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Haverfordwest: Teachers on strike following redundancy concerns

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TEACHERS from Tasker Milward and Sir Thomas Picton schools are on strike in Haverfordwest today (Jun 12) during an important exam period for pupils.

Nearly 100 teachers are involved in the strike over fears of job losses as the two schools merge to form a new one – Haverfordwest High VC School, which will open in September.

The National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT) members voted to strike as frustrations hit a new high last month.

This morning a protest was held outside County Hall, with members of staff brandishing signs with phrases such as ‘let down by governors’ written on them.

Those on strike are asking for a guarantee of no compulsory redundancies for at least two years once the new school is formed – something that Pembrokeshire County Council say they cannot promise.

A spokesperson for the Council said: “The local authority and the governing body are disappointed by the decision of the NASUWT to pursue industrial action after a period of protracted negotiations where there has been compromise on both sides.

“They do not accept that they have refused to continue negotiating with the NASUWT. Indeed the offer to the trade union to meet with the local authority and governors remained open last week but no response was received from the NASUWT.

“It is however true that the temporary governing body cannot concede to the demand of the NASUWT that there be no compulsory redundancies for two years.

“This is because there are no guarantees of funding at a national or local level and this could leave a legacy funding position that would be untenable for the permanent governing body.

“Agreement has been offered for an 18 months guarantee to ensure staffing remains consistent during the period the school is on a split site and if this arrangement was to continue then the staffing model would also continue.”

The teachers will be protesting later against this month on June 28, then again on July 11.

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County Councillor Dai Boswell guilty of child rape

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THE FORMER Pembroke mayor, Cllr Dai Boswell, has been convicted of child rape and three counts of indecently assaulting a child by a jury at Swansea Crown Court today (Jun 18).

In relation to three other allegations of indecent assault, Boswell was cleared.

The offences are said to have taken place between 1991 and 1994 and relate to two children who were under 13 at the time.

Boswell served in the Army for more than 12 years and was well known locally as district parade marshal for the Royal British Legion.

The Pembrokeshire County Councillor was immediately remanded into custody

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One thousand march to save Withybush Hospital A&E services

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Over 1,000 people marched in Haverfordwest today (June 16) to show their support for the A&E department at Withybush General Hospital.

The protesters marched from Haverfordwest football club, leaving  at 11.30am and made their way via Bridge Street to Castle Square, and then around to the Riverside Shopping Centre, and back to the field behind the football club where a family fun day had been organised.

There were rumours that there would be inclement weather for the protest, but just on cue, the sun came out as the first walkers left the field for what many were describing as a “now or never” attempt to retain services at Withybush.

Conservative politicians joined the march including local MP’s Simon Hart and Stephen Crabb as well as Paul Davies AM. County Councillors and representatives from the Labour party were also at the protest, amongst others.

Stephen Crabb MP told The Herald that all of the University Health Board’s proposals for Withybush Hospital included a “downgrade”, and that this was not acceptable for the people of Pembrokeshire. In a passionate interview with Herald TV he said that today was the day that “local people fight for the services that they deserve.”

Mr Crabb said that he knew that recruitment of staff was a “challenge across the whole of the UK” but the Health Board need to be told they need to do more for Pembrokeshire.

Just before the protest, the admin of the Save Withybush Group on Facebok posted: “Over 22,000 have joined this group and almost 23,000 have signed the petition so we know there is massive support among the people of Pembrokeshire to save our hospital. Now we just need everyone to turn out this Saturday and show Hywel Dda Health Board that we mean business and that they will not get away with closing our A&E or any of the vital services at Withybush.”

Drivers of vehicles honked their horns as they drove past the protest which was led by musicians from the Saint City Jazz Band from St Davids.

Many people told Herald reporters that they felt that the hospital had been “deliberately undermined” ans that uncertainty created by the Health Board themselves in relation to hospital services was having a negative effect on the recruitment of staff.

This large march and fun day is described by organisers as the first stage in a summer of action to fight for services at Withybush Hospital.

Those who have not already done so are urged to fill in the consultation document published by Hywel Dda University Health Board.

  • Photography by Mike Hillen and Aad Oostermeijer.
  • Additional reporting by Matthew Roberts

 

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Pembroke Dock: Dog in black bag found dead in water

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A SHOCKING image of a dead dog which was found in the water at Pembroke Port, wrapped in a black bag, has been sent to The Herald.

The image was sent to us by a local man who pulled the bag out of the water.

Once on the dry land, he realised that tragically the remains of a dog was inside.

The shocking uncensored image is below.

WARNING: Upsetting imagery follows.

A witness at the scene told the Herald that police were called to the scene following the discovery.

The man who made the discovery told us: “The bag was down floating by the tugs, Pembroke Port, it looked like a tent bag at first.

“We pulled it up and took it on the walkway to cut it open – we didn’t know what it was.

“Once it was opened, we could see there were stones inside, and then as we opened it more it was obvious the dog was inside.

“To be honest, it looked like it had been in there a while.”

The man then told us that as he left the scene, a member of the tugboats called the police.

“It’s not nice, horrible to see, not nice at all. It didn’t look like a young dog but you don’t have any idea really with it in that state,” he added.

The Herald has contacted Dyfed-Powys Police for more information.

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