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Badger and the big lie



brynman and jaminHALLO readers. My word, UKIP supporters are a sensitive souls! Who would have thought a few inconvenient truths would have raised so many hackles. Badger particularly liked the correspondent who told me it was wrong to criticise UK IP’s policies because they had not yet produced their manifesto. How proud he must be to follow a party with no policies (apart from the obvious one). Badger is certain we can all rest assured that as soon as Brother Farage is able to type with more than one finger and work out how to stop spelling ‘banana’ w c will be faced with a literary tour-de-force to rival “Hurrah for Little Noddy”.

Back to matters Pembrokeshire, however, readers. Let’s put the Euro elections back in their empty ballot box. Over the last couple of weeks, while he has been slaving away over Latin epigrams, Badger has read the story of Beloved Bryn’s brush with luxury motoring with considerable bemusement. Not, however, amusement. He’s not even driving the Brynmobile. No readers: we are paying the lease and insurance on Beloved Bryn’s Porsche so Parry Jones junior can tootle to Valero every morning! That, readers that takes the biscuit! Badger has a question for you readers. One he has used before. One that he has been ticked off by his editor for using before. It is a short question. Badger is prepared to take the risk of having to stand in the naughty corner for a while to ask it. WTF?
Readers, even IPPG leader Jamie Adams must be aghast at the CEO’s complete lack of political nous. It appears as though, at least when it comes to insensitivity and arrogance, Jamie takes a distant second place to Bryn. When Jamie told the Full Council that he often popped along to the CEO’s office to engage in “challenging” discussions, when Jamie told the Full Council that he and Beloved Bryn didn’t always see eye-to-eye. did Jamie have in mind how the news that Bryn had availed himself of a Porsche Panamera Hybrid S with a list price of C85.000 would look and sound to a Pembrokeshire public told relentlessly that the Council can’t afford to maintain essential services?

Or was Jamie appeased by a trip around the car park in the Brynmobilc and playing Robin to the CEO’s Batman? Jamie is fond of harping on – like the good Toytown Tory Boy that he is – that all these spending cuts people complain about are the fault of the “Welsh Labour Government in Cardiff Bay”. Well, readers, there are two problems with Jamie saying that: Firstly: you can usually tell when Jamie is spouting (expletive deleted) codswallop. It happens when his lips move. Secondly: Cardiff Bay dots not raise its own taxes. it receives a block grant from the Coalition government in Westminster. With that block grant it has to allocate funding for services across Wales. The Welsh Government is funded nearly entirely by a block grant  The Dynamic Duo: Bryn and Jamie are “on a budget” provided by the UK Treasury.

The change in this block grant is calculated using the Barnett formula, based upon changes in the budgets of Whitehall departments that deliver services for which the Welsh Government are deemed to have responsibility in Wales. Large increases in spending on the NHS and education in England therefore fed through to substantial increases in the amount of grant paid to the Welsh Government in the first decade following devolution. But cuts to government spending as pan of the fiscal consolidation mean that the Welsh block grant has been cut substantially since 2010-11.

The total block grant allocated by the UK government to Wales in 2013-14 is set to be 9.4% lower in real terms than that in 2010-11 (after adjusting for the transfer of funding for council tax benefit to the Welsh Government). Further cuts have been announced for 2014-15 and 2015-16, which, if implemented, would take the cut to 12.2%. So, when Jamie says it is all Welsh Labour’s fault, he really is ejecting a particularly large quantity of a substance with which, as a farmer, he would be intimately familiar. Readers, if Jamie’s was the only whopping porker we had to contend with that would be enough.

But it isn’t. Badger is not talking about the way the Council claims to overpay its officers because to get the best it has to pay the best. Badger isn’t even talking about the nonsense Jamie told Tenby Town Council about the rationale underpinning his decision (made with others) to give Beloved Bryn a whacking big tax break on his pension and to make unlawful payments to the CEO, to boot. Badger wants you to consider the following: Beloved Bryn became CEO of Pembrokeshire County Council in 1996. He was appointed at the top of his then pay grade and received a salary of around f60,000 a year.

The Council’s 2012/13 Accounts show that the Chief Executive received £194.661 in respect of gross salary, fees and other emoluments plus benefits in kind of £11,665. Corresponding figures for 2011/12 were £208,170 and £10,017, plus in that year, employer’s pension contribution to the local government pension scheme of £30,000. Had the lowest paid worker’s wage risen at the same rate as Beloved Bryn’s over the same period, a manual working for the local authority would be on somewhere near £25,000 per year. Care workers would be on around £27,000 per year.

Badger can bet his boots that there are no lowest pay grade workers on that sort of screw. The big lie, readers, is that senior officers have to be paid the same sort of wage as notional equivalents in private industry. However, senior officers in local government have blue-chip, gold-plated pensions funded by tax payers. Senior officers in local government have the type of job security a manager in the private sector can only look at and envy.

The idea that there are companies battering down the council office doors to get at the senior staff and spirit them away to the private sector is a lie of such size and magnitude that it even dwarfs the lie by implication that Bryn would have run away from Pembrokeshire if he hadn’t been given unlawful payments by his employers. Readers, if a senior manager in the private sector had presided over the number of crises and cock-ups that Bryn Parry Jones has, do you think he would still be in a job? If your name is Jamie Adams or Suc Perkins and you answered “yes”. please lie down. The nurse will be with you shortly to show you to your room.

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Sensational music event thrills the crowds at Scolton Manor



AN UNFORGETTABLE evening of live jazz, classical, rock, and film score music captivated hundreds of attendees at the enchanting ‘Music at the Manor’ event. Presented by the esteemed Pembrokeshire Music Service, this musical extravaganza took place amidst the picturesque grounds of Scolton Manor, offering young talents from across the county a chance to showcase their skills in a relaxed setting. For many of these budding musicians, it marked their debut performance in front of a live audience.

The event witnessed outstanding displays of talent from a myriad of ensembles, including the County Brass Band, Training Orchestra (featuring the Second Steps group), Concert Band, Rock and Pop bands, Rock Strings, Symphonic Wind Band, Pembrokeshire’s Community Choir, and the esteemed Cleddau Chamber Orchestra.

Among the delighted attendees was Patricia Mawuli Porter OBE, who attended the event alongside her family. She described the evening as “a wonderful demonstration of community, music, family, caring, and just what an amazing part of the world we live in.” Mawuli Porter OBE was particularly impressed with the diversity of performances, ranging from youth bands belting out energetic renditions of songs like ‘Teenage dirtbag’ to the majestic classical and movie-themed scores, which added depth and variety to the musical tapestry.

“We can only applaud the team at Pembrokeshire Music Service for putting on the most incredible community event and look forward to next year’s event with great anticipation!” Mawuli Porter OBE exclaimed with enthusiasm.

Cllr David Simpson, Leader of Pembrokeshire County Council, expressed his gratitude to the Pembrokeshire Music Service team for organizing such an excellent evening of entertainment. “It was a lovely concert, and so good to see it full of local people enjoying themselves,” he commended. “Credit must go to the brilliant participants, be they playing an instrument or singing songs, they were excellent.”

Vivienne Ward from the Newport Music Society also offered her congratulations to all the performers, acknowledging the impressive talent pool in Pembrokeshire. “What impressive young musicians there are in Pembrokeshire, and what a wonderful variety of different bands/orchestras are available for the young to choose from; they are indeed lucky,” she praised.

The event drew overwhelming praise from parents in attendance, with one parent raving, “The standard was exceptional, and a wonderful evening was had by one and all. Well done, everyone! A massive thanks to everyone involved, and much appreciation to Pembrokeshire Music Service – we are so lucky to have you!”

Philippa Roberts, the head of the Music Service, expressed her heartfelt gratitude to all those involved in making ‘Music at the Manor’ a resounding success. “A huge thank you from the team at Pembrokeshire Music Service to everyone who contributed to making Music at the Manor a wonderful community event,” Roberts said. “Working in partnership with Valero, the Friends of Pembrokeshire Young Musicians, and Scolton Manor, I am grateful to everyone who helped and supported the performers to provide a special evening of live music.”

With its remarkable performances and celebration of musical diversity, ‘Music at the Manor’ proved to be an extraordinary showcase of Pembrokeshire’s vibrant musical talent. As the echoes of this magnificent event fade away, anticipation for next year’s edition continues to build, promising an even more spectacular musical spectacle for all to enjoy.

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Police confirm body found in search for Huw



POLICE said than a frantic search for Haverfordwest man Huw Phillips, 56, has been called off after the body of a man was discovered in the local area.

Police said that Huw’s family have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers, after the body was found on Saturday afternoon (Jun 3). 

Huw’s son Kenes Phillips took to Facebook to share the sad news. He bravely said: “Thank you everyone for sharing, showing your love, helping with the search and just doing whatever you could to offer the slightest bit of help.

“But unfortunately, my father was found dead.”

Huw’s good friend Mark Llewhellin paid tribute. He said: “Huw was born of the 4th July. He was kind, sensitive, a good laugh and one of my very best friends.
“I was lucky to have had him as a close friend.
“See you on the other side my friend, but not yet, not yet.”

The police posted on Facebook at 4pm on Saturday saying: “Thank you for sharing our appeal earlier to find Huw, missing from Haverfordwest.

“Sadly, a body has been found during the search, and therefore we are no longer appealing for information.
“Officers are supporting Huw’s family and our thoughts are with them all.”

Earlier on Saturday, the police found Huw’s abandoned car in Clay Lane, Haverfordwest.

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Ironman Wales in Tenby becomes second UK event of 2023 to sell out



THE HIGHLY anticipated Ironman Wales event in Tenby has captured the attention of athletes, becoming the second race in the UK this year to sell out well before the season kicks off.

Scheduled for Sunday, September 3, Ironman Wales has now joined the Ironman 70.3 Swansea event as another sold-out competition in the country.

The popularity of the Tenby event should come as no surprise, as it was the only race to feature in the top 10 globally in eight out of nine categories in the Ironman Athletes’ Choice Awards. This prestigious recognition is based on votes cast by triathletes from around the world.

The captivating swim start at Tenby’s North Beach, the picturesque bike ride passing by stunning beaches and castles, and the exhilarating finish line on streets filled with cheering spectators have made Ironman Wales internationally renowned.

Sam Brawn, the regional director for UK & Ireland at The Ironman Group, expressed his delight, saying, “Ironman Wales continues to attract a tremendous following from our athletes year after year. Whether they are returning participants or newcomers eager to conquer this iconic course, the event remains immensely popular.”

“We take great pride in the fact that the race has been acknowledged as one of the finest events in the global Ironman Series. It secured a spot in the top 10 across multiple categories in the Global Ironman Athletes’ Choice Awards, including a second-place ranking in both the ‘Will Recommend To A Friend’ and ‘Overall Host City’ categories.”

For those who were unable to secure a spot in Tenby, Mr. Brawn highlighted Ironman Cork as an exciting alternative. The inaugural event in Cork, Ireland, took place last year and will return on Sunday, July 2.

“It’s also thrilling to witness the growing popularity of new races, such as the festival weekend in Cork, Ireland, which has gained traction after just one year,” he added.

The official UK and Ireland race season will commence in just over a week with Ironman 70.3 Staffordshire on June 11. The organizers eagerly anticipate an exhilarating few months of racing, regardless of the weather conditions that the British summer may bring.

Athletes looking to complete their race calendar for 2023 can find the full schedule of events at

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