Showing posts from 2017

Review: The Prince of Wales

The Prince of Wales, a new play by Jon Tregenna, performed by Llanelli Stage Company and Llanelli Youth Theatre, Stiwdio Stepni at Ffwrnes Theatre, Llanelli. (running through to Saturday night, November 18).

It’s got history, humour and high jinks.
And the end result is slightly hysterical in a highly amusing way.
The new play from Buggerall author Jon Tregenna is a fast-moving, cleverly-staged development of a radical idea.
What if there is a descendant of the last great Welsh king, Llywelyn Ap Gruffudd?
Will it be the end of the Prince of Wales, Prince Charles?
Will it spark a constitutional crisis?
There’s razor-sharp humour in sackloads played across a backdrop of serious themes about Welsh nationhood, friendship, mistaken identity, love, passion and the consumer culture.
Throw in a few swipes about a pretentious arts and media culture and you have a bubbling Welsh cocktail which fizzes and delights through one long act with multiple scene changes.
The Welsh love their heroes - and the dis…

The latest 'On Song' column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star

The latest 'On Song' column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star -
Carmarthen Male Voice Choir Côr Meibion Caerfyrddin will be holding their annual concert this weekend, 7.30pm on Saturday, November 18.
Priody Chapel in Priory Street, Carmarthen, is the venue.
The choir’s special guests include tenor Osian Wyn Bowen, Côr Merched Hyn Ysgol Bro Myrddin and organist Meirion Wynn Jones.
On Sunday, November 19, there’s the annual Grand Concert at Myddfai Community Hall (7pm start).
The concert will feature three combined choirs – Cwmann, Dinefwr and Llandovery.
Soloists will be Tristan Lewis Deganwy (Llandudno), Ioan Wyn Parry (Dolgellau) and Mariwyn and Cadi Fflur.
Proceeds from the event (tickets £10) go towards Llandovery Hospital League of Friends and Myddfai Community Hall.
Côr Merched Curiad y Cwm ladies choir will be celebrating their 30th anniversary with a special concert at Tumble Hall at 7pm on Friday, November 24.
The choir’s special guests will be the Tywi Vall…

New appointment at Bay TV Swansea

Press release: November 7, 2017. For immediate publication.

New appointment at Bay TV Swansea
Freelance journalist and media consultant Robert Lloyd has been appointed as station manager and head of news and sport at Bay TV Swansea.
Lloyd, 58, has more than 40 years of experience in the media world.
He is a former editor of the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star and a former deputy editor of the South Wales Evening Post.
Peter Townsend, chairman of Bay TV (Swansea) Ltd, said:
“We are delighted to welcome Robert Lloyd to the team at Bay TV Swansea.
“He is a well-known figure throughout the community and brings a wealth of experience to the team.”
Robert Lloyd said:
“Bay TV Swansea has built some very solid foundations as a local TV station since its launch in July, 2016.
“I look forward to working with energetic, enthusiastic and very professional colleagues at Bay TV Swansea.
“I will be working hard to build further partnerships in the community and extending Bay TV Swansea’s reach into the S…

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Latest news from Brecon Jazz Club

Latest news from the team at Brecon Jazz Club - 

Please bookmark the date: Tues 7 November at Christ College Brecon, Neuadd Theatr, for Lenore Raphael US jazz pianist and her top quartet. Note the venue and also start time of 7.30 pm (a bit earlier than usual, and will have earlier finish). For this event, member price is £10 (£12 visitors/young people £5). More info and ticket booking: [use your membership no. to book]
This is a very special event. Lenore Raphael is someone we've known many years and heard play in London, but how could we invite her to Brecon? With help from trumpeter Chris Hodgkins and staff at Christ College Brecon, we proudly present this standout concert.
And what an all-star line-up, too! Lenore is bringing a leading US guitarist Wayne Wilkinson, and Chris has invited wonderful bassist Alison Rayner to complete the quartet. Between them, they have played with some of the biggest names in the jazz world.
This will be Lenore and Wayne…

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.


Soup kitchens!
What image pops into your head when you hear those words?
A raggle-taggle group of whey-faced, shoeless Victorian children, holding out wooden bowls?
Or the Great Depression of the 1930s when long lines of undernourished men and women in threadbare clothes, waited in the freezing cold for a free hot meal?
Soup kitchens are consigned to history, along with rickets, scurvy and Betamax videos.
In poor, inner-city areas they’ve never gone away.
Due to recent events, including the financial crisis of 2007/8, they’ve spread . . . even to Llanelli.
Every Sunday evening, the Sosban Soup Kitchen in Old Castle Road supplies poor, hungry people with a free hot meal.
Run by Gary Glenister and his team of volunteers, it relies on soup and bread generously donated b…

The latest 'On Song' column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star

The latest 'On Song' column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star -

It’s a big Saturday night for West Wales concert-goers.
They have to make a choice between the Royal British Legion Charity Gala Concert at The Lyric in Carmarthen and a 'Voices for Hospices' charity concert in Llandeilo, featuring Wynne Evans.
The Tywi Valley concert, is in aid of Ty Cymorth, the Carmarthen-based hospice.
The concert starts at 7m on Saturday, October 21, at the new Ysgol Bro Dinefwr in Llandeilo.
Carmarthen-born tenor and radio and TV personalityWynne Evans is a patron of Ty Cymorth hospice.
The concert is being billed as 'Voices for Hospices' and will also celebrate the Rotary International Foundation centenary and 100 years of Rotary International in Wales.
Rotary clubs invited to be involved include Carmarthen, Carmarthen Tywi, Llandeilo, Llandovery, Lampeter, Aberwstwyth and Aberaeron.
The choral line-up includes Côr Meibion Cwmann a’r Cylch, Côr Meibion Dinefwr, C…

New working group for Aberystwyth University campus grounds

The Welsh Historic Gardens Trust is working with Aberystwyth University in a new partnership to develop a long-term conservation plan for the Penglais campus grounds.
A joint working group has been set up with representatives from the Ceredigion branch of the Trust, with the first meeting held Monday 16 October 2017,
As well as the Trust, the group will include Estates Department staff and the University’s own botanical experts.
There will also be consultation with staff and students as part of the development of a conservation management plan for the grounds, which are Grade II* listed by Cadw.
Dr Caroline Palmer, Chair of the Ceredigion branch of the Welsh Historic Gardens Trust said: “We are pleased to be working in partnership with the University on what we envisage will be the development of a long-term plan to be rolled out over a number of years. Our joint aim will be to draw up a policy for current maintenance and future aspirations for this designed landscape. We are fortunate …

Côr Meibion Llanelli delighted to perform for Hillary Clinton

Côr Meibion Llanelli Male Voice Choir leaders have been talking about their pride at performing in front of USA Secretary of State and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
The Llanelli choristers were picked to perform at the closing event for Mrs Clinton’s visit to Swansea University.
Mrs Clinton was awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws in recognition of her commitment to promoting the rights of families and children around the world.
Côr Meibion Llanelli secretary Fred Elias said: “We knew about Mrs Clinton’s visit a couple of months ago, but it was all hush-hush for security reasons.
“But we sort of put two and to together when we were asked to rehearse The Star Spangled Banner, the American anthem we were already very familiar with from our tours to North Amercia.
“Then, when Mrs Clinton’s visit was officially announced, we had to go through stringent security protocols, including getting our own special photographic ID tags for the occasion.
“Most of the events for Mrs Clinton’s vis…

Jenkins Bakery presents £3200 cheque to Cancer Research UK charity

Staff at Jenkins Bakery shops in Llanelli and the rest of South West Wales have collected a magnificent £3,200 for Cancer Research UK.
The money was raised during a special summer fundraising campaign when pink cup cakes were on sale at Jenkins Bakery shops.
The company made a charity donation of 10p or every cake sold and customers added to the sum by making their own contributions. Jenkins Bakery staff also organised special fundraising events.
“The Pink campaign in our shops was a huge success,” said Jenkins Bakery area manager Fiona Snook.
"Members of staff dressed up in a pink theme and the shops were decorated to add to the party spirit.
“Our loyal customers were, of course, fantastic and hugely supportive of the campaign, with generous donations to Cancer Research.
"I must give special praise to our staff, who were fantastic, holding raffles, fancy dress events, bikeathons and a quiz night. "We are into our fifth year of doing this event and each year the fundra…

Nominations open for the annual Carmarthen Town Sports Awards

Nominations are now open for the prestigious annual Carmarthen Town Sports Awards.
Carmarthen Town Council is inviting nominations for the 2016 Carmarthen Town Sports Awards.
Sporting clubs and members of the public are requested to submit their nominations for each of the 11 categories.
An independent selection panel of sporting experts will decide on the winners of each category.
All winners will be invited to attend to receive their award at the Presentation Evening to be held on Friday 26th January 2018 at the Carmarthen Quins Rugby Football Club.
Nominations need to be submitted to Mrs Eleri James at the Carmarthen Town Council offices by no later than Monday 27th November 2017.
The eleven categories are: Senior MaleSenior FemaleU13s Junior MaleU13s Junior FemaleU16s Intermediate MaleU16s Intermediate FemaleU19s Youth MaleU19s Youth FemaleJunior TeamSenior TeamCoach/Organiser/Volunteer. There will be two awards in each category, first and second, making a total of 22 trophy winn…

Nominations sought for Aberystwyth University Honorary Awards 2018

The deadline for nominations for individuals to be considered for an Honorary Award at Aberystwyth University’s 2018 graduation ceremonies is midnight on Monday 23 October 2017.
Nominations can be submitted by members of staff, students and members of the public.
The University confers a number of Honorary Fellowships, Honorary Doctorate and Bachelor degrees every year.
Honorary Fellowships are awarded to honour individuals who have, or have had a connection with Aberystwyth or Wales in general, and who have made an outstanding contribution to their chosen field.
Those honoured in recent years include award winning novelist and The Times columnist Caitlin Moran, journalist and presenter Robert Peston, former Australian Prime Minster Julia Gillard and naturalist and television presenter Iolo Williams.
In 2015, the University also began to confer Honorary Doctorate Degrees and Honorary Bachelor Degrees.
Honorary Doctorate Degrees may be conferred on those who have been outstandingly succes…

Top Three UK university ranking for International English Centre

The quality of English language tuition enjoyed by international students at Aberystwyth University is rated among the best in the UK according to figures published this week.
The International English Centre (IEC) at Aberystwyth University has been ranked third in EL Gazette’s league table of university English language centres in the UK.
The publication’s University Ranking Table is based on British Council inspectors’ summary statements and an assessment of fifteen areas of activity at university English language centres.
The IEC’s most recent inspection took place in March 2017 when British Council inspectors identified ten areas of strength, marking it as a Centre of Excellence.
This compares very favourably with the average of four areas of strength identified for British Council language schools.
The areas of strength identified at Aberystwyth’s IEC include staff management, student administration, quality assurance, learning resources, course design, learner management, teaching, c…

New range of Halloween products launched by Jenkins Bakery

The popular South Wales-based Jenkins Bakery has launched a special range of products to mark Halloween.
"We always like to do something special to mark different occasions throughout the year," said Russell Jenkins, operations director at the Jenkins Bakery.
"Our customers have come to expect us to do something special and this year we have six different products for people to enjoy as they party over Halloween.
"We hope our customers enjoy them."

The products are -
Pumpkin Biscuits (£1.00)

Our top quality shortbread biscuit with a hand decorated pumpkin in sugar paste & chocolate – packed with shelf life label underneath. 
Halloween Cupcakes (£1.00)

Our top quality plain sponge, covered with chocolate frosting, decorated with a halloween sugar paste plaque, and a sprinkle of bats or pumpkin figures. 
Skeleton Biscuits (£0.80)

Our top quality shortbread biscuit covered with a sugar paste skeleton plaque. 
Frankenstein Biscuits (£0.80)

Our top quality shor…

Latest special offers from the team at Jenkins Bakery

Latest special offers from the team at Jenkins Bakery are as follows.

Website -

Llanelli Goods Shed project Curry Night fundraising success

The team behind the Llanelli Railway Goods Shed project held a very successful fundraising Curry Night at the Ali Raj restaurant in Trinity Road, Llanelli.
The restaurant is just across the railway tracks from the proposed £2.2m development in Marsh Street.
Goods Shed project officer Robert Lloyd said: “This was the third annual fundraising Curry Night and was a great success, raising more than £700 towards the project.
“The evening was marked by a project update speech by our Trust chairman Nia Griffith MP and attended by civic dignitaries representing Llanelli Town Council, Llanelli Rural Council and Carmarthenshire County Council.
“One of our trustees, the Rev Eldon Phillips, conducted an auction of artwork and photographic memorabilia. The photos were supplied by well-known local photographers Alan Evans and Byron Williams.
“Among the high earners in the auction were a watercolour of the Gower by celebrated Llanelli artist Denise di Battista and a ‘curiosity’ item of an old pithead soa…

Review: Côr Meibion Llanelli annual concert

REVIEW: Côr Meibion Llanelli Male Voice Choir, Dafydd Iwan and Côr Ysgol y Strade at Ffwrnes Theatre, Llanelli.

The ‘annual’ Côr Meibion Llanelli concert is always regarded as one of the highlights in the Llanelli musical calendar – and the 2017 renewal continued a fine, high class tradition.
The popular guest star for the show was Welsh folk singing legend Dafydd Iwan, who got the audience tapping their feet and singing along with many of his favourite hit recordings.
The emotional highspot for many was a rendition of Hawl i Fyw, which moved some audience members to tears.
Accompanied on the piano by the excellent Hefin Ellis, guitarist and ranconteur Dafydd thrives on telling musical stories and the audience were entertained, amused and moved in equal measure.
Côr Meibion Llanelli played a powerful hand in fielding a 55-strong choir on the Ffwrnes stage – no mean feat in an age when many other male voice choirs complain about a decline in numbers.
The first-half highlights included …

Normal service about to resume . . .

Apologies for the lack of posts in recent weeks.
I have been bogged down with project work and other deadlines.
Normal service about to resume.

The latest Clay Shaw Butler Money Matters column from the Carmarthenshire Herald

The latest Clay Shaw Butler Money Matters column from the Carmarthenshire Herald.
By Mark Jones, director of Carmarthen-based Clay Shaw Butler chartered accountants and business consultants.

In last week’s Money Matters, we stressed the importance of sticking to deadlines – particularly when it comes to tax matters.
Keeping a regular, updated calendar of key taxation dates is very important on a business and a personal level when it comes of money management
At Clay Shaw Butler, we have an online calendar of upcoming key taxation dates on our website.
But, in case you don’t have access to that, here are a few helpful dates for the rest of the year . . .
October 2017
Thursday October 19
PAYE quarterly payments are due for small employers for the pay periods 6th July 2017 to 5th October 2017.
This deadline is relevant to small employers only. As a small employer with income tax, national insurance and student loan deductions of less than £1,500 a month you are required to make payment to …

The latest 'On Song' column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star

The latest 'On Song' column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star -
There’s a very exciting Royal British Legion Charity Gala Concert being planned for West Wales in October.
The headline acts are the famous Thee Three Welsh Tenors – Rhys Meirion, Aled Hall and Aled Wyn Davies - and soprano Gwawr Edwards.
Rarely do the Three Welsh Tenors get the opportunity to perform together as each is a professional tenor with a demanding solo career in his own right.
Also appearing will be one of Wales’s famous male voice choirs, the mighty Morriston RFC Male Voice Choir, the bagpipes of the City and County of Swansea Pipe Band and the Corps of Drums of the 215 RAF Squadron.
The fundraising concert is at The Lyric Theatre in Carmarthen on Saturday, October 21.
Soloist Gwawr Edwards has a new recording out - 'Blue Jay and Red Cardinal' written by Marta Bellido and Mosi Dorbayani.
Gwawr is widely regarded as one of the most talented soprano soloists inWales.
She was born into …

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.


A false impression:

When I was a lad, my gran warned me that watching too much television would harm my eyes.
As young boys tend to, I ignored her and absorbed as much of the three channels our 17-inch telly offered.
We were content with BBC One and Two and ITV, as there always seemed to be something ‘great’ to watch – especially on a Saturday night.
The deterioration of TV programme quality since a mind-boggling selection of channels was thrust upon us – I don’t remember asking for them, do you? - will be the subject of a future article, I am sure . . .
I had no idea my gran was a fortune teller able to look into the future as far as 2017.
Because it’s only this year that TV started to harm my eyes - to such an extent, when I hear the theme music to certain shows I take the prec…

There’s a new ‘master of the house’ at Llanelli’s No1 tourist attraction

Historic Plas Llanelly House, one of the jewels in Llanelli’s crown, has a new ‘head of the household’. Paul Carter has taken on the new role of Commercial and Events Manager at Llanelli town centre’s premier tourist attraction.
He aims to make Llanelly House a major ‘destination venue’ for first class events and exhibitions and raise the profile of the historic property for weddings, top quality entertainment and great value quality food and drink.
Mr Carter, 50, said: “Llanelly House is very familiar to many in and around Llanelli, but for some it is still something of a hidden treasure.
“We’ll be creating a range of exciting new activities in Llanelly House to reach out to those who have yet to experience the delights of the house. We’ll be putting Llanelly House firmly on the map as a ‘go to’ venue attractive to one and all.
“Our historic doors are open with a welcome to all in West Wales (and beyond) and we look forward to working with the local community in developing new activ…

1000 words: Strangest thing I've eaten

It was celebrity broadcaster Wynne Evans who posed the question on Radio Wales last week . . .
“What’s the most unusual thing you’ve eaten?”
Snails . . . oysters . . . frogs’ legs . . . there were quite a few of the expected ‘standards’ in the replies.
But it got me thinking – what’s the most unusual thing I’ve eaten?
The answer arrived quicker than a burp in the tasting and testing department of the pop factory.
Rocky Mountain Oysters!
Bit of a nuts answer, really.
Rocky Mountain Oysters are definitely not the bivalves of the sea.
In the version I sampled, they were bulls’ testicles.
But there are variations on the theme – you can have bison, pigs and sheep testicles on the same menu card, if you so desire.

The dining location was the world famous Coors Field baseball stadium in the Mile High city of Denver, Colorado.
They were offered up as an alternative to foot-long hot dogs and cholesterol-packed killer cheeseburgers.
The date was September 2001 and I was in the company of Monro…

Latest special offers from the team at Jenkins Bakery

Latest special offers from the team at Jenkins Bakery - 

More special offers on the website -

The latest Clay Shaw Butler Money Matters column from the Carmarthenshire Herald

The latest Clay Shaw Butler Money Matters column from the Carmarthenshire Herald.
By Mark Jones, director of Carmarthen-based Clay Shaw Butler chartered accountants and business consultants.

Deadlines are so important in the world of business – particularly when it comes to tax matters.
At Clay Shaw Butler, we recognise how important deadlines are by helping our customers with a regularly-updated calendar of upcoming key taxation dates.
Here is what’s coming up during the rest of this year . . .
August 2017
Saturday August 19
PAYE, Student loan and CIS deductions are due for the month to 5th August 2017.
This deadline is relevant to employers who have made PAYE deductions from their employees' salaries and to contractors who have paid subcontractors under the CIS.
Employers are required to make payment to HMRC of the income tax, national insurance and student loan deductions. Contractors are required to make payment to HMRC of the tax deductions made from subcontractors under the CI…