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Ancient ceremony to mark new primary school development

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Guests at the ceremony included pupils from Hakin Community and Hubberston VC schools: They will be moving to the new school when it opens early next year.

SCHOOLCHILDREN from Hakin Community and Hubberston VC schools have taken part in a ceremony to mark the development of a new primary school currently under construction at Gelliswick Road.

Pupils from both schools visited the site of the £12 million project, which was formally named Gelliswick Church in Wales Voluntary Controlled Primary School by Cabinet earlier this week.

It is one of several schools which have been built, or are being built, under the 21st Century Schools Programme – a £120 million initiative between Pembrokeshire County Council and the Welsh Government to build state-of-the-art schools.

The new school will provide:

  • a new build primary school for 480 pupils
  • an Early Years Unit for around 60 pupils
  • a Complex Needs Unit for 24 pupils aged
  • some facilities accessible to – and shared by – the community.

A new 3G sports pitch adjacent to the site has already been handed over to the Council.

The youngsters were among guests at a ‘topping-out’ event marking the structural completion of the building by contractors Willmott Dixon.

The ancient ceremony is said to ward off evil spirits and bestow good fortune on a property.

The pupils contributed by pouring wine, oil, corn and salt on a small yew tree. They will be among those children moving into the new school when it opens at the end of the year.

In Saxon times a yew tree branch was placed in the uppermost part of a new construction as a symbol of completion.

Wine symbolised fertility and wisdom and oil promised liberty and prosperity. Corn would ripen and grow prosperity into abundance and the salt equated to purity and hospitality.

Welcoming guests, Willmott Dixon’s Operations Director, Ian Jones, said the event marked the halfway point of the contract which was slightly ahead of schedule, thanks to the team led by Martin Bennett.

“This is an important milestone in the building’s construction, both for ourselves and Pembrokeshire County Council,” he said.

He revealed that 168 tons of steel had gone into the frame of the new school while 3,000 tons of concrete had been poured into its foundations. Walls had been covered with 65 tons of plasterboard.

Mr Jones went on: “I am pleased to say that 78 per cent of the goods we have used on site have been procured in Wales and that we have given 272 weeks of employment to those who were previously jobless while also offering 81 weeks of work experience.”

County Council Leader, Jamie Adams, said the Authority was involved in the second largest 21st Century Schools Programme in Wales and that the money spent in investing in the education of children was worth every penny.

Under the scheme, the County Council has already opened four new schools and are in the process of building five others around Pembrokeshire.

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Police: RNLI ‘most likely saved man’s life’ following tombstoning incident

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POLICE have issued an urgent warning following a tombstoning incident Tenby on Saturday evening (Apr 10).

A multi-agency operation was launched just after 6pm following reports of a man in difficulty after jumping from cliffs into the sea.

A spokesperson for Dyfed-Powys police told The Herald: “We were called to the beach opposite St Catherine’s Island at around 6.15pm today, where a man had got into difficulty after jumping off the cliff into the water.

“On the arrival of officers, RNLI were at the scene and were administering CPR to the 23-year-old who was unconscious and not breathing.

“Fortunately, he regained consciousness shortly after and was taken to hospital for assessment.

Inspector Gavin Howells added: “This incident highlights the serious danger posed by tombstoning or cliff jumping, and the potentially life-threatening consequences.

“We urge people not to take part in this sort of activity anywhere along our coastline, and not to put themselves or the emergency services at risk for a thrill.

“We would like to thank our colleagues at the RNLI for their swift response to this incident, and for their actions which most likely saved this man’s life.”

RNLI Tenby posted on Facebook the following: “The Georgina Taylor was launched after person seen in difficulty in water

“Tenby’s RNLI inshore lifeboat was launched at around 6.25pm on Saturday, following a report of somebody in difficulty in the sea off Castle Beach.

“The volunteer crew were quickly on scene and immediately saw the casualty, who had been pulled from the water and was on the rocks.

“The casualty was taken from the rocks and into the lifeboat, where Casualty Care was administered whilst the helmsman made best speed to the harbour.

“As the lifeboat was entering the harbour, an ambulance was arriving at the slipway.

“The crew then assisted the ambulance personnel in getting the casualty onto the stretcher and into the ambulance, before re-housing the lifeboat.

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Police and drugs advice service issue warning over ‘deadly batch’ of heroin

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POLICE have asked the media to issue a warning over a batch of heroin.

The drug circulating in west Wales, first detected in Llanelli, is particularly dangerous, it has been confirmed.

“We are warning drug users to take extra care following reports of a particularly harmful batch of heroin circulating in the Llanelli area” said a Dyfed-Powys Police spokesperson.

“We have reasons to believe some drugs being distributed and used in the Carmarthenshire area at present have been contaminated with other substances and could be extremely dangerous for anyone taking them.

“We would also appeal to drug users to seek medical attention immediately if they become unwell.

“Please share this information with anyone you believe could come into contact with these drugs.

”In an emergency or if you think someone’s life is at risk always dial 999.”

Earlier this week Barod, the drug and alcohol abuse service reported a dangerous and toxic heroin circulating in Pembroke Dock which a spokesperson described as being ‘potentially deadly’.

To comes as Public Health England issued a formal alert about the risks of heroin containing fentanyl or carfentanyl.

The warning reads: “There is significant evidence from a small number of post-mortem results of recent drug user deaths and from police seizures that some heroin may contain fentanyl or carfentanyl added by dealers.

“These are highly potent synthetic opioids and very small amounts can cause severe or even fatal toxicity.

“Those of you in contact with heroin users should be alert to the increased possibility of overdose arising from heroin cut with these synthetic opioids, be able to recognise possible symptoms of overdose and respond appropriately.”

The fentanyls are a group of synthetic opioids; some have legitimate uses while others are illicit drugs.

Fentanyl is about 100 times more potent than morphine and is a licensed medicine used to treat severe and terminal pain. Carfentanyl is 4,000 – 10,000 times more potent than morphine and principally used as an animal tranquilliser.

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Tenby’s famous walrus ‘Wally’ has been spotted again

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TENBY’S most famous marine animal has been spotted again after fears she had been scared away.

Wally was spotted on Friday evening by the seaside town’s Lifeboat station.

Thought to be a two-year-old male, the walrus’s return comes after it was feared she had been disturbed by people flocking to catch a glimpse of her and “getting too close”

The animal has attracted hundreds of people to the seaside town now that the travel restrictions with Wales have been lifted to coincide with the Easter school holidays.

Wally was last seen on Monday, but  members of the public were warned it was in the animal’s “best interests” to be “left alone” as much as possible and they were urged to “avoid the temptation to get near and disturb” her.

A joint statement was issued by the RSPCA, Tenby harbour master Chris Salisbury, Welsh Marine Life Rescue, Tenby lifeboat coxswain Phil John, British Divers Marine Life Rescue, Natural Resources Wales and CSIP Marine Environmental Rescue said that they were concerned to hear that people had tried to get close by using personal watercraft or paddle and surfboards.

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