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Showing posts from August 29, 2010

Carmarthenshire sports cash boost

Extra funding of nearly £13,000 is being pumped into sport and physical activity in Carmarthenshire.
In the latest round of Community Chest funding approvals, £12,767 has been awarded to 16 different clubs and projects.
Sport Wales’ Community Chest grant offers organisations up to £1000 of National Lottery funding.
It is designed to encourage more people to be more active and is run locally in partnership between Carmarthenshire Council and Sport Wales.
In the third of the six Community Chest meetings being held in the county this year, funding was awarded to projects including:
• Newchurch Community Association, Trawsmawr - £683 to set up a new table tennis club for all ages at their newly refurbished facility.
• Drefach Ladies Football Club - £670 for training facilities and club kit.
• Carmarthen Karate Club - £1,000 for protective equipment to increase the number of sessions and the training of members.
• Terry Griffiths Matchroom - £1,000 to set up a weekend club for children aged 11 to …

Carmarthenshire exceeds waste target

New figures show Carmarthenshire has exceeded its target on the amount of biodegradable waste – such as paper, cardboard and kitchen scraps - that can be sent to landfill.
During 2009/10 Carmarthenshire sent 23,536 tonnes of biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) to landfill – that’s 36 per cent under its allowance of 36,844 tonnes.
The figures have been revealed in a report on the Landfill Allowances Scheme for Wales, published by the Environment Agency Wales.
The Landfill Allowances Scheme (LAS) limits the amount of biodegradable municipal waste that councils are allowed to send to landfill. It aims to encourage the reduction, recycling, composting and treatment of this type of waste.
Reducing the amount of waste going to landfill also helps to cut greenhouse gas emissions, methane produced by the breakdown of BMW in a landfill can be up to 25 times worse than carbon dioxide.
Carmarthenshire was one of eight local authorities in Wales to be singled out for using the least amount of its allo…

Waste amnesty day for Pontyberem

Residents in Pontyberem are being urged to have a good clear out and get rid of any rubbish they have lying around the home.
A waste amnesty is being held on Saturday, September 11 and householders will be able to take advantage of a one-off chance to dispose of any large items of rubbish for free.
A collection point will be set up at the park (by the recycling banks) between 8am and 10.30am.
Most household waste can be taken along including bulky waste items such as furniture and electrical goods. However, asbestos, tyres, paint, garden chemicals, batteries, gas bottles, construction waste and trade waste will not be accepted.
Operatives will also be on hand to help residents dispose of any bulky items.
The amnesty has been organised by Carmarthenshire County Council and Tidy Towns and the aim is to encourage residents to dispose of waste that may otherwise be fly-tipped.
It is also hoped the amnesty will encourage householders to recycle and/or reuse as much of their rubbish as possible.
E…

River Teifi walk plans are approved

Proposals to improve the riverside walk along the Afon Teifi in Newcastle Emlyn have been approved by Carmarthenshire planners.
The local authority submitted the application for full planning permission for improvements to the riverside walk include hard surfacing, boardwalks and new sections of footpath to improve the accessibility of the riverside area.
The plans also include provision of seating, benches, picnic areas, litter bins, an outdoor classroom, interpretation boards, timber steps and fencing, together with landscaping on land adjacent to the southern bank of the river between Old Graig Street and the rear of the Emlyn Arms Hotel.
A report to this week’s meeting of the planning committee said that Arup have been commissioned by the authority to prepare proposals for environmental enhancements to four towns/villages in Carmarthenshire. The proposals will form the basis of an application for grant funding under the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) program…

Llanelli shoppers get the waste message

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Shoppers in Llanelli’s Asda are being encouraged to love food, hate waste.
Carmarthenshire County Council’s waste awareness officers were in store to advise customers on what they could do to cut the amount of food they throw away.
Figures show that in the UK we throw away 8.3 million tonnes of food and drink every year.
Not only is it harmful to the environment but it is means we are wasting a total of £12 billion on food and drink every year – that’s £480 per household per year or £50 a month.
Waste awareness officers were on hand to talk to customers about how they could cut down on their food waste by looking at portion sizes, using best before or sell by dates, freezing food to stop it going to waste and giving recipe ideas for leftovers.
Residents in Carmarthenshire were also given advice on the green bin/blue bag recycling scheme as well as information on home composting and real nappies.
Sustainability officer Tina Brice said: “Before hitting the shops, check what you already have i…

Burry Port clear out is a success

Residents in Burry Port had a big clear out and got rid of six tonnes of rubbish and junk they had lying around the home – including 10 fridges!
A waste amnesty was held giving householders a one-off chance to dispose of any large items of rubbish for free.
The amnesty was organised by Carmarthenshire County Council in partnership with Tidy Towns and the aim was to encourage residents to dispose of waste that may otherwise be fly-tipped.
It is also hoped the amnesty will raise waste awareness and encourage householders to recycle.
Executive member for regeneration Councillor Clive Scourfield said: “I am pleased that so many residents took advantage of this chance to get rid of any unwanted rubbish they had around the home.
“Bulky waste such as furniture, wood and cardboard left lying in and around homes is not only a fire hazard but can result in fly-tipping which not only spoils our quality of life and enjoyment of the environment but can cause serious pollution and harm to human health a…

New head of law at Aberystwyth

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Professor Noel Cox has been appointed as the new Head of the Law and Criminology Department at Aberystwyth University.
Professor Cox joins the University from Auckland University of Technology (AUT) where he was a Professor of Law and Head of the Department of Law.
Born and brought up in Auckland, New Zealand, Professor Cox holds numerous degrees, including Master of Laws and Bachelor of Laws from the University of Auckland; Doctor of Philosophy in Political Studies and a Master of Theology. He also has a Master of Arts in ecclesiastical law, from the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Examination in Theology, and a Licence in Theology from the University of Wales Lampeter.
His main field of research interest is constitutional law and also has an interest in Church-State law and cyberspace law.
Furthermore, Professor Cox is the author of over 100 academic papers and four books.
In 1994, Professor Cox received the Fowlds Memorial Prize as the most distinguished student in the Faculty of Law at th…

Elvet honoured for ATC service

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A Gwendraeth Valley octogenarian has been recognised for 60 years’ service to the Air Training Corps.
Elvet Morris, aged 88, from Cefneithin, was the founder member of the Mid Gwendraeth Squadron in Ponthenri.
Following demobilisation from the Royal Air Force in 1949, it was Mr Morris’ intention to enlist in the Auxiliary Air Force based in St Athan in Cardiff. However, he suffered a violent attack of malaria which left him unwell for several months and as a result, he was advised to join the Air Training Corps instead.
Mr Morris was living in Ponthenri at the time and decided to form his own squadron based in the village.
Sixty years on and the Mid Gwendraeth Squadron is still going strong – thanks to the hard work and dedicated service of Mr Morris.
The squadron recently celebrated its anniversary and Mr Morris in particular received recognition for all that he has done over the years.
Local member and the council’s executive board member for regeneration Councillor Clive Scourfield has …

Latest 'View from Richmond Park' column

The latest View from Richmond Park column as published in the Carmarthen Journal today -
The new season is well and truly underway for Carmarthen Town AFC, with the Welsh Premier League side chalking up their first win of the current campaign with victory over Port Talbot last Friday night.
Town face a much sterner test when they take on mighty Bangor at home on Saturday afternoon, but there are signs that Tomi Morgan’s troops are starting to build a team.
It’s been all change this year, with a new manager and new faces galore in the playing line-up.
It is, therefore, time to put the spotlight on some of the current players –
MIKE LEWIS (GK) Date of birth 04.04.89 Ever present with Afan Lido last season. Formally with Swansea City but was released due to injury. Recently graduated in Sports Science from UWIC. A new signing this season.
DERYN BRACE (Defender) 15.03.75 A U18 & U21 International. Deryn spent six years at Wrexham’s Racecourse before signing for Carmarthen Town in 2000-2001…

Carmarthenshire Direct wins national award

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Carmarthenshire Direct has been awarded a national Customer Excellence Standard for its first class service.
The new award, which replaces the Chartermark scheme, aims to make a real difference to public service users by encouraging organisations to focus on their customers’ needs and preferences.
It has been developed by the Government to offer public services a practical tool for driving customer-focused change within their organisations.
A statement on the award reads: “The foundation of this tool is the Customer Service Excellence standard which tests in great depth those areas that research has indicated are a priority for customers, with particular focus on delivery, timeliness, information, professionalism and staff attitude. There is also emphasis placed on developing customer insight, understanding the user’s experience and robust measurement of service satisfaction.”
Carmarthenshire Direct, which includes the contact centre and Customer Service Centres at Llanelli, Carmarthen …

Warning on Carmarthenshire tax offer scam

More people in Carmarthenshire have been the target of a telephone scam which offers to repay council tax.
Callers tell the householder they have had a reduction in their valuation band and have therefore overpaid council tax.
They then ask for bank details for payment of a rebate, however this information is then used to try to take money from their account.
The scam was operating in Carmarthenshire a few months ago, and it has started again recently.
Over the last few days several people have contacted the council tax team querying the matter after being telephoned.
Officers are now repeating their warning to people that the phone calls are a scam and not to give any personal or bank details out.
Resources executive board member Cllr Wyn Evans said: “Unfortunately, we have had several more reports of this scam over the last few days.
“We need to make people aware of this and ensure they do not give any personal or bank details to the callers.
“No-one from the county council is ringing peop…

£20million to help Carmarthenshire council estates

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A huge £20 million is being invested to improve the areas around council estates in Carmarthenshire.
Groundbreaking work is underway to clear neglected land and create new play areas, allotments and community green spaces.
Tenants and housing officers have joined together to create key projects and identify areas where work is most needed.
Pilot schemes are underway before the programme is rolled out across the county.
Carmarthenshire County Council is behind the Environmental Works Project.
It forms part of the £200 million Carmarthenshire Homes Standard, which is aimed at improving the council’s 9,200 council homes.
Huge refurbishment schemes are underway to improve houses, and officers want to ensure that the areas around estates are also improved.
In recent months a neglected play area in Waun Sidan, Pembrey has been improved and landscaped.
New railings and security gates have been installed at Woods Row Court in Carmarthen, along with improvements to flower beds, new outdoor lighting an…

Tenants join big clean-up in Llandybie

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A Carmarthenshire housing estate is spic and span thanks to local tenants.
Families in Llandybie’s Cae Coed and Heol Marlais have taken part in a community clean up.
They donned overalls and gloves and armed with litter pickers, they collected 22 bags of rubbish.
The event was organised by housing staff at Carmarthenshire County Council along with Tidy Towns and Keep Wales Tidy officers.
Tenants of all ages joined forces to clear the area of litter after complaints about the site being used as a dumping ground.
Organisers say the event was a big success and has helped to empower tenants to improve their surroundings.
The council’s Tenant Participation Officer Janet Griffiths said: “The litter pick was very well supported and many tenants turned out to help.
“We want to empower tenants to take responsibility for their local environment.
“It has been shown that if a community works together to improve an area, it leads to longer lasting improvements than if the council worked alone.
“We are awa…

Ammanford dog owner fined

An Ammanford dog owner has been fined £75 for failing to clean up after his pet.
The council’s environmental enforcement officers issued a fixed penalty notice to the man in Pentwyn Road, Betws yesterday (Tuesday).
Failure to pay could lead to prosecution in the magistrates court and a maximum fine of £1,000.
Carmarthenshire County Council is working hard to tackle the problem of dog fouling and enforcement officers regularly carry out patrols the county.
Chair of the council’s Environment Scrutiny Committee Councillor Jim Jones said: “Dog mess left anywhere is a serious health risk. Hopefully this will act as a warning to others that this type of anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated and those caught flouting the law will be prosecuted.”
The council is appealing to the public to help identify those responsible. Anyone with any information is asked to contact Carmarthenshire Direct on 01267 234567.
Councillor Jones added: “The council is determined to stop the problem of dog fouling i…

Gwendraeth man fined for litter offence

A Gwendraeth Valley man has been ordered to pay a total of £275 after being caught throwing litter out of a car.
Daniel Yeomans, aged 20, of Heol Blaenhirwaun, Drefach, was convicted in absence of an offence under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 at Ammanford Magistrates Court.
The prosecution was brought by Carmarthenshire County Council.
The court heard that on March 17 the council’s environmental enforcement officers were on duty in Cross Hands Business Park when they saw something being thrown out of a car window.
A few minutes later the officers saw something eles being thrown from the same car. They approached the vehicle and explained what they had seen and that it was an offence to throw litter.
He was issued with a fixed penalty notice of £75, however, he failed to pay it and was prosecuted in court as a result.
Yeomans was fined £125 by magistrates and ordered to pay £150 towards prosecution costs.
It is now hoped this case will act as a warning to others that those caught br…

Carmarthenshire on a window mission

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Every window replaced as part of the Carmarthenshire Homes Standard is recycled and made in to new.
Over 90 per cent of the materials which make up a singled glazed window unit can be recycled and used in the making of new window products.
Double glazing is being installed at more than 9,000 homes as part of a multi-million pound investment in the council’s housing stock.
Carmarthenshire County Council’s property services division, part of Technical Services department, contracts Anglian Home Improvements to carry out the replacements and a Neath-based recycling firm makes the old in to new.
Mike Clark, quality standards assistant with the property services division, said: “We have been replacing single glazed windows with double glazing since 2004 and have already replaced windows at 8,000 homes.
“With so many old windows being removed, we were keen to make sure that we recycled as much waste material as possible.
“Fortunately, we are able to recycle over 90 per cent of the materials that …

Pantyffynnon children get busy planting

Children in Pantyffynnon have been busy planting flowers donated by Petals florist and garden centre in Tycroes.
Communities First were behind the project which has run open access play sessions in the community over the last few years.
The sessions allow the children to play freely under the supervision of trained and qualified workers in the area, and helps address their local needs.
Communities First is a Welsh Assembly initiative delivered by Carmarthenshire County Council.
Regeneration executive board member Cllr Clive Scourfield said: “As a result of the project Communities First has been able to build children’s skills, confidence, awareness of safety, improve team work, encourage physical activities, environmental awareness, sharing, and team skills.
“This latest activity helped the children get green and learn about the living world and our environment whilst having fun.”
Communities First Development Officer Emma Martin-Jewell added: “There are on average 13 to 15 children…

Citizenship ceremony in Carmarthen

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Seven people have become new British citizens at a ceremony in Carmarthen Register Office.
Yunming Wu, formerly of China, now living in Kidwelly, and Michelle Ann Wright from South Africa now in Llanimole, were two of the participants.
Others, all now living in Carmarthen, were Talatu Ayaba Stanley from Nigeria, and Govardhan Reddy Mittapalli, Jayakumar Balakrishnan and Bindu Moonjely Divakaran, all from India.
Gurdeep Kaur, now living in Swansea, and originally from India, also took part.
The citizenship ceremony was held to formally welcome on behalf of Her Majesty’s Government seven new people to Britain and to Carmarthenshire.
Designed to enhance the significance and importance of becoming a British Citizen, the aim of the ceremony, provided by Carmarthenshire County Council’s registration service, is also to provide each individual with a memorable occasion and help them celebrate with their friends and family a new sense of place and belonging.
The opening address and ceremony was…

Carmarthen centre backs Welsh language

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St Catherine’s Walk in Carmarthen is playing a pioneering role in the way it is supporting the Welsh language.
The county Council, Welsh Language Board and Menter Gorllewin Sir Gar have worked closely with the centre’s management to promote the use of Welsh.
St Catherine’s Walk manager Mike Pugh said: “We have been credited with Investing in Welsh by the Welsh Language Board and we are the only shopping centre in South West Wales to have that. My colleagues and I have been assessed and are either starting to learn Welsh or improving our Welsh. I have started Welsh lessons myself.
“All our promotional work, leaflets, store signs and internal signs are bilingual; Frankie & Benny’s menu cards are bilingual, as are the signs in the car park. If any communication is received in Welsh we reply in Welsh.”
He said that the decision to support the language as much as possible was taken right at the start.
“It was right from the set-up of the centre in March that we decided to support the Welsh …

Tributes paid to Councillor Haydn Jones

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Tributes have been paid to Cllr Haydn Jones who died suddenly.
Cllr Jones, a member for Newcastle Emlyn since 2004, was very well respected and well liked by all who knew him.
He was executive board member for technical services, and his portfolio included waste management, transport and streetscene.
All staff and members at Carmarthenshire County Council who knew Cllr Jones were shocked and saddened to hear of his death.
Chief Executive Mark James said: “Haydn was a very well respected, hard working county councillor, who was an absolute pleasure to work with.
“He was committed to his job, to his community, to his family, friends and colleagues.
“One of life’s true gentlemen, Haydn will be sorely missed, not only for his valuable contribution to the work of the county council, but for his good nature, his warmth, and the friendship and courtesy he showed to all.”
Cllr Jones, aged 72, was married to Mair for over 40 years, and had two children Aled and Gaynor, and six grandchildren.
His worki…

Carmarthenshire warning on car crime

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Residents across Carmarthenshire are being warned to lock their car and make sure valuables are out of sight when out and about this summer.
The Community Safety Partnership is warning people to make sure their vehicles are secure - even if they are leaving them for just a few minutes.
The number of vehicle crimes in the county is low and figures continue to fall with a reduction of 29 per cent last year.
However, the number of thefts from unattended cars tend to peak during the summer months as motorists leave their cars unlocked or with windows and sun roofs open and hoods down.
Figures show that between April and June there were 183 car crime offences in Carmarthenshire.
Of these, 64 per cent were thefts from an unattended motor vehicle and 36 per cent were as a result of a door or window being left unlocked or open.
The main type of property stolen included CD players, Sat Navs, mobile phones, bank cards and cash.
Community Safety Inspector Tony Ward said: “The number of vehicles that ar…

Tumble luncheon club is a winner

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A new volunteer-led luncheon club in Tumble is acting as a catalyst for the regeneration of the village.
Cinio a Chlonc (Meal and a Chat) is the first initiative to get underway in the area, providing a twice-weekly service for people aged 60+ to eat and socialise together.
Supported by Llannon Community Council, the club was one of the first to be established after Carmarthenshire County Council offered independent providers the chance to operate their own lunch clubs.
Membership is no longer restricted by eligibility criteria, and members are able to spend longer socialising than they were before.
Reduced-cost meals, with food sourced locally and cooked on the premises, are served every Tuesday and Thursday at Tumble Hall.
Cllr Pat Jones, executive board member for health and social care, said: “Tumble luncheon club is a shining example of what can be achieved within communities. The council was faced with criticism for asking town and community councils, and voluntary organisations, to …

Pantyffynnon summer cookery school success

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Communities First Pantyffynnon has organised a six week summer cookery school for local residents.
This latest initiative, organised in association with Hywel Dda Local Health Board, has received overwhelming support from the community and has enabled the participants to learn all about home cooked foods, the benefits of eating a healthy balanced diet, learning about what is in our foods, and cooking on a budget.
One of the themes Communities First works towards through the Welsh Assembly programme is to improve people’s health and wellbeing. This is being achieved through this project and other initiatives during the year, such as the community loan-a-bike scheme.
Morwen Brundrett, a local resident participating in the project, said: “This is a fantastic learning experience for me and has really encouraged me to cook more healthily at home. It has given people of all ages a chance to get together and discover more about foods and how ingredients can complement each other as well.”
Commu…