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‘Secret talks’ to bring nukes to Milford Haven



Trident: Could nuclear weapons be heading to Pembrokeshire

Trident: Could nuclear weapons be heading to Pembrokeshire

MILFORD HAVEN PORT AUTHORITY says that it has not yet been approached regarding the relocation of the British nuclear submarine base NMNB Clyde, after rumours resurfaced in the newspapers this week.

The national press is reporting that defence officials have secretly started examining plans to move Britain’s nuclear-armed submarines from Faslane in Scotland to Wales, but the Chief Executive of the port, Alec Don, told The Herald on Wednesday (Jan 28): “We have not yet been approached by any authority in relation to this.”

Stephen Crabb MP said: “I’ve been to Faslane and seen for myself the thousands of high quality jobs provided at the base. At a time when Pembrokeshire has recently lost a major employer, stories like this will sound appealing to some. But the UK Government and the Ministry of Defence are absolutely clear that there are no plans to move the Trident base from Scotland. Such an operation would cost billions of pounds and is not on the table.”

The Scottish Daily Mail has reported on its front page that it’s ‘well-placed source’ said political leaders in Wales were keen for the Ministry of Defence to ‘look at Welsh sites’, including Milford Haven.

The national press is reporting that there are many obstacles to trident coming to Milford Haven aside from the cost, including safety with the LNG terminals. If moving Trident to Milford Haven becomes a necessity, and if the UK Government were to offer Cardiff a good funding package as a sweetener, then it could just be possible, it is being reported.

Scottish Daily Mail on Jan 28

Scottish Daily Mail on Jan 28

Plaid Cymru has responded to reports that the Ministry of Defence is exploring options for relocating Trident to Wales.

A Plaid spokesperson told The Herald: “Plaid Cymru’s opposition to Trident is longstanding and unconditional. Only last week we held a Commons debate calling for Trident renewal to be scrapped and for the estimated £100bn cost of the system over its lifetime to be diverted to fund vital public services.

The spokesman added: “Talk of the Ministry of Defence making plans to relocate Trident to Wales comes as extremely worrying news. Our nation is not a dumping ground for weapons of mass destruction. We will be taking immediate action to secure clarity on the matter and hope that all parties in Wales will join us in doing the same.”

Frances Bryant, Green Party candidate for Preseli Pembrokeshire told us: “I do not believe the people of Pembrokeshire, and especially Milford Haven, would welcome this dangerous technology in their midst, any more than the people of London or Westminster would welcome it on the Thames.

She added: “As far as the Green Party is concerned we would relocate it to the scrap heap. It is ridiculously expensive,and of no real military value . We think that the 100 billion pounds  that this system is projected to cost in its lifetime would be better spent on education, the NHS and other vital social infrastructure.
She concluded: “Jobs in Milford Haven could instead be created and sustained by the fabrication of renewable energy systems which require a well trained and skilled workforce already in place in that location.”

Green Party spokesperson Pippa Bartolotti said: “This is a missile system which costs the people of Britain £5707 a minute, which could kill 320 million people and the £100billion pounds it costs could fund our A and E services for 40 Years. If this money was invested in our green and social infrastructure it would create 2,000,000 jobs.”

She added: “No responsible government will ever use this weapon of mass destruction, but we must be minded that the Trident system is dependent on software, and cyber warfare is the new front line. There is a real and frightening possibility that this software could be hacked by small terrorist cells. No words can describe the anguish of a nuclear strike. Greens call for the abandonment of all nuclear weapons worldwide, and the nuclear power plants which feed them the weapons grade material. The cold war is over, and enough destruction is taking place in terms of pollution and species extinction without the added threat of nuclear warfare. Greens move forward in a more hopeful setting, where empty threats are replaced with solid policies which work for the common good of humanity.”

Cllr Paul Miller said: “Clearly if there were proposals on the table for Trident to be based in Milford Haven there would have be a conversation to be had with people of Pembrokeshire. Our community is desperate for jobs but that would clearly need to be balanced against whatever potential proposal might or might not come forward.”

The Labour candidate for Preseli Pembrokeshire added: “The SNP lost the Independence referendum and aren’t in a position to dictate to the rest of the UK. I’m not sure if this proposal will come to light. If it does, I’ll be on the frontline getting the best for the people of Pembrokeshire.”

A spokesman for Pembrokeshire County Council said: “We declared the county a nuclear-free zone in 1998 and this policy still stands. This decision was taken following an announcement by the then owners of the Royal Naval Armament Depot at Trecwn – Omega Pacific Limited – to utilise the site as a nuclear waste storage facility.”

“This sparked great consternation in Pembrokeshire and it was in the light of this concern that the Authority adopted its nuclear-free policy.”

This week, Comedian Russell Brand has been invited to face shipyard workers after saying the Trident replacement programme they are working on should be scrapped. He posted a video online saying too much money was spent on defence and it should go to the NHS instead. But Barrow Labour MP John Woodcock said he would rather be protected by a nuclear deterrent than an “eccentric comedian”.



What is Trident?

THE UK Trident Programme deals with the attaining, operating and developing British nuclear weapons. Trident itself is a structure of four submarines armed with ballistic missiles, which delivers multiple thermonuclear warheads, more commonly known as hydrogen bombs. It is currently the British military forces’ most powerful and expensive weapon.

Although patrols began in 1994, the Trident programme was first initiated in July 1980, during a period of immense tension in the Cold War. It was regarded that there was a threat coming from the Soviet Union and its allies in the Warsaw Pact. The tridents were built with a twenty-five-year life expectancy, but are expected to continue into 2042 following an upgrade.

Since 1998, Trident is the only nuclear service in Britain and is currently situated at the Clyde Naval Base in Scotland. At least one submarine is always on patrol as a preventative measure of nuclear war.

Trident has been said to be the best way of ensuring peace and deterring an aggressor. Every British government since 1945 has seen the necessity of nuclear weapons. Yet, it is a very expensive programme and nuclear weapons are seen to be immoral. Britain could set an example through disarmament. Countries such as Spain, Australia, Canada and Germany do not have nuclear weapons and they still have global influence.



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Search for missing Pembrokeshire man scaled back by police



FOLLOWING nine days of extensive searches on land and sea, we can confirm that the search for missing man Jai has been scaled back.

Police said in a statement: “We launched a search for Jai, aged 40, in the area around Hobbs Point on the morning of Monday, 20 March, following a sighting of Jai and his car, a silver Honda Civic, in the area.

“In the past week we have carried out extensive searches using the force’s specialist search team and police search adviser (POLSA), marine unit, specialist sonar, drones, dog unit, as well as working with South Wales Police’s dive team, the NPAS helicopter and Coastguard.

“A decision was made yesterday to scale back the search, which has been communicated with Jai’s family.

“However, we will act on new information, and officers continue with missing person enquiries.
“We are appealing for people not to put themselves in danger, particularly near the River Cleddau, if they are attempting to look for Jai.

“If you have information that could help with that investigation, please let us know:”

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Pembrokeshire chef, Daniel Jones, wins Pub Chef of the Year 2023



TALENTED chef Daniel Jones has scooped first prize in the Pub Chef of the Year category at the International Salon Culinaire awards 2023. The finals of the competition took place at ExCel London on 22 March 2023.

Executive chef Daniel is co-owner of JT at the Abergwaun Hotel, the hotel and restaurant in Fishguard, Pembrokeshire, recently awarded a 4* rating by Visit Wales. His winning dish of Lemon Sole, Spring Vegetables, Bluestone Ale and Pickled Cockle Vinaigrette with ‘Welshman’s caviar’ (handpicked laver seaweed from the Pembrokeshire coast) came first place amongst the seven finalists, and will be introduced to the restaurant’s menu this summer.

International Salon Culinaire is regarded as one of the world’s top competitions for chefs, with over 100 categories, from pastry to knife skills. The competition has been a platform for chefs of all levels, from the talented young chefs training at college, to those who are well established and firmly on their culinary career journey. Gordon Ramsey won Chef of the Year in 1992, and the awards have over the years seen world-class ambassadors including Michel Roux Jr and, this year, Monica Galetti.

The Pub Chef of the Year category launched in 2022 to celebrate the fine food in the pubs and bars of the UK, and to recognise the hard work, expertise and talent in the kitchens of these establishments.

First place winner Daniel said: “I am over the moon to win the Pub Chef of the Year at the International Salon Culinaire. It’s a great honour to have cooked alongside other great culinary talent, and I’m delighted to have been recognised by the esteemed judges on the panel this year. I’ll be taking my accolade back to my hometown of Fishguard, where I hope I’ve made the community proud.”

No stranger to competition, Daniel competed in Masterchef: The Professionals in 2010 and he reached the semi-finals of the National Chef of the Year awards in 2018.

His modern European restaurant JT At the Abergwaun Hotel is steeped in Welsh heritage, supporting local suppliers and offering ingredients like Welsh lamb and beef, plus the famous Fishguard Duck and chicken, along with a selection of fine Welsh cheeses. The A La Carte menu changes daily, depending on what can be sourced that day, from locally foraged, farmed or fished ingredients like local lobster and spider crab.

Daniel will be introducing all-day dining on Saturdays for all to enjoy – including non-hotel guests – and this summer, JT At the Abergwaun Hotel will launch a seven-course tasting menu to showcase Daniel’s award-winning cooking (including his winning dish!) and the local Pembrokeshire produce which he’s so proud of.

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Tuk Tuk touring business with franchise hopes gets licence plate call turned down



A SOUTH Pembrokeshire three-wheeler ‘tuk tuk’ tour business, which has hopes of creating a country-wide franchise has had a call for discreet signage on a support vehicle turned down.

Pembrokeshire County Council’s licensing sub-committee, meeting on March 27, considered an application to amend standard terms and conditions of a private hire vehicle.

The application, by Lorraine Niederlag of Begelly-based Tuk Tuk Time, asked for standard external private hire plates to instead be displayed internally for its “usually affluent” clients.

The application for this change of plates asked: “We wish to request the removal of the large private hire licensing plates, in exchange for more discreet internal plates. The intention is to focus on tours that would compliment our tuk tuk tours.”

The applicants said the charming three-wheeler Tuk Tuks were usually kept to south Pembrokeshire tours, and were not really suitable for county-wide day trips; the support car being used for that.

“As our clients are usually affluent, it would be detrimental to arrive in a pre-booked vehicle with such a ‘taxi’ image. In view of all bookings being pre-booked, we cannot see any safety issues for clients by more discreet signage,” the application added.

At the committee meeting, TUK Tuk Time said it hoped to use the support vehicle, bearing the signage “Wales’ premier travel” for some short trips from its campsite to restaurants until the business grew.

Lorraine Niederlag told members it was hoped that Tuk Tuk Tours could eventually become a franchise, with similar three-wheeler Tuk Tuk and support car schemes running in other parts of the country.

She told members that if the small plates call was turned down the support vehicle would be sold.

Cover image: Giving a shout out to the Rainbow Delivery Squad are Lorraine Niederlag, family and staff of Tuk Tuk Time. Picture: Gareth Davies Photography

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