Wales

Swansea Kingsway work halted amid concerns for Dawnus

Work at Swansea's Kingsway
Image caption Swansea's Kingsway is undergoing a £12m redevelopment

Work on a £12m Swansea city centre redevelopment has come to a halt, with the future of a company delivering it unclear.

Work on the Kingsway has stopped, one day after a road project was halted in Manchester as workers claimed they had not been paid by Dawnus Ltd.

Subcontractors on the Kingsway project told BBC Wales they had been sent home by their bosses.

BBC News has contacted Dawnus but it has yet to respond.

However, Swansea council said it was in discussions with the company and was "monitoring the situation".

The subcontractors working on the Kingsway retail redevelopment have been informed that managers from Dawnus in Llansamlet will hold a meeting with them on Thursday.

One subcontractor working in Swansea city centre, who did not wish to be named, said: "We turned up to work this morning and the foreman told us to go home for the day.

"It's not a surprise to be honest - it's been coming for months.

"Plant hire firms came to the site and took machinery as they are worried they are not going to get paid.

"The floodlights for the works in Swansea city centre were taken this morning. I've never seen anything like it."

Image caption Workers are due to meet company management on Thursday morning

Among Dawnus's other projects are the £5.6m Roath flood risk management scheme in Cardiff, Bont Evans tree works and stabilisation in Machynlleth, Powys, and St Asaph flood defence works, Denbighshire.

Dawnus has previously operated in Liberia and Senegal and won awards for its work at Tata steelworks in Port Talbot and Monmouthshire Housing Association.

The most recent company accounts show the company had a turnover of £170m in 2017, however it also posted a pre-tax loss of £1.35m. But last September, the company said it employed 700 people and was optimistic about the future.

"We are in discussions with Dawnus and monitoring the situation. In the meantime the city centre remains open for business," a Swansea council spokesman said.

"Traffic's running smoothly and we are ensuring the area is safe for pedestrians and road users. Our main priority is to ensure the Kingsway and Pupil Referral Unit projects go ahead as planned."

'Key partner'

Powys council has awarded contracts to the company to build three new schools in the local authority area.

Work on an English-medium school in Welshpool is underway and is due to be completed in September, while two other projects are at the planning stage.

Councillor Myfanwy Alexander said: "The county council is aware of media reports commenting on the company's financial position and is monitoring the situation closely.

"The council has not received any formal contact from the company.

"Dawnus is a key partner in a number of our school modernisations projects and we will be working to mitigate any potential issues which arise."

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