WHEN WE think ‘air pollution’, we might think exhaust fumes and cigarette smoke, but the fact is that many of the products we use in our homes to make them cleaner and smell better may also be making us ill.
Asthma, eczema, fertility issues, even heart problems and diseases such as cancer may be linked to products we use every day in our homes.
Those concerns led Llechryd-based businesswoman Karen Stinton to set up Ceredigion’s (and perhaps Wales) first all-natural environmentally friendly cleaning company: Busy Bee Natural Cleaning Company. And business is buzzing!
Although Karen had previously been cleaning homes and commercial premises using more conventional products, she has always had an interest in natural alternatives, and more recently, events in her personal life made her take a serious look at the chemicals that were in her home.
Karen explains: “My husband, Ian, had a double lung transplant last year which has made him susceptible to all sorts of illness and left him vulnerable to all kinds of pollution. Obviously, I wanted to make sure our home was as healthy as possible for him, and I began to look seriously at alternatives to the chemical cleaning products available in the supermarkets.”
Research into ‘old fashioned’ cleaning methods proved to Karen that chemical cleaning products weren’t necessary to have a clean, safe home: ingredients such as vinegar, bicarbonate of soda and lemon that were used by previous generations, can all be used to clean effectively without leaving harmful chemical residues in the atmosphere.
Encouraged by the results she was achieving at home with her natural cleaning solutions, Karen launched Busy Bee Natural Cleaning Company in October 2015 using the cleaning products she mixes at home from old family recipes. Since then, she has been inundated with requests for her cleaning services (and products). In fact, demand for her cleaning services has been so great, she has taken on 2 new members of staff.
As Karen tells us:
“I have been bowled over by how popular the natural cleaning services are proving – and it’s great to be able to employ more people in the area.
“ I think many people know that alternatives exist to conventional cleaning products but they either haven’t got time or are worried about getting it wrong.”
“With Busy Bee, we’ve been able to help people improve the atmosphere in their homes, while maintaining high standards of cleaning.”
Busy Bee Natural Cleaning Company is currently cleaning domestic and commercial premises in South Ceredigion/ North Pembrokeshire/West Carmarthenshire.
Proposed work on dangerous Dorglwyd Junction set to be delayed
ELIN JONES AM and Ben Lake MP have expressed their frustration following a recent statement from the Welsh Government noting that work on the A487 Dorglwyd junction from Comins Coch, would be delayed.
The junction has witnessed several crashes and close-calls over recent years, with local residents calling for the development of a roundabout or similar traffic-calming measures.
The Welsh Government announced in September 2016 that a feasibility study would be undertaken by the following Summer as to consider potential options to improve the junction.
However, a recent letter from Ken Skates AM, Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport to Elin Jones AM and Ben Lake MP noted: “We are aware of the issues at the junction and an improvement scheme has been within our upgrades programme for some time. Unfortunately, due to limited financial resources and competing priorities, it has progressed slowly.”
“We are currently reviewing the scope of a possible improvement and considering solutions which are affordable and minimise environmental impact. When we are in a position to present outline solutions, a workshop with local stakeholders will be held. This is likely to be in early 2019.”
Elin Jones AM said: “Whilst I do welcome such clarification from the Cabinet Secretary on the next steps for Dorglwyd junction, it is disappointing to read that no major works for the transformation will happen due to the expense of the project. It is positive however to see that a smaller scale improvement is now to be pursued, with consultation likely to be undertaken in early 2019.”
John Roberts, local Ceredigion County Councillor for Faenor ward, added: “I share both Elin Jones’ and Ben Lake’s disappointment at the response from Ken Skates AM. The original plan was to encapsulate a more global project including the Llanbadarn bypass therefore we need to be more realistic in our aspirations for Dorglwyd corner. Having discussed the project on site with both Elin Jones AM and Ben Lake MP last week we were of the opinion that a much smaller project which could solve the Dorglwyd issue was feasible and be much cheaper than the present scheme. We will wait for the consultation period in 2019.”
Museum lights up the past
CEREDIGION MUSEUM has had a full refurbishment of its lighting thanks to £116,558 of grants from Welsh Governments Museums Archives and Libraries Division and the Rural Community Development Fund.
Museum Curator, Carrie Canham, said: “Lighting has been a problem for us for some time; the system was so old that we couldn’t get new bulbs for some of the fittings. Also, we love to put on theatrical and musical performances at the museum but we couldn’t create an atmosphere with just strip lights and footlights. We’ve now got great stage and display lighting and it’s transformed the whole experience for our audiences.
“The new lighting system is all LED, so not only does it look much better it is also more suitable for the more delicate exhibits and it saves us money on our lighting bill.”
The lighting was designed and installed by DBNAudile, who specialise in museum lighting.
The team managed to install the system with minimal disruption to visitors.
KeolisAmey awarded Wales and Borders Rail contract
KEOLISAMEY is pleased that the Welsh Government has announced its intention to award the contract to operate the Wales and Borders rail service and the South Wales Metro to KeolisAmey.
Upon successful completion of a 10-day standstill period, the contract will run from June 4, 2018, to October 14, 2033, with rail services transferring on October 14, 2018.
This standstill period is normal procurement practice.
KeolisAmey is a joint venture partnership of international public transport operator Keolis, and infrastructure asset management specialist Amey.
KeolisAmey currently runs the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) in London, which has one of the best records in UK rail – consistently better than 99% reliability. Additionally, we operate and maintain Greater Manchester’s Metrolink – the largest tram network in the UK.
Alistair Gordon, Chief Executive of Keolis UK, said: “This will be a transformative new rail service for Wales and its borders which will see Keolis once more combine its worldwide expertise in passenger operations with Amey’s engineering excellence.
“We look forward to the successful completion of the procurement process – this exciting contract will deliver for all of Wales. The procurement process was rigorous, resulting in transformative solutions for the benefit of all in Wales, and indeed, future generations.
“While the proposed changes won’t happen overnight, the railway will be unrecognisable in five years thanks to the vision of the Welsh Government.”
Andy Milner, Amey’s Chief Executive, said: “Building on our successful partnership with Keolis, which already sees us deliver two high performing services – the Greater Manchester Metrolink and London’s DLR – we are honoured to be asked to operate the Wales and Borders service.
“This is a great opportunity for us to use our joint capabilities to deliver a first-rate service for Wales. We will be focused on working with Transport for Wales to transform the existing infrastructure and introduce new trains to significantly improve the passenger experience, as well as creating hundreds of new jobs and apprenticeship opportunities.”
KeolisAmey is unable to make any further comment until the procurement process has concluded and the contract has been awarded.
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