Connect with us


Badger enjoys the sweet smell of ‘success’



badger_2087377bIt worries Badger that an administration so committed to cutting public services is headed by a man who finds remembering to file his expenses on time difficult and is a self-confessed bad book-keeper. All those alleged efficiency savings and service improvements (a.k.a. ‘cuts’) swimming around in the head of a man who forgot to claim £4649 in expenses; it cannot be easy for him, poor dab!

All the talk of those supposed service improvements, alleged efficiency savings and being kind to our environment cannot obscure the fact that Pembrokeshire County Council has embarked on a course of slashing low paid workers’ pay while preserving the obscene salaries paid to upper management as a reward for their collective past and continuing failure; on a policy (cutting bin collections) that will ensure that Pembrokeshire households will be regular stopping off points for Badger’s woodland chums Ratty and Foxy; and a policy that means that if you are caught short in a public place, you will be doing your bit for the environment by wearing reusable nappies.

How lucky we are then that the Council was this week able to announce that ‘Latest figures show that Pembrokeshire County Council’s performance improved again last year and was well above average when compared to other local authorities in Wales … Pembrokeshire’s performance was particularly positive in adult and children’s social care.’

Now that is good news, to an extent. If success is going to be measured as not failing as badly as everyone else, Jamie Adams’s breast must be swelling with pride.

We can all be proud of the Council’s achievement in closing a library before finding out how much it would cost to replace it and then having to back track on its plans for it; that its own estimate of capital works required to the education estate was wildly incorrect; that the Council’s view of success is maintaining ‘the lowest Council Tax in Wales’ by slashing public services and showering European grant money on a few private landlords and property speculators.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the figures that escaped Cllr Adams’s attention:

Cllr Jacob Williams’s motion about traveller pitches in Pembrokeshire and the need for the Council to ensure its procedures were appropriate rightly received widespread attention. The Council now has the chance to right a wrong and put its money where its mouth is. When the Council has an estimate for a requirement for expenditure of £1m in this financial year and has since the start of it spent £6,000, the need for rapid review instead of mere lip service is underlined.

Pembrokeshire County Council takes 78.6 days to discharge its primary duty to households determined to be homeless. That is 78.6 working days. Add in the weekends, because people don’t stop being homeless on Saturday and Sunday, and Pembrokeshire is proud to keep the homeless without a permanent roof over their heads for over four months. That is against a Welsh average of 128 working days and a target of 66 days. Hurrah. We are not the worst!

The Council’s desired ‘Key Outcome 1’ is that ‘Children, young people and families in Pembrokeshire have the opportunity to lead healthy, happy and fulfilling lives.’ Not if you are a child with special needs, however: for those children, Pembrokeshire’s performance is woeful. Out of 23 statements of Special Educational Needs, only 3 – 13% – were issued within 26 weeks. For the sake of clarity, the same period last year produced an 88% performance against the same target. Success, indeed, then! No explanation is given for this pathetic failure in the papers recording the Council’s performance for special educational needs assessments other than that reports are ‘awaited’ from Health and Social Care.


Rocking on for six months after the end of the year to which those figures relate, the Council is STILL awaiting an explanation? Perhaps there is only one manual typewriter in County Hall and the typist is on long term leave.

Perhaps best value for money in education could be achieved by making an effort to recruit the best available permanent staff for Pembrokeshire’s schools instead of the below, a response to a Freedom of Information Act request:


Staff on fixed term contracts 7,014,631.23
Supply staff 1,546,187.07
Agency staff 119,098.76
Total 8,679,917.06

Mind you, Social Care and Education are responsible for every Compromise Agreement the Council confirms entering into since 2009. Think of those agreements as ‘we pay you to go away, not make a fuss and keep your lip zipped’ ways of ending employment. Note the startling figures for the current and immediately past financial years.

01/04/13 2 @ £48,720 + Payment in Lieu of Notice
01/04/12 – 31/03/13 2 @ £35,200 + PILON
01/04/11 – 31/04/12 0
01/04/10 – 31/03/11 1 @ £7,000 + PILON
01/04/09 – 31/03/10 1 @ £3,672 + PILON

Three of those agreements were in senior management positions.

We can all take comfort in the thought that scarce resources are being spent wisely and well and not ploughed into rewarding failure and mediocrity.

Something smells sweet around Jamie Adams and the IPPG. Perhaps it is success, after all.

Continue Reading


Large emergency service mobilisation to assist driver who went over cliff near oil refinery



POLICE, ambulance, coastguard, and RNLI and two helicopters were all involved in the extraction of a casualty from a vehicle which had gone over a cliff and landed on the beach at Popton Fort very near to Valero Oil Refinery on Thursday morning.

The emergency call came just after 6.30am, with a large number of rescuers arriving quickly to assist the driver of the vehicle.

Valero oil refinery confirmed that the incident did not involve their facility.

RNLI Angle posted on social media saying the following: “Our crew were paged at 6:37am to a vehicle over the cliff near Popton Fort.

“A vehicle had left the road and fallen onto the beach below.

“Police, ambulance, the fire service and St Govans and Tenby coastguard rescue teams were already on scene, however the lifeboat was requested to assist with evacuating the casualty due to the difficult location.

“Following assessment and stabilisation by paramedics, it was decided that the casualty’s injuries were potentially too severe for transfer by sea, but not ruled out completely due to the incoming tide.

“With this, a request was made for the air ambulance to attend.

“With the air ambulance paramedics now on scene, their assessment was that evacuation by helicopter would be the most appropriate, therefore a further request was made for the a coastguard rescue helicopter to attend and evacuate the casualty.

“With the option of evacuation by lifeboat still a possibility, the all-weather lifeboat stood off should it be required.

“With the coastguard helicopter now on scene, the casualty was handed over into the helicopter for onward transfer to hospital.

“The lifeboat was stood down to return to station, arriving back at 8:30am.”

Continue Reading


National Park Trust supporters take a walk on the wild side



SUPPORTERS of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Trust were treated to a dazzling display of wildlife during a recent guided walk through Skrinkle Meadow.

The event, which took place against a backdrop of glorious summer weather, was arranged as a way of expressing thanks to Trust supporters and highlighting the importance of meadows and the Trust’s Make More Meadows campaign.

The Make More Meadows campaign has been running since April 2019, and seeks to reverse a dramatic national decline in wildflower meadows over the last 75 years. So far, it has raised enough money to support 13 meadow sites, covering a total of 132 hectares and providing vital habitats for pollinators and other wildlife.

Director of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Trust Jessica Morgan said: “The Walk and Talk event at Skrinkle was an excellent opportunity to showcase the colourful results of meadow restoration, and our thanks go to National Park Authority Ranger Service Manager Libby Taylor, whose expertise turned this into a thoroughly enjoyable visit. National Park Authority Wardens have worked for years to improve biodiversity at Skrinkle Meadow, and seeds from the meadow have been used to create other wildflower meadows in the Park.

“On this occasion, six-spot burnet moths stole the show, but in previous years Skrinkle Meadow has provided some of the best orchid displays and richest variety of wildflowers in the county.”

The meadow regeneration theme was of particular interest to many of the attendees, who either have meadows of their own, or are considering establishing new ones.

To learn about the work of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Trust and exclusive supporter events like this, sign up to the newsletter at

Continue Reading


Paddleboarder with suspected wrist fracture assisted by Fishguard RNLI



ON SATURDAY (Aug 13), a female paddleboarder, who decided to take a swim when located at Aber Bach, unfortunately fractured her wrist when diving from a nearby rock. Her female companion called for assistance which resulted in Fishguard RNLI’s inshore lifeboat being tasked to the scene, located between Fishguard and Dinas Head.

The inshore lifeboat, with three crew members, launched at 2.20pm and arrived on scene at 2.40pm. Her injury was assessed by a crew member, who is a practicing doctor, and she and her companion were transferred to Pwllgwaelod beach where their car was located and they drove to Withybush Hospital for further treatment.

The lifeboat then returned to base at 3.00pm.

Continue Reading

News6 hours ago

Large emergency service mobilisation to assist driver who went over cliff near oil refinery

POLICE, ambulance, coastguard, and RNLI and two helicopters were all involved in the extraction of a casualty from a vehicle...

News17 hours ago

School leavers receiving A level results across Pembrokeshire today

A LEVEL RESULTS posted this morning show an overall 98* pass rate at grades A* to E compared with 99.1%...

News2 days ago

Pembrokeshire County Show opens today, and promises to be ‘action-packed’

WALES’ largest county agricultural show, Pembrokeshire County Show, opens today (Aug 17), and promises to be action-packed next week. The...

News2 days ago

Police investigating early morning hit-and-run in Pembroke; Officers appeal for information

POLICE in Pembroke are investigating a road traffic collision which occurred at about 2.15am on Sunday (Aug 14). A silver...

Health2 days ago

Health board: COVID-19 vaccinations will be by appointment only from end of this month

THE LOCAL health board has announced that from August 31, access to Mass Vaccination Centres (MVCs) in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and...

News3 days ago

Police looking for a suspect following disturbance in Narberth High Street

POLICE are investigating an incident which occurred at about 1am on Sunday morning, 31st July 2022 in Narberth . A...

News3 days ago

Seven injured in A477 road accident near Neyland – Two remain in hospital

DYFED-POWYS POLICE is appealing for witnesses after seven people were injured in a road accident. Two people remain in hospital...

News4 days ago

100 firemen at recycling centre blaze which will take ‘days to extinguish’

OFFICIALS from Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service have said that a fire at TBS Recycling in Waterston...

News4 days ago

Dry fire hydrants challenging fire fighters at recycling centre fire

FIRE crews from as far as way as Whitland, Kidwelly, and Tumble in Carmarthenshire tackling a large blaze at a...

News5 days ago

Female casualty airlifted to Cardiff following serious road traffic collision near Neyland

THE A477 was closed at the Honeyborough roundabout in Neyland on Saturday afternoon (Aug 13) following a road traffic collision...

Popular This Week