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£3m to prop up Pembrokeshire

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murcoA MULTI-MILLION pound fund to create and protect jobs in Pembrokeshire has been announced following the loss of 340 jobs at the Murco oil refi nery . Economy and Science Minister for Wales Edwina Hart said the government would: “Focus on doing all we can,” to maximise opportunities for those workers from the site. As well as a £3m fi ghting fund, Mrs Hart also said she would explore ‘additional ways’ to improve the A40, ‘including the potential for dualling’. The Minister told The Herald: “I will be introducing a special round of the Welsh Economic Growth Fund that will be open to support businesses in creating and safeguarding employment in Pembrokeshire.

That £3m will sit alongside a £500,000 new round of the SME Growth Fund that I am committing to, aimed at supporting smaller and micro-sized companies to maximise the employment and growth opportunities in the region. We will of course be exploring the use of European monies to meet our goals and be working with the UK Government to consider the use of the EU’s Globalisation Adjustment Fund.  The energy sector is integral to the economic fabric of the local area and is a specific priority of the Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone.” Paul Davies, Assembly Member for Preseli Pembrokeshire, said: “I have campaigned for the dualling of the A40 from St Clears to Fishguard for years and welcome moves to explore its potential.

You can travel along continuous dual carriageway from eastern Europe to Ireland apart from this stretch through Pembrokeshire, which is a barrier to investment and makes it more difficult for West Wales firms to compete. Consideration of dualling and other potential upgrades to the A40 must be concluded as swiftly as possible so work can begin to protect jobs and attract new ones. At this difficult time for Murco workers and their families, we welcome support available for them and hope regeneration funding will be made available to support the jobs dependent on the oil refinery’s supply chain.”

William Graham AM, Shadow Minister for Business, said: “I welcome the Welsh and UK Governments working together to support Murco workers and their families at this worrying time. We welcome consideration of ways to support employment in the West Wales communities affected by the loss of Murco. Workers at Murco and in the supply chain are highly experienced and will need every possible help in identifying new sources of employment to enable them to use their skills to contribute to Welsh industry.” Marc Tierney, South Pembrokeshire Labour Assembly Candidate said: “The Welsh Government Economy Minister has shown her strong support for Murco workers and the local economy this week in the Senedd.

The new appointment of Mr Stan McIlvenny OBE (current Chief Executive and Company Secretary of Port of Waterford Company) as the Chair of Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone reemphasises the focus on securing economic prosperity for Haven communities and the wider west Wales area. The undertaking to look at improving the A40 is an important step forward and it is right that the Welsh Government looks more closely at this now. As part of that process engagement must take place with local communities and organisations representing business, tourism and other local interests.”

William Powell, Welsh Liberal Democrat Regional Assembly Member for Mid & West Wales has told The Herald that he welcomes the £3m fund. The announcement by Economy Minister, Edwina Hart, follows the loss of 340 jobs at the Murco oil refinery in Milford Haven. William Powell has also welcomed the appointment of Stan McIllvenny OBE as Chair of the Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone, who has high level international experience in the ports sector. William Powell stated: “We need to do everything possible to develop the local economy to provide high quality jobs to replace those being lost at Murco. That is why I am pleased to hear the Economy Minister’s emphasis on improving transport links including the long overdue dualling of the A40 into the county.

I’ve also urged the Minister to explore innovative sources of funding for infrastructure investment, including the European Investment Bank. This could include both port development and the potential electrifi cation of rail services into West Wales.” He added: “It is also excellent news that the current Murco apprenticeships will be built into the training programme at Valero. This helps to lessen the danger of a skills drain out of the local economy, which we can ill afford, especially in the energy sector.

I commend Valero for their vision and commitment to both Pembrokeshire and the wider Welsh economy.” Joyce Watson AM said: “We should not lose sight of the fact that Pembrokeshire retains a strong energy sector. We have the LNG terminal, the Valero refi nery and Pembroke B – the largest gas-fi red power station in Europe. I would imagine the immediate priority for staff will be to discuss whether there are job opportunities at these alternative sites – because we don’t want to lose these skills in West Wales.” The collapse of the Murco deal will lead to the loss of hundreds of wellpaid local jobs. Mrs Watson stressed the importance of ‘open lines of communication’ with employees: “The last thing they need is to feel they’re being kept in the dark. I have also asked my offi cials to conduct further, urgent work, to explore additional ways to improve the A40, including the potential for duelling. This work will be complete within 6 months,” she said.

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Two vans and outbuilding broken in to in Milford Haven – Police investigating

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DYFED POWYS POLICE is investigating reports of two vans and an outbuilding being broken in to sometime overnight on Tuesday 12 to Wednesday 13 October, at Vaynor Road, Milford Haven.

Items including tools, cash and bicycles were stolen. Following enquiries, two men have been arrested on suspicion of burglary and theft. The 20-year-old and 23-year-old, both from the Milford Haven area, remain in police custody at this time.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.pnn.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Quote reference: DP-20211013-043. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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Nathaniel Nuttal charged over serious assault in Monkton

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A 32-YEAR-OLD man who was arrested following a serious assault in Monkton on Wednesday Morning (October 13) has appeared in court this morning charged with Grievous Bodily Harm with intent.

Police were called to a property in Tenby Court, Monkton, at approximately 5.35am on Wednesday Morning following a report of a serious assault.

A 40-year-old man has been taken to hospital with serious injuries.

32-year-old Nathaniel Nuttal from Monkton was arrested at the scene and has subsequently been charged with section 18 assault (GBH with intent).

Nuttal appeared at Llanelli Magistrates’ Court this morning.

A Dyfed-Powys Police spokesperson told this newspaper: “The 32-year-old man that was arrested at the scene, was subsequently charged with Section 18 Assault.

“Nathaniel Nuttal from Monkton, appeared before Llanelli Magistrates Court this morning (Friday, October 15).”

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Schools gearing up for Shwmae Day

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THE Criw Cymraeg (Welsh Crew) at our schools in Pembrokeshire have been busy preparing a whole host of exciting activities to celebrate ‘Shwmae Day’ today! (Friday, October the 15th). 

Shwmae Day is a celebration of the Welsh language and all things Welsh. Seren and Sbarc (the Welsh Language Charter mascots) are asking children to dress as Welsh superheroes or in their best red, white and green outfits to celebrate the day and kick start their Language Charter journey this year.

Bro Ingli Welsh Crew (pictured) have organised several activities for Shwmae Day. Every child and even the staff will come to school dressed in a Welsh cape like Seren and Sbarc. The Criw Cymraeg have arranged a competition between each year for one winner to win a specially designed Seren a Sbarc water bottle. Parents will have the opportunity to have a cup of tea and Welsh cakes when dropping off their children at school in the morning and having a Welsh conversation with the Criw Cymraeg or even being taught a few phrases! The donations will be given to the Wales Air Ambulance. The Criw Cymraeg have also arranged with the kitchen for everyone to have Welsh soup and Welsh cakes for lunch.

Roch School are also dressing up as superheroes. Their Criw Cyrmaeg have arranged lots of exciting activities throughout the day for children to use their Welsh skills from crafts, mocktail making, listening to Welsh music and quizzes to teddy bear picnics. Children will have an extra surprise as they host some special superheroes at their picnic who will join them playing Welsh language games in the playground and sharing a sandwich at the teddy bear picnic.

Scores of teams have also registered for the Big Welsh ‘Dim Clem’ quiz hosted by Menter Iaith Sir Benfro for our English medium primaries. We’ll see which school will be crowned the winner!

And finally, to top off the excitement, all schools will have access to an online gig by Welsh artist Gwilym Bowen Rhys to enjoy during the day.

“What a fantastic effort by our schools to celebrate the Welsh language and to kickstart their Language Charter journey,” said Cllr Cris Tomos, Cabinet Member for the Environment and Welsh Language. “I wish everybody a great, fun-filled day.” 

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