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Haverfordwest: Paedophile Shaun Smith jailed for 15 months

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A MERLINS BRIDGE man trapped by paedophile hunters has been jailed today for 15 months.

Shaun Alan Smith, aged 53, had admitted attempting to entice an underage girl to engage in sexual activity.

Smith, of Glen View, had contacted what appeared to be a teenage girl on Facebook.

In fact, said Helen Randall, it was a man who used his 10 year old daughter’s profile as his.

He told Smith “she” was 14 and Smith sent a series of worrying messages. The man passed Smith onto the “Welsh Warriers,” who attempt to trap paedophiles looking for children to abuse.

Smith sent the “girl” messages offering to take her virginity and asking if she was wearing knickers. At one stage he told her, “You are the type of girl who could get men into trouble.”

There were then conversations about meeting at a McDonald’s and Smith was filmed approaching the restaurant.

After his arrest Smith, a father of four, told police he had not been interested in sex and had asked her about her knickers “to make sure she was properly dressed.”

His barrister, Jim Davis, said it appeared Smith had been dealing with the Welsh Warriers from the start and never with a real girl.

He said Smith had been in jail since his arrest nine weeks ago and after his release “would not be going home to a log fire and a Christmas dinner but a hostel of some kind.”

Judge Geraint Walters told Smith, “There were several weeks of conversations and you used graphic terms of sexual activity.

“It defies belief that a father of four children could behave in this way to someone else’s child.”

He also told Smith it was “nonsensical” for him to say he was not getting sexual pleasure from his activities.

He also warned Smith that he was in self denial and not ready to undertake a sex offenders programme.

Smith was ordered to register with the police as a sex offender for the next 10 years.

Community

Stunning mural by local artist graces Tenby’s oldest pub

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THE WELL-LOVED Coach and Horses pub, Tenby’s oldest establishment, now boasts a stunning new mural by renowned local artist Lloyd the Graffiti.

The artwork, completed on June 12, has quickly become a beloved fixture in the heart of the town, capturing the admiration and praise of residents and visitors alike.

The mural, which features a vivid depiction of the iconic Welsh poet Dylan Thomas, pays homage to his legendary visit to the pub in 1953. According to local lore, Thomas became so inebriated during his visit that he left his manuscript for “Under Milk Wood” on a stool. Lloyd’s artwork brilliantly captures this slice of literary history, merging it with a vibrant portrayal of Tenby’s charming streetscape.

The mural’s unveiling has sparked an outpouring of positive reactions on social media, highlighting the community’s appreciation for Lloyd’s exceptional talent and the mural’s contribution to the town’s cultural landscape. Guy Manning commented, “Love it, absolutely wonderful!” JenksArt added, “Well done buddy! You smashed that about time Tenby had something like this in the heart of the town.” Amanda Absalom-Lowe expressed her admiration, “Lloyd you are such an amazing artist honest to go how do you just do it!? What a talent you have in this world and show it to the world!! Amazing.” Local residents have also been sharing their joy at seeing the mural come to life over the past few days: Sarah Bolwell shared, “So amazing! We’ve loved watching this progress over the last few days, what a brilliant addition to the street.” Kath Brown humorously recounted, “Whoop whoop you finished it! Well done, it’s been a real treat to watch the progress and heckle you as we’ve gone in and out!”

Anna Davies, a top fan, declared, “Wow that’s amazing it’s absolutely awesome such talent Lloyd the Graffiti Dylan Thomas lives on in Tenby for everyone to admire and talk about.” Other reactions included Nicola Newell: “Amazing,” Danielle Coles: “Brilliant,” Cheryl Hunt: “Stupendous,” Theresa Evans: “Shouldn’t they have a Welsh flag out the front?” Hazel Phillips: “Amazing,” and Penny Rossiter: “This looks amazing.”

Lloyd the Graffiti’s mural has not only enhanced the aesthetic appeal of the Coach and Horses pub but has also reignited the town’s enthusiasm for public art. Many residents hope this will be the first of many such projects, bringing more color and creativity to Tenby’s streets. As the mural continues to draw attention, it stands as a testament to the vibrant artistic talent within the community and the timeless allure of Dylan Thomas’s legacy. Visitors to Tenby are encouraged to stop by the Coach and Horses pub to experience this remarkable piece of art firsthand.

For those interested in seeing more of Lloyd’s work or commissioning a piece, he can be contacted through his social media platforms, where he regularly shares his latest projects and artistic endeavors.

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Community

Tragedy on Teifi: Tributes paid to Leon Vernon-White

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FOLLOWING the tragic incident last week, police have identified the canoeist who tragically lost his life in a river accident in west Wales as Leon Vernon-White. The 24-year-old, originally from Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, was described by his family as a ‘free-spirited’ individual and a ‘character’ who brought joy to those around him.

Leon was reported missing in the River Teifi near Cardigan on Thursday, June 6. His body was recovered near Cardigan Bridge in the early hours of the following morning, after a thorough search by multiple emergency services. The search involved Dyfed-Powys Police, Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service, HM Coastguard, and the RNLI.

RNLI Cardigan Lifeboat also played a critical role in the search, deploying both their D-class and Atlantic 85 lifeboats to scour the river and estuary areas.

Leon Vernon-White was well-known in his hometown of Tewkesbury, where he often entertained locals with his singing and guitar playing on the streets. His family described him as a person who had the remarkable ability to make everyone smile. Despite his mischievous and stubborn streak, he was deeply caring, loving, and loyal. His talents extended beyond music; he was also a jewellery artist and had a keen interest in science.

In a heartfelt statement, Leon’s family expressed their immense loss, saying, “He will be a huge loss, and there will always be love in our hearts for him.” They also extended their gratitude to the emergency services and the support they have received from friends and family during this difficult time.

The RNLI Cardigan Lifeboat station detailed their involvement in the search on their Facebook page. They reported that their crew was paged at 19:52 on June 6 to assist in the search for a missing person in the River Teifi. The search operation saw the Cardigan D-class and Atlantic 85 lifeboats navigating the river, while the Fishguard lifeboat monitored the estuary for any signs of the missing canoeist.

Sadly, after hours of searching, the crew of the D-class lifeboat was involved in the recovery of Leon’s body from the river. The lifeboats were meticulously prepared for service again after the operation, demonstrating the RNLI’s dedication and professionalism even in the face of such tragic outcomes.

The RNLI expressed their deepest condolences to all those affected by this tragedy, echoing the sentiments of a community mourning the loss of a vibrant young man.

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Education

Ysgol Penrhyn Dewi’s model train club appeals for donations

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THE YSGOL Penrhyn Dewi Model Train Club, is reaching out to the community for donations of old Hornby 00 gauge rail tracks and accessories. The club, which has been a staple of the school’s extracurricular activities, aims to enrich its collection and create more intricate and engaging layouts for its members.

In an appeal reminiscent of a bygone era, the school has issued a traditional wanted poster, urging those with unused or forgotten model railway items to consider contributing to the club. The poster, which features a vintage steam locomotive and a railway crossing sign, reads: “Wanted: Ysgol Penrhyn Dewi VA Model Train Club is looking for donations of any old Hornby 00 2 rail track or accessories no longer used or needed.”

The initiative, spearheaded by enthusiastic students, seeks to foster creativity and technical skills through the hobby of model railroading. The club members, dressed in their school blazers, are pictured eagerly overseeing their current collection, which, while cherished, is in need of expansion to accommodate their growing ambitions.

Donations can be left at the Dewi Campus reception or, if necessary, arrangements can be made for items to be collected. The poster concludes with a heartfelt “Diolch!”, expressing the club’s gratitude in advance.

This appeal not only highlights the club’s dedication to preserving a traditional pastime but also underscores the educational value such activities offer. Engaging in model railroading allows students to learn about engineering, history, and geography in a hands-on and enjoyable manner.

As the Ysgol Penrhyn Dewi VA Model Train Club looks to the community for support, it stands as a testament to the enduring charm and educational potential of model trains. The school hopes that with the generosity of the public, they can continue to inspire and educate the next generation of railway enthusiasts.

For those interested in contributing, further details can be found on the school’s website or by contacting the Dewi Campus directly.

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