I was pleased to hear the announcements in Gordon Brownâ€™s Budget to provide full employment and reduce the tax burden on businesses and workers in the UK’s
poorest communities. Since Labour came to power in 1997, Pontypridd has seen a 74.8 percent reduction
in unemployment, and the New Deal is providing local businesses with the skilled workers they need to grow.
This Budget offers a unique opportunity to local businesses wanting to expand as well as young entrepreneurs with the enthusiasm to make a significant contribution to the local economy.
I call on the council not to waste this opportunity provided by the Budget and ensure that small businesses are able to make a big difference in the regeneration
Justin Fletcher of Morrisons was right to point out that the regeneration of Pontypridd could be better achieved by not concentrating on expanding food-retail.
The Morrisons proposal as an alternative to Teesland will be welcomed by everyone who uses Pontypridd often and want their heritage to remain.
However, although the position of the proposed Morrisons store could draw people towards Pontypridd, their renowned â€˜Market Streetâ€™ format could pull
trade and jobs away from the town.
Pontypriddâ€™s strength is that it is a market town â€“ something that even Cardiff is unable to offer â€“ and this needs to be built upon, not taken away.
Any new developments in or around Pontypridd should be to encourage growth, not threaten what is already provided at a high standard.