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Community campaigns to buy Trecadwgan Farm – a County Council farm near Solva

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CAMPAIGNERS in and around the community of Solva and the St Davids Peninsula are working hard to stop Pembrokeshire County Council from selling off this historic county farm at public auction in July, in order for the community to raise funds for a community asset transfer.

Solva community council, who are unanimously supportive of the vision for a community farm at the site said:

This Council, support the proposed purchase of Trecadwgan farm as a community project supporting the principles of food sovereignty, agroecology and biodynamic principles and practices. This Council also felt that given the current circumstances and recent declaration of a climate emergency by PCC, this project would naturally support any carbon reduction schemes and green projects. We do not feel that the sale of the farm would be securing value for money and would mean the loss of a potentially valuable community asset.

We would ask that PCC remove the farm from auction immediately and undertake discussions to support this unique and vibrant project.

Dating back to the 15th century the farmhouse is being sold with 13 outbuildings and 11 acres. The community benefit group have a vision for the site becoming a hub for the area that can offer skills training and be a location for many land-based social enterprises. One of the campaigners Rupert Dunn noted “There is a unique opportunity for the community and supporters both near and far to become joint purchasers of this historically important farm. Given the sensitivity of the issue of the sell-off of county farms across the UK, this case has national significance and raises a spotlight to our local authority to act with vision and to work together with communities. ” Rupert continued “I have spoken to many food, craft, training and agricultural based projects and there is great enthusiasm, the local community council at Solva are in full support”

The group is now forming a constituted Community Benefit Society registered with the FCA and will be looking to issue community shares in the development. A Pembrokeshire champion of community cooperatives, Cris Tomos of PLANED who has supported many community share offers commented ” The community and enterprise vision for Trecadwgan farm is fantastic and would see the opportunity for people to gain new skills and employment. It will be crucial to now form the new society as soon as possible with an inaugural board of directors to set up the community business”

Anyone wishing to show solidarity with the campaign or are interested in supporting the new community scheme are invited to attend the public meeting in Solva Memorial Hall at 6.30pm on Friday the 14th of June. There will be an opportunity to hear from people with a connection to the farm, form the new board and also have people putting their names down for being part of subcommittees to focus on finance, marketing, legal and other issues.

There will also be family-friendly activities held at the farm from 11am-5pm on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th June including: elderflower cordial making, gardening, scything and green woodworking as well as food to share and a chance to shape the vision for a community farm.

 

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Fishguard RNLI launch to attend injured fisherman 13 miles offshore

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FISHGUARD’s RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat launched early on Monday (Jan 17), with a full volunteer crew, to rendezvous with an Irish scalloper fishing boat which had an injured crew member aboard. The 14-metre fishing boat ‘ Golden Fleece’ had requested assistance by making radio contact with HM Coastguard. 

The lifeboat launched at 7.30am in calm conditions and headed to the fishing boat positioned approximately 13 miles north of Cemaes Head. Once on location the injured fisherman, who had suffered a significant finger injury, was transferred to the lifeboat. No further medical assistance was necessary from the lifeboat crew but he was kept under observation during the return journey to Fishguard where he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance upon arrival at 8.30am.   

 

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Brains’ £100 million sell-off plan includes local pubs in Pembrokeshire

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SA BRAINs is close to completing a £100m deal which will see the sale of 100 Wales pubs, including Pembrokeshire locals, it has been reported.

It is reported that Wales most prominent brewers will sell the freeholds to 100 of it’s pubs to a consortium.

Brains currently has a portfolio of 200 pubs across Wales and the South West.

Sources within the pub industry said that the transaction could be signed in the next few days.

The deal is to be made with Song Capital and Cerberus Capital Management, the former owner of Admiral Taverns.

The deal, which is thought to be around the £100m mark, is expected to be used by the Brains’ family shareholders to pay down debt.

The hospitality sector has been hit severely by the Coronavirus pandemic, being forced to close for long periods at a time and then reopening with strict restrictions.

In 2020, Brains struck a deal with Marston’s to operate 141 of its pubs, under the Welsh brewers brand, following financial pressures of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Six Pembrokeshire pubs are earmarked to be included in the transaction; The Ferry Inn, St Dogmaels, Crown Inn, Tenby, Grove Hotel, Narberth, Waterman’s Arms, Pembroke, Harbour Inn, Solva and The Galleon, Broad Haven.

The sale will see the Brains pub estate as a family-owned brewer with a small residual pub portfolio.

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Business

St Clears’ McDonald’s opening delayed for a week

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McDonald's sign

THE OPENING of the new 100-seater McDonald’s in St Clears has been delayed by a week. 

The restaurant, which will be built along the main approach road to Pembrokeshire, aimed to open its doors on Wednesday, January 19. 

However, the company has confirmed that the opening has been postponed until Wednesday, January 26. 

The new McDonald’s will join Haverfordwest and Pembroke Dock McDonald’s as the only members of the company located west of Carmarthen. 

It hoped to provide over 80 full and part time jobs due to being open around the clock. They hosted a recruitment day in December 2021. 

The original applications had previously stated that the McDonald’s would be open 24 hours a day. A premises licence application is currently being made to the County Council for the “provision of late-night refreshments” which, if accepted, would allow the restaurant to be open 24 hours a day.

It will open on the opposite side of the road to Travelodge and Starbucks, which replaced the Little Chef restaurant in 2017.

The restaurant was initially going to include a separate building which would have accommodated a Costa Coffee. However, it will now host a Greggs. 

Alongside this, planning permission has been granted separately for a petrol station with six electric charging points.

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