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Residents’ anger as Lower Priory on the brink – pub already flooded

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RESIDENTS of Lower Priory in Milford Haven had a sleepless night last night as they grappled with rising water levels following significant rainfall.

Petrified of a repeat of the flood which wrecked so many homes in November 2018, the fire brigade was called – and some home owners telephoned the council’s emergency out of hours hotline to get deliveries of sand bags.

A source at Milford Haven Docks told The Herald that they were doing their best to keep the water level in the marina below 27 feet to alleviate the rising water the best they could – but residents gathered in the early hours of the morning on a flooding Priory Inn car park to discuss, under the floodlights of a fire engine, their options.

Our reporter spoke to many residents who said that they felt the issue of flooding events was not being taken seriously by the Milford Haven Port Authority which owns the shopping centre built on the partly infilled pill. Culverts are not sufficient, and had not been regularly cleared of debris – although there had been some action following the major floods two years ago which saw water levels rise 8 feet in places.

Pill Priory: One home was an inch or so from being flooded, only saved by a large pump

Ian Banister, the resident who is co-ordinating with the statutory authorities, said he was sick to death of my own voice.

In an email he sent to the Port today he wrote: “In the early hours this morning one of the residents phoned the pier head operator who was unaware of our plight. He was asked what the level of the lakes were in particular Havens Head, on his computer screen and he could not answer, he did not know and could not say even what the levels were earlier in his shift. This proves that there is no consistency, if not any, in monitoring the lakes on their computer screen, and neither monitoring CCTV.”

He added: “Nobody is physically paying a personal site visit regarding water level inspection in particular in night time. After the flood of 2018 a protocol by PCC was set up that Jonathan Rees and myself were given a phone number to phone PCC emergency team. They in turn would approach MHPA and relevant personnel elsewhere. This we phoned several times early hours this morning but nobody answered.

“We were then forced to phone the Marina office and the Pier Head Control Tower where we were given the usual text book reply. Some of the residents visited the marina themselves.

“Our properties are surrounded by water once again, the Priory Inn is devastatingly ruined once again.

“Words simply cannot explain how we all feel. We have been let down once again.

“For the third time this week we ask you, when is the second sluice gate going to be repaired after being out of service for over ten years, when?

He asked the Port for clarification on some key points – he wrote: “Why cant you drop your water level to a historic level of 25 foot ? Its been done before, why can you not take mitigation measures to accomplish this again?

“Dredge out your Marina!”

Emergency services at Lower Priory early hours of Dec 19

A spokesperson for Pembrokeshire County Council told The Herald: “After a period of sustained rainfall, and with ground conditions now saturated, water levels have risen in the Pill adjacent to Lower Priory, Milford Haven. Water entered one property – the public house at Lower Priory.

“The Fire & Rescue Service provided an operational & tactical response and attended Lower Priory last night. Pembrokeshire County Council operatives also attended and sand bags were deployed. The Council continues to work closely with the Fire & Rescue Service to review this situation.

“The forecast indicates showery spells over the next few days, then a longer period of rain developing across the county during Sunday night until first light on Monday morning. The forecast indicate rainfall totals look as if they will be much less than we have seen last night and earlier in the week.

“Further spells of rain are likely again on Monday night/Tuesday morning and again during Tuesday night and into Wednesday, although similarly at the moment the rainfall amounts do not look as large as we have seen at times this week.

“The Council has reviewed the situation, and given the forecast prediction and the situation as it stands, no specific additional actions are planned for Lower Priory area. We will continue to monitor the situation and work with Fire & Rescue service to evaluate the risks and respond accordingly.”

The Milford Haven Port Authority has been asked for a comment.

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A40 closed at Scleddau due to collision between car and motorbike

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EMERGENCY SERVICES have shut the A40 at in Scleddau due to a serious road collision.

The accident happened just before 2pm. The Herald understands that the collision involved a motorcycle and car at a junction near The Gate Inn public house.

Police said: “Emergency services are currently on scene and dealing with the incident. Please find an alternative route if possible. Update to follow.”

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Moley’s Ambassador March to support those who have lost a child

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ON SATURDAY (Jun 19), Andrew Cole (aka Moley) will set off on a 24 hour walk around Pembrokeshire with the aim of doing as many miles in as little time as possible. 

Moley is proud to have recently been made ambassador of the charity ‘2 Wish UponAa Star’ an organisation dedicated to supporting families that have lost a child under 25 years of age.

He will be setting off at 6am in the morning from Neyland and walking all day and night, finishing at 6am the following morning.

2 wish upon a star was set up by Rhian Mannings, who set up the charity after losing her own son.

By celebrating the lives of those lost, and offering support to families through their grief; Rhian and her team offer an essential service to the community and those families who have suffered the devastation of losing a loved one.

Appealing for support from the people of Pembrokeshire he said: “Please give generously to support the wonderful work of Rhian and her team. Also, if you happen to see me in the day, feel free to give me a beep of encouragement’

“If you would like to donate to Moley, and support the charity, you can visit his JustGiving page.”

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/moleycole

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Lifeboats and chopper in major air sea rescue off the coast of Tenby

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TWO RNLI lifeboats from both Tenby and Angle stations have been launched to assist a coastguard helicopter which has been scrambled from MOD St Athen.

It is understood that a search for a missing person or persons is underway.

Paged this morning: Angle Lifeboat is currently involved in the search south of Tenby

The alarm was raised before 10am this morning (June 18).

Tenby’s Y-boat is also involved in the operation, The Herald understands.

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Rescue underway: Coastguard chopper position at 1030HRS on Friday, Jun 18 (Pic MarineTraffic)
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