- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Owners of a popular Gwynedd campsite and a neighbouring aviation business are being urged by Welsh government to reach an ‘amicable arrangement’ over emergency vehicle access.
At high tide, twice a day, the only route to Shell Island, also known as Mochras, is via Llanbedr Airfield. For more than 50 years, an arrangement to grant emergency access to the peninsular was upheld. Since last April, however, emergency services have had to call a mobile telephone number issued by Snowdonia Aerospace LLP, tenant of the government-owned site. The campsite’s owners say the new arrangement endangers visitors and puts at risk the future of their business.
An online petition calling on the Welsh Government to guarantee emergency access to Shell Island has been signed by more than 30,000 people. At the Senedd this afternoon, Mrs Watson greeted campaign representatives Edmund Bailey, Richard Workman and George Workman.
Speaking at Assembly question time yesterday (6 Feb), the Labour Mid and West Wales member called on the government to mediate. She said:
“I want to call very briefly for two statements. The first is from the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport on emergency vehicle access to Shell Island campsite via Llanbedr airfield. Emergency vehicles have had high-tide access through the Government-owned airfield for more than 50 years, but the tenant, Snowdonia Aerospace LLP, has not guaranteed long-term continued access, putting the future of that business in jeopardy.
“I think that where we own land and where we sublet it, we are mindful that the two businesses, in this case, operating either side of that are able to communicate and carry on to the benefit of those communities.”
Answering on behalf of the government, Leader of the House Julie James AM replied:
“We are aware of the emergency services access issues in relation to Shell Island during periods of high tides especially. It is a matter for the directors of Shell Island to pursue discussions with Snowdonia Aerospace directly to reach amicable arrangements, and we are encouraging both parties to explore all the options available to seek solutions that work for everyone concerned. I’m sure the Member has made her concerns very clear as well.”