RCT Council Refuses to Provide Running Costs for Floodlights at Blaengwawr AstroTurf

RCT Council Refuses to Provide Running Costs for Floodlights at Blaengwawr AstroTurf

The Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT) Council has refused to disclose the running costs of one set of floodlights at the Blaengwawr AstroTurf, according to a recent Freedom of Information (FOI) request. AberdareOnline, a local news outlet, made the request in September 2022, asking for the cost of electricity for running the floodlights at the sports venue for the years 2018, 2020, and 2021. The RCT Council responded that the information could not be provided as it would exceed the appropriate limit and that the costs were not recorded separately but among other energy costs that the council had.

To difficult to determine the cost

The council claimed that hundreds of cost codes would need to be reviewed to manually extract the information for the three years specified, which would excessively exceed 18 hours. AberdareOnline argued that it was hard to believe that the floodlights did not have a separate electric meter, considering the Blaengwawr AstroTurf was a stand-alone unit. Moreover, the public interest in the matter was apparent, given the ongoing rise in council taxes and energy costs.

The council argued that the floodlights were physically switched on by the user group via a locked switch box and were set to go off automatically at the end of bookable sessions at 9 pm. However, the council also admitted that there had been an issue with the floodlights remaining on after 9 pm due to a timer issue when the clocks went back. AberdareOnline pointed out that this excuse did not justify the cost of operating four sets of floodlights well after midnight and the additional light pollution to existing development.

The Blaengwawr AstroTurf was built in 2018 as part of the RCT Council’s 14th 3G-pitch facility project, which aimed to provide residents access to a 3G facility within a 3-mile radius of wherever they live.

Reported the floodlights left on

AberdareOnline would add that it had reported the floodlights left on to the council numerous times after 11-30 PM. when the leader of the council goes on about the cost of energy and our council tax rising over 3% the council should be accountable for all their energy cost there’s no excuse.

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Team @ AberdareOnline

Team @ AberdareOnline

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