AFAN LIDO campaigners have made their final case in front of a crowded public meeting at the Four Winds.
This is the last public meeting they will hold before they hand in a petition containing thousands of signatures to Neath Port Talbot Council’s consultation on the rebuild of the leisure centre.
Local councillors Ted Latham, Suzanne Paddison and Marian Lewis were among the audience, as well as assembly member David Rees and a representative of Aberavon MP Hywel Francis.
The campaign committee said they had more than 5,500 signatures on their petition and were planning to make a presentation of their submission at 12pm on Tuesday 17 July at the Civic Centre in Port Talbot.
They are also offering template letters that people can send to councillors, and will be collecting completed letters and petition sheets at the Aberavon Lifeguard Club on Sunday at 12pm.
The message of the meeting was that local people must contact their local councillors to make their opinions known.
David Rees AM said: “The meeting reiterated views previously expressed and the message once again is clear and loud for a fit-for-purpose and flexible facility for the people of Port Talbot. Feelings of local people are strong and those are now being conveyed to the local authority via the councillors here tonight.”
Meanwhile, David Rees and Hywel Francis put out a joint statement earlier this week, urging locals to put their proposals forward to the consultation by the 18 July deadline.
They said: “We are confident that the consultation on the new Afan Lido will bear fruit. We are pleased that the consultation has been extended and that the Local Authority welcomes constructive proposals.
“As elected representatives for the constituency we want to achieve a new facility which would be fit for purpose to enhance health, sport and leisure for all of our local communities, serving young and old, able bodied and disabled. We are particularly interested in how disabled users can achieve access to all facilities and how strategic partnerships can be developed with the NHS.
“We express the hope that we should learn from new provision in other parts of Wales which focus strategically on the health and educational opportunities provided by their sport and leisure provision.
“We are confident that the Local Authority, given its excellent record in investing in the town, will work with the local community and build a new Afan Lido fit for the twenty-first century.”
A council spokesman refused to comment on the campaign and response to the consultation so far. He said: “The consultation continues to 18 July and the Council will then reflect on the comments received in framing advice to Members.”