A protest has been held in a Rhondda town in a bid to tackle a long-standing eyesore.
People gathered outside the Gordon Hotel – later known as the Embassy Bar – in Gelli to demonstrate about its’ continued decline and blight on the local community. The building has been vacant for more than a decade and has deteriorated rapidly in the years of neglect that have followed.
A petition has also been started calling for the building to be brought back into use or, if that is not possible, to demolish it because of concerns over its safety.
Ystrad councillor Larraine Jones said she recently received news that there was interest in the building from a potential buyer. “If this is true, and the building is bought, it is fantastic news,” said councillor Jones. “I hope this is not yet another false dawn and that if it is bought, then I hope someone acts quickly to safeguard the building.
“People in Gelli are sick and tired of putting up with this eyesore. Plaid Cymru will continue to keep a close eye on the situation and be ready to campaign with local residents on this matter.”
Fellow Ystrad councillor Elyn Stephens said: “The council has already spent money securing The Gordon at mine and Larraine’s request. I hope there will now be positive plans because it is an interesting building that could be put to good use rather than knocking it down.
“It’s one of the biggest issues that people have approached us with since before we were elected so it would be nice to see a satisfactory conclusion.”
Rhondda AM Leanne Wood said: “The issue affecting the community of Gelli is not unusual in the Rhondda. There are many buildings that are derelict and have become a blight on the landscape.
“Some of these buildings are now sadly beyond repair and need to be demolished on safety grounds. Others buildings are not so far gone and can be saved and preserved for future generations to enjoy.
“People want the council to be more proactive in safeguarding those buildings that can be brought back from the brink and making safe those that unfortunately have to be demolished.
“I am calling upon RCT council to take a positive step and review all the derelict buildings in the county borough to see what can be done to make our communities a more attractive and safer place in which to live.”
If you agree with Leanne, please click this link to get involved with Plaid Cymru.