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Two hundred at County Hall Bryn protest

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Two hundred people attended a protest at County Hall

Two hundred people attended a protest at County Hall

A PROTEST by local union members at Pembrokeshire County Council has been held at County Hall, Haverfordwest. The unions say they are protesting at leadership under Mr Parry-Jones, the chief executive.

The unions are also calling for the council CEO to be suspended while Gloucester police investigate his pension arrangements.

Unison branch secretary Vic Dennis told The Herald: “We organised a ballot very quickly, as a result of the reopening of the police investigation, and within a week we got over a 50% return on the ballot, during a peak holiday period, and 98% of those that returned said they had no confidence in the chief officer of this council.”

He added: “We want the county council to deal with what’s happening at the top fairly and equitably, the same as all our members who come to work every day, We expect fairness. We’re not looking for special treatment.”

Around two hundred people took part in the protest. A number of councillors were present  including, Cllrs Paul Miller, Jonathan Nutting, Reg Owens, Rhys Sinnet, Alison Lee, Gwilym Price, Tony Wilcox and Stephen Joseph.

Asked why he was out supporting the protest, Cllr Tony Wilcox said: “I’m out here with a few hundred people because it’s time for a change. It seems hard to believe that a guy, who is in complete control of everything, can be responsible for nothing at all when it goes wrong.”

He added: “The very least he should do is stand down voluntarily until such as time as the enquiry has run its course. The Carmarthen chief executive did stand down but ours never did and he’s not going to now, he’s just completely immune and out of touch with everything. This is Pembrokeshire sadly; it’s not a nice place to be. We’re losing staff left right and centre for all sorts of reasons”.

Cllr Gwilym Price told The Herald: “I feel very strongly that Bryn Parry-Jones should have been listening to the people a long time ago and listening to us councillors that he has the moral duty to stand aside whilst he’s being investigated and that he should pay back the money.

“At a time of austerity when our people, our workers, who work very hard, had to lose money, anything up to £5000, it’s a bit obscene for him to collect all that money and have a huge amount of money to defend his position which we fought was really untenable.

“Most of all, this is my opportunity to say what I really feel about the people who are supporting him, these are elected members, I’m an elected member and I hope that I’m honest enough to represent my constituents, but as long as we have the IPG group who are like nodding donkeys, who will support the Bryn Parry-Jones’ of this world, then he is sitting pretty.

“He’s got a little cocoon around him, he tells them what to say and they say it and they vote that way and I find that disgusting. I have as much disgust for those for keeping him there as I do for the man who is taking this money”.

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Port boss: Pembroke Dock development full permission an ‘important step’

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THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE of the Port of Milford Haven has welcomed a decision of “non-intervention” by the Welsh Government over plans to re-vamp Pembroke Dock’s historic port facilities.

The redevelopment scheme, approved by Pembrokeshire County Council’s Planning Committee in May, will see some areas such as a dock covered with sand and “infilled”.

Plans also include the demolishing of some buildings, erection of buildings and ancillary works.
Despite planning being granted at council level, full authorisation to go ahead with the development was not to be issued until the Welsh Government made its decision regards the matter.

More about the planning application can be read here: https://www.herald.wales/west-wales/pembrokeshire/major-marine-project-causes-concern-about-visual-impact-and-heritage-loss/

Now that the Welsh Government has decided not to interfere with Pembrokeshire County Council’s grant of planning permission, the Port’s boss, Andy Jones, expressed his delight, saying: “This marks an important step forward in the development of Wales’ clean energy centre at Pembroke Dock.

“It will provide sustainable opportunities for the many people who rely on the activity along the Milford Haven Waterway for employment.

CEO: Port Authority’s Andy Jones (Pic MHPA)

“Pembroke Dock Marine will unlock new opportunities for young people to enter the maritime, renewable and engineering sectors, build resilience within Pembrokeshire’s business community, and make a positive contribution to our natural environment as we transition to a low carbon energy generation.”

Tim James, head of commercial and energy at the Port of Milford Haven called the project a “once in a generation opportunity to improve Pembrokeshire’s economy for years to come”.

Objectors had complained that the plans were too large and would damage the historic dockyard, as well as having a visual impact on the dock.

The was opposition from local heritage campaigners, with complaints over the size of two huge proposed hangars which the project’s critics said would impact adversely the landscape.

The economic benefits of the £60 million marine energy “far outweigh” any impact on the historic environment, a report earlier this year to council planners said.

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Medical evacuation from LPG tanker off St Ann’s Head

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ANGLE Lifeboat was launched on service at 12:59pm on Thursday afternoon (Jun 10) to assist in a medical evacuation from a LPG tanker 13 miles SSW off St Ann’s Head.

The coastguard helicopter from Newquay in Cornwall was also on route. With the poor visibility due to fog, Angle all-weather lifeboat was to stand by the vessel to provide an alternative route for evacuation if needed.

After a choppy route in the poor visibility the RNLI volunteers arrived on scene at 2:07pm.

At the time of their arrival, the paramedic from the coastguard helicopter was aboard the vessel preparing the casualty to be winched to the helicopter.

In less than ten minutes the casualty was winched up to the helicopter and flown to hospital, at which point the lifeboat and crews were stood down and headed back to the station.

After rehousing shortly after 3:30pm the lifeboat was washed fuelled and made ready for service shortly after.

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Milford Haven child sex offender Colin Sharpe jailed for 10 years

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A MILFORD HAVEN child abuser sat crying in court as details of his four-year long abuse of a schoolgirl were read out.

Colin Sharpe’s teenage victim says she is now “plagued by nightmares” that he will return and abuse her again, Swansea Crown Court heard.

Sharpe, 40, of Howarth Close was told by Judge Paul Thomas QC at Swansea Crown Court that “Your only concern was your own selfish sexual pleasure.”

The court heard that after the matter was reported to police and officers began a search for tSharpe. He was found in his vehicle in a car park at St Ann’s Head.

The court was told that police used their car to block Sharpe’s exist from the car park but he “sped off” across the grass towards the cliff edge before crashing into a fence.

The defendant abandoned his vehicle and made off on foot to the clifftop. A standoff then developed during which police brought in a specialist negotiator to talk him down.

After a lengthy negotiation Sharpe was arrested.

Passing sentence, the judge told Sharpe: “You had no concern for the psychological damage you did.”

He added: “But it is to your credit that you immediately admitted what you had done; this had saved his victim the further ordeal of giving evidence in a trial.

Judge Paul Thomas jailed Sharpe for 10 years and imposed an indefinite order requiring him to sign the sexual offences register on release.

Sharpe will now be subject to an indefinite sexual harm prevention order and an indefinite restraining order when he is released.

As The Herald previously reported, Sharpe, who has been on remand since March, admitted one charge of sexual assault and five of sexual activity with a child, all between July 2017 and March 2021.

Police were informed about the sexual abuse by a third party, who discovered what he had done, and he was arrested and questioned early last year.

Earlier, Ian Wright, counsel for the CPS said that Sharpe used “emotional blackmail to frighten the girl into staying silent”.

He added “Matters seem to have come to a head on March 12 this year after Sharpe had once again sexually abused his victim.”

Dean Pulling, defending, said that when the police interviewed Sharpe he gave ‘guilty pleas and admissions’ at the earliest opportunity.

Excerpts from a personal victim statement highlighting the ongoing ordeal of Sharpe’s teenage victim were also read out in court.

“I am having nightmares,” the statement reads.

“I have nightmares of him coming back from prison and starting to do worse. My life has been greatly affected.”

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