Packed meeting supports Bailey Hill

Over 50 people attended a meeting last night on the future of Bailey Hill, to find out more about the exciting plans to improve Mold’s Norman Motte and Bailey, and a possible grant for the work through a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) application.

The plans were presented by Claire Halestrap, Harrison Design and Development, who was involved with the public consultations and produced the outline scheme of improvements and management for Bailey Hill. Claire answered questions from people at the meeting on many topics including access to the site, impact on residents with increased visitor numbers, selectively removing some of the trees, the natural play area and where it should be sited, minimising disturbances to wildlife, and improved signing for the public car park.

She stressed that as Bailey Hill has Scheduled Ancient Monument status any changes would need the full approval of CADW (the Welsh Government’s historic environment service).

The application to HLF is being led by Sophie Fish of Flintshire County Council (FCC). She has worked on other successful HLF projects. Sophie explained to the packed meeting the stages and timescales that the Bailey Hill application would go through. Applications to HLF of under £1 million require five percent match funding and this would have to be sourced from other grant giving organizations, businesses and public donations as FCC is unable to provide the match funding.

Sophie said that HLF want to see community involvement and long-term commitment to the Bailey Hill improvements and a ‘Friends of Bailey Hill’ group could be formed to take this forward.

Robin Guest, Mayor of Mold, who chaired the meeting emphasized that this was a community project and it was through Mold Town Council and Cittaslow Mold working with FCC that we had got to this stage. Now a step up was needed and members of the public, and local businesses were invited to form the ‘Friends of Bailey Hill’ group to take this exciting project forward. Mold Town Council would provide support to the Friends group and if Stage One of the HLF application was successful an officer could be employed to work with the Friends on the Stage Two development and delivery phases.

He added that Bailey Hill has suffered from years of decline and under investment but that the proposed scheme gave us the opportunity to reverse this and make the Hill an attractive destination and asset for the people of Mold and visitors to the Town. This could only be done with the support of people willing to get behind the scheme, join the Friends group and help to make the HLF application successful.

The first meeting to set up the ‘Friends of Bailey Hill’ will be on Tuesday 18 March at 7pm, and if you would like to be involved please contact Samantha Roberts, Mold Town Clerk, on 01352 758532 or email her at townclerk@moldtowncouncil.org.uk

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