Cardiff Council Update: 18 July 2023

Here is our latest update, covering: The Court School is to be renamed as plans to develop the school are given the green light; Final steps towards a sustainable future for St David's Hall; and is your organisation eligible for funding under the latest Levelling Up Fund?


The Court School is to be renamed as plans to develop the school are given the green light

Cardiff Council's Planning Committee have approved plans for new build accommodation for The Court School. A decision to rename the school ‘Ysgol Cynefin' has also been agreed.

The unanimous planning decision marks the next stage in the development to increase the capacity of the school by relocating and rebuilding it across two sites.  One is to be located on land to the south of Fairwater Primary School on Wellwright Road, the other will be south of Pen Y Bryn Primary School at Dunster Road in Llanrumney. This will utilise land at the current St Mellons CiW Primary School, following its relocation to new build accommodation located at the St Edeyrns development.

The new school name Ysgol Cynefin, translates to habitat school, and was chosen by the school and key stakeholders to encompass the relationship between people and the natural world, and how connecting people to surroundings can shape a sense of identity and wellbeing.

Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills, Cllr Sarah Merry said: "Planning approval and the news of the name change, marks an exciting new chapter for this school. By relocating and rebuilding Ysgol Cynefin over two sites, improvements can be made to the standard of facilities whilst providing more places for children in need of specialist provision.

"The new school name fits with the vision and ethos of the school, as they seek to support pupils who face challenges in terms of emotional health and wellbeing.

"Cardiff is currently embarking on our most radical transformation of additional learning needs provision seen in recent years. The new Ysgol Cynefin is part of the significant plans already well underway, to address the shortfall in places required across the city."

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Final steps towards a sustainable future for St David's Hall

A sustainable future for St David's Hall has come a step closer with a decision taken that Cardiff Council should protect the iconic venue by entering into a 45-year lease with Academy Music Group (AMG).

The lease would see AMG take on full responsibility for the building, operating it as an independent commercial enterprise and removing the need for any financial contribution from the Council towards its maintenance, upkeep and operation.

The agreement would also commit AMG to providing a long-term future for the Hall, allocating a minimum of 60 days within the peak event calendar for key classical events and an additional 20 days outside peak dates, with a further commitment of an extra 10 days every other year for the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World event. Alongside this, AMG will also enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with key classical stakeholders to develop an optimum classical and community programme, as well as committing to maintain the venue's key musical instruments, including the Steinway pianos and the St David's Hall organ. Council employees currently working at St David's Hall will transfer to AMG on existing terms.

Cabinet Member for Culture, Parks and Events, Councillor Jennifer Burke, said: "Entering into a lease agreement with AMG would secure a sustainable future for the National Concert Hall of Wales, protect its cherished classical music provision and ensure it continues to play a leading role in the cultural landscape of Wales."

Established in 1982, the 2,000 capacity St David's Hall has hosted a diverse range of events and performances over the years, from symphonic orchestral performances to rock and pop concerts, comedy shows, and dance performances, providing a platform for world-class artistic experiences. Moreover, its acoustic excellence, crafted in collaboration with renowned acousticians Sandy Brown, has earned it a well-deserved reputation as one of the world's top ten concert halls and one of the UK's premier classical music venues.

However, St David's Hall has been facing significant challenges. A lack of national funding has left the Council with the responsibility of maintaining the building and supporting the classical programme.

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Is your organisation eligible for funding under the latest Levelling Up Fund?

Funding is available of between £10,000 and £250,000 for projects to benefit local communities across Cardiff.

The funding is available to a range of organisations that can demonstrate that they can deliver projects which benefit local communities, build pride in place, deliver economic benefits, and are in line with both the required criteria and Cardiff Council's Stronger, Fairer, Greener Policy. The eligible organisations are:


  • Local authorities and other public sector bodies
  • Private sector companies that deliver projects
  • Voluntary and third sector organisations
  • Further education and higher education colleges and institutions


All of the information on the funding and eligibility criteria is available on the council's website. All schemes that receive funding must be delivered between October 2023 and March 2025 and all applications must be submitted to the Council by midday on 18 August 2023.

Leader of the Council, Cllr Huw Thomas said: "The Council has clearly set out our priorities in the Stronger, Fairer and Greener Policy which provides the blueprint and vision on how the city will develop over the next three years and beyond.

"The plan sets out 7 wellbeing objectives to achieve this, which are making Cardiff a great place to grow up and grow older; supporting people out of poverty; empowering communities; reducing our carbon footprint through One Planet Cardiff and modernising and integrating our public services.

"The applications that are received will be judged against a range of policies including the Stronger, Fairer, Greener Policy and Cardiff's Wellbeing Plan, as well as the eligibility criteria which is set by UK Government which is all set out on the Council's website. We hope as many eligible organisations apply, so we can direct this funding to where it is needed most so that we can make a difference to local people and benefit local communities."

Read more here