Monday, May 22, 2017

Protection racket Racket protection

Since moving back to Cardiff, I've been loudly and regularly lamenting the plight of the city's gig venues and Womanby Street as a whole - so it's only fitting that positive developments should be shouted from the rooftops.

On Friday afternoon, it was announced that Lesley Griffiths, Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural Affairs in the Welsh Government, has agreed to revise the national planning policy so that it makes explicit reference to the agent of change principle. This puts the onus for soundproofing and noise reduction onto new developments rather than pre-existing venues. It's good news for Fuel, though sadly ten years too late for the Point.

What's more, Griffiths has said that the policy will also be updated to make it possible for places like Womanby Street to be given protected status as areas of cultural significance for music.

Needless to say, news of the two revisions has come as music to the ears of those behind the Save Womanby Street campaign, which was explicitly named by Griffiths as a factor in the decision. It just goes to show that sometimes the weight of public opinion and the power of well-coordinated and passionate protest can prevail.

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