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Pembroke Dock Library welcomes David Saunders MBE



DAVID SAUNDERS, MBE will be giving a talk at Pembroke Dock Library on February 27 at 7.30pm. The talk will be on life and wildlife on Skomer Island 50

Bird man: David Saunders (right) on Skomer Island in the 1960s (pic. Wildlife Trust

Bird man: David Saunders (right) on Skomer Island in the 1960s (pic.
Wildlife Trust)

years ago where David lived with his wife and two small children for 7 years. They were the only inhabitants, surrounded by wildlife including thousands of seabirds, grey seals and the unique Skomer Vole.

David has spent a lifetime in wildlife conservation for which he earned the MBE in 2003. In 1960 he became the first warden of Skomer Island. Returning to the mainland, from Pembrokeshire, he organised Operation Seafarer in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Over 1000 surveyors took part, providing the first comprehensive account of the abundance and distribution of seabirds breeding around the coasts of Britain and Ireland.

David understood the value of records to the conservation cause and was consequently supportive in initiating the Pembrokeshire Bird Report and bringing about the publication of The Birds of Pembrokeshire, 1994.

He writes regularly for Bird Watching Magazine and has had published books including the RSPB Guide to British Birds.

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Changes to housing scheme once feared to have been sold to Birmingham backed



Amendments to previously-granted plans for a Pembrokeshire housing estate, which was once feared to have been sold off to Birmingham City Council, have been given the go-ahead.

Back in 2022, Wales and West Housing and construction partners Jones Brothers (Henllan) Ltd were granted permission by Pembrokeshire County Council’s planning committee for a 50-home social housing estate on land off Maesgwynne Lane, Fishguard.

That permission, subject to the completion of a S106 planning obligation, was finalised in early 2023.

The 1.7-hectare site is being developed into a mixture of one-bedroom flats, one-bedroom bungalows, two, three and four bedroom houses.

Since then, rumours surfaced that the development had been sold off to Birmingham City Council for overflow housing, dismissed by the developers as having “no truth whatsoever”.

Wales & West Housing rubbished the claims saying that they are completely untrue.

“There is no truth whatsoever in this rumour,” a spokesperson for Wales & West Housing said earlier this year.

“We are very much continuing our development of the site off Maesgwynne Lane. We’re working with our construction partners Jones Brothers (Henllan) Ltd to build 50 new homes for affordable rent on the site, as approved by Pembrokeshire County Council’s planning committee.

“The development is being funded by Wales & West Housing in partnership with Pembrokeshire Council and Welsh Government.

“When it’s finished, we’ll be working with Pembrokeshire County Council to let them to local people who are most in need of homes they can afford to rent.”

Birmingham City Council added at the time: “This is not something we are aware of here, so it appears to be an inaccurate rumour.”

Amendments to the previously-granted scheme were recently submitted to county planners by Jones Brothers (Henllan) Ltd, with minor changes to roofing and other visual alterations.

In approving the amendments, a report for planners stated: “The proposed amendments are not so significant as to have a greater impact than the approved scheme; there will be no detrimental impact visually or in terms of local amenity; no third-party interests would be disadvantaged; and there will be no conflict with national or development plan policies.”

The amendments were conditionally approved.  

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Mayor welcomes luxury cruise ship as it visits Milford Haven



THE LUXURY vessel Star Legend, part of the Windstar Cruises fleet, made a call at the Port of Milford Haven on Wednesday (Jun 12), with its next destination set for Portsmouth on June 14.

Dignitaries, including The Mayor, went on board the vessel to welcome it into port.

Milford Haven Town Council said on Facebook: “The Mayor – Cllr William Elliott and Consort – Mr Lloyd Jones had the pleasure of welcoming passengers off the cruise ship Star Legend, with the Port of Milford Haven.

“The cruise ship is currently being charted with a two week voyage around the British Isles on a cycling tour with the passengers mainly from the US or Canada.

“Delighted to be invited onboard for a tour of the ship and to meet the Captain and Crew.
Have a lovely day in the lovely weather!”

Windstar Cruises is embarking on its largest agent ship schedule in the UK and Ireland this summer. Both of the company’s Star Class yachts, Star Legend and Star Pride, will offer up to 450 places for trade partners between June and August. The ships will visit 11 different ports across the UK and Ireland. The programme includes tours of the respective yachts and brief business updates from the Windstar team.

Augustus Lonsdale, Windstar Cruises’ Head of Sales for the UK & Ireland, commented: “After the success of last year’s ship visit programme, when we welcomed over 250 agents onboard, I’m delighted that so many UK agents will have the chance to come onboard Star Legend and Star Pride this year.

“Windstar Cruises is fully committed to the UK, especially after a record start to the year, and we are continuing to increase sales and visibility within this important market.

“This expanded ship visit programme provides our trade partners with a great opportunity to experience a taste of Windstar’s ‘180 Degrees from Ordinary’ experience for themselves – which will, in turn, help them sell the product.”

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Coastwatch celebrates 30th anniversary with Relay Flag Event



THE National Coastwatch Institution (NCI) celebrated its 30th anniversary with a relay flag event, highlighting the charity’s crucial role in coastal safety. The event, which took place at the Wooltack Point station, was attended by notable figures, including Stephen Crabb MP and the Mayor of Milford Haven, Councillor William Elliott.

Stephen Crabb MP expressed his gratitude to the NCI for their invitation to join the celebrations and praised the volunteers for their dedicated service. “A special anniversary flag is travelling around the UK coast in a station-to-station relay to highlight the excellent work of the charity in helping to save lives around the coast,” Crabb stated. Reflecting on past efforts, he recalled working with local campaign groups in 2011 to prevent the closure of Milford Haven Coastguard Station, a decision that saved 23 jobs and maintained a vital service for the community.

The Mayor of Milford Haven, Cllr William Elliott, also attended the event, acknowledging the importance of the NCI’s work. He commented on the collaborative efforts that made the relay possible and the significance of the flag relay in promoting coastal safety.

The flag, symbolising the NCI’s commitment to safeguarding coastal areas, arrived at Mackerel Quay, Milford Marina, around midday. The event saw the flag being transferred aboard a Dyfed-Powys Police Marine Unit Rib to Martins Haven, where it was then carried to the station by the Dale Coastguard Rescue Team.

Station Manager Haydn Evans spoke about the excellent work of the volunteers at Wooltack Point, who serve as the “eyes and ears” along the Pembrokeshire coast. The relay flag’s journey around the UK serves as a tribute to the dedication and hard work of all NCI volunteers.

The celebrations underscored the vital role that both the Milford Coastguard Station and the voluntary Coastwatch Station at Wooltack Point play in ensuring the safety of local residents and visitors throughout the year. The event not only marked a significant milestone for the NCI but also highlighted the continued importance of community and collaboration in coastal safety.

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