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‘Visit Pembrokeshire’ is new the destination management organisation for county



PEMBROKESHIRE TOURISM members have vote to establish a new destination management organisation called ‘Visit Pembrokeshire’, the first of its type in Wales – and one of the few in the UK. The meeting where this was agreed was held on Friday (Nov 6).

Over the last 20 months the organisation has been working closely with the other members of the Destination Pembrokeshire Partnership (DPP) – Pembrokeshire County Council, PLANED & The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority – to bring to life Pembrokeshire’s new Destination Management Organisation ‘Visit Pembrokeshire’. Our new Destination Management Organisation is the first of its type in Wales bringing together the public, private and third sector to help drive growth and development within this key economic sector. At this challenging time for the tourism economy – the establishment of Visit Pembrokeshire offers some welcome good news.

Visit Pembrokeshire will formally launch on the 16th November, when the County Council Tourism Marketing staff and resources will be transferred to Pembrokeshire Tourism. We will also receive financial support from PCC and staffing resources from PCNPA and PLANED. Visit Pembrokeshire will be led by the trade and will focus on a range of diverse activities including tourism leadership and advocacy, destination marketing, campaign and project delivery, industry liaison and support, research and intelligence and event support. Our expanded team will continue to be based in the existing Pembrokeshire Tourism offices at Llanion cove, Pembroke Dock (though will continue to work from home currently) – under the new name of Visit Pembrokeshire.

Emma Thornton

The key appointment for this new organisation has been the recruitment of the new Chief Executive Officer. The search for this much sought-after destination leadership role started earlier in the summer and attracted over 460 applications from all over the UK and abroad.

This search has now been completed and we’re delight to announced that Emma Thornton has been appointed as Visit Pembrokeshire’s new Chief Executive Officer.

Jane Rees-Baynes, Chair of Pembrokeshire Tourism, the transition board of Visit Pembrokeshire says: “We are exceptionally pleased to have found Emma who is an outstanding tourism leader who brings to the county extensive destination management experience as well as public-private sector partnerships. Emma will lead Visit Pembrokeshire with real confidence to an exciting future both for our members and our local communities who want to see economic growth closely aligned to the values of a sustainable future.’
Speaking about her appointment, Emma says

“I am absolutely delighted to be appointed as the new CEO for Visit Pembrokeshire.

“Pembrokeshire is one of the most beautiful parts of the UK and in fact the world. The Destination Management Plan (DMP) published earlier this year, is a demonstration of the commitment from Destination Pembrokeshire Partners to work collaboratively, and sets out a clear vision and strategy to grow tourism for the benefit of all.
2020 has been an incredibly tough year for tourism, but with its stunning coastline, natural and cultural assets and great visitor experiences, Pembrokeshire is now well placed to benefit from a growth in domestic tourism and, when the time is right, international visitors.

“I feel privileged to be taking up this role at this challenging but exciting time, and look forward to working with the new Visit Pembrokeshire team to lead on delivery of the new DMP and to help support business recovery.”

Pembrokeshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy, Tourism, Leisure and Culture, Paul Miller, said: “The launch of Visit Pembrokeshire is fantastic news for this county. This is the first organisation of its kind in Wales and I’m proud that the Council has been at the forefront of making it happen. It’s been an enormously challenging year for our tourism industry, and the creation of this new organisation brings hope and excitement for a better future.”

Tegryn Jones, Chief Executive of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority said: “I welcome the establishment of Visit Pembrokeshire as the new Destination Management organisation working to promote Pembrokeshire as a leading visitor destination. Tourism is an important part of the Pembrokeshire economy and the National Park Authority looks forward to working with Emma Thornton and her team, the Board of Visit Pembrokeshire and the wider tourism industry to develop a sustainable tourism offer that supports the people and communities of Pembrokeshire.”

Iwan Thomas – Chef Executive of PLANED added: “We are delighted to be working alongside our partners to contribute the voice of communities to this new tourism & hospitality body within Pembrokeshire. Our communities provide the skills, supplies, and much more in terms of support for this key sector of our economy within the county, so PLANED are 100% behind Visit Pembrokeshire, to demonstrate and deliver a joined up and innovative approach that will benefit the county collectively”

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Cyclist killed on A40 was serving police officer, force confirms



A CYCLIST who died after a crash with a van on the A40 in Carmarthenshire was a serving police officer with Dyfed-Powys Police, the force has confirmed in a statement to Herald.Wales.

The driver of the van involved in the crash, which happened on Thursday (Feb 25) has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving, it was confirmed on Friday (Feb 26).

Police are investigating the fatal collision, which caused the road to be closed for 12 hours, and are asking for any witnesses to come forward by calling 101.

37-year-old Lynwen Thomas, who is a former student at Ysgol Bro Myrddin, Croes-y-Ceiliog, Carmarthen, was a sergeant and a very well-respected member of Dyfed-Powys Police.

A spokesperson for the police said in a statement: “Our thoughts are with her family, friends and colleagues, who have all been offered specialist support. We ask that family members are given the privacy they need at this difficult time.”

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Pembrokeshire residents urged to take a virtual GP consultation when offered



PEMBROKESHIRE residents are being urged to take up the offer of a virtual consultation, over the phone or video call with their GP, to help Keep Wales Safe during the current lockdown ‘stay at home’ restrictions.

The way we access local NHS services is changing, with more ways in which you can consult your doctor or nurse. Most surgeries now offer telephone as well as electronic advice consultations in the first instance. Following your advice call, a face to face appointment may be organised, but video consultations are also available. You can now speak to a doctor or healthcare professional using the video camera in your smartphone, tablet or computer and a connection to the internet. This is often more convenient and can save you time, as you will not need to travel for a face-to-face appointment. The system used is confidential and secure.

In a recent YouGov survey carried out for the Welsh Government’s Keep Wales Safe campaign only 27% of residents in Mid and West Wales had made use of the GP virtual service over the past 12 months with just 57% having heard of the service. However, 88% believed it was important to have access to a remote GP consultation once they had learnt of its existence.

Jill Paterson, Director of Primary Care, Community and Long Term Care at Hywel Dda University Health Board, said: “If you are offered a video consultation appointment this is because your Health Care Professional has indicated that is it safe and appropriate to do so. Your video appointment will be confidential and will not be recorded. If you require support please contact your GP surgery using the number provided in the appointment confirmation.”

She continued: “By putting off small problems or regular appointments you could potentially be putting more strain on NHS emergency services so please, help us to help you, do not put anything off. Local GP surgeries are open and are there to offer medical advice and consult patients.”

After being offered a video consultation you will be sent a letter, email or text with details of your appointment. This communication will contain details of the service that has requested to see you by video and have provided a web address link. You can type or copy the web address link into a web browser via an internet enabled device and this will take you to the video clinic waiting area.

  • In order to access your virtual appointment, you will need:
  • Access to a device that will allow you to access the internet. You should use Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge web browser on a desktop or laptop, or on an Android tablet or smartphone or Safari web browser on an Apple iMac, MacBook, iPad, or iPhone.
  • Your device will need a webcam (camera), speakers and microphone.
  • A good internet connection (if you can watch a YouTube video, this is good indication that you have a good connection).
  • An internet usage plan that is sufficient to cover the data consumption of a video call – ideally use a Wi-Fi connection if you have this available.

Sixty two percent of those surveyed by YouGov in Mid and West Wales said they will continue to access NHS services using the new ways that have been introduced as a result of the pandemic. The new methods include making more use of pharmacists; virtual GP consultations and using the NHS 111 online and telephone services.

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‘Cautious optimism’ for county’s tourism sector – but clarity still needed



‘GIVE us clarity’ is the overriding message from the County’s tourism and hospitality businesses as the sector looks forward with cautious optimism to another busy season.

In a meeting hosted by Preseli Pembrokeshire MP Stephen Crabb, thirty key local businesses were able to share their views with Paul Davies MS, Pembrokeshire County Council, the National Park and Visit Pembrokeshire.

The meeting focussed on the need for business support measures so long as uncertainty remains over the timetable for re-opening the economy in Wales.

Stephen Crabb said: “There is a lot of belief around that this summer will see another ‘staycation’ boom so long as the vaccination programme continues to make good progress and infection rates fall. Pembrokeshire has had a lot of national media coverage in recent months and could experience a bumper season but it’s crucial we get the re-opening right. There is a clear need for some kind of timetable to help businesses prepare appropriately and for clear rules to avoid confusion and contradictory messages.”

Paul Davies said: “It was a pleasure to hear from tourism businesses across Pembrokeshire about some of the challenges that they’re currently facing. The message was pretty clear – they want clarity from the Welsh Government and some timescales by which they can start to plan for reopening. I’ll certainly be taking back the concerns highlighted during the meeting and raising them with Welsh Government Ministers at the Senedd.”

Emma Thornton from Visit Pembrokeshire added: “Great to attend the Hospitality and Tourism Round table event today and to have the opportunity to discuss the ongoing challenges our industry faces over the coming months but also to share a collective optimism for what we believe will be a really strong year for tourism in Pembrokeshire when we are able to reopen and welcome our visitors back.

“Visit Pembrokeshire as the new Destination Management (DMO) for Pembrokeshire will be working closely with local stakeholders and businesses to help realise this opportunity in a sustainable and responsible way mindful of protecting what makes our beautiful county so special”

Stephen Crabb: Wants clarity for tourism businesses

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