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Linda gets taken out by Paddy McGuinness!

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taken outIt definitely wasn’t a case of ‘no likey, no lighty’ when Linda Bowen met comedian and TV presenter Paddy McGuinness at an annual awards ceremony.

Linda, who manages Slimming World groups in Pembrokeshire, was delighted to get a chance to cuddle up to Paddy when he co-hosted the Slimming World Awards with the organisation’s chair and founder Margaret Miles-Bramwell OBE.

Bolton-born Paddy, who shot to fame in Channel 4 comedy Phoenix Nights alongside school friend Peter Kay before becoming a popular stand-up comedian and TV presenter on shows including ITV1’s Take Me Out, said he thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

He added: “I have to admit the most I knew about Slimming World before the awards was a gag in Peter’s routine that refers to Slimming World as being a £1 cheaper than its competitors! Jokes aside, I was genuinely amazed to hear about what a difference people like Linda who run and manage Slimming World groups make to people’s lives. At the ceremony I met lots of people who’d lost incredible amounts of weight and it had totally changed their lives. Every single one of them told me that they couldn’t have done it without the support of their Slimming World group.

“Before I started working in comedy I was a fitness instructor so I know how important it is to look after yourself, but equally I know it’s not always easy to motivate yourself. So, having the right help and support to keep you on track really is invaluable.”

Linda said meeting Paddy at the event, which was held at Birmingham’s International Convention Centre, was the cherry on the top of a great year for Slimming World: “Obviously the most important thing of all is that our members have lost weight and improved their health throughout 2013 and we’re so proud of all of our members – many of them have achieved their target weights and been able do things they never thought possible before slimming down, including doing more with their families, taking up new hobbies, reducing medication or simply fitting in smaller-sized clothes. And they’re helping their entire family to eat more healthily too. But as well as seeing stonking success on the scales, we’ve had a lot of fun throughout the year too – we’ve held parties in group, raised money for charity and members have cheered each other on with every step of their weight loss journey. I can’t wait to see what 2014 holds for Slimming World and I’d love anyone who’s thinking about losing weight this January to join us.

“I truly believe that Slimming World is the best way for people to take control of their weight this New Year. Even if they’ve struggled to stick to slimming plans in the past, I know we can help them to make a change for life this time around – our members are proof of that. Slimming World’s Food Optimising plan isn’t a ‘diet’, we simply help our members to discover new healthy habits and a healthier way of eating that they can enjoy without ever feeling hungry or deprived. By making small easy changes to the way they shop, cook and eat and getting support to overcome the challenges they face along the way, they see a big difference on the scales, a big difference to the way they feel, and a big smile on their face!”

To get your 2014 off to a super slimming start visit www.slimmingworld.com or call 0844 897 8000 to find your nearest group.

For further information please contact Hannah Weston on 01773 546131 or email hannah.weston@slimming-world.com

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Schools to remain open for now as Wales moves to ‘delay’ phase

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SCHOOLS will remain open as Wales moves into the “delay” phase in containing the coronavirus, the Welsh Government has announced.

The advice will change from Friday (Mar 13), with people who become unwell being asked to self-isolate for seven days.

Chief medical officer Dr Frank Atherton said the trajectory of the virus was now “quite clear” and the challenge remained preparing for a significant number of cases in Wales.

Dr Atherton said: “Wales was now really in the delay phase of the virus and it would lead to some inconvenience for people not going to work or school.

“We need to reduce the demand on the health and social care system so it can prepare for peak which may be May or June.”

SCHOOLS OPEN FOR NOW

Health Minister Vaughan Gething said closing schools was not an appropriate option for now.

He told a press conference at 3.30pm Thursday (Mar 12): “Ministers have had clear advice that closing schools now is not an appropriate step to take. For now, the advice and guidance is very clear. Schools should stay open.

“To be effective measure schools would have to be closed for a significant amount of time.

“If we close schools, what impact does that have on parents? Parents could be nurses, doctors or the police. We need to keep key workers in work.

“Another point is, if parents can’t look after them then it’s likely that older members of the family or grandparents will be. Older people are the people we want to protect now and in the future.

“Furthermore, in the Easter break, lots of children will be with each other anyway. The value in closing schools is low.

“Ministers are making choices guided by the best possible evidence and scientific advice.

“Members of governments around the UK need to take a responsible approach and take steps where there is no medical advice to do so within the four nations of the UK.”

LATEST FIGURES

Six new cases of coronavirus have been identified in Wales, bringing the total to 25 at the time of going to press. (7pm, March 12)

785 people in Wales have been tested for Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). 760 results were negative, and 25 results were positive.

CONCERT CANCELLED

Milford Haven School postponed the concert due to take place Thursday (Mar 12). The school stated on social media: “We have regrettably made the decision to cancel the scheduled Milford Haven Cluster Welsh Concert here at Milford Haven School tonight.

“The decision is owing to us taking a proactive approach to prioritising the health and safety of not only our own pupils, but also their families and the wider community. Please note, this is not due to any specific health concern within the school. We will announce rescheduling of this event in due course.”

ROBUST MEASURES IN PLACE

Dr Robin Howe, Incident Director for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak response at Public Health Wales told The Herald that he was certain that “robust infection control measures in place.”

“The public can be assured that Wales and the whole of the UK is prepared for these types of incidents. Working with our partners in Wales and the UK, we have implemented our planned response, with robust infection control measures in place to protect the health of the public.

“We would encourage people to check the advice for returning travellers, which includes guidance for those returning from Italy, China, Thailand, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Macau, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Iran.

“Members of the public can help protect themselves and others by always carrying tissues, and using them to catch coughs or sneezes. They should bin the tissue, and to kill the germs, wash their hands with soap and water, or use a sanitiser gel. This is the best way to slow the spread of most germs, including Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).

“Public Health Wales’ trained scientists are now conducting the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) diagnostic test in Wales. Over 90 per cent of the individuals who have been tested in Wales have been offered testing in their own home, making it as convenient as possible for them, as well as protecting our ambulance and hospital resources for those who need it most. We are not able to comment on individual cases for reasons of patient confidentiality.”

Official updates on the virus in Wales will now be given at 11:00 daily.

There are now 596 confirmed cases in the UK, up from 456 on Wednesday, and two more deaths, of people with underlying health conditions in London and Essex, taking the total to 10.

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Community

Ancient Connections – Creative Camino from Ireland to St Davids

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Ancient Connections, a three-year arts, heritage and tourism project linking North
Pembrokeshire and North Wexford is looking for Welsh and Irish artists and community
members to join a weeklong pilgrimage walk to St Davids, Pembrokeshire.

Since the launch of the project in September 2019, the Ancient Connections team have been
busy putting their ambitious plans into action; generating creative opportunities for artists and
communities to engage with their hidden past.

Now, the project is seeking two artists and three community members with close links to
Pembrokeshire to undertake a weeklong journey from Ferns, Co Wexford, to St Davids,
Pembrokeshire, in May 2020.

Artists working in performance-based art forms such as music, song, poetry, performance art
and dance are encouraged to apply, as they will be expected to produce new art works from
their experiences en route and to give short performances as part of the Fishguard Folk Festival
(23 rd May) and the St Davids Cathedral Festival (26 th May).

For hundreds of years St Davids was the most important site of pilgrimage in Wales, with two
visits said to equal one to Rome and three the equivalent of making a pilgrimage to the Holy
Land. 2020 marks the 900 th anniversary of St Davids canonization and pilgrimages are starting to
make a dramatic comeback! Many who undertake a modern pilgrimage do not necessarily
consider themselves religious; they are more often than not, simply looking to switch-off, slow-
down and reconnect to the important things in life.

Beginning with a spectacular send-off in Ferns, Ireland, on the 20 May, the pilgrims from
Wexford and Pembrokeshire, will make their way along the beautiful sandy beaches of the
Wexford coast, to the port of Rosslare. Here they will board the Stena Line ferry and set sail for
Fishguard. They will then wind their way along the rugged contours of the Pembrokeshire Coast
Path until they reach St Davids on 26 May.

For further information, including how to apply email ruth.jones@pembrokeshire.gov.uk
Closing date for applications is Tuesday 17 th March.

Ancient Connections is led by Pembrokeshire County Council together with partners Wexford
County Council, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority and Visit Wexford. The project is
funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales co-operation
programme.

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Closing day approaching for deposit plan consultation

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The deadline is nearing for public comments on Pembrokeshire County Council’s replacement Local Development Plan – known as the Deposit Plan.

The public consultation on the Deposit Plan opened in January and will end at 4.30pm on Wednesday, 18th March.

The consultation has included seven drop-in sessions at locations around the county. Cllr Jon Harvey, Cabinet Member for Planning, said they had been well-attended and thanked members of the public for their feedback.

“We would encourage anyone interested in the future development of Pembrokeshire to participate in the consultation if they haven’t yet done so,” he added.

The Deposit Plan and related documents are available to view on the Council’s website at: www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/local-development-plan-review/deposit

The Deposit Plan covers the area of Pembrokeshire excluding the National Park.

It identifies a need for 6,800 new homes between 2017 and 2033 (425 a year) including 2,000 affordable homes. This growth will be distributed across the Plan area in accordance with a whole County strategy, which promotes sustainable development.

Residents can look at the Deposit Plan text and maps to view proposals in their area. The Plan proposes revised town and village boundaries (known as settlement boundaries) and a range of sites are allocated for different land uses, including 70 sites for housing. It also identifies a range of industrial sites (known as Strategic Employment Sites), local employment sites and two quarry sites.

The Deposit Plan seeks to respond to the challenges of climate change by including policies and designations to protect sites and species that are of importance for their biodiversity and nature conservation interest, open spaces and Green Wedges.

New growth is directed to sustainable locations. Proposals for vulnerable uses are directed away from flood risk areas and new development will be limited in areas at risk because of climate change. All new dwellings will be built to high quality, energy efficient designs and will incorporate charging points for ultra-low emission vehicles. Three sites are allocated for solar photovoltaic arrays.

The Deposit Plan and related documents are available to view on the Council’s website at: www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/local-development-plan-review/deposit

Hard copies are also available at County Hall, Haverfordwest, in Pembrokeshire County Council Customer Service Centres and in local Libraries, during normal opening hours.

• If you wish to have your say on the Deposit Plan you can do so using the Representations Form available online at the above website address, or in paper format from County Hall, Haverfordwest. This form should be used for making comments wherever possible.

• Please email your representation forms to ldp@pembrokeshire.gov.uk or post to The Development Plans Team, County Hall, Freeman’s Way, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, SA61 1TP by 4.30pm on Wednesday, 18th March 2020.

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