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No confidence ballot ‘likely to go against Bryn Parry’, say unions

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backed brynTRADE UNIONS in Pembrokeshire, including UNISON, are continuing to mount the pressure on Pembrokeshire County Council’s chief executive, Bryn Parry-Jones, as the ballot over ‘no confidence’ in his abilities continues.

Vic Dennis, UNISON Branch Secretary, told The Herald: “Ballot papers went out to all our members in Pembrokeshire last week and the speed and size of response has been overwhelming.

“With days still to go we have already received over 500 responses and many members are on annual leave. The early indications are that the majority UNISON members employed by PCC will confirm that they have lost trust and confidence in their Chief Officer. We have never had such an immediate and overpowering response to a ballot on any other issue”
UNISON along with Unite and GMB are planning a major rally outside County Hall on Friday 8th support it. Vic Dennis added: “This is in direct response to calls from our respective membership to have their voices heard in relation to numerous failings in Pembrokeshire County Council. The continuing pension debacle is the last straw for our members, many of whom now say they are embarrassed to admit they work for PCC.
“The action is taking place at lunch time so members are at liberty to register their protest and we trust that no pressure is put on them not to walk out.”

“It is not only trade union members who welcome this opportunity to show their feelings but the community as a whole. We now ask them to join us on 8th at 12:30 to show their strength of feeling.”
On Friday, August 8 at 12:30 and many members have indicated that they will.
Last week union leaders said: “The Chief Executive has refused to repay and of the £45,000 pounds of pension payments he received directly to his bank account. In the meantime some of the lowest paid and hardest hit by the pay and grading review are suffering hardship whilst the appeals process drags on with no end in sight.”

“The joint unions are now planning to demonstrate their anger at a lunchtime protest on 8 August, similar to the action taken by employees of Caerphilly Council which highlighted the failings of their CEO”, they said.
Paul Miller, Labour leader on the Council, wrote to IPPG leader Jamie Adams when the news broke of the new investigation saying: “It would, in my view, seriously undermine public trust and the moral of the staff were Mr Parry-­Jones to continue in his position while these enquiries are undertaken.

“I appreciate that we have not seen eye to eye on this issue in the past (far from it) but I implore you now to show some courage and leadership. I implore you to break with the past and do what is right.

“Take the first step on what will admittedly be a very long journey, to restore some credibility and public trust to our local authority.”
The Herald asked for a copy of Councillor Adams’ reply to that letter, but we were told that he regarded his correspondence to the Council’s Labour leader as private.

The Council has declined to comment on the unions’ actions.

The Herald will be covering the protest with a live coverage on the newspapers website and Facebook feed.

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Appeal after woman sexually assaulted on cycle path near Haverfordwest

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POLICE officers in Haverfordwest are appealing for witnesses after a woman was sexually assaulted at approximately 4.30pm on Sunday (May 16).

The woman was walking along the cycle path between Haverfordwest and Tiers Cross when she was approached by a man who threatened and assaulted her, before walking away towards Haverfordwest town.

The male is described as a white male, between 5ft 4 and 5ft 11 tall , normal build with a welsh accent. He has short dark hair, a beard and a moustache, brown eyes, and wearing light blue jeans, navy/dark blue jersey with grey sleeves. Anyone who saw a man matching this description in the area between 3.30pm and 5pm in the afternoon.

A 35-year-old man has been arrested and is currently in police custody.

The cycle path is currently closed while the investigation continues.

Detective Superintendent Jayne Butler, who is leading the investigation, said “Incidents of this nature are extremely rare in the Dyfed-Powys area. The public may see an increased presence of police officers in the coming days as police investigate the incident. Anyone with concerns or information that could help our enquiries can speak to those officers or contact police. While a man was quickly arrested we would still like to speak to anyone who saw a man matching the above description in the area yesterday afternoon.”

Anyone with information which could help the investigation is asked to contact police. This can be done online at bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.pnn.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired, text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

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Pembrokeshire County Council Cabinet endorses STEP Fusion application

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PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL’S Cabinet have today endorsed proposals from Cllr Paul Miller (Cabinet Member for Economic Development) to further progress the nomination of a Pembrokeshire site to host a Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP) fusion power station in the county.

Working with the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), the proposed site is adjacent to the existing energy facilities on the South Shore of the Haven waterway.

If approved, the facility will initially host research with the ultimate aim of developing this technology which could offer a virtually limitless source of clean electricity by copying the processes that power the sun.

Cllr Paul Miller, Cabinet Member for Economic Development said: “I am pleased my Cabinet colleagues endorsed this important programme of work. The Haven Waterway has provided livelihoods, underpinned by fossil fuels, for thousands of Pembrokeshire families, mine included, for more than 50 years. It’s my job to help ensure the waterway continues to provide high skilled, engineering, science and technology jobs for the next generation of this county – and so linked to our focus on climate change (and in addition to our existing multi-million pound commitments to supporting wind, wave and tidal clean power generation) my team have been exploring whether we can also support the development of clean, green fusion technology.

“It’s very early days in the UK Atomic Energy Authority’s site selection process but we’ll provide regular updates as things progress.”

•       STEP is an ambitious programme to design and build a prototype fusion power plant;
•       It is a UKAEA programme, currently with £222m funding from the UK Government to produce a concept design by 2024: https://step.ukaea.uk/

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Re-opening of indoor hospitality and attractions at Milford Waterfront

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RESTAURANTS and indoor visitor attractions in Milford Waterfront are welcoming the return of indoor services from today.

The re-opening of indoor dining allows all restaurants at Milford Waterfront to seat customers indoors. As well as all restaurants on the Waterfront now being able to offer this service, the brand-new Foam Domes overlooking the Milford Haven Waterway are able to open, with bookings being taken from the 19th May.

Indoor visitor attractions are also allowed to re-open. This includes the Waterfront Gallery, which is open today and Phoenix Bowl & Pirate Pete’s Adventure Play which is making preparations to open from Wednesday 19th May. Also, Milford Museum, which has had a new rendered exterior finish, is preparing to open for the end of May.

Lucy Wonnacott, Marketing Manager for Milford Waterfront commented: “We are delighted to see the re-opening of indoor hospitality and visitor attractions here at Milford Waterfront. Each business has their own safety and social distancing measures in place and we kindly ask that you respect and adhere to these for your own safety, and that of others. We hope you enjoy your visit to Milford Waterfront and stay safe!”

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