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Badger and the long goodbye

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Badger0BADGER could not let this week pass without a short comment on the cancellation of the joint meeting of two scrutiny committees to discuss the Council’s closure of Community Learning Centre.

As this paper reported some weeks ago, the motion to close the centres appeared without consultation on the Cabinet’s agenda last month. Swift and furious was the reaction of local councillors in Fishguard: not only had they not been consulted but the decision to close was not even part of the seminars they had attended on the budget over the last few months.

As Cllr Pat Davies revealed, even the claim that the closure was the fault of those beastly left-wing types in Cardiff Bay was a load of codswallop.

Speaking of codswallop, Badger has seen the exchange of opinions and emails flowing from Laurence Harding and Claire Incledon to councillors. Badger exposes himself to that stuff so that you don’t have to readers.

It is difficult to find harsh words for Ms Incledon, who has been elevated to her role only recently: it will, no doubt, take her some time to get used to being in the cross hairs of direct questions.

It was rather touching that Ms Incledon felt she had to say that she had not been asked to seek external legal advice in relation to the flawed call in procedure over which she had presided and on which she had decided. It was all her own work, readers. There was no copying off the swot next door.

Having blithely said all was in order and there were no problems, on Monday evening it turned out there were problems and things were not in order. But at least what she had said was all her own work: well done you!

In any event, as the swot next door was Laurence Harding, Pembrokeshire’s very own Sunshine Boy, it was perhaps just as well that her opinion was all her own work.

It is quite bad enough for the Monitoring Officer to be supposed an institutionalised time-server suffering from some weird species of Stockholm Syndrome from being around Bryn Parry-Jones too long, but then he committed his thoughts to paper and dispelled all doubt.

Badger does not know if it is the air conditioning at County Hall, or simply the rarefied atmosphere of the commanding legal heights occupied by Mr Harding and Ms Incledon, but common sense and humility seem in short supply.

It is okay to be wrong, readers. Just don’t try to spin a mistake as anything other than a mistake.

Ms Incledon’s exposed position will – eventually and hopefully – lead her to that conclusion. Badger ain’t holding his breath, though.

As for loveable Larry the lawyerly larrikin, it is soon farewell. It’s been a long goodbye. Very long. Too long.

Badger senses that overwhelmed with his impending freedom from durance vile, Larry’s latest opinion should be read as a cunning post-modern satire. Like The Office. But with laughs.

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Business

Further Covid-19 business support packages to become available soon

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PEMBROKESHIRE businesses that remain affected by Covid-19 restrictions can check their eligibility for a new package of support from the Welsh Government.

This latest support package will help those businesses eligible to meet ongoing costs through to the end of June as they prepare for re-opening and more normal trading conditions.

Businesses that stand to benefit include:

  • nightclubs and late entertainment venues
  • events and conference venues not covered by the Welsh Government’s Cultural Recovery Fund (CRF)
  • hospitality and leisure businesses, including restaurants, pubs and cafes
  • supply chain business, which have been materially impacted by restrictions

An eligibility checker has opened on the Business Wales website so businesses can find out how much support they are likely to be entitled to and how to apply.

See more information and check your business’ eligibility at: https://businesswales.gov.wales/coronavirus-advice/

Funding will be calculated based on the size of the business and the type of restrictions they are under.

Businesses will be able submit applications to the Welsh Government from 24th May 2021 for grants of up to £25,000 and by the end of the month to Pembrokeshire County Council for smaller fixed Discretionary Grants.

To keep up to date and see the future application process for the Discretionary Grants please see: https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/business-advice-and-support

The above link will be be updated with the latest information.  

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News

£50,000 funding windfall for low carbon community projects

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OVER £50,000 of funding has been awarded to local projects through the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority’s Sustainable Development Fund (SDF).

Since June 2020, the Fund has focussed on supporting community-led projects that contribute towards a reduction in carbon and help respond to the climate emergency. These can include:

·       Installing renewable energy generation facilities, such as solar panels, to a community building

·       Transport initiatives that promote reduced carbon emissions

·       The installation of community facilities that minimise waste, such as water fountains

·       Any other community-based carbon reduction initiatives.

Tenby RFC were among those to benefit from the most recent round of grants with an initiative to install recycling bins and litter pick stations at each of the sports facilities in the town.

There were two successful applications from the Solva area – one for the installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels at Solva Community Clubhouse, and the other from the Community Organised Allotment for Solva Tenants (COAST) to help with set-up costs.

Others to be awarded an SDF grant were the Paul Sartori Foundation and the EcoDewi community group. The Paul Sartori Foundation’s project involved fitting of tracking devices onto warehouse vans to enable route optimisation and increased fuel economy; while EcoDewi secured funding to support a part-time role organising community engagement events and volunteering activities, and developing wider community partnerships.

Jessica Morgan, Funding and Grants Officer for the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Trust said: “It’s been wonderful to see such variety in the applications we’ve received, and the innovative climate emergency solutions suggested by communities in the National Park.

“We look forward to receiving the next round of applications, and would encourage any community-led group or organisation that needs support to fund projects that will help reduce carbon and/or respond to climate change to apply as soon as possible.”

The next deadline for SDF applications is Friday 10 September 2021.

To find out more about SDF grants, and to apply online or download the application form please visit www.pembrokeshirecoast.wales/sdf.  

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News

Appeal after woman sexually assaulted on cycle path near Haverfordwest

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POLICE officers in Haverfordwest are appealing for witnesses after a woman was sexually assaulted at approximately 4.30pm on Sunday (May 16).

The woman was walking along the cycle path between Haverfordwest and Tiers Cross when she was approached by a man who threatened and assaulted her, before walking away towards Haverfordwest town.

The male is described as a white male, between 5ft 4 and 5ft 11 tall , normal build with a welsh accent. He has short dark hair, a beard and a moustache, brown eyes, and wearing light blue jeans, navy/dark blue jersey with grey sleeves. Anyone who saw a man matching this description in the area between 3.30pm and 5pm in the afternoon.

A 35-year-old man has been arrested and is currently in police custody.

The cycle path is currently closed while the investigation continues.

Detective Superintendent Jayne Butler, who is leading the investigation, said “Incidents of this nature are extremely rare in the Dyfed-Powys area. The public may see an increased presence of police officers in the coming days as police investigate the incident. Anyone with concerns or information that could help our enquiries can speak to those officers or contact police. While a man was quickly arrested we would still like to speak to anyone who saw a man matching the above description in the area yesterday afternoon.”

Anyone with information which could help the investigation is asked to contact police. This can be done online at 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.

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