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Project catches attention of BBC

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bbc attentionSTUDENTS from Pembrokeshire College, Ysgol Bro Gwaun and Portfield School recently found themselves featuring on the well-known BBC Countryfile programme as part of their John Muir Discover Award.

In early January members of the John Muir Discover Award team met at the Iron Age fort, Castell Henllys, to carry out an important conservation task and participate in filming for an upcoming BBC Countryfile programme.

The group, made up of students from Portfield School in Haverfordwest, Ysgol Bro Gwaun and Pembrokeshire College’s Health Science course had been meeting weekly since September 2013 to pursue the John Muir Discover Award, which they all successfully completed in December of last year.

The award, delivered by Mark Bond of Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, required the students to spend numerous days visiting various “Wild Places” around the county where they explored and conserved the environment whilst sharing the experiences gained. The group participated in beach, river, upland and woodland based sessions where they formed a real connection with nature and contributed to some important conservation projects around the county.

When the BBC Countryfile team heard about the group’s experiences they decided to come and film them for their programme. The task for the day was to mend the walls of the Iron Age Round Houses at Castell Henllys. This involved the students following the historic method of daubing a special mix of clay, straw and cow manure onto the walls.

It was an extremely mucky job but it was met with the levels of enthusiasm and determination that the group has become known for. The students took turns producing the mix, ferrying barrow-loads of it around the ancient village and daubing in on the walls. A huge effort meant that the largest among the roundhouses at Castell Henllys was entirely re-daubed and it looked very impressive as the sun shone down onto the fort near Newport.

Working with the BBC was a wonderful experience for the young people who were also interviewed by Countryfile host Ellie Harrison about the task they had undertaken.

Your Park Discovery Ranger Mark Bond had this to say in tribute to his group: “It has been a fantastic project to be involved with from start to finish.

This is a quite exceptional group of young people who quickly grasped the meaning and potential of this John Muir Award and made lasting connections, not only with the natural world but also with themselves and each other. It’s so fitting that the project ended with a task such as this, and having the BBC come and celebrate what we’ve achieved was just the icing on the cake.”

The episode was aired on BBC1 on January 26 and can be viewed at: http://youtu.be/SasXTx0_NII

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Monkton man with ‘no regard for the law’ jailed for two attempted robberies

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A MAN who threatened to stab a vulnerable victim just a day after trying to commit a robbery against a stranger has been jailed.

Dyfed-Powys Police officers arrested 29-year-old Jamie Rawlinson 20 minutes after receiving a report that he’d threatened to stab a stranger on June 26.

The victim reported that Rawlinson, of Colley Court, in Monkton, had approached him outside his home and held a sharp object to his chest.

The victim managed to get inside his house safely, and called the police.

Rawlinson was arrested 20 minutes later and taken to police custody, where he was interviewed the following day, and released on bail with conditions while officers carried out enquiries.

But just hours later, he was under arrest for a second time.

Detective Sergeant Tanya Rendell said: “The suspect was released on bail with stringent conditions to comply to while we carried out an investigation into the offence. There were a number of enquiries we needed to progress, which would take longer than we would have been able to keep him in custody. Despite the conditions imposed the suspect clearly had no regard for the law or the conditions imposed, and with less than three hours after being released, went on to commit another attempted robbery, this time against a vulnerable man who was known to him.

“The pair had met at a friend’s house and had gone for a walk, when they ended up in an alleyway.

“The victim was physically assaulted – punched and kicked – and was threatened that he would be stabbed if he didn’t give Rawlinson £40 and tobacco.”

PCSOs on patrol saw the victim and took him to a place of safety. Rawlinson, who was still in the area was arrested following this.

He was charged with two counts of attempt robbery and appeared at Swansea Crown Court, where he was sentenced to six years in prison.

DS Rendell said: “This was a swift an comprehensive investigation, involving officers from a number of teams. Evidence was captured by Neighbourhood Policing Teams at the scene, which was followed up with house-to-house and CCTV enquiries, as well as work from the dog unit, CID and firearms officers.

“This excellent teamwork secured the evidence needed to get a charge, conviction and a prison sentence for a man who is clearly a danger to the community.”

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Surge in reports of personal watercraft incidents on the South Pembrokeshire Coast

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THE NATIONAL PARK is appealing for riders of personal watercraft to consider the impact of their activities on other visitors and wildlife following a recent rise in reported incidents.

Launching the small jet-powered boats has already been banned in a number of locations around the Pembrokeshire Coast due to the actions of irresponsible riders and the noise nuisance generated by the crafts.

Recent reports include a personal watercraft weaving at high speed through the moorings close to the shore in Dale and a near miss with a kayaker in Freshwater East.

Park Authority Chief Executive, Tegryn Jones said: “Noisy, intrusive activities such as personal watercraft riding are not generally welcome on the Pembrokeshire Coast due to their impact on the special qualities of the National Park.

“Peace and tranquillity are some of key things that our residents and visitors value and perhaps more importantly our rare and protected wildlife depends on it. One inconsiderate jet-powered craft user has the potential to ruin the day of hundreds of other people.

“High visitor numbers mean many people are taking to the water in various vessels and kayaks and stand up paddleboards are particularly vulnerable to being overturned by the heavy wakes generated by personal watercraft.

“We are urging people to stick to the dedicated aquabatics zones on the Milford Haven Waterway and follow the ‘dead slow’ and minimum wake guidelines that are in place around beaches, harbours and other people.”

Anyone heading out into the water around the Pembrokeshire Coast is reminded to read and follow the Pembrokeshire Marine Code to minimise any disturbance to wildlife and to enable you to have the best experience possible.

Further information and maps highlighting the dedicated personal watercraft and aquabatics zones on the Milford Haven Waterway is available from the Port of Milford Haven website: https://www.mhpa.co.uk/powered-craft/.

To find out how you can minimise disturbance to wildlife while enjoying the waters around the Pembrokeshire Coast visit the Pembrokeshire Marine Code website: https://www.pembrokeshiremarinecode.org.uk/.

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Johnston: Police appeal after boy on scooter injured in collision

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POLICE are appealing for witnesses after a collision in Johnston, near Haverfordwest, on Wednesday (Aug 5).

A boy on a scooter sustained minor injuries during the collision, which took place at around 4.20pm.

A red 4×4 is also believed to have been involved.

Anyone who was in the area of the St Peters Road pelican crossing, or nearby Langford road, and either witnessed the collision or who has CCTV that covers this area is asked to get in touch with Dyfed-Powys Police

As spokesman said: “You can telephone 101 or email contactcentre@dyfed-powys.pnn.police.uk. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired you can text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Please quote Dyfed-Powys Police Ref DP-20200805-249.”

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