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Aberfan Memorial

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As the Uk geocaching community are a caring group, I hope our reviewers wont mind me mentioning this petition.


Originally Posted by Louis MacNeice

Posted on from the IWCA e-group

Reposted by denise at Motorhome Facts

reposted By George on ukcampsite


"At 9.15am on October 21st 1966 144 people died when a coal tip collapsed onto a primary school in Aberfan, South Wales. 116 of the victims were children. The pictures from the time were truly horrifying. After the disaster the people of Coventry paid for a memorial playground to be built as a lasting memorial to the dead.


Now, the disgraceful Merthyr Housing Association plan to destroy the playground to build a new housing development.


An online petition to stop this development has been launched at



It's worth not only signing the petition but also reading the comments of the more than 3,500 people who have already done so.

It's good to know that not everybody has the expedient gold fish memories which the Housing Association seem to be endowed with.


Cheers - Louis Mac"


I was only 5yrs old when this happened, and even now it still brings tears to my eyes.



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Job done. As someone who deals with councils on a Heritage level I can well believe this plan and I don't suppose they have 'any' shame or even considered what it would mean to the people of the village, the whole of Wales or indeed the UK.


You have to remember that many of the people on these councils and committees have absolutely no soul.


You only have to look at what Derby City Council has done to our city since the 1960's!



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I can only say "a big thank you" to everyone who has signed up to now. Having lived, and now living in a small community, I can understand what impact the accident had, not just on the family's who lost someone but the whole community which would have been ripped apart in a way that a large city would not feel. For them to want to destroy the heart of the community again is unbelievable.


Dave :anitongue:

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Nice petition... but that isn't enough. A whole web site rallying the local people of your area would be a LOT better. Organize, contact the media, use the site for lastest information, sucesses, struggles, etc. It would give your cause a lot more attention and importance and give the public a central place to rally around and to get info on what to do next to protect the memorial.

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More info can be found here

I am very glad that Dave has drawn this to the Geocaching community's attention as, if at first sight the proposals are as damning as everyone seems to think, it is a matter of concern. But I am concerned that so many of my friends have signed the petition without apparently considering the facts and so am glad that Lost in Space has given us this link.

As I see it the proposals are from the Housing Association in response to the Council's request for consideration of the needs of the community and the evidence so far seems to suggest that the playground is underused by the children for whom it was intended and is being abused as so many are. If so it may not any longer be an effective memorial and the people of Coventry who provided it may think it better for the land to be used to provide for the elderly. If they had survived, the victims of that disaster would themselves now be much nearer to the dreadful definition of "elderly" than children.

Please don't think me unsympathetic to the reaction of those who support the petition as I still remember my own tears when the news came through, our elder daughter was only 6 months old at the time and it hit hard.

But times move on. Of course a memorial must be incorporated in any proposals but if, as may be the case, the playground is not needed as such, restoration to its former glory as proposed in the petition would not be the best answer as in a few years we would be back where we are now.

There are many precedents for memorials to be changed in character for example memorial hospitals have outlived their usefulness and been redeveloped, e.g. GC49CE.

Airing of opinions in the petition and on this forum should help the Association and Council to be sympathetic to the feelings of contributors and result in a final decision which is in the best interests of the community and still remembers the people who died and were injured. Sadly the use of emotive and dismissive expressions may reduce the effectiveness of the petition.

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Considering that one of the articles states that it is not used for what it was created for, due to anti social behavior have a look at this Article and the links on the right to other articles, which mention the opinions of local residents. Depending on which side is interviewed, conflicting information and opinions is given. What is not disputed is that, the people of Coventry, not one of the richest towns in the UK (and I'm not putting them down with this statement) raised what at the time was a considerable amount of money for this playground, no one seems bothered to ask them what they think of the proposals. The reason it is run down is due to the local council, having to prioritise money, with children's playgrounds, receiving non (this was prevalent all over the country, I used to work for a council who removed several due to no money to maintain them), the problem is then that they have no facility's were they can safely occupy themselves, resulting in even more anti social behavior. Sorry to rant like this, but having previously lived on several large council estates, were there was no facility for younger children, whilst teenagers had youth clubs and such, to hear of another playground disappearing upsets me.



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Agreed Lost in Space and just a last word on it for anyone 'worried' about signing the petition - is everyone willing to let the council do what they want because they claim that they do not have the money for the upkeep. Many councils purposely 'run down' areas, buildings and facilities in order that they can sell them on for development.


Roll over and let them do it or stand and fight - your choice.


Bringing this back onto topic I am still waiting for a response from Derby City Council and Derbyshire ounty Council for a 'Geocaching Policy'. I put the first request in in March this year - I now have all the decision makers names but everytime I speak to them it is to be discussed in another forum or with other officers, etc... Also known as BS!


Roll over and let them do it or stand and fight - your choice.

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Thank you Dave and Lost in Space for drawing attention to the articles to which they referred.

I do not in any way criticise anyone for signing the petition as hopefully it will add to the depth on the enquiries being made by the Association and Council and I do share Dave's lack of trust in elected bodies but decisions are often made on inadequate supply of information.

Maybe increased investment in the playground would be effective, maybe not.

Some residents cite anti social behaviour, others say there is none. I don't know the answers but hope that those responsible for seeking them will obtain and weigh all the facts and get it right.

I would also echo Lost in Space's view that this has gone far enough in this forum.

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As the starter of this topic, my aim was just to bring it to everyones attention. I am gobsmaked at the amount of well thought out debate that it has created, but feel it is now time to close this thread off. Anyone who wishes to sign the petition, please feel free to do so, even though this thread is closed. And finaly a big thankyou to everyone who has posted a message or signed the pettion!



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