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Mum of four feels ‘betrayed’ following partner’s death

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Andrew Rodick: Died in India in 2014

A HAVERFORDWEST woman says she feels she has been betrayed by the UK Government, after her partner died at the age of 40 in suspicious circumstances in India in April 2014.

Alison Barker, a mother of four, says the Foreign Office did not support her after she was told her partner, Andrew Raymond Rodick, was found ‘badly decomposed’ wrapped inside a bed sheet, blue plastic bags and carpet next to a marketplace in New Dehli.

He had been in India for two months, which included stays in Mumbai, Goa and New Dehli.

Following a post-mortem, it was found that Mr Rodick died from deep injuries on his head and face, which were inflicted by heavy objects. It was suspected he was tortured before he died, as he was found with his hands and feet tied together, and there were burns found on his arms, head and face, thought to have been caused by cigarette stubs and a lighter.

He was identified by his passport, which was found ‘badly damaged’ inside his pocket.

Indian police first treated his death as potentially drug related, however said they didn’t have ‘any clues’, except that they knew more than one person had been involved in his murder.

Ms Barker says that she felt pressured by the Foreign Office to agree to his cremation in India, stating they were ‘absolutely useless’. She also had to pay a £1,500 bill in order to have his body cremated, and have his ashes returned to the UK.

Alison Barker: Still struggles to talk about Andrew’s death

Speaking to the BBC, she said: “I was by myself with three children and there was no help, nobody came round and said ‘this is what you have to do now’. I was grieving and making an attempt to be strong for my children.”

Ms Barker found out about her partner’s death when two Dyfed-Powys Police officers attended her home address to inform her. She obtained a partial copy of the post-mortem report two years later, after appealing to local MP, Stephen Crabb to help her. However, it didn’t detail any toxicology results or the cause of his death.

She was sent the remaining details from the post-mortem last week – more than four years after her partner was murdered. However, it stated that Mr Rodick passed away after being poisoned by pregbalin: A drug used to treat epilepsy and anxiety.

The drug was found in Mr Rodick’s jeans pocket.

Ms Barker has said she does not accept the findings of the report given to her by the Foreign Office, and is upset and angry that it took her so long to receive the report in the first place.

At the time Mr Rodick died, Ms Barker was left with twin 9-year-old girls and a 7-year-old son. She had been in a relationship with Mr Barker for 12 years.

She said: “He loved his children. He was a family man, he loved walking the dog, music trips. He made my autistic son a bow and arrow out of sticks.

“He would take the kids swimming and took them to Legoland – he did a lot of ‘dad and son’ things, putting him on his shoulders and taking him to the park.”

A friend of Mr Rodick’s, Mr Tynan, added: “He was always really nice to me. We spoke on Facebook but I didn’t know why he had decided to go over to India. For this to happen to him is really disgusting. I can’t believe anyone would do anything to someone like that.

“When you don’t know someone and you hear news like this you think ‘how tragic, but when you know that person it hits you a lot harder.

A spokesperson from The Foreign Office said: “Where a death has occurred in violent circumstance, we will raise our interest with the local authority in the relevant country and request regular updates on any investigation or trial.

“We welcome feedback from British nationals who have received consular assistance and use that feedback to improve our services and staff training so we can provide the best possible assistance.”

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Launch of Haverfordwest Castle Conservation Management Plan

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MEMBERS of the public are being asked to help shape the future of Haverfordwest Castle as a draft Conservation Management Plan (CMP) is launched.

One of Pembrokeshire’s most important historical assets, the Castle is owned by Pembrokeshire County Council, which has produced the CMP.

The plan:

▪ sets out the significance of the castle and describes how the building will be protected with any new use, alteration, repair or management; 

▪ will help with the planning of maintenance, conservation and repair work and adaptation of the site to meet new or changing uses; 

▪ will help promote understanding of the site and look at improving public access and activities for local people and visitors; 

▪ will support proposals to conserve the castle and adaptations of the site in response to climate change; 

▪ and underpin funding applications to support improvements

An engagement exercise has been launched alongside the Plan, giving members of the public with an interest in the historic and/or environmental significance of the castle an opportunity to comment on the document and share their views.

To take part in the engagement exercise, please click on the following link: 

https://haveyoursay.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/regeneration-communities

The deadline for responses is Sunday, March 28, 2021.

 

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Natural Resources Wales approves Ireland-UK interconnector licence

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GREENLINK INTERCONNECTOR LIMITED says it welcomes the decision by Natural Resources Wales (NRW) to approve its application for a Marine Licence for the Greenlink electricity interconnector project, which will link the power markets of Great Britain and Ireland.

An important project for Pembrokeshire, and the UK as a whole, NRW’s go-ahead is one of several consents required for the construction of the project and covers installation of the marine cable in UK waters.

The approval is a major milestone for Greenlink and joins the onshore planning consents granted unanimously in July last year by Pembrokeshire County Council and Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority.

Greenlink’s proposed 190km subsea and underground electricity cable will run beneath the Irish Sea to connect National Grid’s Pembroke Power Station in Wales and EirGrid’s Great Island substation in County Wexford, Ireland. It will have a nominal capacity of 500 MW.

The Wales-Ireland link is just one of four interconnectors being installed

Nigel Beresford, CEO for Greenlink Interconnector Limited, said: “We are delighted by Natural Resources Wales’s decision to grant this licence. This marks a significant milestone for Greenlink and another important step towards project construction, which we expect to commence later this year.

“The Greenlink team has worked constructively with Natural Resources Wales and Welsh marine stakeholders to find workable solutions to the many technical and environmental challenges facing a large infrastructure project like this, and this has been reflected in the quality of the final proposal.

“The thorough environmental and technical assessments we have undertaken, supported by the practical and value-adding feedback we have received from key marine stakeholders, have ensured that we move forward confident that we are delivering a well-designed project with the interests of the Welsh marine habitat at its core.”

The subsea section of the cable will be approximately 160km in length and uses high voltage direct current (HVDC) technology. The preferred route and installation methods were chosen following the conclusion of subsea surveys and consultation with key stakeholders.

In Ireland, a Foreshore Licence application was submitted to the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Foreshore Unit) in 2019 and the onshore planning application was submitted to An Bord Pleanála in December 2020.

Greenlink is one of Europe’s most important energy infrastructure projects and brings benefits on both sides of the Irish Sea for energy security, regional investment, jobs and the cost-effective integration of low carbon energy. The project will offer important local supply chain opportunities and plans are being drawn up for ‘meet-the-buyer’ events in the local area prior to construction.

Once fully consented, Greenlink is expected to have a three-year construction programme, with commissioning planned by the end of 2023.

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Appeal from Fire and Rescue Service to install working smoke alarms

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AT 01:17am this morning, Tuesday, March 2, 2021, crews from Milford Haven were called to a property fire in the Hakin area of Milford Haven.

The fire was confined to a pan on a stove in the kitchen area and extinguished by firefighters using two breathing apparatus, a hose reel jet and a thermal imaging camera.

Crews also ventilated the property and fitted smoke alarms within the property.

The Fire Service left the incident at 02:00am.

Watch Manager Alun Griffiths, Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said “This fire was the result of cooking left unattended. It is so important to remove all pots and pans from a heat source when you are called away from the cooker.

“Thankfully, the occupiers of the property managed to exit the property before our firefighters arrived, but it could have ended very differently as there were no smoke alarms fitted in the property.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of installing working smoke alarms in your homes and testing them regularly. In the dreadful event of a fire, they can alert you to the danger sooner and could mean the difference between life and death.

“As a Fire and Rescue Service, we provide Home Fire Safety advice which is free of charge. We also offer Safe and Well Visits which you can arrange by phoning us on 0800 169 1234 or by visiting the Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service website.”

For further Home Fire Safety advice or to talk about the possibility of a Safe and Well Visit by Fire and Rescue Service personnel, please phone us on 0800 169 1234.​​​ Alternatively please complete an online Request a Safe and Well Visit​ form on the Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service website: https://www.mawwfire.gov.uk/eng/your-safety/in-your-home/

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