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Councillor has ‘freedom of speech’ says Ombudsman following complaint

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A PEMBROKESHIRE county councillor will not be investigated by the Local Government Ombudsman after the body decided that posts he made on social media did not amount to a breach of the councillors code of conduct.

Cllr Paul Dowson had expressed his negative opinions about a business in Pembroke Dock, E-Lettings, and proprietor, Miss Jill Evans had made a complaint. Miss Evans had said that Cllr Dowson had ‘harassed me and my company on Facebook’.

In a written response dated November 15, Sandra Franklin from the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales said: “Having considered the posts I am not persuaded that Cllr Dowson’s posts are suggestive of a breach of the code. Whist I note that you consider that his statements are untruthful; these comments appear to represent his views and opinion.

“I should explain that councillors have a wide freedom of expression. In both their official and personal capacity. In particular, Article 10 of the Europen Convention on Human Rights and common law afford him the right to free speech – meaning that he can say certain things which even if they may be shocking or offensive to some people he nevertheless has the right to express them.”

Cllr Dowson has been critical about the way that E-Lettings is managing its properties regarding collection of rubbish, rats, and fire hazard. Recently rubbish left by tenants was set ablaze.

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Man ‘lucky to be alive’ after lorry crash

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THE CHAIR of the Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire Liberal Democrats says that he is lucky to be alive after a freak car accident in Burton last week.

Andrew Lye was driving towards the Cleddau Bridge when his car was hit by lorry’s stabiliser which had come loose and was protruding into the road.

The collision, which happened at 2.45pm on Friday (Dec 7), left Mr Lye’s car written off, and he was badly shaken.

Mr Lye was thankfully not injured.

The police are investigating the crash between his Kia Picanto and a DAF LF lorry.

Mr Lye, who is the former Council Leader in the West Wiltshire District Council, told The Herald: “I consider myself to be lucky to get out of the car in one piece.

“I didn’t see the stabiliser bar as the lorry came towards me and the first I knew of the collision was the sound of my car being torn apart and glass and plastic flying over me.

“I am glad that I wear glasses as this protected my eyes.”

The police have been contacted for a comment.

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Pembroke: School to be closed tomorrow due to ‘major leak’

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Closed: Due to a 'major leak' (pic. Martin Cavaney)

A ‘MAJOR LEAK’ has closed Ysgol Harri Tudor / Henry Tudor School in Pembroke this morning (Dec 13).

The electrical system has been affected by the leak and the classrooms are not usable.

The council have said that the school will remain closed on Friday (Dec 14) as well.

A Pembrokeshire County Council spokesperson said: “Ysgol Harri Tudor / Henry Tudor School in Pembroke is closing this morning (Thursday, 13th December) at 10.30 am because of a major leak in one of the buildings. This affected the electrical system and rendered classrooms unusable.

“All staff and pupils are safe and transport arrangements are in place.

“Please monitor Pembrokeshire County Council’s social media pages for information as to whether the school will be open tomorrow (Friday, 14th December). A decision will be taken later today.”

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Santa dog parade raises money for Greenacres

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FRIARS VAULTS in Haverfordwest hosted a Santa dog parade to raise money for Greenacres Animal Rescue on the weekend.

The event, which took place on Sunday (Dec 9), included a catwalk for dogs, hunt for treats and a raffle.

The total amount raised on the night was £110 with a further £45.50 collected through the donation box.

The winner of the best-dressed Dog was Deb and Steve Bunston with Pip, in second place was Danielle Boswell with Badger and in third place was Caitlin Davies with Denzal.

Greenacres Animal Rescue said on their Facebook page: “A huge thank you to all at Friars vaults Haverfordwest & Jamie Sid Williams for holding the fabulous fancy dress pooch party yesterday.

“A very welcome £158.50 was raised for Greenacres. Thank you all”

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