A protest to save a playing field at Pwll Coch primary school has gained significant support – after an eight-year-old boy wrote to Extinction Rebellion asking for help.
Flynn Dee told the environmental protest group the council decision to replace the field with a car park and an artificial football pitch was ‘insane’.
The field has been closed for several months after being deemed ‘contaminated’ by the council – but parents dispute this definition, arguing that if it can be decontaminated for the development, it could have been decontaminated for the children.
Extinction Rebellion told CJS News that Flynn’s protest was ‘inspiring’, adding that it was ‘sad that an eight year old is having to point out the issues that will affect him’.
Cardiff Council have yet to respond to requests for comment.
Before his letter, the number of complaints on the council website was just three; more than thirty have added their objections since.
Flynn’s mother, Jay Dee, says he was inspired to write after seeing an Extinction Rebellion sign when walking home from school.
“He said to me ‘the rebels will help us’” she said, “and when he said it there was real hope in his eyes.”
Flynn wants to be First Minister when he grows up, in order to make “better decisions”. He told CJS News: “when people grow up and go to Pwll Coch I will take away the car park and give back their cae [field].”
Jay Dee says the council has let the children down in presenting them with the plans.
“When they’re shown plans by the council to say this is the new facilities, they can see that there’s going to be new things – new pitches, new swimming pools – what they can’t see is that none of that is going to belong to them, they won’t have access to any of it.”
The parents are not against the development of Fitzalan High. They are simply asking for a ‘more sympathetic approach’.
Extinction Rebellion told CJS News they support the protest: “we don’t oppose the updating of Fitzalan School, there are simply better ways to do things”.
The complaints to the council can be found at https://planningonline.cardiff.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=neighbourComments&keyVal=_CARDIFF_DCAPR_129880&neighbourCommentsPager.page=1