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Free swimming sessions for kids and older people

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The Welsh Government is changing the way it funds free swimming in Wales with the objective of ‘enhancing opportunities for those from deprived areas and those facing the biggest barriers to participation’.

Free swimming will continue to be available to over 60s and those under 16 however there are going to be changes.


Under 16’s

Under the new scheme there will be a free sessions every weekend in every swimming pool in Pembrokeshire throughout the year for those 16 and under.
Adults attending with their children during the designated weekend free swimming session will be eligible for a discounted rate.

Those registered for Pembrokeshire Leisure’s Passport to Leisure – those in receipt of benefits – will be eligible to free swimming during all school holidays.

An annual swim membership for public swimming will be available to all children aged 16 and under for £25/year.

Over 60’s

For those 60 and over there will be a free session available every Monday in all facilities throughout Pembrokeshire.

Those in receipt of Pension Credit Guarantee will be eligible for free swimming at all public swimming sessions.

There will continue be a discounted rate for over 60’s Aquatic Classes & Public Swimming from Tuesday to Sunday.

A six month swim membership, providing access to all public swimming sessions, will be available to over 60’s for £25.

Councillor Paul Miller, the County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy, Tourism, Leisure and Culture, said: “We fully recognise the value that swimming can and does play in the health and wellbeing of everyone.

“The young and not so young across Pembrokeshire make excellent use of our swimming pools and we want everyone to continue to do so in a manner that is affordable to them.

“Through its review, Welsh Government has reduced its free swimming funding throughout Wales by 50%. As a means of addressing the newly identified priorities of the initiative we have tried to react to those, in line with the reduction in funding, by trying to make sure that no-one who’s under 16 or over 60 is prevented from swimming because of the costs.

“The changes are due to take effect from October 2019 and we’ll be carefully monitoring the impact of these changes on swimmer numbers.”

News

New Chairman for Pembrokeshire County Council

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THE NEW Chairman of Pembrokeshire County Council is Councillor Pat Davies, who represents Fishguard North West.

Cllr Davies, previously the Authority’s Vice-Chairman, was installed at today’s Annual meeting of Council at County Hall in Haverfordwest.

She succeeds Cllr Mike James, the Elected Member for St Dogmaels.

Councillor David Simpson – who will remain as Council Leader – proposed a vote of thanks to Cllr James.

The new Vice-Chairman of the Council is Councillor Thomas Tudor (Haverfordwest Castle) who expressed his pride at the nomination.

Councillor Simon Hancock will remain as the Authority’s Presiding Member.

Cllr David Simpson, who was elected to Council in 2004, was the sole nomination for Leader.

Cllr Simpson will complete his Cabinet choices over the coming days but he announced that Councillor Paul Miller (Neyland West) will become Deputy Leader of the Council.

The Lord-Lieutenant of Dyfed, Miss Sara Edwards, and the High Sheriff of Dyfed, Mr Rowland Rees-Evans, attended the Annual Meeting as guests.

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News

Monkton: One person flown to Cardiff following incident

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THERE was a large emergency services presence in Monkton last night (May 25).

At around 7.30pm, emergency services were called to a report of an incident.

Back Terrace was temporarily closed off while officers dealt with the situation.

An Air Ambulance was dispatched and flew one person to The University Hospital of Wales.

A Welsh Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “We were called at approximately 7.30pm yesterday, Wednesday 25 May, to an incident in the Monkton area of Pembroke.

“We sent a rapid response car, an emergency ambulance and an air ambulance to the scene, where the crew were also supported by a duty operations manager.

“One person was flown to the University Hospital of Wales.”

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Community

Nature is blooming at Withybush Woods three years after enhancement project

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THREE years after the launch of a project to enhance Withybush Woods, there are abundant signs that biodiversity is thriving.

Swathes of early purple orchid – a scarce wild flower – have been spotted in shadier parts of the tranquil woodlands while a pair of rare breeding stock doves have made the woods their home for the second year.

Song thrushes can be heard everywhere on the 1.5km accessible footpath together with chiffchaffs, willow warblers, nuthatch, woodpeckers, blackbirds, blue tits and many other woodland birds.

Mallards and moorhens and their young can be seen on the restored lower pond, together with the resident swans, and a new wetland area nearby is providing a new habitat for other species of invertebrates and pollinators.

The EU-funded improvement project was led by Pembrokeshire County Council, which owns the woods on the outskirts of Haverfordwest.

Dr Steven Jones, Director of Community Services, said: “Withybush Woods has always been a beautiful and special place to visit and even more so now, thanks to its increasing range of species and biodiversity habitats.

The enhancement work received funding through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014 – 2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government. 

The scheme also received funding through the Landfill Disposals Tax Communities Scheme, through the WCVA.

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