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Badger looks for a shovel



badger shovelMANURE. Badger has been thinking quite a lot about manure in the days since last week’s Council meeting. Seldom, if ever, has so much been spread by so few for the benefit of even fewer – or for the benefit of one. Where Badger lives, one often sees tankers ferrying waste hither thither and yon and, at the right time of year, smells rich and foul-smelling ordure spread on the fields. Of course, the thing with dung is that in the right circumstances it promotes growth. It enriches the soil and enables it to be utilised to grown the kind of things important to humans: broccoli, mangel wurzles, and bureaucrats (although, left to their own devices, some bureaucrats will propagate solely from waste products). At County Hall last week, the only thing that manure was being used for was to obscure the truth. In much the same way as a startled squid will escape in a cloud of ink, a succession of statements were made by IPPG Councillors that ejected large quantities of nature’s own fertiliser over the proceedings. No doubt the IPPG collectively hoped either that people would be too appalled to dig through their efforts or that the ceiling-high and reeking mound of filth would deter their pursuers. Badger was particularly exercised by those concerned in education and safeguarding. Councillor Daphne Bush is a newcomer to Badger, although he has been aware of her peculiar brand of deranged loyalism for some time. Badger was particularly entranced by her eager toadying. Anyone would think she was repaying a favour. How wonderfully the wise leadership had managed to pass the
last Estyn inspection. Forget why we were in special measures.

It was all a long time ago. Let’s just rejoice, rejoice! Well, even a turd gleams if one rolls it in sequins. Cllr Sue Perkins, the spectacularly graceless Labour turncoat, extolled the virtues of a school of which she is governor. A governor of a school which ignored the wishes of parents. A governor of a school which “needs to improve outcomes for learners”. A governor who thinks, as well she might, that big is better. However, a large amount of ignorant bilge delivered from Cabinet member is still a large amount of ignorant bilge. Sue’s desperate groping for facts to justify the Council’s lying stance on Hakin and Hubberston schools suggested that she had lost her way in the thicket of barbs and petty sniping she confuses for logic. Ignoring your constituents’ views is one thing, there is scarcely a member of the IPPO who doesn’t do that every time they rock up to vote as Bryn tells Jamie to tell them to vote. But ignoring your constituents and telling them that everything is roses in the garden when they can see fresh guano all about them is quite another. In June 2017, when she will most likely be an ex-councillor, Sue might want to ponder if there was any point in her political journey that ensured she occupied the seat next to her bestest buddy Ken “the voice of Ken” Rowlands on has-been row. Sue’s defiant proclamation to the masses that an independent investigation was not required into the way the Council handled the Mik Smith affair is almost certainly a staging post on her way out of County Hall.

From the !PPG benches, and while her colleagues sat abouther nodding rather like they were auditioning as stunt doubles for a car insurance commercial, Sue said it had all been looked at, lessons had been learned and she was sure that everything was now okay. We have heard that sort of language before from the IPPO seats on the Council. Remember Johnny Mirehouse? Who could forget the sound of the Angle Foghorn in December, as he boomed and rumbled in his lordly way about the grants scandal in Pembroke and Pembroke Dock: “Nothing to see here”? All been checked by them accountancy-wallahs. They know what they’re talking about those officer chappies. Sound, all of them. One of ’em read me a report that said everything was ‘rickety-boo’, as you crazy mixed up kids say nowadays.” Now then, readers: what happened next? Whoops. Sue’s words were echoed and added to by Jamie Adams. Now what Jamie said bears some close consideration.

Pointedly declining to apologise to Sue Thomas, who blew the whistle on Mik Smith in 2004, he repeated practically verbatim the letter that Bryn Parry Jones sent to her in November 2005. Talk about His Master’s Voice, readers. Using his knowing and regretful voice (#2 out of a very limited edition of 4) Jamie decided to attack the questioner rather than answer the question. Lying that Paul Miller had not spoken to the Director of Education about the Smith case, Jamie then went on to say: “I too have seen that correspondence (letter from Sue Thomas to Bryn Parry Jones) and I remain still or the opinion that the
whistleblowing of Mrs Thomas was separate from her correspondence to him. Further misunderstanding has occurred in relation to that correspondence. It does not refer to his Mik Smith’s behaviour, the CEO thought the letter intimated a breakdown in the relationship between herself and her line manager.” The email to Bryn Parry Jones says: “It has been intimated that there is some kind of professional vendetta being pursued against the above person. If this were true, why an there at least eight professional youth workers that I am aware of, with serious concerns regarding the work practices of (Mik Smith)?” Straight off the bat, there goes the thrust of Jamie’s point. But there is more, readers. And worse.

The email had already referenced — at more than one point — Mik Smith’s inappropriate conduct towards children. It also pointed out — with some force — that Pembrokeshire County Council’s views on “appropriate behaviour with children” was “widely divergent” from accepted or acceptable models followed by the Police, national bodies and other county councils. Now: Jamie. Let’s assume there is something between your ears. It’s a leap in the dark, but let’s just take that chance. Serious concerns about work practices inappropriate behaviour w i t h children, eight youthworkers with concerns. What does that sound like to you, Jamie? Does it sound like “your perceived problem seems, however, to relate to your personal circumstances and relationships with others”? That’s what Bryn said in 2005. Sounds like what you said on July 17 , 2014 Jamie. Dees not sound much like what was written, though: anything but. In the law of conspiracy, you can be guilty of wilfully turning a blind eye to the obvious. Moral culpability for what happened rests fairly and squarely with Bryn and with people like Sue and Jamie who continue to defend him. An unequivocal apology and a public enquiry is a bare minimum. In the meantime, Badger will just keep digging.

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Five shouts in five days for Lifeboat crews at Angle



ITS BEEN a really busy week for the crews at Angle with their first tasking to the 39 meter 300 tonne tall ship on Monday evening with engine failure and taking on water.

Crews then paged again in the early hours of Wednesday morning to a 11 meter sailing catamaran becalmed and low on fuel.

The training day Thursday was interrupted just after 12:30 PM with a tasking to a tender with three people on board that had upturned just off St Brides Haven.

Little & Broad Haven Lifeboat was also tasked along with Dale Coastguard.

Little and Broad Haven Lifeboat reached the three casualties and took them to shore where they were passed into the care of Dale Coastguard. Angle Lifeboat was stood down as it was passing through Jack’s Sound.

As the Lifeboat was returning from the shout another tasking request came through. A tanker had spotted an unmanned RIB approximately 10 miles SW of St Ann’s Head. Once on scene, after some investigation the RIB was believed to have come from a mooring and no people were missing. The Lifeboat towed the RIB back to Angle.

The Lifeboat was rehoused shortly after 4:00 PM

The 5th shout for Angle Lifeboat this week.

This was a large multi agency search.

The crew were paged at 09:35 AM to assist Tenby Lifeboats RNLI ALB and inshore Lifeboats to search for a missing person in the water following a report from a fisherman on rocks near Manorbier that he had lost sight of a person that had been rowing a dinghy toward shore and the occupant may be in the water. HM Coastguard Tenby had also been tasked to the search

The dinghy was handed over to Tenby inshore lifeboat crew after being picked up by a Range Safety boat who then brought it into the awaiting police at Manorbier Beach.

Coastguard Rescue Helicopter 187 from St Athan and St Govans Coastguard Rescue Team had now also joined in the search for the missing person.

After several hours searching a man approached police at Manorbier, stating he’d been on the vessel off Manorbier, had got into difficulty and ended up in the water.

With the casualty now safely ashore, all units were stood down at 12:27PM.

Angle Lifeboat then headed to Tenby Harbour to pick up some sustenance, a fizzy drink and a chocolate brownie, before heading back to Angle and rehousing at 2:31PM. The lifeboat was refuelled and given a well earned wash ready for the next tasking.

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A40 closed at Scleddau due to collision between car and motorbike



EMERGENCY SERVICES have shut the A40 at in Scleddau due to a serious road collision.

The accident happened just before 2pm. The Herald understands that the collision involved a motorcycle and car at a junction near The Gate Inn public house.

Police said: “Emergency services are currently on scene and dealing with the incident. Please find an alternative route if possible. Update to follow.”

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Moley’s Ambassador March to support those who have lost a child



ON SATURDAY (Jun 19), Andrew Cole (aka Moley) will set off on a 24 hour walk around Pembrokeshire with the aim of doing as many miles in as little time as possible. 

Moley is proud to have recently been made ambassador of the charity ‘2 Wish UponAa Star’ an organisation dedicated to supporting families that have lost a child under 25 years of age.

He will be setting off at 6am in the morning from Neyland and walking all day and night, finishing at 6am the following morning.

2 wish upon a star was set up by Rhian Mannings, who set up the charity after losing her own son.

By celebrating the lives of those lost, and offering support to families through their grief; Rhian and her team offer an essential service to the community and those families who have suffered the devastation of losing a loved one.

Appealing for support from the people of Pembrokeshire he said: “Please give generously to support the wonderful work of Rhian and her team. Also, if you happen to see me in the day, feel free to give me a beep of encouragement’

“If you would like to donate to Moley, and support the charity, you can visit his JustGiving page.”

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