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Well-attended mayor’s civic service

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civic serviceTHERE was a large congregation at the civic service marking the official start of the mayor’s year in office held at St Clements Church, Neyland on Sunday. The service was conducted by Rev Alan Chadwick, the mayor’s chaplain, and Neyland Ladies’ Choir sang two items and the Neyland town anthem, and the organist was Peter Griffiths. The mayors from Haverfordwest, Pembroke, Milford Haven, Pembroke Dock, Milford Haven, Narberth, and the Sheriff of Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire College Principal, and the Commanding officer of the 14th Signals, Brawdy, all attended along with representatives of the cadet force and Dyfed-Powys police. Also in attendance were Cllr Tom Richards, chairman of Pembrokeshire County Council, and deputy chairman Cllr Wyn Evans. Cllr Simon Hancock takes on the role of mayor for the sixth time, and has said he is looking forward to helping develop “the community that he loves”. A councillor for 27 years, Cllr Hancock chairs the Neyland Youth Project and Neyland Ahead Community Association, is treasurer of Age Concern, Neyland and Honorary President of the Brunel Festival Association, Neyland Ladies Choir and Neyland Judo Club.

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Plan your Year of Discovery in Pembrokeshire with Coast to Coast

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PEMBROKESHIRE’S visitors and residents can discover how to make the most of the UK’s only coastal National Park during Wales’ Year of Discovery by taking inspiration from the National Park Authority’s information-packed newspaper Coast to Coast.

The must-read paper, which is distributed across the county, is full of information about where to go to discover Pembrokeshire’s coastline, beaches, its castles and historic sites, as well as promoting self-discovery and personal health.

Helping locals and visitors make the most of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park from spring through to early autumn, Coast to Coast has been produced by the Park Authority for 37 years and features galleries, arts and crafts, watersports, gardens and boat trips.

Speaking of the publication, the Authority’s Chief Executive Tegryn Jones said: “Coast to Coast is a fantastic introduction to the National Park and surrounding area and includes features on the Park Authority’s popular family attractions: Carew Castle and Tidal Mill, Oriel y Parc Gallery and Visitor Centre in St Davids and Castell Henllys Iron Age Village.

“More than 200,000 people pick up a paper copy of Coast to Coast each year, but you can still use this great resource if you prefer to get your information from a smartphone, laptop, tablet or PC, including a map and six-month tide table, at www.pembrokeshirecoast.wales/coasttocoast.

“There are ideas for coastal walks for all abilities, and discovering new and varied activities and landscapes in the National Park and area, including a ‘Try Something New’ page.

“It also includes the Authority’s activities and events programme which offers a unique opportunity to discover the heritage, wildlife, countryside and coastline of the National Park.”

 

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Community

Sincere apology to whistle-blower following Mik Smith cover-up

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THE COUNCIL has apologised after a damning report into the Mik Smith affair has heavily criticised senior council officers, including the former Head of Youth Service Eirian Evans, former Chief Executive Bryn Parry Jones, and former Council leader Jamie Adams.

The report prepared by a task and finish group of councillors takes no prisoners as it lays into the series of missteps and attempted cover-ups regarding the way the local authority’s then-leadership responded to a whistle-blower who reported serious concerns about the convicted paedophile’s relationship with young people in his care while a youth worker for the Council.

As the Leader of the present Administration of Pembrokeshire County Council, I am extremely pleased to see this report produced by the Members of the Task and Finish Group and I appreciate the input of Members, Officers and individuals to produce the conclusions in the report.

Cllr David Simpson said in a statement: “I am however drawn to the involvement of the Whistle Blower in this case. It is never an easy thing to whistle blow in the workplace and I appreciate this is something people have concerns over. It is crucial to ensure that we continue to encourage people to whistle blow and our policy and procedures, I am pleased to say have been updated and reviewed significantly since the period of time these matters occurred. These procedures now can empower people to whistle blow when they wish to report matters of concern.

“Regarding the case in question, I would very much like to thank the Whistle Blower who came forward in the first instance and who provided information of that experience to the Task and Finish Group process. That experience and insight is crucial when organisations like ours seek to learn from negative situations and by adopting recommendations from the group today we are continuing to ensure ever improving safeguarding procedures.

“Therefore I am extremely thankful for the involvement of the whistle blower in this process and would like to offer my sincere apology to her for having to be engaged in this sensitive matter over such a protracted period of time and having to re-visit what would have been a challenging and upsetting set of circumstances.

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Community

Pembroke Dock: Extraordinary stories of arctic exploration

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YOU can discover extraordinary stories of arctic exploration at a special event at Pembroke Dock Library this week.

On Wednesday 18th April from 7pm, David Saunders MBE will be discussing the journeys of three ships built in Pembroke Dock and bound for the Arctic, only to be lost in some of the most mysterious stories in the history of exploration.

David is a maritime historian, a subject he has studied extensively and has always been passionate about.

He is also a well-known naturalist, having become the first warden of Skomer Island in 1960. He was awarded a MBE in 2003.

The event is free to attend and no booking is required.

For more information, contact Pembroke Dock Library on 01437 775 825.

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