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‘Don’t Travel Unless You Have To’

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Roof which blew off a house in Robert Street, Milford Haven, Wednesday.

Roof which blew off a house in Robert Street, Milford Haven, Wednesday.

PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL has urged residents not to travel unless they have to as strong winds are causing chaos across the county.

Roads, schools and businesses were all forced to close as winds hit speeds of nearly 100mph and a Red weather warning was issued by the Met Office.

Pedestrians and motorists in Pembrokeshire are being urged to take extreme care when approaching buildings and trees, in today’s very severe weather conditions. There is a great risk of falling debris from buildings and trees, with the very strong winds in the county today, which are forecast to persist well into this evening.

Winds of 93.6 mph have already been recorded on the Cleddau Bridge and there are Hurricane Force 12 winds off the Pembrokeshire coast.

Tree down at St Giles church in Letterston. Blocking road at present. Picture by Karl Hedley.

Tree down at St Giles church in Letterston. Blocking road at present. Picture by Karl Hedley.

“The message is –don’t travel or walk unless you really, really have to,” said Darren Thomas, Head of Highways at Pembrokeshire County Council.

“Also, if you are travelling with caravans or mobile homes, it would be sensible to seek a sheltered location for these until the winds have died down”.

A number of schools were closed including Portfield School in Haverfordwest, Manorbier School, Ysgol y Preseli and Ysgol y Frenni in Crymych. Ysgol Geryllan, Letterston, Solva Primary School was closed after the roof was damaged, Ysgol Glannau Gwaun, Cosheston VC,  Coastlands School / Ysgol y Glannau in St Ishmael`s, Greenhill School in Tenby and Cleddau Reach Primary School also closed.

Pembrokeshire College also closed just after mid-day as a result of the weather.

Many houses are also without power.

Members of Pembrokeshire County Council staff were on standby at Newgale where there are already considerable waves and extremely high winds. The road at the seafront is closed to high sided vehicles with further assessment for full closure nearer high tide (which is at approx 5.30pm).

Although Council staff were unable to attend to fallen trees until the wind dropped to safe working levels, they are attending to close roads where necessary.

A door was been blown off a service bus on an exposed road at Penycwm on the A487. No-one is injured and a relief bus is en-route.

Tree down in St Giles church grounds, roots showing. Picture by Ben Franklin

Tree down in St Giles church grounds, roots showing. Picture by Ben Franklin

The Cleddau Bridge was also closed to all traffic.

Middle Street in Rosemarket was partially blocked due to fallen tree at West Street.

New Road partially blocked due to fallen tree at West Hook Road / Lower Quay Road.

There were Several fallen trees in the road at Llangwm. The road is closed between Llangwm and Trooper’s Inn – and is likely to remain closed for the majority of the day.

Road between Rosemarket & Burton was closed due to shed debris.

The Main Road by the Church in Letterston was also blocked and there was a tree down between Jefferyston and Creselly.

Whitland fire brigade had to attend Llandewi Velfrey Service Station as there were concerns that the forecourt roof could blow off so equipment was put up to keep it in place.

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Youth centre conquers coast path challenge to get the Point Across

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YOUNG people from the Fishguard area recently stepped up to the mark to take on a walking challenge set by Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority Ranger, Richard Vaughan.

Members of the POINT Youth Centre had been tasked with completing a 22-mile sponsored walk along the Pembrokeshire Coast Path – one mile for each year Richard has worked for the Park Authority.

Richard said: “I was so pleased to see 17 young people take part in the Get the POINT Across challenge, some of them giving up three days of their summer holidays to boot.

“The POINT team certainly went the extra mile and more, walking from Poppit Sands back to the youth centre in Fishguard, which is a total of 27 miles.

“I’ve worked with POINT for around 15 years and have seen how the centre encourages young people to play a positive role in their community. It was great to help them raise some money to continue this work, while they also discovered parts of the National Park for the first time.”

POINT was set up to provide young people aged 11-25 gain the self-esteem, skills and self-confidence to cope with the personal problems during the transition from childhood to adulthood.

The drop-in centre provides a safe and welcoming place six days a week with a range of activities, community projects, workshops and trips. Many have a particular emphasis on the environment such as the John Muir Award and beach cleans.

All the proceeds raised during the walk will go to POINT and Get the Boys a Lift, a not for profit based community interest company (CIC) working to better improve mental health within the community.

To view a video of the Get the POINT Across challenge on the POINT Youth Centre’s YouTube channel.

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New mosaic for Pembrokeshire School

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PUPILS attending Haverfordwest High School after the summer holidays were welcomed back by two new mosaics at the main entrance.

The artwork was the result of a series of free summer workshops for families of pupils from the ten feeder schools aimed at aiding the transition from primary to secondary school.

The workshops were run by Springboard – a Learning Pembrokeshire project for families – and Haverfordwest High School and led by local artist Paul Webb.

Participating families were tasked with creating two large scale mosaics to welcome students at the main entrance.

The finished mosaics incorporate the emblems of all 10 feeder primary schools along with the new Haverfordwest High logo thus ensuring that new pupils feel the connection between past and present on the learning journey at their new school.

Amy Delaney, Springboard Advisor on the project, described it as a fun and rewarding way to enable families to support their children through transition to secondary school.

“Working with other families to produce this amazing piece of artwork has helped both adults and children to feel engaged with the school and more confident about the transition to secondary school.”

Heather Cale, the headteacher of St Marks,Church in Wales VA Primary School in Merlins Bridge, said: “The head teachers of the feeder primary schools have been delighted with the transition project. It has given pupils and families the opportunity to work together, make new friends and to get to know their new school.

“As head teachers we have committed to working more closely together across our cluster, for all learners from 3 to 19 years. This is a wonderful  beginning, and we thank all those involved for their commitment and participation.”

Lauren Davies, Head of Year 7 at Haverfordwest High said the school was thrilled with the success of the project and the positive impact it has had on so many families.

She continued: “We are committed to providing a smooth transition between primary and secondary school for all pupils in the Haverfordwest cluster, and we are continually reviewing and developing transition opportunities in line with the new curriculum.

“Springboard were able to support us with offering something creative and ambitious for last year’s transition. We are already planning another project for the current Year 6 pupils and their families from our partner primary schools.”

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UK’s top skaters and riders drop in on Llanelli youngsters to celebrate a special birthday

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THE WORLD’S and the UK’s finest skateboarders, BMX and Wheelchair Motocross stars will drop in on young people at a Carmarthenshire Ramps skatepark on Saturday 19 October 2019 from 11 am till 2 pm. The event was arranged to celebrate the £3 billion National Lottery players have raised for projects which have specifically helped children and young people develop and thrive in the UK over the last 25 years. £2 million of National Lottery funding has specifically been awarded to support and develop over 47 BMX projects in local communities for young people in Wales to enjoy.     

Wales and Pembrokeshire’s own wheelchair sports superstar, Lily Rice; the Olympic BMX freestyler from Swansea, James Jones; Britain’s leading street skateboarder and 2020 Olympic hopeful, Alex Decunha; and YouTube influencer, Jake O’Neill (aka Jake100), visite hundreds of youngsters at Ramps indoor and outdoor skatepark in Llanelli as part of the National Lottery’s celebrations.
More than £340,000 was awarded by the National Lottery in 2013 to develop and build Ramps Skatepark which now provides activities for over 15,000 young people a year.

At 15 years old, Lily Rice from Manorbier, Pembrokeshire, is a World Champion wheelchair motocross (WCMX) star. She was propelled to fame two years ago when she became the first female in Europe to achieve a wheelchair backflip, and only the second girl in the world to pull off the stunt. Since then, Lily has emerged as one of the global leaders of WCMX – wheelchair motocross.
She says: “By contributing towards building amazing facilities such as this indoor and outdoor skate park, National Lottery funding is helping thousands of young people of all abilities to reach their goals and discover new opportunities. I have trained and practised at numerous National Lottery funded skate parks and there is no doubt that the funding has helped wheeled sports, enthusiasts, to become healthier and more active.”

The National Lottery has inspired millions of people to get active in their local community, as well as supporting individuals and teams from grassroots to elite.

James Jones is a 25-year-old professional BMX rider from Swansea. James, who also celebrated his 25th Birthday this year,  is one of six world-class athletes who make up the Freestyle BMX Team GB for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. James honed his skills and practised his tricks at the Ramps skate park in Llanelli when he was growing up and highlights the importance of young people having access to facilities like this on their doorstep.
James Jones said: “I practised a lot here growing up and this facility has played a big part in my development as a professional rider and a person. I probably wouldn’t be where I am now without the support I got here. It’s not just about learning to ride or skate, there’s a real family vibe here, a great social aspect and it’s well supported by the community. The National Lottery must fund parks such as this one so that young people can have a safe space to pursue their hobbies and meet friends.”
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