A SPECIAL meeting could be arranged to update councillors on plans to redevelop what has been described as the largest tremaining site of industrial dereliction in South Wales.
The British, in Talywain, near Pontypool is a former 19th century ironworks site where private coal mining also took place until the 1980s.
In October last year Torfaen Borough Council granted Welsh development firm Idris the rights to explore the potential of the site for energy production, including from the water courses, to restore historic buildings and develop businesses such as salmon and indoor farming.
Idris is financing its works at the site, while the council has £7.9 million available for the regeneration at present, which includes £3.2 million of its own funds, £1.7 million from a Welsh Government grant and a further £2.9 million from the Welsh Government’s European funded rural development programme.
Council leader Anthony Hunt said he was “happy to update” members on the British site and suggested the special meeting after being questioned about it by Llantarnam independent member David Thomas.
Cllr Thomas said the council had “spent a lot of money at the British to little to show for it”. He asked: “When will Torfaen residents see any tangible benefits?”
The councillor had originally asked the council’s Labour leader if he could “elaborate” on why, at February’s meeting, he said he didn’t believe £259,000 spent on a failed solar farm project at the Ty Coch landfill site had been “wasted”.
Cllr Hunt said though the solar farm project couldn’t go ahead the council had still learnt more about the ground conditions and site’s energy generation capabilities.