Return the Hood Road field to use for events

Until it was closed to events by the Vale Council I had never appreciated the importance of the grass area at Hood Road for events.

It is an ideal events field, being located with easy parking, with the Barry Tourist Railway halt, and across the road from Barry`s largest hotel.

The Vale Council should reassess its plans for the field, and re-open the site to events in time for events planners to make use of it next season. This DOES NOT mean think about it and then act next year, as by then Barry will have lost the events which could have been sited here.

The 'events area' at Barry Island is not suitable for all events, and the 'no food / drink' rule limits the revenue potential for events organisers - and encourages visitors to leave events quickly.

Toilets should be provided at the Hood Road site, and it reopened now - so planning for next years events can begin.

Remember - there are plenty of suitable locations in Cardiff for events that could take place in Barry........
edited on Sep 3, 2013 by Ade Pitman

Barry Ideas Bank Sep 3, 2013

As I understand it from your experience with the Barry at War Weekend you had an historic steam train leaving a very busy and action-packed Barry Island station and the train went to...an empty field.

Your experience raises the significance of the Hood Road site (it's the grass area where the Waterfront and Reggae Festivals were held - opposite the new Premier Inn Hotel) but also the need for Barry to retain, by its fingertips, a strategy for ensuring its worldwide reputation and associations with trains - I kid you not having met people as far afield as Perth in Australia and Jo'burg in South Africa - and they know Barry by its steam train heritage.

There is no point having an historic train yard if there is nowhere for the trains to run to.

Also, is the Vale of Glamorgan Council guilty of driving its policy of making its new Events area on Nells Point as the only site for activities, when feedback from local residents and event organizers, along with the experience of the very successful Open Air Film events and the Knapp Festival organised by Glyn Pooley, show that successful events are helped by being close to traders and facilities, and in locations that are not too exposed: qualities not possesed by the new Events area site.

So, should the Hood Road site be kept - and made available for events?
What alternative uses of the site are there?
Does the Vale of Glamorgan Council need to be less protective about its plans for 'Event sites' at Barry Island and allow for a number of other locations?
Does Barry need a strategy to protect its steam train heritage with a train line that takes people from one point of interest to another?
What do you think?

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Ade Pitman Sep 3, 2013

The Vale has a strategy? I`m sure General Hague had one for the Somme too - and we know how that ended. (56,000 British casulties in one day of fighting).

As Events Organiser of one of Barry`s major events, which incidently was NOT supported in any way by the Vale Council this year - not even in their 'Whats on this summer at Barry Island' marketing campaign, I wrote to the paper in March suggesting that they ask events organisers what they need - rather than try to impose it on them.

Barry Wartime Weekend will never be able to happen at the so called events area, as it is totally unsuitable for our needs. Can you imagine what would happen with our centre-piece Spitfire were the wind to pick up, Replica or not, it would take off.

Barry is perfect for attracting Heritage Tourism, and it`s location next to Cardiff is a huge benefit.

The Tourist Railway could easily link from a world class heritage centre located at the Pump House, to the beach. Accomodation is right on site at the Premier Inn, and with the proper support an event could take place at Hood Road field every weekend throughout the summer.

Add to that the train heritage, and the Gavin & Stacey effect - then why would NOT visit Barry?

Agreed, this won`t happen all at once - but let us not loose the opportunity for lack of vision.

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