes to the plan for the Stradey Park Hotel.”