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Fishguard: Chamber of Trade focus on micro-loans

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Nicola Edwards, Finance Wales

Nicola Edwards, Finance Wales

FISHGUARD and Goodwick Chamber of Trade and Tourism’s recent meeting had a packed agenda, hearing from Nicola Edwards, Micro loans Fund Manager at Finance Wales.

Nicola, who joined the meeting to highlight potential funding options available from Finance Wales, manages a team of six staff based all over Wales making micro loans of between £1,000 and £50,000 to Welsh start-ups and small businesses.

Businesses can use micro loans from Finance Wales for a range of purposes, including to buy stock and new equipment, to fit out their existing or new premises, boost cash flow, recruit new staff or to unlock much-needed additional investment. They can also be used to buy a business.

“I was pleased to meet members of Fishguard and Goodwick Chamber of Trade and Tourism recently to explain the funding options open to them from Finance Wales.  We also work closely with the Welsh Government’s Business Wales service to sign-post Welsh businesses to the support they need to help them grow.

“We’re backing a wider range of start-ups and small businesses than ever and in the last financial year, businesses in Wales’ retail, wholesale, hospitality and tourism sectors benefitted from over 40% of the micro loans Finance Wales made.  We’re keen to talk to more ambitious businesses about how a micro loan from Finance Wales could help them achieve their growth plans,” Nicola explained.

The Chamber’s own project manager, Kate Lindley, reported on the work of Refreshing North Pembrokeshire to date. The project staff have been working with tourism businesses, community groups, festivals and events’ organisers and other local organisations on a variety of projects across north Pembrokeshire to develop and enhance the tourism offer and to extend the tourism season.

Kate reminded the meeting of the aims of the project and how events and businesses are supported. ”As part of the support the RNP will be holding a series of informative networking events across the north of the county in autumn, and I would like to encourage businesses to attend.  Further details will be available shortly in local press,” said Kate.

 

Plans for a campaign on Radio Pembrokeshire to promote Fishguard and Goodwick to Pembrokeshire residents was supported, as there is so much vibrancy and community effort in the twin towns which deserves to be better known. This campaign will start on October 12. Anyone hearing the advertisement slots are asked to tell shopkeepers and others that they have heard about the campaign to attract new “invaders” of our towns.

The Welsh Government has agreed to pay for a coach drop off point in the town, which will enable us to promote the town as a destination to coach operators who have shunned us previously because there is no safe place to deliver their passengers. POINT have agreed to make bunting to decorate the streets next summer; a greening of the towns project is taking shape with the agreement already obtained from the Trunk Road Agency on many locations for planting and additional seats.

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Covid-19 vaccination venues and timeline announced for everyone locally over 50

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EVERY person in JCVI priority groups 5 to 9 will be offered a COVID-19 vaccination by 18 April, Hywel Dda University Health Board has confirmed.

While the health board’s vaccination programme has the capacity to offer a vaccine to everyone in groups 5 to 9 by the original target date of 4 April, the delivery plan has had to be adjusted based on confirmed vaccine deliveries.

Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, and Pembrokeshire residents in priority groups 5 to 9 can expect to receive their vaccine as follows:

  • Group 5, people aged 65 – 69 years – delivered by GP practices between 15 February and 12 March
  • Group 6, people aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health conditions and unpaid carers – delivered by GP practices between 22 February and 4 April
  • Group 7, people aged 60 – 64 years – delivered by mass vaccination centres starting 8 March
  • Group 8, people aged 55 – 59 years – delivered by mass vaccination centres starting 22 March
  • Group 9, people aged 50 – 54 years – delivered by mass vaccination centres starting 5 April

The health board currently has mass vaccination centres located in Aberystwyth, Cardigan, Haverfordwest, Tenby, Carmarthen and Llanelli.

Group 6 is significantly the largest cohort to be vaccinated to date and we understand that many in this group will be anxious to receive a vaccine. Please do not contact your GP or the health board to ask about your appointment, you will be contacted directly when it is your turn and we thank you for your patience.

People in groups 7, 8 and 9 will receive a letter with an appointment date and time. Please arrive as close to your appointment time as possible. The letter will include a phone number to contact the health board should you need to rearrange or cancel your appointment but please make every effort to keep your allocated appointment time.

Steve Moore, Chief Executive of Hywel Dda UHB, said: “While  our programme has had to slow  due to supplies, we want to reassure everyone in groups 5 to 9 that our amazing teams of vaccinators and GP practices have the capability and flexibility to deliver our vaccine supplies as they arrive into the region.

“Vaccine supplies will start to increase again from mid-March, and we are confident that everyone living in our three counties in the top 9 priority groups will be offered a vaccine by mid-April.

“In Hywel Dda we have an older population compared to some other health boards and so over 50% of our adult population will have been offered a vaccine by milestone 2.

“To be able to say that as we approach the anniversary of the first national lockdown is nothing short of extraordinary.

“And again, I must say thank you to everyone living in our three counties who continue to come forward in substantial numbers for the vaccine. Uptake remains remarkably high and we hope to see this continue through groups 5 to 9 and into group 10.”

People are asked, wherever possible, to use their own private transport to attend an appointment. Lifts can be accepted from someone in their household or support bubble, but not from anyone else due to the risk of transmission of the virus.

The health board has put in place transport support for anyone who may have difficulty attending their vaccination appointment. If you have no other means of travel, please contact the health board on 0300 303 8322 and we will be happy to assist.

Everyone in priority groups 1 to 4 should have received an offer of a vaccination. If you have not been contacted, or have changed your mind, please contact your GP at the earliest opportunity. No one will be left behind.

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Nolton Haven: Man hospitalised after getting into difficulties in sea

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A MAN was taken to hospital after getting into difficulties in the sea off Nolton Haven on Friday.

Emergency services were alerted at 2.40pm on February 26 by a 999 call to the control centre.

The Little Haven RNLI lifeboat, Broad Haven Coastguard, an ambulance crew and a Coastguard rescue helicopter assisted police in the operation.

The male casualty was stabilised on the beach and shortly before 4.30pm, was then transported to Withybush Hospital.

A police spokesman told The Herald: “We were called to a male who had got into difficulties in the water at Nolton Haven shortly before 3pm.

“He was taken to hospital by ambulance.”

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Cyclist killed on A40 was serving police officer, force confirms

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A CYCLIST who died after a crash with a van on the A40 in Carmarthenshire was a serving police officer with Dyfed-Powys Police, the force has confirmed in a statement to Herald.Wales.

The driver of the van involved in the crash, which happened on Thursday (Feb 25) has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving, it was confirmed on Friday (Feb 26).

Police are investigating the fatal collision, which caused the road to be closed for 12 hours, and are asking for any witnesses to come forward by calling 101.

37-year-old Lynwen Thomas, who is a former student at Ysgol Bro Myrddin, Croes-y-Ceiliog, Carmarthen, was a sergeant and a very well-respected member of Dyfed-Powys Police.

A spokesperson for the police said in a statement: “Our thoughts are with her family, friends and colleagues, who have all been offered specialist support. We ask that family members are given the privacy they need at this difficult time.”

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