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Crabb selected as Conservative candidate in new Mid and South Pembs seat

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STEPHEN CRABB the current MP for Preseli Pembrokeshire has been selected in a meeting held on Friday (26 Jan) by Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion Conservative Federation to stand as the local Welsh Conservative candidate at the next general election.

With major changes to existing parliamentary seat boundaries taking effect at the next general election, Crabb will now enter the contest hoping to secure a majority in the new Mid and South Pembrokeshire seat.

Stephen is an influential local and national political figure and has served his home constituency since winning in 2005. He increased his majority at the last election in 2019 securing a majority of 5,062. He has served as Secretary of State for Wales, and is currently Chair of the Welsh Affairs Select Committee which cross-examines ministers on the impact of Government spending and policies on Wales. He has recently led inquiries into the scandal of sewage pollution in Wales and the problems at Welsh broadcaster S4C. Stephen has a reputation at Westminster for being able to work across party lines and build effective teams.

Growing up in Haverfordwest, Stephen benefitted from being part of a close-knit community, received an excellent education at Tasker Milward School, and had the security of living in good quality Council housing in Portfield Avenue. A keen sportsman, Stephen captained Tasker Milward 1st XV and represented the County at every age group until he left school. Stephen went on to achieve a first class degree at Bristol University. Stephen has always been grateful to have grown up in Pembrokeshire and has brought his passion for his home county to his work over the past 18 years.

Stephen Crabb MP said: “I am delighted to be selected as the Welsh Conservative Candidate for the new Mid and South Pembrokeshire seat. It’s been a huge privilege to represent my home constituency of Preseli Pembrokeshire at Westminster since 2005, and I am thrilled to have been given the opportunity to seek re-election. I have a strong record of action and delivery for residents in Preseli Pembrokeshire and I look forward to continuing this work and building on it in South Pembrokeshire.”

“Pembrokeshire is a fabulous place to live and grow up, and I want it to stay that way. We face some big challenges that require real knowledge, local experience and a ‘Team Pembrokeshire’ approach. That is what motivates me.”

“I will continue to work closely with both our local MS’s Paul Davies and Sam Kurtz, and, of course, my good friend Simon Hart who continues to be the MP for Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire as well as our fantastic group of Conservative Councillors to keep delivering results as we build towards a general election.”

Paul Davies MS for Preseli Pembrokeshire said: “I am delighted that Stephen has been adopted as the Welsh Conservative candidate for the upcoming General Election. I’ve had the privilege of working with Stephen for many years now and his commitment to the people of Pembrokeshire is second to none.”

“He’s a man of Pembrokeshire, who fights for Pembrokeshire – and he has worked tirelessly over the years to support local people, businesses, and organisations. He has a record of delivery in supporting constituents on their personal journeys, showing leadership throughout the covid pandemic by bringing together organisations through roundtable discussions, and advocating for Pembrokeshire businesses – whether that’s championing our fantastic farmers, anchoring support for the Celtic Freeport or working with our small businesses.”

“Stephen has my full support and I look forward to campaigning with him.”

Mike Bryan, Chair of Pembrokeshire Conservatives said: “I am pleased that Stephen has been selected to fight the new Mid and South Pembrokeshire seat Having campaigned with Stephen at every election since 2001, I know what an excellent servant he has been to Pembrokeshire. He is local, understands local issues and is a part of our community. We have a challenging campaign ahead, but I am convinced that we have right person to continue to put Pembrokeshire first.”

Sam Kurtz, MS for Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire said: “Having worked closely with Stephen for nearly 8 years, I know of his dedicated commitment to Pembrokeshire and its people.”

“As a Member of Parliament, Stephen has long championed our local industries, from farming to tourism and those on the Haven Waterway.”

“Stephen has also stood shoulder to shoulder with constituents and communities who needed his support and has a track record to be proud of.”

“I’m thrilled that Stephen is our candidate for Mid and South Pembrokeshire, and I look forward working alongside him in championing Pembrokeshire in a positive General Election campaign.”

Photo above: Stephen Crabb MP has been selected to stand as the Welsh Conservative candidate in the Mid and South Pembrokeshire seat at the next General Election.

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Community

Pembrokeshire’s ‘Pure West Radio’ celebrates sixth birthday

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THERE ain’t no birthday like a Pure West birthday! 

Pure West Radio – Pembrokeshire’s multi-award-winning radio station is celebrating its sixth birthday this month – and is ready to move up a gear when it starts broadcasting on DAB later this summer. 

Pure West, which now has a staff of 12, and a team of over 90 volunteers bringing news, sport, entertainment and information to the airwaves of Pembrokeshire, celebrated its sixth anniversary on April 4 – and decided to share its celebrations with its loyal listeners – giving no fewer than 1,100 of them free tickets to some top local events. 

For the Pure West Team the birthday was marked with a staff party at Seven Spice in Haverfordwest – but for listeners the treats were more varied. 

Pure West Radio joined forces with Ocky White Travel – itself celebrating a 60th anniversary – to give away a cruise holiday to one lucky winner. On April 3 nurse Ffion Thomas, from Johnston, was announced as the winner of the seven-day P&O cruise to the Norwegian Fjords. She is taking her mum along with her as a 60th birthday treat when the Iona sets sail from Southampton on May 18. 

And the giveaways didn’t stop there… Mark Edwards kindly shared 100 free tickets for a celebratory Silent Disco at Eddie Rocks, in Haverfordwest, that were snapped up within an hour – so a hundred more were released; Pure West Radio also teamed up with Hangar 5, also in Haverfordwest, and offered two one-hour free bounces for listeners, but again demand far outweighed expectations, so another hour’s bounce was provided. 

In addition, Pure West Radio joined forces with The Palace Cinema, in Haverfordwest, for a free showing of Shrek – the Movie – but, yet again, a second showing had to be booked to accommodate all those who wanted tickets. 

And sports fans haven’t been left out of the party – Haverfordwest County AFC, media partners of Pure West, have supplied 100 free tickets for the Bluebrids final home game of the season against Colwyn Bay to the broadcaster’s listeners. 

“Our birthday celebrations were immense,” said Toby Ellis, Station Manager, “We gave away 1,100 free tickets to local events to make sure our dedicated listeners and followers were able to join in the party… putting a smile on the faces of more than a thousand Pembrokeshire people. 

“And while the birthday celebrations are winding down – Pure West Radio – the only radio station based in Pembrokeshire – is gearing up for the next phase in our story. 

“The licence for DAB broadcasting is in place – and we hope to go live within the next few months. 

“We’ve expanded our staff and are currently looking for a full-time show producer – so anyone interested should email [email protected] to find out more, and we have some new sponsors – Ocky White Travel is now the official sponsor of Pure West’s daytime show and Folly Farm sponsors the breakfast show. 

“And we’ve teamed up with yet more Pembrokeshire businesses who are taking advantage of our huge reach to spread their message across the county. 

“There really is something for everyone on Pure West Radio – tune in via app, smart speaker and check out our website for the latest going on in Pembrokeshire, he added.” 

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Crime

Suspended sentence for distribution and possession of child abuse images

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IN a controversial decision at Swansea Crown Court, 20-year-old Euwyn Draper of Goat Street, Haverfordwest, has been spared prison time despite admitting to possessing and distributing indecent images of children.

The court heard that Draper pleaded guilty to charges involving 74 Category A images — the most severe — along with 102 Category B and 385 Category C images. These were amassed and shared over a period last year, with specific distributions occurring on November 4, 2022.

Prosecutor Sian Cutter detailed that the investigation began with a raid at Draper’s residence on December 21, 2022. Although Draper was not present, and initial searches of his devices at his home returned no results, subsequent actions led to his arrest at his workplace. Upon confronting law enforcement, Draper immediately acknowledged his awareness of the reasons for their presence, lamenting, “I know why you’re here. I don’t do it anymore. I’m sorry.”

Further examination of his phone revealed not only the indecent images but also concerning internet searches and conversations indicating a focus on children. Notably, Draper had sent one image of each category to a contact named “Ralph” via WhatsApp.

Despite these admissions, Draper, who has no prior convictions, denied a sexual interest in children during his interview.

Representing Draper, defence lawyer Dan Griffiths stressed the defendant’s recognition of the gravity of his offences and highlighted his client’s age and immaturity at the time of the offences. The court also considered the prolonged period since the arrest to the trial, a span of 16 months.

Judge Geraint Walters addressed the court, underscoring the public’s disdain for such crimes and the harsh reality behind the images. “These are real children, they are not actors,” Judge Walters emphasized, condemning the market that drives such exploitative material.

Ultimately, Draper received a suspended sentence of 12 months for distribution and six months, concurrent, for making the images. Over the next two years, he must complete the Horizon programme and 30 days of rehabilitation activities. Additionally, Draper will be registered as a sex offender and is subject to a sexual harm prevention order for ten years.

Judge Walters concluded with a stern admonition for Draper to commit to rehabilitation and to move past this “dark phase” in his life, marking a pivotal moment for the young defendant and the community’s ongoing battle against such digital crimes.

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Community

The Harbourmaster: Special rail excursion draws crowds to Milford Haven

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MILFORD HAVEN witnessed an extraordinary event yesterday as a special charter train, operated by UK Railtours, made a unique visit to the town, drawing in 500 railway enthusiasts. Departing from London Paddington, the 13-carriage train, which included both first class and standard accommodations, travelled off the usual passenger routes to provide a scenic journey along the south Wales coast.

Starting the day with pick-ups from various locations including Slough, Reading, Swindon, and Bristol Parkway, the train ventured through the Severn Tunnel into Wales, showcasing a series of rarely used freight tracks. Notably, the locomotive switched at Newport to a pair of GBRf Class 66 freight engines, enhancing the experience for those on board by traversing tracks seldom seen by passenger services.

The journey took passengers through Cardiff, Bridgend, and Port Talbot Parkway, deviating at Court Sart Junction to follow the diversionary Swansea District line. The train paused at various locations including Llanelli and Haverfordwest, where passengers enjoyed a 90-minute break while the train was serviced.

A major highlight of the trip was the exploration of the seldom-visited Robeston branch, a treat for the rail enthusiasts who filled the train to capacity, necessitating a waiting list for hopeful travellers. The venture concluded at Milford Haven, where passengers disembarked for a photo session before the train commenced its return journey to London, including a final scenic pass via the Swansea Avoiding line and the Bishton flyover.

Local Councillor Nicola Harteveld of Milford Haven Town Council expressed delight at the influx of visitors, noting, “What an incredible sight at Milford Waterfront today with passengers enjoying our local scenery. It’s a testament to the unique charm and appeal of special rail tours.”

First class passengers were treated to The Great British Breakfast and a four-course dinner, while a buffet car served those in standard class, ensuring all passengers enjoyed their journey with comfort and style.

This tour, fully booked in all classes, underscores the continuing enthusiasm for unique rail experiences in the UK, combining a love for heritage rail with the exploration of less-travelled tracks. As the train made its way back to London Paddington, the participants reflected on a day filled with adventure and picturesque landscapes, leaving them with memories of a rare rail journey along the historic and scenic routes of Wales.

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