Unfortunately for the residents of Saundersfoot, February has been a really wet month causing problems in our village. I received a phone call early one Saturday morning to inform me that the small tunnel, heading to Coppet Hall, had experienced a new rock fall with stones and debris falling onto the path. Some of these stones would have caused considerable damage if they had landed on pedestrians. The landslip was in a property at the end of the Strand and the railings installed by the occupier certainly prevented the path being totally blocked.  When I saw the damage I immediately reported the incident to Pembrokeshire County Council. Along with Cllr. Cormack I waited on site to warn pedestrians of the dangers of falling rocks. The team that came out immediately to observe saw that small debris was falling onto the path and they assisted by warning individuals of the dangers. We waited for a PCC supervisor who immediately closed the tunnel due to safety concerns and the fact that heavy rain was expected over the next few days.  On Monday morning the structural officer examined the site and spoke with the owner of the adjoining property on how the tunnel could safely be opened. The owners of the property fully engaged and proceeded to clean away loose material. They hired a machine to assist with the work as it wouldn’t have been possible to do otherwise. A considerable amount of loose material was removed from the cliff face to make the area safe. This went on for three days and the PCC structural engineer was then satisfied that the path could now be opened to the public. I would like to thank the owners of Craig Y Mor for their support and making sure that this tunnel could be opened as soon as possible and that all safety measures had been taken into account.  I would stress that this could have been opened sooner if certain individuals hadn’t ignored the safety signs and moved the barriers to gain access. The frustration is that they not only put themselves at harm but others who followed behind as the barriers were moved. Having spoken with the owner, it was said that this took longer than expected as they had numerous individuals walking through and when they were clearing away large rocks from the cliff face, they then had to check the path was clear. The signs are in place to protect pedestrians and to warn them of rock falls. No one wants to see the tunnels out of action and everyone involved in this recent slip did everything possible to get this reopened as soon as safely possible.

During the start of February I received numerous calls regarding the leaking water at Brooklands Place. On inspection the water was clear and the path was underwater, making it very difficult to navigate to and from the village. I spoke with residents who had explained that this had been leaking for a while but was getting worse. I spoke with NRW along with Welsh Water. They completed the works within the week and even improved the path for pedestrians that had been damaged due to the amount of water leaking. Since then the path has remained open and no further leaks have been reported.

During February I received a call from a landowner with concerns that numerous vehicles had ended up in his field off the Fan Road. As a local resident I have known many vehicles, over the years, to end up in this field. With that in mind the current speed limit on this stretch of road is 60mph and Councillor Cormack and I have pushed with Pembrokeshire County Council that this stretch of road should be 40mph. This road then proceeds along to the Ridgeway that is currently 20mph and Alec and I feel that this buffer zone should be 40mph and this is at consultation process currently.  I also feel that having additional chevron signs as you turn into Fan Road will assist along with a small bank and hedge on the left hand side of the roadside where there are clear gaps between the road and field. This wouldn’t result in any cost to PCC as the earth is already on site and would have costs if it were transported off site, as the development of the active travel link continues. I personally see the benefits of improving this stretch and I facilitated a meeting with the landowner and the Highways engineer to look at improving safety. I’m happy to report that everyone was in agreement and hopefully this will be implemented over the coming months.

I was invited to attend a meeting held at the Regency Hall for Saundersfoot in Bloom. The meeting was to plan for the fact that Saundersfoot will represent Wales in the small coastal category in Britain in Bloom 2024. One of the main aims of Britain in Bloom is to create long term environmental improvement with involvement from as wide a section of the community as possible. The August Flower Festival at St Issell’s is an excellent example of locals working together. I will say more about this in future reports but everyone is invited to become a volunteer to help our village. The Council has already pledged support and I hope PCC will also look favourably on Saundersfoot in Bloom’s application for an Enhancement grant.

Since November I have had numerous calls regarding the coastal path between Coppet Hall and Wisemans Bridge. During this time I have always tried to keep the residents updated on news and I will continue to do so. During this month I was invited to a meeting with various members of PCC, Highways and Engineers, along with Welsh Government staff, to walk around Saundersfoot. The WG staff entered Saundersfoot via the train station and proceeded to walk to the village to look at one of the projects that they have helped fund. This was an insight for them to understand the need to have access available for all abilities from the station to the village. They observed that the new path was much needed and will significantly improve safety for pedestrians. We also visited the newly constructed path between Stammers Road and St. Bride’s Lane and the added benefits to the local residents and anyone using this newly laid path. Whilst in the village we walked to Coppet Hall and observed the upper coastal path to Wisemans Bridge. This is the only safe path used currently but is very challenging. I stated that this isn’t suitable for many disability groups and that the village is desperately missing the main coastal path. This path is used by almost half a million people over a calendar year and the benefits to the wider community are massive. The wellbeing of this path gets people out and about and the fact that’s its accessible for all is a great attraction. Our magnificent coastline is part of the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path. Alec and I expressed its importance for local businesses and residents who rely on this daily. Wisemans Bridge, Coppet Hall and Saundersfoot all rely on this footfall and I’m extremely pleased to see Pembrokeshire County Council doing everything possible in getting this opened up, subject to safety measure being passed. I have asked PCC to fix secure gates in the long tunnel so this can’t be used over the coming months. I have had numerous reports of people climbing up the rock fall, moving the barriers and accessing the main tunnel to Wisemans Bridge. I have also had reports of individuals being abused and told to mind their own business. This isn’t acceptable and, with that in mind, I held a meeting with the local PCSOs at the Regency Hall and highlighted my concerns. They have agreed to look into covering this area more frequently with the intention of warning individuals who ignore the signs that are there to help them. Below is an update that I received last week.

Pembrokeshire County Council has been given the go ahead to bid for Welsh Government funding to repair and reopen the recently closed Wiseman’s Bridge to Saundersfoot path.  Following landslips in November, December and, most recently, February, along the Wiseman’s Bridge to Saundersfoot section of the National Cycle Route 4, it had to be closed on safety grounds.   Pembrokeshire County Council understands the concern among residents about local access and that a plan is needed to address the issue with landslides attributed to heavy rainfall over recent months.  The route also forms part of the National Cycle Network Route 4, and is one of the longest in the UK.  Annual visitors along the route totalled 481,684 in 2023 and was vital in supporting the local economy within Saundersfoot. 

The Council has been working closely with Welsh Government, and the Active Travel Board to submit a bid application for funding works to restore the link.  There was a recent visit to Saundersfoot to view walking and cycling routes within the village, along with the landslide area.  The go ahead to bid for Welsh Government funding within the Active Travel scheme to help cover the cost of the remedial work required has been given and funding applications have been submitted.  This will include not only clearing the area, but to also undertake engineering safety works to re-stabilise the cliff in the affected areas.  A programme of works has been submitted to support the plans, which could enable the pathway to be reopened within the current year.  In conjunction with Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority (PCNPA), a second funding application has been submitted via the National Parks Partnership Cycling Projects Fund.   It is hoped that sufficient funding will be provided through these two streams to undertake all the works necessary to finance the scheme, and the route can be reopened and made safe for all users.   In the meantime, there is continued risk of further rock falls and the public is asked to respect the closure of the path and avoid the area.

During February there were a few minor issues I had to deal with in my role as County Councillor. It was brought to my attention that some of the lights in the small tunnel at the end of the Stand weren’t working. This was reported to PCC and within 3 days the lights were fixed and all working fine.

Previously I had reported that there were many drains in and around our village that were blocked, many of those were on the Strand at the top of the slipway and one in particular at the taxi rank on Milford Street. I met the team on site and watched as they operated the machine to clear the drains. They fill up with sand, cigarette butts and leaves which, if left, can cause flooding onto the road. Whilst in the village last week the team cleared out the majority of the drains and if any residents have others that need attention, then please make me aware of them.

Whilst in the village recently I met the Highways engineer and pointed out that the new disabled bay on Milford Street was working well and it was great to receive positive feedback from local residents who had been using the bay. I also highlighted my concern that originally it was agreed that the bay would have a 2 hour restriction in force to assist as many disabled drivers and users as possible to use this parking bay. It was agreed that the signage is wrong and he would look into making this a 2 hour restriction. This wouldn’t help users if there were cars parked constantly in the bays.

It was also brought to my attention that garden waste was being fly tipped at the Plantation, off Sandyhill Road. I met a local resident who walked me through the Plantation woods and highlighted blatant fly tipping from a neighboring property. I visited the property and you could clearly see where the cuttings came from. I then spoke with the owner who was made aware of my concerns and promised that it would be removed this week. Unfortunately incidents like this attract fly tipping so it’s nice when we solve an issue immediately and hopefully this will discourage other neighboring properties doing the same.

There was an issue with the pavement laid two years ago on Milford Street. After talking with local residents and businesses it was agreed that this would be changed back to its previous design and this has now been completed. I would like to thank the team at Evan & Pritchard for finishing the works with little disruption to pedestrians.

The WalkTalkWalk held at Saundersfoot surgery every Friday from 1pm to 2pm has been very well received by local residents. This has been growing over the last two months with many new faces attending just to come and have a leisurely walk or just have a conversation with many of the residents who enjoy getting out each week. This is open for everyone and we meet at the Medical Centre every Friday at 1pm. I would like to thank the staff at the surgery that come along and assist each week.

During the last eighteen months, Councillor Cormack and I have fully supported the introduction of speed awarenessdevices around the village. Unfortunately this has taken longer than we anticipated and hopefully we will be in a position to confirm the installation date. Alec and I held a meeting last week along with Ray from SCC and Mark from the team at Highways PCC. The meeting took place before the site visit to discuss all the options available to get this over the line as swiftly as possible. Alec and I have a strong view that we have 3 main arteries into the village where speeding has been noted through the data collected by PCC and feel that there should be 3 devices to warn pedestrians as they drive into the village. The three sites which we all agreed on were, the bottom of Broadfield Hill as you’re entering the village, Stammers Road after the last house on the left hand side entering the village and also the Ridgeway, opposite the junction of Ocean Point. There has to be a consultation process with local residents that these are in the best possible position to warn drivers of their approaching speed. These devices can pick up vehicles from 100 meters away so it’s important that there is a good view of the road from these devices. There may be some work to be done at one of these positions due to cars regularly parking on the road. It has been quoted that they don’t anticipate any activation issues, and an agreement could be put in place should activation be impeded. Alec and I feel that communication with residents is key and that all three devices are in the best possible position for this to work effectively.

During the beginning of February, two litter picks were arranged in Saundersfoot. The earlier litter pick was attended by 10 volunteers and concentrated on the centre of the village whilst I litter picked on the Fan Road to the junction at Pentlepoir. What is extremely disappointing is the amount of litter being thrown out of vehicles from the junction down to Fan Road and the top of the Ridgeway. This is now being picked once a month and it’s staggering that in this relatively small section we are continually collecting three full bags of rubbish. This is mainly, tins, plastic bottles, vapes, cigarette packages, cans and take away food packages. On my most recent pick, it appears that one motorist emptied his wallet of receipts and amongst the paper was a nice crisp ten pound note, that was greatly accepted. In just over an hour we had collected 21kg of rubbish into roughly 10 bags of rubbish.

For the second litter pick of the day, 50 volunteers turned up at Saundersfoot Sailing club to take part in a ‘Surfers against Sewage’ one million mile beach clean, stretching from Monkstone Point to the back beach behind the harbour. In this stretch alone, 10 lobster pots, 13 bags of rubbish and 3 bags of rope were collected which can be recycled. This has already been sent to Sharron at Willow Waves Craft. The next planned litterpick on Glen beach will be on 7th April. It is hoped to arrange another litter pick in the community and I will keep you notified. I would like to thank Julie Davies and Sam from E-coast on the High Street who do an incredible job arranging the beach cleans and the various litter picks around the village all year round. It just shows that having 60 volunteers to help out in our village on Sunday 11th shows the fantastic community spirit amongst us.

If any resident wants to get involved in any of the community events and you would like to be notified of volunteering opportunities in the village, you can add your name to a volunteer list co-ordinated by Saundersfoot Connect. There is no obligation, just give some time when you can. Email your contact details to info@saundersfootconnect.co.uk

Last item on litter. The brave souls called the Numb Nuts who swim in the sea every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 9am, have informed me that, on occasions, they come across dog poo, as well as dog poo bags and empty glass bottles. Our fabulous beach should not be polluted by irresponsible people. Whoever you are, please use the bins or take your litter home.

During February I was contacted by Saundersfoot in Bloom to try and assist in clearing the brambles and litter that was at the side of the Regency Hall near the stream. The Regency are trying to refurbish the Brookside suite which overlooks the stream with new flower pots and planting. As well as other users of this suite are a group comprising of people suffering with Alzheimer’s and the intention is to transform this into a space that could be used on a regular basis. I made contact with PCC and within days the area was transformed and all the overhanging branches, brambles and litter removed. I personally would like to thank the partnership between PCC and Roscoe Tree Services who have completed a fantastic job. All this good work in our community will add to the work being carried out by the team at Saundersfoot in Bloom. I am delighted that two PCC officers attended a meeting recently with Saundersfoot in Bloom members to advise on preparation for Saundersfoot’s entry in Britain in Bloom this summer.








Thursday the 7th of March, County Councillors across our county converged on the Chamber at County Hall to discuss the proposed council tax increase of 16.3%. This decision has been not only on my mind but also for the majority of residents in Saundersfoot and Pembrokeshire over the last few months. I’m sure you’ve seen the reports of other councils and their struggles to balance the budget and Pembrokeshire is no different. Over the last six weeks I’ve spoken to many residents about their concerns and have listened to the many points that have been raised over this time. It’s unfortunate that pressure on Social Care and Education are spiraling in the wrong direction. It’s important that we continue to provide the services across the county and look at constructive ways on how we can make savings across the board. This has been a difficult decision and in view of my communication with the residents, I have decided that I cannot support the proposed 16.3% and will look at ways of trying to find an alternative figure. I’m determined to represent the community that elected me and to listen to their concerns.

During yesterday’s meeting an alternative proposal was put forward which would limit the increase in council tax to 12.5%. The changes will be funded primarily by the use of £1.5 million of reserves plus £1 million of efficiency savings as part of an operational review led by the Chief Executive.  It was stated by cabinet members that they had listened to the concerns of colleagues across the chamber regarding the budget as well as the representations they have put forward on behalf of their constituents and made the decision to propose the alternative proposal of 12.5%. Vital public services that Pembrokeshire County Council provides across the county will still be protected. It is also worth noting that pressures identified in the budget report will not go away and difficult decisions will be necessary in the coming years. This has been a very challenging time and ideally I would have preferred the council tax increase to have been slightly higher than last year’s tax increase of 7.5%. Unfortunately after listening to the Chief Finance officer and other councillors, I realised that even supporting 12.5% would still present very difficult decisions over the coming months as regards services. I made the difficult decision and supported the 12.5% increase yesterday and will continue to support our services that so many in our County rely on

Councillors Alec Cormack, Alistair Cameron and myself met with Saundersfoot Medical Centre recently to discuss the ongoing challenges there. We meet quarterly to talk about developments at the surgery and feedback information from the patients. There is a high demand for appointments and during the week commencing 19 February there were 2224 calls of which 1264 were between 8 and 9 am. As an alternative to ringing for an appointment, patients with access to the internet are encouraged to book online using the NHS Wales App which you can find on the medical centre’s website. This should be a quick way to book an appointment and it will also ease some of the pressure on the reception staff that are taking calls. However, the centre recognises that some patients are unable to access the internet and need to book by phone. I would point out that the receptionists are there to help and direct the patient to the right medical treatment they require at the surgery.  If you want advice from your doctor, self-help information or have an administrative request (such as a sick note or test result) you can use e consult which can also be accessed from the medical centre website. This takes you through a series of questions to help establish what the issue is and within 72 hours you will get a response from the medical centre. Of course, if there is an emergency, you should still dial 999.  Social care is a big strain on demands and if you’re a carer, you can contact the team for assistance and assessment. Carers need to be registered, even if they don’t get paid, to make sure they get all the support and help needed. You are able to register with social services or at the surgery.

As councillors, we felt there has been an improvement in being able to get an appointment at the medical centre and we believe staff at the centre are working hard to provide a good service when the NHS is under enormous pressure. Whilst it can be frustrating, we ask that everyone is considerate towards the reception staff that are working hard to satisfy everyone’s needs. If any resident has an issue then I would gladly chase up their concerns.

To let residents know that developers Morgan Construction, will start work in the fields behind Whitlow over the coming days/weeks depending on weather conditions. They will initially mark out the site then they will start to develop houses North of Whitlow. As soon as I receive more information, I will let you know.

Fan Road update. Over the past month they have been progressing with works along Fan Road and especially the area near the pond, which has been accessed with the necessary clearance works. The ground profile has been adjusted to the formation levels for the new path, with the pond level regulated following the culvert adjustments and reinstatements. The final fencing, drainage and path construction works will now continue prior to the other works along Fan Road. Further works have been completed in the area of Valley Road with this new section of path now awaiting the installation of the priority system. This will cut the road down to one lane section of traffic calming. Works near to Bonville’s Court access are advancing with a path created across the junction and within the area of land gained from the holiday park owners. Along this location the new path runs inside the existing hedge line which has been shaped into a manageable hedgerow. Once this section is complete it is programmed to benefit from additional natural native planning of hazel which creates a suitable habitat for the dormice within this part of Pembrokeshire. During the latter part of February, we had a visit from Welsh Government officers and officials. They were pleased to see the infrastructure which will greatly improve pedestrian and multi user connectivity between the sustainable transport network and the village. They were also keen to learn of the issues being experienced along the NCN route between Wiseman’s Bridge and Saundersfoot and were supportive to re-open this facility at the earliest opportunity. Whilst within the village the WG visitors were also shown the proposals which are being advanced to feasibility level for Stammers Road, Sandy Hill Active travel link. These were again welcomed for the positive nature of the alterations. Once these are at a more advanced stage, they will then be presented to the public.

I would like to finish on a positive note and mention that Saundersfoot Harbour is hosting The Phonics, who are the UK’s premier Stereophonics tribute band. They will be also supported by a Tom Jones Tribute act. This will be a standing concert that will be held on the events decking area on Saundersfoot Harbour. It is really refreshing to see the events decking being used for the community to engage and support events through the calendar year. After numerous meetings with Nicola and her team, I’m extremely positive that they are looking forward to utilising not only the decking but all aspects of the harbour for the benefit of the residents and wider community.

Cllr Chris Williams
Saundersfoot South