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Tributes pour in for Derek

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DerekRobertsONE of Pembrokeshire’s most popular football figures lost his fight against cancer on Sunday night.

Sixty-year-old Derek Roberts passed away at Withybush Hospital where he had worked as an employee for most of his working life.

Many tributes have already been placed on Twitter and Facebook as the sad news spread amongst the community.

Derek played for Haverfordwest County Youth in the team that beat Carew to lift the Wiltshire Cup in 1970. Derek also made his debut in the early 1970s playing as a defender for Haverfordwest County in the old Welsh League Division One. He later played for the highly successful Merlins Bridge team who won Pembrokeshire Football League division one two years on the trot in 1979 and ’80, and the same team won the Senior Cup three times from 1978 to 1980, and achieved the double two years running.

Following his retirement from football he took up many coaching and managerial positions with teams such as Merlins Bridge, Camrose and Haverfordwest County.

He also gained an ‘a licence’ as a football coach with good friend Michael Ellis, and had spells as an academy coach with Cardiff City and Swansea City.

Earlier this year Derek underwent a successful liver transplant in a hospital in Birmingham.

Following his recuperation this summer he felt a lot better and set up his own football coaching school for children at the Bridge Meadow called the ‘Soccer Blast Coaching For Kids.’ All the money raised from these sessions was handed to Birmingham Royal Infirmary and Wales Air Ambulance.

In August, Derek was thrown a surprise 60th birthday at the Haverfordwest County clubhouse where many family and friends celebrated.

Haverfordwest County chairman Rob Summons said: “Derek was a fantastic and genuine man who was a great friend to me. I will miss him greatly but will treasure the memories of all the good times we had together. He was one of the bravest people I have ever known.”Former Bluebirds manager and friend Michael Ellis said: “It is such sad news that Derek has passed away.“I can’t believe it’s happened so quickly. Life is hard to take when someone so special is taken so early in life.”

Pembrokeshire League secretary Brian Hawkins said: “The Pembrokeshire Football League would like to pass on our sincere condolences to the family. Our thoughts are with them during this sad time. He spent a lot of time coaching in Pembrokeshire and will be sorely missed.”

The funeral will take place next Monday, December 11 at Parc Gwyn Crematorium, Narberth at 3.15pm, and after the service the wake will be at Haverfordwest Golf Club.

There will be no flowers and all donations are for the Liver Transplant Foundation in Birmingham. All cheques made payable to Mr Rob Summons, 19 West Street, Rosemarket, SA71 1JH.

Chris O’Sullivan, Haverfordwest County

The Man was a true Gentleman, a proper mans man, always had class about him no matter what he said or did.! This world at times is very unfair, takes all the good ones.! Was an absolute pleasure to play my football in an around the same football club as him for so long, great coach and an absolute great man.. RIP Mr Derek Roberts you will be missed greatly xxx

Adam Raymond, Formerly Haverfordwest County

Absolutely stunned and devastated to hear the news about a true Pembrokeshire football great. My first county coach and the man who gave me so many opportunities in the game. An absolute gentleman and somebody who I could always rely on for advice and guidance. Rest in Peace Derek Rocco Roberts x

Jason Rice Merlins Bridge

The Pembs football community has sadly lost a great man I’m DEREK ROBERTS, it was Derek that gave me baptism of fire debut in Pembs footie as a 17 yr old way back in 1990 down in S’Foot, I came on for last 10 mins for the Merlins Bridge for legend Tony Jones who got injured (shock)!, Derek simply said Ricey I know your keen but just enjoy it, show us what u got but don’t do anything silly, next thing I get nut megged so I just turn around and before the bastard crosses it, bang i take him down… yellow card! Fair play mind Derek after game put his hand on my shoulder and said, well done Ricey, good tackle but next time tuck your balls away and close your legs, even only last year we still laughed about that. brilliant advice by a brilliant coach which I’ve never forgotten. RIP Derek.

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Health

Health board: COVID-19 vaccinations will be by appointment only from end of this month

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THE LOCAL health board has announced that from August 31, access to Mass Vaccination Centres (MVCs) in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire for COVID-19 vaccinations will be by appointment only in preparation for the start of the winter vaccine programme.

Anyone wishing to drop-in for their first or second dose during August is advised to check opening times on the day before travelling by visiting hduhb.nhs.wales/healthcare/covid-19-information/covid-19-vaccination-programme/mass-vaccination-centres or calling 0300 303 8322 as these are subject to change. If you still require a booster, please wait to be offered an appointment.

From 31 August 2022 onwards, please book an appointment by calling 0300 303 8322 or by emailing COVIDEnquiries.hdd@wales.nhs.uk

Bethan Lewis, Interim Assistant Director of Public Health at Hywel Dda University Health Board (UHB), said: “Throughout the vaccination programme we’ve aimed to make the vaccine easily accessible through a combination of drop-ins and appointments. This change will allow us to deliver the COVID-19 in partnership with primary care and minimise the risk of duplication or vaccine waste.

“If you are eligible for an autumn COVID-19 booster, please wait to be invited by either your GP or the health board. Everyone eligible will be offered an appointment by November.

“GP practices are also preparing to invite eligible patients for their seasonal flu vaccine and aim to offer an appointment to everyone eligible by December. Again, please do not contact your GP practice at this time, you will be invited when it is your turn.”

Scheduled drop-in sessions for children and young people who are home-educated or not in education to access childhood vaccinations routinely offered through school nursing teams will continue as advertised at selected MVCs.

The remaining drop-in sessions for children aged 5 to 17 years of age will be held between 12pm and 6pm in the following locations:

Aberystwyth MVC (Thomas Parry Library, Llanbadarn Campus, SY23 3AS) – Tuesday 30 August
Carmarthen MVC (Y Gamfa Wen, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, SA31 3EP) – Friday 2 September
Cwm Cou MVC (Ysgol Trewen, SA38 9PE) – Monday 22 August
Haverfordwest MVC (Pembrokeshire Archives, SA61 2PE) – Wednesday 31 August
Llanelli MVC (Dafen Industrial Estate, SA14 8QW) – Tuesday 23 August
These drop-in sessions are also open to any Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire or Ceredigion school attendees who may have missed their vaccinations.

If you are unable to attend one of these sessions and have any queries or wish for your child to receive their scheduled vaccines, please complete the form available here hduhb.nhs.wales/healthcare/services-and-teams/immunisation-and-vaccination/childhood-and-young-people-vaccinations/vaccine-access-for-home-schooled-children or call 0300 303 8322 to be contacted by a member of the health board’s immunisation nursing team.

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Police appeal for information after man ‘was slapped on the back of the head’

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POLICE in Pembroke Dock are appealing for information after an alleged assault.

A male was slapped to the back of his head outside Lloyds Bank on Monday, August 8, 2022 between 5pm and 5.15pm following an argument with another male.

If you have any information please contact the Police on 101, quoting reference DPP/3231/08/08/2022/02/C

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Gareth Mann from Milford Haven sentenced to seven years in prison for drug offences

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DRUG dealer Gareth James Mann, aged 46, from Bunkers Hill, Milford Haven has been sentenced to a total of 7 years in prison.

A Misuse of Drugs Act search warrant was executed at Manns’ home address on 17th March 2022, where he was found to have controlled drugs including Heroin, Cocaine, Cannabis, Morphine, Pregabalin, Buprenorphine and Diazepam with a combined street value of up to £3660. Cash totalling £3430 was also found in his possession.

He was arrested and later charged with possession with intent to supply Class A drugs and with possession of criminal property.

Garth Mann: Drugs worth £3660, and cash totalling £3430 was found in his possession.

Mann appeared at Llanelli Magistrates court on Friday, March 18 where he entered a not guilty plea. He was remanded in custody to appear at Swansea Crown Court.

Following a 6-day trial Mann was found guilty of all counts by a majority verdict on Monday 15th August 2022 and sentenced to a total of 7 years in custody.

DS Vinny Barrett said told The Herald: “Tackling the supply of illegal drugs is a priority for police in Pembrokeshire and the misery that illegal drugs bring to local communities will not be tolerated.

“We are taking a positive approach in targeting those that supply illegal drugs, and I would encourage anyone with information about the misuse of drugs to contact police.

“This information will be acted upon and will help us in preventing the supply of illegal drugs and the criminality that can be associated with them.”

To report suspicious behaviour in your community, visit https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, email 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or call 101.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111, or visiting www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

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