New Common Bye-Laws

A set of proposals has been drafted for the introduction of New Common Bye-Laws. A copy can be found by clicking here.PDF Document


The Buckley Shopping Centre

There is no evidence that the 2017 re-naming of The Buckley Precinct to The Buckley Shopping Centre, by the owners Spurscow Estates, has brought about any significant improvement in footfall numbers, or a broader range of retail offer available with the units there.  Both are going to be needed for profitable trading within the units and for Spurscow as a company. Despite the premises having been “on the market” for some years now, little or no interest appears to have been shown by any potential buyer.  Despite some recent unfounded rumours, my current information, as of August 2019, is that The Buckley Shopping Centre is still owned by Spurscow Estates and is still up for sale. 


Somewhat more positively, the owners agreed to open one unit as a base for “Pop-Up-Shops.”  The idea being that budding retailers with a bright idea or a novel commodity can rent a table, at an affordable cost, whereby they can display their wares to the public, hopefully with the result that sufficient interest is taken by passers-by, in adequate numbers to encourage the would-be trader to open a full-sized shop, within the Shopping Centre or perhaps in one of the many empty retail units within the town centre.


Under the old wisdom of nothing ventured, nothing gained, good luck to Spurscow Estates, to those who made the Pop-Up-Shop arrangements and to those who are brave enough to test the public’s interest in whatever they decide to put on offer.

Town Centre Changes

The town now has a Flintshire Connects section in the library, where local people can go to connect electronically with the many county council services that are part of everyday life. Buckley Town Council’s offices are still where they have been for many a long year, in the town hall. Cognizant of changing times, the Town Council now has its own website. On the upper floor of that same building, the offices of Welsh Border Community Transport Scheme, of which both my wife and I are trustees, can be found. Not far away on the same floor, there is a Citizens Advice office, open on a Wednesday of each week. Of that county organisation, I have been a trustee for some years and am currently the chairman.


Sadly, since I last updated this website, our last bank in town, Lloyds, located by The Cross traffic lights, has shut down, leaving our nearest real bank branches in Mold, some four miles distant. It seems hardly right that Buckley, now with close to 20,000 residents, being the largest single urban community in Flintshire, should be left without a formal banking presence.  Fortunately, Messrs Blakemore, the company which runs the two Spar shops in Buckley, located a Post Office facility at the back of their town centre store in the pedestrianised area. That facility does compensate for the absent Banks by providing most of the everyday banking services no longer provided in town by the big-name banking companies.


After umpteen irritating months without a formal post box in the town centre, which occurred when the original full Post Office closed down and the facility at the back of the Spar Store opened, We can now celebrate the re-appearance of a proper pillar-type post box, in all of its red glory, outside of the Spar Shop, as of June of 2019.


Readers will never know the full details of the lengthy battle fought with the Royal Mail organisation, by town councillors, county council’s Streetscene Officers, and county council’s building control officers, over several frustrating months, before Royal Mail finally did what they should have done many months ago.


Flipping back to the bad side once again, the closure a year or more ago, of The Windmill Bar and Grill was a decided blow to the town. Hopes at that time were that one of the major entertainment/restaurant chains would take an interest in the building and re-open it as a restaurant and licensed premises.  Sadly, a planning application has now been submitted to county council, for the conversion of the premises into 9 Apartments. 


On the more positive side, Gwrp Cenefyn’s development of nearly a couple of dozen social housing apartments on the site of the old Precinct Medical Centre, has been completed.  The first occupants have already moved in and it will not be long before every single one of the apartments is occupied. Despite the best efforts of the owners, agents, town council and Flintshire’s Business Development team, the Factory Shop premises remain unoccupied.  With the first floor level unfit for commercial activity or occupation and a flat roof which requires some attention, it is not going to be easy to find anyone to take it on as a rented venture. Several years of engagement by the town councillors who stepped forwards to become Directors of the company set up to oversee the conversion of the building into a multi-functional community hall, has brought little or no progress. Charitable status has yet to be achieved.  The lack of that has not made the Directors’ bid for funding any easier, given that the conversion project has a bill of around £2million attached to it. 


A more positive recent step forward has been that Cadwyn Clwyd have agreed to fund a full feasibility survey, the results of which are now eagerly awaited.  With the closure of the Windmill facility, the town lacks a decent venue for the holding of public events within doors, which would be put right by the successful conversion of the Old Baths Building, as originally envisaged those several years ago.


If I extend this section on Town Centre Changes just a little, residents should not forget that an Outline Planning Application has been submitted to county council for a 70-90 bed Assisted Living Facility and 14 Sheltered Bungalows, located on the land laying between Manor Drive and Home Bargains and the Fire Station and Jubilee Road. That potential development would be a significant item, with significant impact on the town centre itself.   


If I extend my observations somewhat further, I would draw reader’s attention to the fact that in the county council’s emerging Local Development Plan, there is a total of some 7000 housing units to be built over the next five years or so, on various locations across the county. 160 or those will appear on the Wales Government owned chunk of land, presently green fields, at the top of Well Street, on its Mold side, just beyond the junction with Bryn Awelon.

Dog Control Orders

Since 2009, when Dog Fouling Regulations were finally introduced in Flintshsire, there have been some dozens of formal prosecutions and many dozens of warnings issued.  Despite that activity and although there has been a notable improvement, our community is still beset by some dog owners who choose not to clean up after their dogs.  If your local area is still having problems, please let me know, by the usual email (arnooldwoolley@outlook.com) or by phone at FCC on (01352) 752121 or on my home number of (01244) 549421, which you are welcome to use at all hours and over the weekend too if you need to.

Meanwhile, FCC is not alone in relation to this issue of difficulty in catching the offenders, in that it is quite difficult to do so.  Local people do not like "finking" on their neighbours and they like even less the thought of being asked to give evidence in court should a ticket be disputed. Where does that leave us, because we really do need to get a grip upon and to educate or sort out the persistent offenders whose dogs still foul our pavements, footpaths, playing fields and other areas threatening the health and welfare of both children and adults?  

Well, the scene has been set by one or two other local authorities who have called in the snoopers as it were.  They have engaged private companies to monitor the hot-spots and gather the evidence needed to ensure successful prosecution.  If FCC moves in that direction, I will support that action. Those who may get prosecuted as a result will have only themselves to blame.


For those responsible dog owners who wish to dispose of their dog mess correctly there is an app available for your smart phone which details the locations of dog mess bins and also gives only helpful infformation. The app is called Flintshire Doogy Do and is available in both Welsh and English versions.


Recently there have been a couple of successful prosecutions against dog owners who have failed to clean up after their dogs.

The New Medical Centre.

I know! We all wanted it to go into the centre of our town.  If we, townspeople and local councillors, had had our way, there it would have gone.  However, do please register and remember that you residents, alongside us councillors, had no say in the matter at all, when decisions had to be made.   The decision, made solely between the new North Wales Health Trust, the Welsh Assembly Government and the chosen Developer, was made and the new Medical Centre built.

Buckley Old Swimming Baths.

Old BathsSome seven years ago, there was an attempt, a quite shameful attempt, by Flintshire County Council, to sell off the land and the Old Baths Building, so that it could be demolished in order to build another block of flats. In fact, the first that was really known about it was when a demolition company's representative, acting for developers, appeared at the town council offices right out of the blue and asked Martin Wright, the Town Clerk, for the keys to the baths building so that they could take a look around it before starting demolition!

I am delighted to say that with much good, hard work performed by our Town Clerk, Martin Wright and a great deal of research into archived and non-archived records by his wife Mary, the county council's effort to sell off what they did not own,  was swiftly and firmly scotched.  The town's councillors were able to protect the interests of residents because there is no doubt that, while the land on which the Old Baths Building stands, was owned by Flintshire County Council, there is clear evidence from archived records that the building itself, originally costing £5,000, built by the mining and other communities of Buckley and opened on 28th June, 1928, funded by a one-penny-per-tonne levy from local coal-mine owners, as part of a nation-wide scheme to combat poor living conditions within mining communities, was NOT owned by the county authority, but was handed over, long ago, to the town council for the benefit of the community.  


In 1961 the baths were shut for a while to allow renovation work, costing £20,000 to be completed. The baths re-opened in April of 1962 and remained open and in use until 2005, when a new swimming bath appeared as part of the Leisure Centre close to Elfed School. Since then, the Old Baths Building has stood empty, awaiting a new lease of life for the benefit of the local community.


Plans to take control of the baths building have been in the pipeline since 2010.  To facilitate that, in 2012 a Community Interest Organisation was set up, “The Old Buckley Baths Community Hall Ltd” with 8 town councillors as Directors. Their sole purpose is that of saving the building and eventually turning it into a multi-purpose community hall, with charitable status.  However it was only in 2014 that an Asset Transfer from Flintshire County Council enabled progress to be made.  A number of councillors have ceased to be involved and progress towards charitable status has been difficult and not yet achieved.  However, more recently, this year, Cadwyn Clwyd have agreed to fund a feasibility study, to investigate the entire project.  Hopefully the outcome from that activity will enable more rapid and positive progress to be made by the directors of what is now a formal company.   With cost estimates of something between £1.5 and £2 million to see the project to completion, achieving charitable status for their project is the number one aim for the directors. I wish them luck in their efforts.

Walkabout Buckley

Walkabout BuckleyWalkabout Buckley walks are organised and led by Jim and Lyn Dyson, assisted mainly by David and Kath Waller, Sandy and Alex McLeod, Paula Woolley and a cluster of other local volunteers who have all undergone Walk Leader Training.  The walks are fully insured, well controlled and very well attended.  There are walks to suit all abilities and inclinations, starting with a regular Thursday morning gathering at the small section of the Precinct Way Carpark, adjacent to the rear of Iceland Store in Buckley at 09:45 hrs for a 10:00hrs start.  Two walks, one shorter and a little slower than the other.  Take your pick!   2-2.5 miles in an hour over easy terrain, or 3 miles+ in 1 - 1.5 hrs.  All followed by a relaxing cup of tea or coffee and a biscuit at the Community Centre Hall within the Jubilee Court Sheltered Housing Complex, which is across Precinct Way, opposite the new Aldi Store, where you can finish off the chattering you have been doing along the course of the walk.  The atmosphere is warm and friendly and so are the walkers.

There are also longer walks, on the 2nd Wednesday of each month, usually around 5 miles in length, out of Buckley, sometimes in the Clwydian Range AONB, sometimes in adjoining counties. One recently saw 30 walkers from Buckley and other local walking groups, all headed off to Hilbre Island off the Wirral.  No, they did not walk all the way there and back!  Only from West Kirby.  On this occasion a coffee break was taken on the island and lunch was had either in West Kirby or at Parkgate, or at home as the mood suited. 

Through the summer there are Friday evening walks, on the last Friday of each month.

It has to be said that most of the walkers are mature people, although a number of younger folks do come along too, mostly over the summer months and school holidays.  If you feel like some exercise at a comfortable pace in friendly company, why not come along.  The cost is £6 per year to cover insurance, or 50P per walk - and if you attend 12 occasional walks in the year, the rest become free anyway.

Make contact with Lyn or Jim on 01244 550488 or give me a call on 01244 549421.


The total number of attendances during 2017 was 2477, slightly down on last year.

New walkers who joined us in 2017 numbered 18.

The total cumulative mileage covered by the Thursday walkers in Buckley, during 2017, was 7709.76, slightly up on the year before.


Walking is good for you and so is socializing, so why not come along for a trial walk with us – you will be warmly welcomed!


Walkabout BuckleyWalkabout BuckleyWalkabout Buckley

Buckley Little Theatre Group

I am not quite sure why, but the existence of this group and their really terrific stage presentations seem to be one of the least known of Buckley’s community activities.

The Little Theatre itself has been a county council owned building.  Until a few days ago that is, when I had the pleasure of signing off the documentation that has now agreed the sale of the theatre to the Little Theatre Group.  The building stands directly behind the derelict listed building that is the old Hawkesbury Hall House.  Now that they own the theatre, the company can get on and do some of the alterations and improvements to the  building that they have been unable to do as tenants. 

For a bunch of dedicated amateurs, the quality of performance, be it Pantomime, Comedy, or Drama, is high.  When the next production comes about, as they do every few months, do get a ticket or two and go along for an evening of quality entertainment at very reasonable cost – and right on your doorstep at that.

Incidentally, I know that the group is always on the lookout for new faces.  So, if you feel the call of spotlights, greasepaint and applause, get in touch with me, or with George or Joyce Hughes (01244 543225) and you will find yourself warmly welcomed.


Back to top


Home | News | Biography | Independant Alliance | News | Contact Arnold Woolley | Site Map | Local Affairs | Useful Links