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Welsh Water investment to support customers and environmental improvements



CUSTOMERS and the environment are set to benefit from major initiatives by Welsh Water, made possible by its not-for-profit business model.

As cost-of-living pressure increases and with its focus on reducing any adverse impact on the environment, the company is taking steps to take full advantage of its unique operating model to support its household customers and the environment.

Welsh Water, which already provides financial support to a larger number of customers, proportionate to the company’s size, than any other water company in England and Wales, has confirmed that it will:

maintain its range of support measures to help customers manage their bills such as payment holidays, flexible payment plans, and advice on simple ways to reduce water use
invest £12million to expand the financial support to an extra 50,000 households either through its “social tariffs” scheme or a new community fund
launch a pilot of the community fund in January 2023 to target customers who are struggling with household bills but are ineligible for benefits and, therefore, Welsh Water’s social tariffs.
The role that the company plays in protecting river water quality has come under increased focus over the past year, with Welsh Water already investing heavily to reduce its phosphate contribution to rivers. The company has already committed to investing £833 million to improve its wastewater assets, particularly Combined Storm Overflows (CSOs), on sensitive rivers between 2020 and 2025 and has also announced an additional £100 million investment to help protect river water quality.

This further investment allows the company to accelerate plans to install more phosphate removal plants at wastewater treatment works (£60 million) and to reduce the impact of CSOs – particularly those which are located along Special Areas of Conservation (SAC) rivers (£40 million). This will mean investing in its key assets at sites such as the Menai Strait (£10 million), Brecon
(£6 million), Monmouth (£2 million) Trebanos (£2 million) as well as Llanybydder, Lampeter, Wolfscastle, Corwen, Llanfoist and Letterston (£20 million). It will also enable more nature-based solutions to be developed to help improve river quality. On, for example, the river Wye the company is working with the Wye & Usk Foundation and Hereford Council to support additional phosphorus removal using natural treatment through a low carbon wetland system which will also enhance local biodiversity.

Cllr Liz Harvey, Deputy Leader of Herefordshire Council said: “The close collaborative working with Welsh Water and the Wye and Usk Foundation is slowly getting housebuilding in the county moving again and making a contribution to improving our rivers too.”

This announcement of funding to support vulnerable customers and protect the environment comes as the company reports on its half year results. Despite the wider challenges facing the economy, the company has maintained a strong performance. This has included continuing to invest just over £1 million per day on improvements to its water and wastewater networks.

The company has also confirmed that it is working on a scheme to support its employees through the cost-of-living crisis and has already implemented the increase to the Real Living Wage for all affected employees.

Glas Cymru Chairman, Alastair Lyons, said: “Our non-shareholder business model sets us apart from the other water companies in England & Wales and it is important that we demonstrate how it provides tangible benefit to our customers. I am, therefore, very pleased that not needing to reward shareholders makes it possible for us to announce this additional investment to benefit our customers and the environment. This builds on the millions of pounds our model has already allowed us to invest to help keep bills affordable for customers and deliver essential investment schemes to improve services for customers and mitigate the impact of our operations on the environment”.

Welsh Water Chief Executive, Peter Perry, said: “The current financial crisis is understandably a worrying time and will mean that more customers will find themselves in a situation where they struggle to pay their bills. With the goal of earning the trust of our customers, we know that we have an important role to play here which is why we are going to be supporting even more customers in this time of need. Our advice to customers is to contact us the moment the bill becomes a worry so that we can look how we can provide support to alleviate this concern.

“Equally as important is that we redouble our efforts to protect the environment, particularly river water quality. With expectations changing, more needs to be done, especially to reduce the impact of CSOs. Removing them from our sewerage system altogether is not an option but what is in our control is the ability to target investment at those CSOs which have the biggest impact so that we can improve their performance and river water quality. The extra £100 million will enable us to bring forward investment schemes to help achieve this and will build on the £833 million we are already investing in our wastewater network through to 2025.”

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Welsh craft activities, singing, games, story time and Sion Corn at Crymych Library



CHRISTMAS celebrations will be starting early this year at Crymych Library.

On the morning of Saturday, December 10, from 10.30 am, there will be a morning of Welsh Language craft activities, singing and games for young children at the library.

There will also be a Welsh Language story time session at the library from 11.30am.

As well as the fun, there will also be a chance to meet a very special visitor, Sion Corn, before he gets busy with his Christmas deliveries.

If you’d like to join the fun, please register in advance by e-mailing

Hurry, as spaces are limited.

Crymych Library is located on the Ysgol Bro Preseli campus in Crymych.

The library is open for seven hours a week on Tuesdays and Fridays from 4-6 pm and on Saturday mornings from 10am. to 1pm. For more information, please contact the library on (01239) 832092.

This event is being organised in conjunction with Menter Iaith Preseli and is funded by the Welsh Government.

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Park Authority sponsorship boost for Boxing Day Swim’s belated half century



PEMBROKSEHIRE Coast National Park Authority says that it is delighted to be one of the main sponsors of this year’s Tenby Boxing Day Swim.

The popular event will mark its belated 50th anniversary this year, after Covid-19 enforced cancellations of the event in 2020 and 2021.

Chair of Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, Di Clements said: “The Authority is delighted to be helping this well-supported community event celebrate its half-century landmark, especially as the National Park celebrates its own notable 70-year milestone this year.

“We hope this support will help raise much needed funds for a range of local causes, recognise the efforts of the brave participants and link to the Authority’s wider winter of well-being support programme, helping communities across the Park to stay well this winter.”

Chairman of the Tenby Sea Swimming Association, Chris Osborne added: “The swim’s stunning location on Tenby’s North Beach calls for continuing collaboration between community events organisers, like Tenby Sea Swimming Association, and environmental custodians such as the Park Authority.

“These joint anniversaries, and this generous sponsorship for which we are very grateful, are a choice way of celebrating this partnership.”

The 2022 Tenby Boxing Day Swim is raising money for the Tenby Memory Café, the Dai Rees Foundation, Tenby RNLI and the Paul Sartori Foundation.

Swimmers are asked to register online and make a small donation to help cover the cost of organising the event, which will ensure more of the sponsorship money raised goes to the chosen good causes.

For further information, visit, or follow Tenby Boxing Day Swim on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.


Caption: National Park Authority Chair, Cllr Di Clements with Tenby Sea Swimming Association Chairman, Chris Osborne.

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Pair of Pembrokeshire convenience stores sold to experienced retailers through Christie Co



SPECIALIST business property adviser, Christie & Co has successfully completed the sale of two convenience stores: County Stores and Bargain Booze in Pembrokeshire, South Wales.

Operated by Filji Varghese since 2008 and 2012 respectively, the two sites have been purchased by expanding retailers, Kishore Manikonda and Saritha Ravilla who have exciting plans for the businesses.

County Stores is centrally located in the county town of Haverfordwest, close to the main train station, and draws most of its trade from the many surrounding residential and commercial properties. Operated under Premier branding, the store is also within close distance to Haverfordwest Castle, and benefits from the tourist trade throughout the year.

Bargain Booze is ideally located in the centre of Pembroke Dock, with good access to the town’s main train station, and benefits from the high footfall of the busy street. The business is well established, and its wide range of traditional convenience items and alcohol selection ensures loyal, repeat trade from the local residents.

Previous owner, Filgi Varghese comments on the sale, “I have thoroughly enjoyed serving the local community and I am grateful for all their support. In that time, my staff have been brilliant, and I wish them well moving forward with the new owners. Christie & Co was professional and proactive throughout the process, and I would highly recommend speaking with them if you are considering selling your retail business.”

New owners, Kishore Manikonda and Saritha Ravilla comment, “We are very pleased with the purchase of these fantastic stores. We will continue to operate the business as Premier and Bargain Booze branded stores but change the trading name as ANANNYA STORES. We have plans to do a complete refit in the near future to modernise the businesses, as well as extending the opening hours and introducing new products for the local community.

“This is the fourth business we have purchased through Christie and Co, and we are very grateful for their help in ensuring the process went through smoothly.”

Joe Brayne, Business Agent at Christie & Co who handled the sale, adds, “The two stores have been operated successfully for a number of years and presented an ideal opportunity for Kishore and Saritha to add to their growing portfolio. I am sure they will make a success of both businesses and we wish Filgi all the best with his future plans.”

County Stores and Bargain Booze were sold for an undisclosed price.

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