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Llanfyrnach: Community wind turbine was more than a decade in the making

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AFTER a long and bumpy journey, a community group from North Pembrokeshire are finally about to install a 700kW wind turbine on Trefawr Farm in Llanfyrnach.

Cwm Arian Renewable Energy – a community benefit society run by local residents and based in Hermon Community Resource Centre near Crymych – will be very relieved to see the community wind turbine installed by the beginning of October.

The project received planning permission from the Welsh Government in 2016 for the 61 meter high wind turbine, which is set to generate over 2,000 MWh every year – that’s enough electricity to power around 500 homes each year. Although the electricity grid technology doesn’t allow the wind turbine to power local homes directly, all the profits gained from selling the electricity will be paid into a community fund, which will be distributed to local community projects, businesses and individuals for activities which benefit local people and the environment.

“We’ve worked really hard for over a decade to make this project happen” said Cwm Arian director Holly Cross, “and it hasn’t been easy, but we’ve been determined to see it through because it’s just such a good idea to make money for the community from clean energy!”

The group has been supported with advice and development funding from the Welsh Government Energy Service, and in May this year were offered a low interest loan from Development Bank of Wales to enable them to buy and install the wind turbine. It is due to be delivered and installed on the 9th October, and after a few weeks of tests and checks, will start generating electricity (and money)!

Daniel Blackburn, who is also a director of Cwm Arian and part of the small team of locals working hard to realise the project, is hoping for a windy winter – “We’ve heard from the pioneers of Welsh community renewable projects like Transition Bro Gwaun and Awel Aman Tawe that their community wind turbines have generated quite a lot more income than they had expected, so we’re hoping it’ll be the same for our community”.

The project will be opening a community share offer in 2020, and is benefitting from the chairman Cris Tomos’ experience of setting up successful community share offers that have helped people take ownership of their assets across the county – “We’re looking forward to inviting local people to become members of Cwm Arian and invest in the renewable energy scheme. Even a small investment will earn them a better interest rate on their savings than if they keep their money in the bank, and will also help Cwm Arian pay back the bank loan sooner so the community fund will grow quicker – it’s a win-win situation for everyone!”.

With climate change and environmental problems in the news almost every day, Cwm Arian Renewable Energy is showing what a small group of determined individuals can do to find solutions for a greener future for their community.

To find out more about Cwm Arian Renewable Energy’s wind turbine project, and keep up to date about the community share offer and the other sustainability projects they are running in North Pembrokeshire, visit their Facebook page or their website.

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Eligible unpaid carers encouraged to register for COVID-19 vaccine

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UNPAID carers in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire who are not already registered as a carer with their GP practice are being asked to complete an online registration form if they wish to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has recommended that unpaid carers are eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine as part of priority group 6, subject to certain eligibility criteria.

Revised national guidance from the JCVI describes unpaid carers as those who are eligible for a carer’s allowance, or those who are the sole or primary carer of an elderly or disabled person who is at increased risk of COVID-19 mortality and therefore clinically vulnerable.

Those clinically vulnerable to COVID-19 include children with severe neuro-disabilities, those who are designated Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV), adults who have underlying health conditions, and those who need care because of advanced age. Eligible carers should be vaccinated in priority group 6.

Anna Bird, Assistant Director of Strategic Partnerships at Hywel Dda UHB, said: “Unpaid carers play a vital role offering care and support and it is in everyone’s interest that they are supported.

“For many years now, the health board has built strong links with unpaid carers across our three counties through initiatives such as our Investors in Carers scheme, designed to help organisations focus on, and improve, their carer awareness and the help and support they give to carers.

“There are over 10,000 unpaid carers registered with GP practices or the local authority across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire but we know there are many more people out there who may not recognise themselves as an unpaid carer and are unaware that support is available for them, including their eligibility for a COVID-19 vaccine.”

If you believe you may be eligible, are aged 16 or over and are not registered as an unpaid carer with your GP, please complete this online form https://hduhb.nhs.wales/healthcare/services-and-teams/carers-information/covid-vaccine-for-unpaid-carers/covid-vaccine-for-unpaid-carers/ to register your details. People without internet access can contact the health board on 0300 303 8322.

Those already registered as an unpaid carer with a GP will be contacted directly to receive a COVID vaccination and do not need to do anything further.
Please wait to be invited for your vaccination and do not contact your GP or health board to ask about your vaccine appointment. You will be contacted when it is your turn, thank you for your patience and understanding.

To find out more about the support available for unpaid carers in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire please visit https://hduhb.nhs.wales/healthcare/services-and-teams/carers-information/

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Welsh pet food company launches new pet store in Haverfordwest

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FRIDAY (March 5) Carmarthenshire based pet food company, Burns Pet Nutrition, launched a brand-new pet store in the stunning town of Haverfordwest. The new shop will sell a variety of pet goodies, such as food, toys, and accessories, and even provide a wellness service offering advice and guidance to local pet parents.

The Haverfordwest location will be the sixth pet store to-date for the beloved Welsh pet food brand, who are known for their award-winning, natural and healthy pet food, along with their generous support of rescue centres and shelters, charitable donations and community projects.

The shop launched officially on March 5, as a welcome addition to the personality of the local area. Haverfordwest Mayor, Alan Buckfield, says: “I’m very pleased to welcome the opening of the Haverfordwest Pet shop. This new business in Withybush Road adds to the range of shopping available in our Town and obviously fills a gap in the market as well as providing new job opportunities.”

Burns Haverfordwest store offers toys, treats and accessories, and of course, plenty of Burns Natural Pet Food to keep local pets happy and healthy. Burns pet food is renowned for its use of natural, holistic and simple ingredients in hand-cooked recipes, which is why they’ve sold over 2 billion bowls to date and received numerous awards and accolades, including an incredible 92% in the latest Which? Consumer poll of best pet foods.

With stores in Llandeilo, Carmarthen, Cardigan, the new shop is a benchmark in the efforts of the company to champion the local high street and support communities in Wales. The company has launched a variety of charitable campaigns and initiatives in Wales over its long history, mainly to support community initiatives, help local rescue centres and give back to pets and their owners in every part of Wales and beyond. On the launch of the new store, John Burns, veterinary surgeon and founder of Burns Pet Nutrition, says:

“Launching a sixth pet store in the stunning location of Haverfordwest is very exciting for us. We believe it’s important to invest in our highstreets and communities, as they can be the lifeblood of a local community. We hope that the new Burns Haverfordwest Pet store will become a favourite amongst local pet owners.”

Burns new shop has opened on The County Showground, Withybush Road in Haverfordwest, and for one week only lucky customers can get a free 2kg bag of dog food for every 12kg bag they purchase.

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No deaths of people with coronavirus in Wales in the last 24 hours

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THERE have been no further deaths of people with coronavirus in Wales reported in the latest 24-hour period, Public Health Wales (PHW) has confirmed.

A further 164 positive cases were also reported.

The total number of PHW reported deaths remains at 5,403.

Dr Giri Shankar, incident director for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak response at Public Health Wales, added the dashboard is designed to be a “rapid reporting tool which is subject to ongoing reconciliation” and that “official data are provided by the Office for National Statistics”.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said stay at home rules could be revised, following a review of lockdown measures this week.

Wales’ overall case rate has fallen to 45 cases per 100,000 people.

PHW said it should be noted there is often a lag in reporting deaths following the weekend.

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