Monday, 4 January 2016


Neptune Developments

As I have said before, Rhyl is a purpose-built resort. (This would have been a daft place to build a town for any other reason.) Therefore occasional waves of public investment in tourism are to be expected and welcomed.  

Towards the end of 2015, Denbighshire County Council announced that a private company named Neptune Developments would create new things on our promenade. A Travelodge hotel was mentioned, a leisure complex, and so on.

No private company in its right mind would invest huge sums of its own money in Rhyl after the decades of Labour Party domination have left the resort’s reputation in tatters. No, the deal must be a hybrid affair.

Neptune and Denbighshire have done business together before. Neptune was behind the refurbishment and extension of the present council offices in Ruthin, and Denbighshire paid off the company in instalments. Put simply, it was like a hire purchase agreement.

Before we natives get carried away with enthusiasm about the proposed promenade works, we should be told about the financial implications for the public purse in the long term – including maintenance costs.

And there is something odd about the timing of all this.

Welsh Government says that the counties of Denbighshire and Conwy are to be merged. This would create a completely new authority that might not like the Denbighshire-Neptune deal.

Is the purpose of the deal to complicate and even delay the merger plans? In the absence of financial and other background information, Rhyl Life can give Neptune's proposed works only a cautious welcome.