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Showing posts from June 5, 2011

Carmarthen Park and Ride success

Half a million passengers have ridden Carmarthen’s Park and Ride service in three years. Now many more are set to continue to do so.
Demand for the shopper and commuter special shuttle bus service has proved so popular it is to continue and users have indicated they are prepared to contribute to running costs.
There have been more than 500,000 passenger journeys since the service started with 161,946 riding in the last 12 months averaging 536 passenger journeys a day.
Thousands have been taking advantage of the twin shuttle bus service some weeks delivering them into the town centre after leaving their cars at the traffic and hassle free out of town Nantyci site.
The service was initially introduced in December 2007 on a temporary basis whilst the number of parking spaces in the Town Centre was reduced during construction work of the St Catherine’s Walk development.
County executive board member for transport services Cllr Philip Hughes said: “The shuttle has proved invaluable in reducing…

Council and Board aim to help Carmarthenshire carers

Carmarthenshire County Council and Hywel Dda Health Board are working together to help carers.
A new strategy is being planned to ensure carers are given the best support by both agencies working together.
It will ensure carers receive information around issues such as medication and crisis support as well as training and support.
Staff in both agencies will also receive training to make them aware of carers issues.
This strategy will be developed as part of the new Carers Measure which will delegate more responsibility on the NHS to provide information and advice to carers.
The NHS will also need to ensure that they consult with carers and the cared for in a timely manner and that carers’ knowledge of the cared for person is respected and used appropriately.
Public consultation on the measure is currently underway until the 23rd June 2011, details of which can be found on http://howis.wales.nhs.uk/sitesplus/862/page/45773.
Carmarthenshire County Council’s Carers’ Champion, Cllr Pat Jone…

Sustainability lunch for Carmarthenshire children

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A special sustainability themed lunch has been enjoyed by thousands of Carmarthenshire schoolchildren.
Carmarthenshire County Council’s Catering Service laid on the special dinner to celebrate Wales Sustainability Week 2011.
On the menu was traditional Welsh roast beef sourced by Welsh Bros from Llanidloes, with an alternative of homemade vegetable roast.
This was served with Yorkshire pudding, cabbage, carrots, creamed and roasted potatoes and gravy, followed by a delicious portion of Carmarthenshire vanilla ice cream, which is produced by Frank’s in Capel Hendre, Ammanford.
The lunch brought together several food products that are sourced locally, and organically, for school meals throughout the year.
The council follows a Local Sustainable Food Strategy, which it launched in 2004, to ensure the development of sustainable food chains, reduce environmental impacts, and produce healthier school meals using as much local produce as possible.
Following this strategy has also helped give the l…

Ammanford ready for Big Day Out

Ammanford's Big Day Out explodes into life on Saturday July 9 with its immensely popular Mardis-Gras Carnival.
This successful event sponsored by Taylor Wimpey has been given a new lease of life after the county council successfully secured a grant from the Western Valleys programme.
The Valleys – Heart and Soul of Wales is a three-year campaign led by partnership organisations from the Western Valleys, Heads of the Valleys and The Valleys Partnership.
The aim is to change perceptions of The Valleys, attract more tourists and bring long-term economic benefits to the area and this year’s Ammanford Big Day Out is sure to do just that.
The streets will be running with riotous colour when the mass parade takes to the streets wending its way to the Recreation Ground through anticipated crowds of 3-4,000 people. This year the festivities have the theme “Birds” so expect some flights of fancy on the parade.
There’s a series of arena acts booked including the Rockwood Dog Display team and Batt…

Father and son team-up to keep things tidy

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A father and son team are responsible for keeping Carmarthen town centre spick and span.
Den Rees, aged 67, from Tumble, and Dale Rees, aged 31, from Gorslas, can be seen cleaning the town daily in their bright green uniforms.
Dale usually starts work at 7.30am and uses a mechanical sweeper to pick up all the rubbish left behind from the previous night.
Then dad Den starts at 10am and the pair work their way around town picking up litter, cleaning up dog dirt and emptying the recycling bins.
The pair also help to keep the streets safe during the bad weather by helping to grit the town centre.
Den, who has no intention of retiring anytime soon, said: “I enjoy my job, I like working outside in the fresh air, meeting different people and being on my feet all day helps to keep me fit.”
He has worked For Carmarthenshire County Council for five years and son Dale has been working alongside his dad for three years.
“The town has definitely got busier since the new shopping centre opened,” said Dale…

Trinity students organise litter-pick

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Students from University of Wales Trinity Saint David in Carmarthen have helped clean up the community.
The Students’ Union organised a litter-pick of the streets in the College Road area near the campus.
Some 27 students gave up their free time and collected 10 bags of rubbish, most of which could be recycled.
Students' Union vice president Hannah Nash said students often got a bad reputation but they wanted to change people’s attitudes and give something back to the community.
She said: “We attended a community PACT meeting and we wanted to show that the students of Trinity Saint David do care about their local community and are willing to volunteer to improve it.
“Hopefully this is the first of a number of activities we can get involved in; we are hoping to volunteer with local sports teams and in the schools as well.”
The council’s Street Scene division supplied litter-pickers, gloves and t-shirts to the students and also briefed them on health and safety as part of it’s ‘Go Green, …

Glanymor takes greenest school crown

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Ysgol Glanymor in Burry Port has been crowned the greenest secondary school in Carmarthenshire.
The school has won the council’s first ever Eco Challenge Award scheme and a £5,000 cash prize.
The aim of the challenge was to find out who was the cleverest when it came to energy conservation, reducing waste and environmental best practice. It was open to all secondary schools in the county.
The judges were particularly impressed with the way in which Glanymor had dealt with controlling litter on the school grounds, improving energy efficiency, reducing traffic congestion outside the school and reducing and recycling their waste.
As well as the prize money, the school received a certificate of achievement and four litter recycling bins so that pupils can recycle in the school yard as well as inside the classroom.
Runners-up were Ysgol Dyffryn Taf in Whitland and Bryngwyn School in Llanelli.
They, too, have received cash prizes and litter recycling bins for the school yard.
Carmarthenshire Cou…

New Llandeilo Day Club is a hit

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Older people living in Llandeilo have given the thumbs up to their new day club.
The club, run by the WRVS at the council’s Maes Elfryn Sheltered Housing Scheme, threw open its doors for the first time this week.
Almost 30 members have attended and enjoyed a cooked lunch and a chat with friends and volunteers.
It was a change for some who had previously attended a council-run day club at the nearby Noddfa Teilo.
In the hands of volunteers, the new club provides a more flexible service for older people and, because it is no longer run by the council, more people are able to join as eligibility criteria no longer applies.
Husband and wife Gordon and Mary Kendrick are two of those that have moved from Noddfa Teilo.
“It’s been lovely,” said Mary, aged 74. “I think the thought of the move was worse than it actually was. We’ve all enjoyed, and will be looking forward to the next few weeks when we start having more entertainment.”
The new club provides social activities from 11.30-2.30pm every Wedn…

Man dumped waste at recycling banks

A man has been fined £75 for dumping household waste next to the recycling banks in Brynamman.
The council’s environmental enforcement officers issued the fixed penalty notice after finding the rubbish at the bring site in Nantgarw Road.
Failure to pay could lead to prosecution in the magistrates court and a maximum penalty of up to £2,500.
The council hopes this fine will act as a warning to others that this type of behaviour will not be tolerated.
Executive board member for the environment Councillor Philip Hughes said: “We are very disappointed that the council’s recycling sites are being misused in this way as they are important facilities for communities.
“We want to encourage people to recycle as much of their waste as possible, however, people are dumping all types of waste at the sites and we have also had people leaving their recyclables in plastic bags next to the containers because they are too lazy to empty them into the banks. This is littering; it makes the area look unsightl…

Fined for cigarette litter

A man and a woman have been fined £75 for dropping cigarette ends in Carmarthen town centre.
The 22-year-old male and 32-year-old-woman were caught littering in separate incidents in Nott's Square by the council’s environmental enforcement officers.
Failure to pay the fixed penalty notices could result in prosecution in the magistrates court and a maximum fine of up to £2,500.
It follows a council campaign to highlight the problem of smoking-related litter and encourage people to put their cigarette butts in the bin.
Director of Technical Services Richard Workman said: “We do not want to fine people, but we will not hesitate to do so if they continue to litter in this way. Many people do not think of cigarette ends as litter, but they are. They make an area look unsightly and they are difficult and very expensive to clean up - the ends fall into grates and cracks in the pavement which makes them almost impossible to remove by normal cleaning.”
Research shows that discarded cigarette en…

Whitland restaurants get 5-star rating

Two food businesses in Whitland have been given top marks for food hygiene.
Roadhouse Restaurant and Café Culture Cymru received the top rating of 5 under the recently introduced Food Hygiene Rating Scheme.
The food hygiene rating or inspection result given to a business reflects the standards of food hygiene found on the date of inspection or visit by the local authority. It is not a guide to food quality.
The information provided on businesses is held on behalf of local authorities participating in the national Food Hygiene Rating Scheme Wales.
Daniel Davies of the Roadhouse Restaurant said: “We are very pleased to have achieved the 5 star rating. The scheme is an amazing idea.
“Customers can see exactly what standard a restaurant is up to and it keeps everyone on their toes.”
Roy Eydan of Café Culture Cymru said: “I am very proud that we have had a 5 star rating. To be a successful businessman running a restaurant or café before anything you have to make sure everything is clean. Everyo…

Eco Eli and Tidy Ted on the road again

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Eco Eli and Tidy Ted are taking their fun-packed show to Welsh language primary schools across Carmarthenshire to teach them the importance of our environment.
The council’s eco-friendly elephant is back on the road with the all-singing and all-dancing Gregory Brothers and her new friend Tidy Towns mascot Tidy Ted.
Together they are spreading the word on issues such as waste reduction and recycling, litter and dog fouling.
The Welsh version of the show is now visiting Welsh language primary schools across the county and aims to raise awareness of the environment and what we can do to protect it in a light-hearted and entertaining way.
Funded through grants from the Welsh Assembly Government, the fun-packed show is a partnership between Carmarthenshire County Council and Tidy Towns.
The show was launched at Ysgol Pontyberem and pupils from Ysgol Y Fro also went along to join in the fun along with the council’s executive board member for education Councillor Gwynne Wooldridge.
He said: “The s…

New website helps consumers

Consumers in Carmarthenshire can now use a new national website to make sure that the brands they are buying are genuine.
Trading Standards chiefs in the county have welcomed the launch of shopping directory Brand-i, which has been created in partnership with the Trading Standards Institute.
The website aims to reduce the amount of counterfeit goods purchased by consumers by providing them with a list of genuine stockists for their favourite brands.
The directory has a large amount of brands including UGG, GHD, Abercrombie and Fitch and Pandora. Most of which are renowned for fakes. The website address is: www.brand-i.org
Executive board member for public protection Cllr Pam Palmer said: “The Brand-i website is a welcome service to help consumers avoid being conned into buying counterfeit goods when they think they are buying brand names.”

Topping out ceremony postponed at hotel

Today's scheduled 'Topping Out' ceremony at the new £2million spa at the Lamphey Court Hotel in Pembrokeshire has been postponed. Key guests were unavailable.

All smiles after Juniors Day at 'The Ash'

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Included in this picture are competitors who took part in the recent Juniors Day events staged at The Ashburnham, Golf Club. Back Row (left to right) - Simon Greville (Junior Organiser), Rhodri Evans, Bobby Phillips (Best Gross 71), Tony Washer (Club Captain), Lucy Davies, Amber Thomas, Nia Greville, Richard Brice (Junior Organiser). Front Row - Connor Bunnyon, Scott Jones, Jack Holland, Daniel Brice, Joshua Morris, Owain Williams, Griff Sayer.
See earlier post -
http://sirgarblog.blogspot.com/2011/06/iwan-rees-wins-junior-medal-at-ash.html

The day Robert met the President

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Llanelli-born MP Robert Buckland has been telling the Llanelli Star how he shook the hand of Barack Obama following the US President's state visit to Britain.
Robert, a former pupil of Old Road Primary and St Michael's School, was elected MP for South Swindon in May last year.
He told the Star: "It was an honour to be able to meet the President and to speak briefly with him about the shared values that have made the relationship between Britain and the United States such an important one over the years."

Iwan Rees wins Junior Medal at 'The Ash'

The Junior Open Medal at The Ashburnham Golf Club in Pembrey, near, Llanelli, was won by Iwan Rees.
Rees fought off a strong challenge from Joshua Morris and Jack Holland during the hugely-popular Juniors Day at ‘The Ash’.
Ashburnham club manager Huw Morgan said he was delighted with the success of the Juniors Day.
“At The Ashburnham and we are working very hard to encourage the next generation of golfers and it was splendid to see so many youngsters (club players and visitors) out on the course.”
Full competition details -
Junior Open Medal - Boys
Competition Scratch Score = 72(Men)
1, Rees, Iwan, 78 - 12 = 66; 2, Morris, Joshua, 87 - 20 = 67; 3, Holland, Jack, 81 - 13 = 68; 4, Phillips, Bobbie, 71 - 03 = 68; 5, Nichollas, Owen, 86 - 16 = 70; 6, Holland, Freddie, 90 - 20 = 70; 7, Watkins, Rhys, 83 - 13 = 70; 8, Williams, Nathan, 83 - 12 = 71; 9, Johnston, Scott, 81 - 10 = 71; 10, Mathias, Haydn, 75 - 03 = 72
Other results on the Juniors Day –
Junior Open Boys 21-28
Competition Scratch Score = …

Latest 'View from Richmond Park' column from the Journal

The latest 'View from Richmond Park' column from the Carmarthen Journal -
Carmarthen Town AFC will be holding their pre-season trials for the different age groups of the club's Academy on the following dates –
June 27th Under 12s (first of two sessions)
June 28th Under 16s
June 29th Under 12s (second of two trials)
All players to report to Richmond Park, home of Carmarthen Town Football Club, by 5.45pm each evening.
The Under-14s squad is already in place.
General contact numbers for players interested in joining the Academy: Keiran Davies: 07718 918442; Ray Squires: 07970 146709; Gareth Jones: 07814 262656; Shane Earp: 07743 489905; Ashley Williams: 07531 295225.
Pre-season training for the Under 19s will begin in mid June.
Updates will be released in the local press and on the Carmarthen Town website - http://www.carmarthentownafc.net/
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Carmarthen Town AFC will be staging its 13th Fete and Primary School Football Tournament at the Richmond Park…

34,000 visits chalked up!

Thank you very much, folks. Thanks to you, dear readers and visitors, this blog is continuing to pick up more hits.
It's now hit the 34,000 page views mark.
That's 1,000 more views since May 31 - just over a week ago!
Keep the hits coming, folks! Much appreciated.
Many thanks.
See earlier post -
http://sirgarblog.blogspot.com/2011/05/33000-visits-chalked-up.html
Meanwhile, the blog has chalked up its first visitor from the Palestinian Territory.
The full country by country list (figures from January 6, 2010) is as follows -
United Kingdom (GB) 10,703; United States (US) 1,330; India (IN) 101; Canada (CA) 76; Germany (DE) 68; Australia (AU) 67; Ireland (IE) 54; Europe (EU) 53; France (FR) 49; Taiwan (TW) 45; Japan (JP) 41; Belgium (BE) 35; Netherlands (NL) 29; Italy (IT) 29; Qatar (QA) 29; Spain (ES) 25; New Zealand (NZ) 23; Philippines (PH) 21; Pakistan (PK) 21; United Arab Emirates (AE) 19; Malaysia (MY) 19; Russian Federation (RU) 17; Poland (PL) 14; Singapore (SG) 14; Sweden (SE) 13…

Aberystwyth event puts focus on 'nuclear trust'

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Next week, the Department of International Politics at Aberystwyth University will host a two day symposium on the prospects for cooperation and trust building between nuclear-armed powers and potential nuclear weapon states.
The ‘Nuclear Rivalries and Prospects for Cooperation and Trust-Building’ is the second annual symposium of the 'The Challenges to Trust-Building in Nuclear Worlds' project and is coordinated by the Department of International Politics and the David Davies Memorial Institute of International Studies.
The event is part of the three-year research project ‘The Challenges to Trust-Building in Nuclear Worlds’.
The project is led by Professor Nicholas Wheeler of Aberystwyth University and supported by the RCUK’s programme ‘Global Uncertainties: Security for All in a Changing World’.
The project’s overall goal is to explore the contribution that multidisciplinary research on trust can make to opening up new policy options for promoting cooperation and security in th…

In the news today . . .

Smashing pic and story in the Carmarthen Journal today about rising Ashburnham golf star Nia Greville and her trip to Italy with Wales.
'View from Richmond Park' Carmarthen AFC football column in the Carmarthen Journal today.
Carmarthen Journal sports pages put the spotlight on summer tournaments at The Ashburnham Golf Club in Pembrey.
Splendid story in the Carmarthen Journal Out And About pages about Stagecoach Carmarthen's new production of the musical Oliver!
Nice story in the Carmarthen Journal today about the Carmarthen Mayor's Fun Run 'debrief' meeting at St Peter's Civic Hall.
Details of the next open golf events at The Ashburnham Golf Club are in the sports pages of the Llanelli Star today.
Llanelli Star sports pages put the spotlight on Ashburnham golfer Nia Greville and her selection for the Wales team to travel to Italy.
Splendid picture in the Llanelli Star of Cor Meibion Llanelli with Welsh author Peter Griffiths, a native of Cynheidre now living in U…

Darren Bowen lifts Cavalier Cup

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Darren Bowen was the winner of the Cavalier Cup competition staged at The Ashburnham Golf Club in Pembrey, near Llanelli.
The competition was staged on Saturday, June 4.
Full competition details –
Competition Scratch Score = 73 (Men)
Winner, Bowen, Darren, 74 - 05 = 69.
Runner-up, Dixon, Gareth Alun, 84 - 14 = 70.
Third, Key, Michael, 79 - 08 = 71.
Other positions –
4, O’Sullivan, Mark, 80 - 09 = 71; 5, Stimson, Ian, 76 - 05 = 71; 6, Anderson, Elliot, 75 - 04 = 71; 7, Edwards, Geoff, 82 - 11 = 71; 8, Kavanagh, Jeff 77 - 06 = 71; 9, Williams, John, 92 - 20 = 72; 10, Hale, Martin 84 - 12 = 72.

Stagecoach pupils stage success story

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Pupils at a leading Carmarthenshire performing arts school have been successful in the latest round of prestigious national examinations.
The youngsters took part in a variety of exams under the umbrella of LAMDA, The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.
“The exams are always a good test of ability and the LAMDA certificates are highly valued by the pupils,” said Stagecoach Carmarthen principal Liane Davies.
All members of the Main school for ages 6 - 16 attained a merit or distinction in group musical theatre grades.
One student obtained a bronze medal in musical theatre and one was awarded a silver medal.
In the group performances, the following results were recorded –
Stage 1 - Merit – for the Medley from the musical Cats.
Stage2 - Distinction –Oklahoma.
Stage 3 - Merit - Sister Act and Sweeney Todd.
Stagecoach Carmarthen principal Liane Davies added: “The LAMDA examinations are an excellent benchmark for assessing the standards of our pupils and we are very proud of their achievements…

Charity gets a smart idea for fund-raising

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The Healing The Wounds charity in Wales is one of the first in the UK to use a new piece of cutting edge technology to boost its fund-raising.
The charity, which helps treat sufferers of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), has launched its own ‘QR code’ – a special type of bar code which can be used by smartphone users. The technology makes donations as easy as a camera click.
“This is state-of-the-art technology and we think we are the first charity in the UK to use it,” said Healing The Wounds executive director Kevin Richards.
“QR codes have been a bit slow to catch on in the UK, but with the help of our friends in Vodafone we have come to appreciate their significance very quickly.”
QR stands for Quick Response code, a specific matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code) that is ‘readable’ by dedicated QR barcode readers and camera telephones.
“The idea is simple,” said Mr Richards. “We can place the QR code in a number of locations – on our website, on posters, on leaflets and other l…

Jodie Marie on Radio Wales

Just heard the excellent Jodie Marie on the Roy Noble show on Radio Wales.
She's from Narberth. Just 19. Fab voice and writes her own songs.
Website -
http://www.jodiemarie.co.uk
You Tube video of Single Blank Canvas -
http://youtu.be/Vi0okXxp01U

Grayce stars in jazz music video

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A pupil at the Stagecoach performing arts school in Carmarthen has landed a lead role in a new music video for an international jazz star.
Grayce Davies is a Stage 2 pupil at Stagecoach Carmarthen. She recently played the lead role (Olivia) in a music video for jazz singer Aimua Eghobamien's new song ‘Tis what it is’.
This was Eghobamien's first music video. Nick Bartleet, from Pixelloft Ltd, was the director. He is known for directing music videos for musicians such as Mcfly and Taio Cruz.
Stagecoach Carmarthen Principal Liane Davies said she was delighted at the success of one of her pupils.
She added: “Grayce loved filming and being in front of the camera. She even had her own runner, which she thought was great! We are all very proud of her at Stagecoach Carmarthen.”
You can see the video at - http://www.aimuaeghobamien.com/
Stagecoach Theatre Arts Carmarthen has its base at the Model Church in Wales School.
The school opened in May 2009 and became an instant success. The school …

Alumni delight for Aberystwyth

Aberystwyth University is delighted to see that 10 alumni are taking their seats in The Senedd as the Welsh Assembly reconvenes for business.
The election returned 10 former Aberystwyth University students - five Plaid Cymru, four Labour and one Liberal Democrat.
Four of the 10 AMs were newly elected in the election on 5th May with the remaining six returning for another term in Cardiff Bay.
The 10 Assembly Members join 13 Aberystwyth University alumni elected as Members of Parliament during the 2010 General Election.
Professor Noel Lloyd, Vice Chancellor of Aberystwyth University said “I am delighted to note that Aberystwyth University alumni make up a sixth of the Welsh Assembly. I, and everyone at the University, congratulate them all on their election and wish them every success in their political career.”
Julian Smyth, Director of Development and Alumni Relations at Aberystwyth University said: “We have always known in Aber just how special our former students are, but it is truly wo…

Off to Bridgend

Off to Bridgend for a meeting with the Healing The Wounds charity to help victims of PTSD.

This week's special offers with Jenkins Bakery

This week's special offers from the Jenkins Bakery (inc 3 medium corned beef pasties £1.60) are now on the website - http://ning.it/dZZV8w