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County Council Leader’s coronavirus update for Thursday, 16th April

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Pembrokeshire County Council Leader, Councillor David Simpson,
has provided a further coronavirus update for Thursday, 16th April, as
follows:

‘I hope this newsletter finds you all well and healthy and that you are
staying at home, keeping safe and most importantly listening to the
advice regarding Covid-19. We all have a role to play in tackling this
pandemic

‘I appreciate that my updates do repeat the key Covid-19 messages.
However, I do not apologise for reminding you all of the importance to
adhering to the Government advice and guidance.

‘Our key role is to preserve lives. It’s simple: we need to stay at home
to take the pressure off the NHS and ensure we all stay safe.
Tragically, people are dying from the virus and anyone who feel they
are immune to it needs to reconsider their view.

‘Living in Pembrokeshire, a fantastic county, does not give us
immunity. I appreciate we are a rural area but please remind
yourselves daily: “anyone can spread or catch this virus, so stay at
home and stay safe.”

‘I also appreciate that staying at home can be challenging. We are
though currently blessed with good weather, so go outside, stretch
your arms and keep mobile.

‘I would like to highlight and thank our leisure centre staff who have
created videos to help everyone of all ages and abilities to keep
active at home during the lockdown.

‘Videos cover general fitness, yoga and core exercises plus specific
videos for those recovering from illness or injury.

‘As Charlotte Armstrong, the Pembrokeshire Exercise Referral Co-
ordinator, explained: “It’s a difficult time and we really wanted to do
something to help everyone feel positive and motivated at home.

“Even if you exercise for just ten minutes a day, it will release
endorphins which help with anxiety and make you feel happier, which
is really important at the moment.”

‘The Pembrokeshire Leisure YouTube channel is free and available
for anyone, so please have a go.

‘It can be viewed at:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5pvN2D0m28eZMnrmfm7zAw/featured

‘Or search Pembrokeshire Leisure on YouTube.
‘Over the Easter weekend our officers worked alongside Dyfed-Powys
Police to tackle non-essential travel. This joint operation will be
featured on Wales This Week on ITV Wales tonight at 7 pm. Please
tune in.

‘I’m aware that our Community Hub is very popular and we have now
received and responded to over 1,300 calls since it opened on 26 th
March thus highlighting that the demand is there and growing.
‘Within the Hub the team are dealing with outbound calls to those who
have received the shielding letters. We have now made contact with
1,140 people and, of these, 314 have registered for food parcels.
‘Capacity is being increased with a new set of redeployed staff from
our leisure services division joining the call-handling team. I want to
thank everyone within the Hub for their efforts to support our
communities.

‘I also want to share with you some feedback we have received
regarding the Community Hub. The following comments are very
much appreciated and emphasise the importance of keeping in touch
and the strength of togetherness:

 I just wanted to say a huge thank you for my food box
that has just been delivered – amazing.

 I don't perhaps fit into the typical expectation of
someone who has to follow the shielding guidance …so
it feels very unusual to receive such unprecedented
support from strangers. You also helped put me in touch
with my dog walker!

 In these strange and scary times, knowing that there is
a wonderful community out there, willing to help
everyone and anyone in whatever way they can is the
most heart-warming and reassuring response anyone
can receive. Thank you!!  

 Please do pass on my gratitude – everyone I've spoken
to have been so helpful and upbeat. Just what you need
when you spend all day on your own with just a snoring
dog!

‘The Pembrokeshire Community Hub contact information is:

 website: https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-community-information/community-hub

 e-mail: communitycovid19@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

 telephone: 01437 776301

‘Press releases issued since my last update are:

 New Fitness Channel Launched:
https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/newsroom/new-fitness-
channel-launched-by-pembrokeshire-leisure

 Follow Lockdown Rules Urge
Councillors:https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/newsroom/county-councillors-who-contracted-covid-19-urge-residents-to-follow-lockdown-rules

 Community Thanks:
https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/newsroom/dyfed-powys-local-resilience-forum-thanks-communities-for-playing-their-part-in-tackling-the-current-health-crisis-on-the-bank-holiday-weekend

‘Public Health Wales is updating and adding to their resources
regularly. Please find all assets here:
https://phw.nhs.wales/topics/latest-information-on-novel-coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-resources/

‘Also, please keep an eye on our newsroom at:
https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/newsroom

‘And to get daily email updates, log onto our website and sign into My
Account at:
https://myaccount.pembrokeshire.gov.uk

‘Remember: stay strong, stay at home and stay safe. Thank you.’

Useful links:
 www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/coronavirus   
 www.sir-benfro.gov.uk/coronafeirws
 https://phw.nhs.wales/
 Iechyd Cyhoeddus Cymru – Coronafeirws Newydd (COVID-19)
– Cyngor hunan-ynysu
 https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-
19-list-of-guidance

News

Former Cardigan Castle director sentencing delayed

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THE SENTENCING of a former director of Cardigan Castle who has pleaded guilty to charges of fraud and theft totalling over £40,000 has been delayed.

Former director, Jac Davies, pleaded guilty to charges of fraud and theft was due to be sentenced on Wednesday (May 4) at Swansea Crown Court – but has now been delayed.

Davies who held the £40,000 a year post fraudulently obtained £33,098.75 and stole a further £7,932.97 from the award winning restoration project..

Davies held his position at Cardigan Castle from September 2017 to November 2019.

The defendant has pleaded guilty to fraudulently obtaining £4,143.20 from the castle on December 21, 2017.

Again Davies admitted to fraudulently obtaining £28,955.55 between February 4, 2019 and November 3, 2019.

Two further charges of theft were also admitted – one charge of  theft from the castle of £1,908.18 between May 2, 2018 and May 24, 2019 and a further charge of theft from Cardigan Castle Enterprises to the sum of £6,024.79.

Dyfed-Powys Police conducted a year long investigation after being contacted by the castle board of directors.

Financial discrepancies were identified during financial monitoring.

An internal investigation was launched and Davies left his position within the castle in October 2019 following a disciplinary process.

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Dyfed-Powys Police criticised for failing to record thousands of crimes

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A SHOCKING new report says that Dyfed-Powys Police failed to record thousands of crimes, despite being told to improve two-and-a-half years ago.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) found the force had documented just 87.6% of reported crime – meaning upto 4,400 crimes are not recorded each year.

The report highlighted that of violent crimes, 85.4% were registered, which means about 2,400 went unrecorded, some involving domestic abuse or the vulnerable.

The force said it had “plans in place to improve its crime recording.”

HMIC reached their conclusion by comparing the number of reports to the police with recorded numbers. About 35,900 were reported.

In 2018, HMIC found that our local force was too often not recording crimes. And in 2014 it was reported the force was one of the worst in the UK at recording crimes. 

Dyfed-Powys Police T/Chief Constable, Claire Parmenter was quick to respond to the shocking finding. In a statement emailed to The Herald she said: “We accept the concerns and recommendations published by HMICFRS in respect of crime data integrity. As an organisation, we are firmly committed to supporting victims and putting them at the heart of everything we do. The force has plans in place to improve its crime recording and I am determined we will get this right.

“Since the previous HMICFRS inspection in 2018 we have made significant improvements in our response to Domestic Abuse victims, creating the vulnerability desk which provides real time intelligence to officers attending incidents of Domestic Abuse and ensuring that safeguarding arrangements are in place through a new partnership hub. Recent audits in April evidenced we were achieving a 98% compliance for the completion of risk assessments. This ensures that every Domestic Abuse victim is looked after and kept safe.

“We have a programme of change already in place which will deliver significant process and cultural change. The elements of this programme will improve the forces’ ability to manage demand, support victims, improve the timeliness and quality of investigations and supervision of crime. HMICFRS were unable to take this project into account as part of this inspection. Delivery plans commence next month (June 2021).

“Since the date of this inspection, we are already seeing improvements as a result of the swift additional action we have taken, achieving 100% crime recording compliance in respect of anti-social behaviour for February and March 2021 which is positive.”

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News

Firefighters extinguish blaze at St Catherine’s Fort, Tenby

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A CONTROLLED wood fire earlier in the day caused a fire to break out on Tenby’s St Catherine’s Island on Thursday (May 6).

Heat that was caused by a wood fire earlier in the day caused a ignition on the unburned wood nearby that was needed to be extinguished by Tenby fire crew.

Taking to their Facebook page, St Catherine’s island thanked Tenby Fire Brigade for their assistance.

No serious damage was caused by the incident.

The spokesperson said: “A massive shout out to Tenby Fire Brigade last night who were called to the Island last night after we left following a long day working on the Fort and burning off all the old flooring, having now replaced it all. 

“We had spent at least half an hour making sure that our controlled barrel fire was out. Unfortunately the ground was so hot it transferred to the rest of the unburned wood. 

“Thanks to our amazing local Fire Service, they were on hand to help us out and no damage occurred.”

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