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Council’s prosecution over shed was a ‘wheelie bad idea’

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A MILFORD HAVEN businessman has succeeded in overturning a decision that he breached planning rules.

James Kershaw, of Lower Priory, was convicted when a Court ruled that a shed he placed on wheels was a permanent fixture at his home.

However, in an appeal hearing on Friday (Aug 23), Swansea Crown Court found that the Council’s prosecution of Mr Kershaw was an abuse of process.

The Judge accepted Mr Kershaw’s evidence he undertook work to put wheels on the shed in January 2018.

When he did so, Mr Kershaw relied on the advice given to him by an officer of Pembrokeshire County Council. In September 2017, the officer told Mr Kershaw that provided he placed the shed on wheels there would be no problems with planning and enforcement.

The Judge decided that it would bring the administration of justice into disrepute to allow the planning authority to prosecute Mr Kershaw after he relied upon the advice given to him by one of its employees.

After the case James Kershaw, who was awarded substantial costs, said: “The judge made the only fair and reasonable decision he could have in this case. I would like to thank my legal team, including my very capable barrister Mr. Matthew Paul.

“The Council’s incompetence has cost the local taxpayer over £10,000.

“The shed doesn’t harm anyone and is a mobile, movable structure which replaces a more permanent shed which was dilapidated and in the same location.”

“I hope the Council can concentrate now on more pressing issues like sorting out the flood risk at Lower Priory.”

“The Council’s planning department, who were keen to prosecute me, are responsible in part for the flooding which affected so many people last year in my neighbourhood; they allowed development lower down stream at Haven’s Head Business Park.”

“Sorting this issue for the other locals and myself is clearly more important than them wasting time and money on a pointless legal challenge”, jokingly Kershaw said, “it was a wheelie bad idea”

Pembrokeshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning and Infrastructure, Phil Baker, said: “While accepting the Court’s decision, the Council wishes to point out that the ruling hinged on a legal argument over process due to the discovery of advice provided by a planning officer given to the applicant during the planning application.

“The Appeal Judge determined that this subsequently invalidated the Authority’s ability to bring a prosecution.”

Councillor Baker explained: “The Council is keen to stress that it should not be accepted that the outcome of this case implies that by adding wheels to a structure that it is no longer a building and therefore not subject to planning regulations.”

He added that the planning officer in question is no longer employed by the Authority.

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Inquest opened into tragic death of Ianto Jenkins, 3, at family’s farm

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THE CORONER has opened and adjourned the inquest into the tragic death of a three-year-old boy who died after being hit a vehicle at the family farm.

The inquest, in Llanelli, was adjourned with a date to be fixed in four months.

Ianto Cerwyn Sior Jenkins was sadly pronounced dead at Rhosfach Farm near Efailwen, which is north of Clunderwen, at about 19:40 HRS on August 3.

He had been playing with his sister and cousin at the time.

It was explained Ianto was struck by a pick-up truck and trailer while playing on his bicycle.

Coroner’s officer Hayley Rogers said the emergency services were called to the farm at 19:00, after reports that a child had been in a crash with a piece of farm machinery but he died at the scene.

Coroner Paul Bennett extended his “belated personal condolences” to the family and told them the coroner’s service would conduct its enquiries with the “appropriate diligence and propriety”.

Ianto’s mother, Chloe Picton, previously paid tribute to her “blue-eyed boy… who was always smiling and laughing. He loved being out on the farm and going on the tractor with his daddy. Ianto and I had a very strong bond, he was ‘mummy’s little boy’ and was always by my side everywhere we went, now that’s been taken from me.”

Inquiries by the Health and Safety Executive and police are still ongoing.

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A40 accident leads to three people being airlifted to hospital

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POLICE are appealing for witnesses following a serious accident on the A40 on Friday (Sept 25) near the turning for Trecwn. The accident happened just before midnight .

Three people were airlifted to hospital with suspected life-threatening injuries, and a further four people were injured.

Dyfed-Powys police told The Pembrokeshire Herald: “We are appealing for witnesses following a serious collision on the A40.

“Three people were airlifted to hospital with suspected life-threatening injuries, and a further four people were injured.

“Ambulance and fire service also attended, with Coastguard helicopter assisting.

“The road was closed overnight as investigations took place.

“If you saw what happened, or noticed a white Skoda or red Chrysler travelling along that stretch of road in the time before the collision, please contact police by calling 101, or share what you know anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

A spokesperson for Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue told The Herald: “We can confirm that two fire engines were on the scene with the first call received at 11:55pm.

“We had two engines there with crews from Fishguard and Haverfordwest at the scene. There were numerous casualties with two vehicles involved. Casualties with numerous injuries were transported to hospital by ambulance crews on the scene.

“One person was trapped and there were two walking wounded.”

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Get juiced this October at Carew Castle’s free apple pressing events

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MEMBERS of the public are invited to bring their apples along to two free apple pressing days at Carew Castle this October.

With the apple harvest season in full swing, the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority-run attraction is offering the chance to turn any stockpiles of this nutritious fruit into delicious juice.

The apple pressing events will take place from 10am on Saturday 2 October and Sunday 3 October in the grounds of Carew Castle, where Ranger Chris will be on hand with an apple press.

Daisy Hughes, Visitor Services Manager at Carew Castle, said:  “This is the time of year when apples are at their best and many people find themselves with a surplus. The free apple pressing days provide the perfect opportunity to get together with friends and family in a pleasant setting and enjoy some freshly-squeezed juice.

“We look forward to welcoming guests of all ages to these events. There is no admission fee, and the only requirement for those attending is that they bring along some apples and a container for their juice, and are prepared to have a go.”

For more information on events in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park this autumn, visit www.pembrokeshirecoast.wales/events.

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