Posted: Fri 19th Apr 2024

Welsh Affairs Committee Rob & Ryan comment ‘taken out of context’ says Deputy Leader of Council for people living in or visiting the Wrexham area

The Deputy Leader of Wrexham Council has said there is a ‘Rob and Ryan’ effect on housing availability in Wrexham, as “…there has been a noticeable shift in businesses and individuals catering for the increasing number of visitors”.

The Welsh Affairs Committee had extra focus this week, in part as Rob and Ryan got a mention. As we reported yesterday the increase in AirBnBs in Wrexham was blamed in part for issues around housing, which affects ex-offenders as well. The increase in the AirBnBs was attributed to the ‘Rob and Ryan effect’ – with the takeover of the club prompting an increase in tourism, and therefore provision for that demand.

Yesterday's report

Yesterday’s report.

Those comments were ‘taken out of context’ according to Cllr David Bithell – Deputy Leader of Wrexham Council, and lead member for housing.

Cllr Bithell said, “I have been a Councillor for Wrexham County Borough Council since 2004, and a fan of Wrexham AFC for over 40 years. I cannot remember a time when there was more excitement, promise and optimism.

“The success of our football club is intrinsically linked to the success of Wrexham.

“In the past few short years we have gone from being an oftentimes overlooked area of north Wales, to an international tourist destination – welcoming unprecedented amounts of interest and visitors and we’re rising together.

“We’ve all known that Wrexham is special, and now the world is also finding out-this the true Rob and Ryan effect.

“Yesterday a comment was made at The Welsh Affairs Committee that had convened to examine the quality and availability of housing for prison leavers as it continues its inquiry into Prisons in Wales.

“At that committee a comment was made that I believe has been taken out of context and needs to be addressed.

“As a result of welcoming the volume of tourists as we do now, there has been a noticeable shift in businesses and individuals catering for the increasing number of visitors. This is of huge benefit to our local economy, especially the tourism, leisure and hospitality sectors.

“Wrexham now faces similar housing issues to other more traditional tourist areas across Wales.

“Housing for Homeless people is a statutory duty on all councils in Wales. It is also law that we must discharge our duty under legislation into the private or social rented sector.

“I hope this statement clarifies the situation and we look forward in anticipation to what the future brings as we work closely with the club on our joint ambitions.”


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