MUMBLES Community Council has thrown its hat in the ring to take over a prime slice of Langland.
Councillors voted in favour of a proposal by council vice-chairman Will Thomas to submit an expression of interest in the three tennis courts nearest Alma Road and the adjacent public toilets.
Swansea Council owns the land but has been encouraging bids from third parties to take it over. Council chiefs want any development to provide leisure and public toilet facilities and to be sympathetic to the environment.
Mumbles Community Council submitted its bid just before the deadline on Friday, February 12.
Cllr Thomas, who is also a Swansea councillor representing Langland, said the community council was keen to improve the appearance of the area and prioritise benefits for local people and visitors.
He said he envisaged upgrading the toilets, installing new seating, and potentially providing new sports facilities – for example, a basketball area, volleyball area, or paddle tennis court.
“Someone has mentioned a yoga studio – that could be a really good idea, but that would come out in a consultation,” he said.
Cllr Thomas said the community council would see what the county council’s response was to the expression of interest before a consultation and more detailed proposal was potentially explored.
Swansea Council envisages potential uses such as a restaurant, café, shop, gallery, training centre, gym and sports facility.
Money raised through a lease, it said, would be reinvested in council services.
The planning process would have to be followed, and no permanently occupied housing would be permitted.
“Any scheme must be top class and those operating it will be required to provide, run and maintain new public toilets,” said a section about Langland on Swansea Council’s website.
There are six tennis courts at Langland, and Swansea Council is handing three of them over to the community council, which will refurbish them.
Many people in the area want four tennis courts to remain there and have signed a petition calling for one of the tennis courts in the development site to be protected.
Swansea Council said its initial dialogue with the community council included the transfer of four, not three courts, but cabinet members decided it was prudent to include an extra court within the advertised area for potential development to maximise all opportunities. It may be that this extra court is not used in any scheme.
The county council said the tennis courts were under-used and cost more money to staff and maintain than income received.