Showing posts from October 12, 2014

Latest 'On Song' column from the Llanelli Star

The latest 'On Song' column (about the choral scene in and around Llanelli) from the Llanelli Star - 

Loud Applause Productions has some big events coming up before the end of the year.
Saturday, October 18, sees the World War 1 Centenary Gala Concert, supporting the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal at Ffwrnes Theatre, Llanelli.
The concert will feature Rebecca Evans, Rhys Meirion, the combined choirs of Burry Port Male Choir, Dyffryn Tywi Male Choir and Mynydd Mawr Male Choir, 215 City of Swansea Squadron Royal Air Force Corps of Drums, Samuel Morris and Angharad Rees. Brian Sullivan will be the compere.
On Saturday, November 1, Ffwrnes will stage A Night with the Stars.
Connie Fisher will host the evening and will be joined by Llangennech Primary School Choir (finalists in Songs of Praise School Choir Competition) and other guests.
Taking centre stage will be members of the Loud Applause Rising Stars stable - Samuel Morris, Daniella Difede, Keely Morgan, Angharad Elise Thomas, Li…

The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post

The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post

Comedian Phil Evans is from Ammanford. He is known as the man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy.


Six months ago I loaned a friend £5,000 to have plastic surgery and I’ve been unable to get my money back. The operation was so successful, I have no idea what he looks like.
Many glamour models fade from view as they get older, but former model and weightlifter Jodie Marsh is the host of a new American TV series that features people who’ve had disastrous plastic surgery. That’s quite an achievement, so I take my hat off to Jodie. After all, she’s taken much more off for me in the past.
The first recorded case of reconstructive surgery dates back to Ancient Egypt, which is surprising when you consider that The Sphinx has badly needed a nose job for centuries.
The first plastic surgery as we know it, was carried out by an American surgeon in 1927 to cure a cleft palate. Since then it’s saved the looks and m…

Swansea City’s Kevin Johns stars in new Barclays film on the spirit of the game of football

Swansea City pitch announcer, Kevin Johns MBE, is the star of a new Barclays short film profiling individuals who represent the true spirit of the game.
The film introduces the charismatic Kevin and follows him during the first game of the Barclays Premier League season as Swansea take on Burnley at the Liberty Stadium.
It showcases his role in lifting the crowd, who he describes as the 12th man, before every home game and the passion he puts into his performances.
The film is the second in the ‘Spirit of the Game Heroes’ campaign, which chronicles those who make the Barclays Premier League what it is. Barclays asked every Premier League club in the country to nominate one person who best represented the passion behind their club. Swansea City nominated Kevin because of the passion he brings to the match day experience and his place in Swansea City folk law.
Kevin, who is a renowned actor, MC and radio DJ in the local area, spoke about his adoration for the Swans.
From falling in love wi…

Dylan Thomas still provides a boost for Carmarthenshire tourism

He may have been born 100-years ago but Welsh poet and writer Dylan Thomas is still one of Carmarthenshire’s most powerful tourism assets.
He composed most of his greatest works in his Laugharne shed, which continues to attract great numbers from far afield whenever events are staged in his adopted home of Laugharne.
Carmarthenshire County Council commissioned Strategic Marketing to conduct a survey of visitors to Laugharne during this summer’s Dylan Thomas centenary celebrations.
County marketing and tourism development officer Sarah Owen said: “The objective was to understand in more detail the profile of visitors and their overall experience and perception of Carmarthenshire as a place to visit.
“There were quite a few surprises. A significant proportion of visitors travelled to the events from England with many making journeys of several hours. One in six travelled from South East England. Twenty per cent of Dylan’s events visitors had never been to Carmarthenshire before. These visit…

Llanelli planning biggest ever Christmas Carnival

Llanelli is set to explode in to life with its famous Christmas carnival, throwing the biggest party in the town’s history.
The 20,000-plus pulling power of the biggest carnival in Wales has already seen 18 floats booked - more than any year ever before with six weeks still to go.
Executive board member for leisure Cllr Meryl Gravell said: “Llanelli certainly knows how to party. This carnival is going from strength to strength.
“It is wonderful to see the enthusiasm from the organisers and all those who attend the carnival let their hair down and welcome Christmas in style and with a panache that only Llanelli can muster.”
Carnival organiser and Round Tabler Roger Bowen said: “We have many of the regular entries and a number of enquiries from newcomers for this year’s event.
“The battle this year will be having enough lorries to go round. Owens Road Services and Greens Transport have pledged their support again but the entries are rolling in fast. We could easily top 30 floats this year m…

Cancer care remains at Withybush Hospital, Pembrokeshire

Hywel Dda University Health Board has no intention to remove cancer services from Withybush Hospital, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire.
A change has been made to the way in-patient services are delivered at Withybush Hospital due to medical staffing problems.
As is usual practice in district general hospitals, patients will be admitted to hospital through the Acute Clinical Decision Unit or the Emergency and Urgent Care Centre so there is no delay to their treatment. Patients with cancer related problems will still usually be placed on ward 10, although some will be placed on other wards depending on the clinical problem. For example they may be placed on a surgical ward if they have problems best looked after by a surgeon.
Patients will be looked after by experienced general physicians and their teams with specialist oncology input from within the university health board or from the specialist cancer centre at ABMU Health Board. This is the usual practice in district general hospitals thr…

Problems for the cill gates at entrance to Burry Port Harbour

Power surges and electricity cuts caused by the lighting strikes in recent weeks have caused problems with the cill gates at Burry Port Harbour.
The short power cuts householders have been experiencing between Burry Port and Kidwelly sometimes several times a day have been causing the cill gates retaining water in the marina to rise in safety mode. This prevent vessels leaving on the tide.
Carmarthenshire coastal manager Rory Dickinson said: “Every time this happens we have to visit the control room and reset the system to get it operating again.
“It is similar, but a little more complicated than trip switches on a domestic supply.
“There was a power cut last Tuesday following which the cill working mechanism could not be reset.
“Specialists were called in and found the three of the cill gate’s sensors had blown simultaneously.”
“The sensors were new and the specialist thought it was too much of a coincidence for the problems to be anything other than electrical storm related.”
The sensors h…

Jazz classic being performed to mark Dylan Thomas centenary

Llanelli's Ffwrnes Theatre will be the venue for a special event to mark the Dylan Thomas Centenary on Friday night (October 17).
The theatre will see a live performance of Stan Tracey's world-renowned 'Jazz Suite inspired by Dylan Thomas' Under Milk Wood'. The suite is recognised as an iconic jazz masterpiece. Renowned pianist Richard Roberts leads a Welsh all-star jazz quartet with readings from the text by Swansea actors Phylip Harries (Torchwood, Doctor Who. Tracy Beaker, City Central) and Caroline Berry (Inspector Morse, Stella, Blood Brothers, Doctor Who and who is currently appearing as "Val Phelan" in Coronation Street).
Stan Tracey CBE (30 December 1926 – 6 December 2013) was a British jazz pianist and composer, whose most important influences were Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk. The Under Milk Wood suite is Tracey's best known recording. Tracey's 1965 album (its full title is Jazz Suite inspired by Dylan Thomas' "Under Mil…

Q and A session on changes to Aberaeron GP services

Hywel Dda University Health Board is holding a public question and answer session in Aberaeron to explain the changes to GP services in the area to local people.
Oxford Street Surgery will close on 31st October 2014 following the retirement of Dr. Price Jones from this practice. All patients registered at the practice will be allocated a new GP provider, close to where they live, and patients will receive letters giving more information next week.
The Community Health Council, the Local Medical Committee and other local GPs have all been involved in deciding the best option for the future delivery of general medical services to patients in this area. The University Health Board will also be meeting with locally elected members to explain the changes.
Executive Director of Primary Care, Community, Mental Health and Clinical Strategy Dr Phil Kloer said: “The University Health Board feels that it is very important to meet with the patients affected by these changes to ensure all of their…

Busy autumn season for Llanelli's 'Hywel choirs'

Conductor John Hywel Williams and the Hywel Girls’ Choir & Hywel Boy Singers are enjoying a stellar Autumn season. In addition to an exciting concert schedule, the Hywel Choir will be seen by millions on national and international television on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
On Christmas Eve, the choir will appear on BBC Breakfast and other domestic and international BBC news programmes during Christmas Eve as part of the remembrance of the famous WW1 Christmas Truce.
On Christmas Day, the choir will be seen and heard on “Frozen at Christmas” on UK Channel 4, a documentary about the making of Disney’s Frozen which will also feature the makers and actors behind the Disney phenomenon. The choir will be filming for this during October.
In addition to their TV appearances, John Hywel Williams and his choristers will next be heard in concert on 1 November at a sell-out St. David’s Hall at the Wales Festival of Remembrance with international singing star Katherine Jenkins. The choi…

Advice to Pembrokeshire parents on changes to paediatric services

Hywel Dda University Health Board is providing information to Pembrokeshire parents on changes to paediatric services, including information on what to do if your child is unwell, ahead of service changes being made later this month.
From Monday 20th October 2014, there will be changes to some healthcare services for children and young people.
All Pembrokeshire households and businesses are being sent a leaflet about the changes through the post. Posters are being distributed to health and community locations, a radio advertisement will provide people with contacts for further information and newspaper adverts will appear in major publications. Resources are also available on the University Health Board’s website at
Most paediatric services remain unchanged and will be accessed in the usual way, including all community, outpatient and minor injury services.
There will be a 12-hour (10am-10pm), seven day a week paediatric assessment unit in W…

E H Carr Memorial Lecture 2014: ‘Realism and the relativity of judgement’

Raymond Geuss, Emeritus Professor in Philosophy at Cambridge University, will deliver the Annual E H Carr Memorial Lecture at the Department of International Politics, Aberystwyth University on Thursday 30th October
The lecture, which is open to the public, will take place in the Main Hall at the Department of International Politics and starts at 6.00pm.
The title of Professor Geuss’ lecture is ‘Realism and the relativity of judgement’.
Professor Geuss is a very distinguished scholar specialising in political philosophy, ethics and the history of Continental Philosophy.
His publications include The Idea of a Critical Theory (Cambridge University Press, 1981) and Philosophy and Real Politics (Princeton University Press, 2008). This latter book examines the realist approach to political philosophy.
Prior to moving to Cambridge in 1993, Professor Geuss taught at Princeton University, the University of Chicago, and had also held posts at the Universities of Heidelberg and Freiburg.
His l…

New winter menu launches for Carmarthenshire primary schools

Children across Carmarthenshire will be getting their first taste of the new winter menu when it launches in the county’s primary schools on Monday, November 3.
The refreshed winter menu is packed full of tasty homemade meals, with delicious dishes including cook’s choice homemade beef or vegetarian casserole with mashed potato, peas or mashed swede.
There’s also a range of curry dishes, including chicken tikka paninis and chicken korma with rice, as well as other children’s favourites such as spaghetti and meatballs, pizza and fish fingers - all guaranteed to warm their tummies on the cold winter days.
Amongst the desserts on offer is a homemade lemon cake with custard, and an old-fashioned homemade flapjack.
The menu, designed and implemented by Carmarthenshire Catering Service – part of Carmarthenshire County Council – follows the Welsh Government’s Appetite for Life legislation, to improve the health of children by offering nutritionally-balanced school meals.
The nutritional value of …

'Pride In Your Patch' working well in Pontyates

Residents and tenants at a Pontyates housing estate have been clearing out their junk as part of the council’s Pride In Your Patch campaign.
A skip amnesty was held at Maesglas last week, organised by the housing department, and supported by Keep Wales Tidy and Tidy Towns.
Locals were encouraged to have a good clear out, and that they did – within an hour the skip was full!
Housing community engagement officer Pat Evans said: “Pride In Your Patch is all about encouraging tenants to take ownership and pride in their gardens and community areas. There are a number of elements to the project, including construction training opportunities, but this is one of the simplest – just having a good clear out and tidy up to make the community look and feel a lot nicer.
“We had great feedback from tenants, and many of them are planning more events together in the future, such as litter picks with families.”
Pride In Your Patch is one of several schemes that run as part of the council’s Carmarthenshire …

Comedian Phil Evans to give the ‘inside track’ on what makes good comedy

Celebrated Welsh comedian Phil Evans is set to give the ‘inside track’ on what makes good comedy.
The man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy is bravely putting himself on the analyst’s couch for a one-man show with a difference.
The ‘difference’ is that it isn’t so much a one-man show as a two-man ‘fun fest’, with Phil being interrogated by fellow comedian Daniel Glyn.
The ‘Phil Evans Exposed’ show is a one-night-only event at Llanelli’s Best Western Diplomat Hotel on Saturday, November 1.
Phil explained: “This sort of question and answer interrogation is long overdue and something that I’ve has been putting off for quite a few years.
“Everybody’s been asking me to do a Q & A show. The truth is that I have now run out of excuses.”
TV personality, film reviewer and fellow comedian Gary Slaymaker is excited about the event.
“Phil Evans is true showbiz royalty - not only the Clown Prince of Comedy, but also the King of the Cwtsh.
“With many years experience, Phil isn't so much a comic, but…

Plea to support the British Legion Poppy Appeal in Carmarthenshire

Carmarthenshire County Council is urging local residents to support the British Legion Poppy Appeal on the centenary of the First World War.
Council Chair Cllr Daff Davies has offered the council’s support to the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal and agreed that poppies can be placed in council premises.
The Head of the Poppy Appeal Ray Sheppard said: “In this Centenary year of World War One we are ever mindful of the sacrifices made by our Armed Forces and the demands on our services are as important now as they were then.
“Our welfare services this year have seen over £1.7m a week spent on a variety of services. From helping a young widow through an inquest to ensuring that an older veteran can stay independent in their own home.”
Last year’s Poppy Appeal currently stands at just over £38m. This year Remembrance falls from October 26 until November 11.
The Poppy Appeal is running its Poppy People campaign to attract new volunteers. Anyone over 16 years of age can help and they can do t…

Glangwili Hospital staff climb Snowdon for charity

Staff from Cilgerran Ward at Glangwili Hospital, Carmarthen, have climbed Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales, for a charity close to their hearts.
Staff from the paediatric unit came up with the idea of the Snowdon Challenge to raise money for the ward through the University Health Board’s charity, Hywel Dda Health Charities.
The team set themselves a target of £3,500 to help buy new parent beds for overnight stays at the hospital. They are well on their way to reach their target having already raised over £3,200.
“Charitable donations help us to provide above and beyond what the NHS is able to offer,” said Senior Sister Janet Millward.
“I am extremely proud of what the team has achieved and for their dedication to provide parents with more comfortable surroundings on the ward.”
Staff Nurse Jayne Sherwin added “The team had a fantastic weekend in North Wales and thoroughly enjoyed the Snowdon climb. We are pleased to be able to give something back to the hospital and play a small …

Aberystwyth University scientist proposes a new mechanism for building quantum computers

A new mechanism for building quantum computers has been proposed by an international team of scientists led by Dr Daniel Klaus Burgarth at Aberystwyth University.
Writing in the scientific journal Nature Communications (, Dr Burgarth et al describe how the frequent observation of a basic building block of a quantum system, known as a qubit, could lead to the creation of far more powerful computers.
The paper, Exponential rise of dynamic complexity in quantum computing through projections is published today, Friday 10 October 2014.
While the possibility of using quantum effects to develop a new type of computer has been known for over 30 years, only small “quantum computers” have been built until now.
Scientists are now engaged in a world wide effort to build large quantum computers which will be able perform some very complex computations in a very short time, tasks that would…

Latest special offers from the Jenkins Bakery

Latest special offers from the Jenkins Bakery -
WEEK COMMENCING October 13, 2014
3 Medium Corned Beef £1.65
2 Large Corned Beef Pasties £1.95
2 Chicken & Mushroom Pasties £2.30
2 Teacakes 90p
Sandwich of the week Chicken and stuffing £2.30
Rustic Baguette of the week Chicken Tikka £2.40
Filed softie of the week Tuna Mayo £2.25

Website -

Llangunnor pulls out all the stops for Older Persons Week

The community of Llangunnor pulled out all the stops to lay on a host of activities to celebrate Older Persons Week.
The action-packed week included a presentation by a local historian, arts and crafts, exercises for people aged 50+ and a coffee morning.
It was supported by various agencies who provided information on resources available to older people locally, and concluded with an afternoon of traditional entertainment with musical recitals, a raffle and auction.
The events were pulled together by tenant Lis Duffy, Taf Myrddin tenant network executive member, as part of the Timebanking scheme that encourages volunteering in the community.
If you would like to receive more information on volunteering in your community, contact Pat Evans on 01554 899288.

Carmarthenshire Council facing £45million budget cuts over next three years

Carmarthenshire Council is facing massive budget cuts of around £45million over the next three years.
The figure was revealed following the announcement of the Welsh Government’s provisional funding settlement.
Carmarthenshire is looking at a reduction in its funding settlement from Welsh Government of 3.3% which is less than recently anticipated, although still considerably more than was originally planned.
It was thought that the county was looking at savings of around £30million over the next three years, now it is likely to be £45million.
Bosses have warned that hundreds of jobs could go, and some services will be lost as the authority tries to balance its books.
Leader Cllr Kevin Madge said: “Although this is a better settlement than we recently anticipated, the situation overall is still very bad news for Welsh local authorities, including Carmarthenshire.
“There is no doubt it will have a grave effect on the services we deliver, on the people who work for us and on the county as a wh…