Fight Over Drug Rehab Centre Continues

Protestors against a new Gwent centre for former drink and drug addicts say their fight against the plans is continuing. Caerphilly county borough council’s cabinet decided this month that the proposal would go ahead.

Highbury House, in Blackwood, is now set to be converted into a 20-bed centre for former addicts, staffed 24-hours.

But residents are vowing to take the plan to judicial review after a two-year battle against the controversial centre. They say they are worried about former addicts being around children who live and go to school nearby, and are now waiting for legal advice as they consider their next move.

The council says facilities such as this are desperately needed in the Valleys, with increasing numbers of vulnerable addicts having to travel away from home for help.

Chairman of the Blackwood community group Keith Smallman said: “The early indications are that we have a case to pursue. At the moment we are waiting for a list of solicitors who will be able to help us and then we will decide what to do.

“Our campaign against the centre is still very much on, and I’m hopeful we will eventually get the result we want.”

A council spokeswoman confirmed no planning application has yet been submitted for the conversion of the house.