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Murco refinery deal saves 400 jobs

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MURPHY OIL has agreed to sell its Milford Haven refinery in Wales to oil entrepreneur Gary Klesch, who vowed to maintain operations at the struggling plant.

The sale, which follows several failed attempts to sell the 135,000 barrels per day refinery over the past two years, will see Arkansas-based Murphy Oil exit most of its British operations.

The price of the deal was not disclosed.

“We look forward to using our considerable industry expertise to return the site to profitable growth,” a Klesch Group spokesman told The Herald.

“By taking a long-term investment view we aim to secure the future of this refinery for its employees and the broader community.”

Bryan Kelly of Murphy Oil Corporation said: “Murphy Oil is pleased to announce that a deal has been agreed for the sale of the Milford Haven Refinery. We have worked tirelessly to find a workable solution that would see the refinery remain open, and are delighted that a positive outcome has been reached. The company is extremely grateful for the patience and professionalism of Murco employees, without whom a deal would not have been possible.”

Murphy halted production at the ailing plant in May after failing to strike a deal with London-based private equity fund Grey Bull. The Klesch Group is a global industrial commodities business, with three divisions specialising in the production and trading of chemicals, metals and oil.

Stephen Crabb MP said on twitter: “Excellent news for Murco refinery employees as sale moves forward. It’s so important to maintain UK oil refining.”

Stephen Crabb later told The Herald: “I am delighted that Klesch Group have today formally agreed to purchase the Murco oil refinery in Milford Haven, following an agreement in principle reached last month. Gary Klesch has a strong track record of reviving businesses in loss making industries and I was pleased to be able to bring him into the negotiations seven months ago. There is still more work to be done but today’s announcement is very encouraging news for the refinery staff and their families.”

Pembrokeshire County Council has welcomed the announcement: “This is good news for Pembrokeshire, Wales and indeed the whole of the United Kingdom” said the Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy, Councillor David Pugh.

He went on: “The refinery is a key component of the UK energy supply system and its retention supports and strengthens the role of the Milford Haven waterway as a global energy centre – a position recognised in terms of its Enterprise Zone status.

“The refinery supports hundreds of quality jobs in the local and regional economy, both directly and indirectly.

“Safeguarding this skill-set – and the local supply chain – has been an important focus of the Task and Finish Group which the County Council has contributed to.

“We look forward to working with the Klesch Group and take this opportunity to congratulate all partners involved in bringing these negotiations to a successful conclusion.”

The refinery has been a major employer since it opened in 1973.

According to Murco, the deal is still pending regulatory approval and subject to other material conditions.
“This transaction is scheduled to close no later than October 31, 2014”, a spokesman told The Herald.
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Meet the Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor

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A NEW Pembrokeshire business is proving to be an inspiration for young people after its recent launch.

The Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor is the brainchild of Ewan Griffiths, who turned his dream into reality thanks to the advice and support of Cam Nesa.

The project aims to reduce the number of young people aged 16-24 who are not in education, training or employment.

Before signing up to Cam Nesa, Ewan was out of work and struggling for direction, and anxiety was preventing him from maximising his potential.

Throughout his journey with Cam Nesa, Ewan worked closely with youth worker Donna Wright to devise a plan that provided support and guidance to improve his confidence and self-esteem, and provide mechanisms for coping with anxiety.

In addition, the project provided Ewan with opportunities to gain qualifications and obtain information that would help him with starting his own business.

Ewan’s message to other young people is simple, “If you find yourself struggling, there is help.”

“Cam Nesa supported me in all aspects of my plan, and working with Donna was fantastic.”

“I would definitely encourage others to reach out for support.”

Donna Wright, who supported Ewan throughout his Cam Nesa journey, said that the launch of his new business is a great source of pride for Cam Nesa and Pembrokeshire Youth Service.

“Ewan has come on leaps and bounds, and it was his engagement and determination that has made his outcome with Cam Nesa so successful and inspiring”, she said.

“Congratulations Ewan on your achievements, and we all wish you good luck with your new business.”

The Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor provides repairs and servicing for mowers, strimmers, hedge cutters, and most agricultural engines, with the mobile service providing collection and returns.

For more information, search ‘Pembrokeshire Mower Doctor’ on Facebook.

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Milford Haven: Mount estate death not being treated as suspicious say police

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POLICE have confirmed that following a welfare visit to a property in Mount Estate, they discovered a male occupant, in his 30’s, in need of medical help.

Despite the best efforts of medical staff he sadly passed away on Sunday.

A spokesperson for the police confirmed to The Pembrokeshire Herald: “Dyfed-Powys Police attended a property at the Mount Estate, Milford Haven on Friday 30th April 2021, following a report of concern for the welfare of the occupier.

“A male was taken to hospital where he died on Sunday 2nd May 2021.

“The death is not being treated as suspicious.”

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Polling station changes in Pembrokeshire

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POLLING STATIONS in Pembrokeshire are open today (May 6) but a small number may have changed from the last time you voted.

In Neyland, the polling station will be at the new Community Hub building on John Street.

St Katherine’s Church Hall will be the new host for the station in Milford Haven, having previously been held at the Murray Suite in the town hall.

A polling station will be placed at the leisure centre in Haverfordwest while one at Trecwn has been moved to the Gate, Scleddau.

Voters in the county will be electing for the Preseli Pembrokeshire and the Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire constituencies.

People will also be able to select five MSs to represent the Mid and West Wales Region.

The candidate with the most votes will win the constituency but the ballot for the region will be decided by a different process.

People will be elected according to their share of the vote, using a mathematical process, and gives parties who may have won fewer or no constituencies a better chance of winning regional ones.

It will also be a big day for 16 and 17 year olds as they will be able to vote in Welsh elections for the first time.

The ballots will be counted on Friday (May 7) with results expected to come in from the afternoon.

Polling stations opened at 7am and will close at 10pm.

All those who vote will be required to stick to Covid-19 safety measures including wearing a mask and maintaining social distancing.

Clean pencils will be available but voters can bring their own pen or pencil.

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