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Proms in the Park the latest victim of Caerphilly Council budget cuts

Published in News at 09:36, Tuesday May 6th, 2014.

By Gareth Hill

Sophie Evans wowed the crowds at BBC Proms in the Park on Saturday - Picture by Carl Jones

Sophie Evans wowed the crowds at BBC Proms in the Park last year – Picture by Carl Jones

The BBC’s Proms in the Park is the latest event to be axed in Caerphilly due to council budget cuts.

The town has hosted the event, to mark the Last Night of the Proms, three years in a row against the backdrop of Caerphilly Castle.

But Caerphilly County Borough Council has confirmed the Proms have been scrapped this year.

A council spokesman said: “Caerphilly has provided the spectacular backdrop for the BBC Proms in the Park for the last three years and the whole area enjoyed the many benefits of hosting this popular event.

“Unfortunately, due to the severe financial constraints facing the council, we were not in a position to offer to host the concert this year.

“We hope to work with the BBC again in the future and wish them luck with this year’s event.”

The announcement comes just weeks after Caerphilly Observer revealed Caerphilly would not be hosting a stage of the Tour of Britain cycling race because of council budget restraints.

More than 4,300 people attended the televised 2013 BBC Proms in the Park in Owain Glyndwr Playing Fields, listening to West End star Sophie Evans and BBC National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales.

The Proms also gave prominence to community acts, including Caerphilly Children’s Choir, Caerphilly’s Got Talent’s winning violinist James Jones and Aber Valley Male Voice Choir.

Nigel Jones, Musical Director of Caerphilly Children’s Choir, said: “Coming on the back of the news that Caerphilly will not be hosting the Tour of Britain this year, the news about losing the Proms comes as a second blow.

“It casts doubt on the council’s policy regarding the promotion of Caerphilly.

“I feel very fortunate that the Caerphilly Children’s Choir had the opportunity to perform at the Proms last year. It was the largest audience the choir has had and was a wonderful experience for all the choristers.”

“Such a huge cultural event as this has many benefits and it is such a shame that the event has now left Caerphilly. We shall be the poorer for that.”

BBC Cymru Wales Director, Rhodri Talfan Davies, said: “BBC Proms in the Park is a wonderful opportunity to share in the fun and excitement of the Last Night of the Proms. This year we’re back in Swansea after a successful time in Caerphilly.

“Returning to Singleton Park, in the year of the centenary of the birth of Dylan Thomas, is very exciting and I’m sure everyone in the park and millions of viewers at home are in for a real treat.”

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  • ARTHUR THE GREAT

    Well`, This is a turn up for the books, at last the Caerphilly council, under Labour, have got the message that these `events` held in Caerphilly town Centre do not have the welcome from all residents in the town that local elected Councillors for St Martins Ward assume. The residents of the town are those who sustain disruption after disruption road closures and diversions, and the disruption to local businesses, not to mention the filthy legacy each of these `events` leaves as a blight on the town to be paid for by ratepayers to clear away, whilst, those traders who come into the town for these events make a runner with our money.

    The next `event` in the town which has to be scrutinised, from a financial point of view, ( besides the annual drunken orgy which the Big Cheese event has become), is the annual bombfire of ratepayers money for the loss making annual fireworks display over the Castle. Costs to put on £14,000, collected on the night for local charities £ 5,000 if we are lucky, therefore a loss making political binge by The Caerphilly town council of something approaching £9,000 or so.

    Spend the money on something worthwhile Councillors or explain your actions to the ratepayers of the town, enough waste is enough.

  • PaulC.

    To save the council money they should axe the tourism and events department as they’re not exactly doing much to justify their huge salaries.