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Neil Hamilton backs Going for Growth

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Going for Growth: Neil Hamilton

​NEIL HAMILTON, UKIP’s Group Leader in the Assembly and AM for Mid & West Wales is backing an initiative to help local food and drink businesses grow.

Next week, Food Centre Wales in Horeb, Ceredigion, will be hosting a ‘Going for Growth’ event to assist businesses in developing and reaching new markets.

Mr Hamilton, the party’s spokesman for Rural Affairs and the Environment, recently praised Welsh food and drink businesses for achieving success in national competitions.

He congratulated Pembrokeshire couple, Nick and Annette Tonkin of Coedcanlas, for winning the coveted Great Taste Golden Fork Award for the best food or drink from Wales with its organic Welsh blackcurrant jam.

He also praised two other businesses from his Region who were nominated, Powys based Monty’s Brewery with its Great Taste 3-star winning Monty’s Dark Secret and a Rack of Welsh Lamb by Brecon-based Welsh Venison Centre & Beacons Farm Shop.

Mr Hamilton said:​ “The demand for good local food has been steadily increasing as more and more people are keen to buy and eat local produce.

“I welcome events like ‘Going for Growth’ which will encourage and help small businesses to develop and become even more successful.

“I am delighted that local food and drink enterprises are receiving this kind of support and would encourage them to make every effort to attend the day at the Food Centre Wales on Tuesday October 10.”

The event will be opened by Rachel Rowlands, founder of the highly successful Rachel’s Organic who will be sharing her experience of growing a food business. Representatives from the Welsh Government will also be on hand to highlight the latest industry research data to help businesses identify potential growth areas for their business.

Also speaking will be Ruth Davies from Cwm Farm, who will talk about product development, supplying Selfridges and exporting; Andrew Martin from Welsh Government Food Division, who will give an insight into the Welsh food and drink industry; Morrison’s buyer, and Matt Trigg, who’ll be giving a talk about what they look for in food products and how to get onto their shelves.

Councillor Gareth Lloyd, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Economic and Community Development said:​ ​“To have such an experienced and successful group of businesses and local producers come together to offer their experiences, knowledge and advice, it will be an opportunity not to miss. We’re proud of the high standard of our locally produced food and drink within Ceredigion and are enthusiastic about how we can show support in local businesses to flourish.”

A lunch of locally produced food will be followed by an afternoon, offering optional 1-2-1 discussion slots with any of the food technologists and industry experts present at the event. There will also be a chance to take a tour of the research and development facilities at Food Centre Wales.

To book your place contact Food Centre Wales on 01559 362230 or email gen@foodcentrewales.org.uk.

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Man accused of sexually assaulting six-year-old girls

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A FORMER Penparcau man is to stand trial accused of sexually assaulting two six year old girls.

Raymond Albert Wardall, 55, now of Blaenllynant Lodge, Queens Road, Aberystwyth, appeared at Swansea Crown Court for a plea and trial preparation hearing before Judge Paul Thomas.

Wardall denied a total of eight charges of sexual assault and sexual touching.

He will stand trial on November 27 and was granted bail until then.

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Alerts issued ahead of Storm Brian

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NATURAL RESOURCE WALES (NRW) is warning people that parts of the Welsh coast could see localised flooding as Storm Brian combines with high tides this evening and tomorrow.

The conditions could cause a storm surge, which in some areas could lead to overtopping of sea defences. Current predictions show that the worst affected areas are likely to be along exposed sections of the west coast of Wales from Southern Gwynedd to Llantwit Major.

High tides in these locations are expected to peak between 6am and 11am tomorrow (Oct 21).

NRW has already issued a number of flood alerts for the west coast, and is likely to issue flood warnings for Aberystwyth and Newgale later today. Further alerts or warnings for other areas will be issued as necessary.

24/7 Emergency response workers from NRW will be out at key areas of the coast over the next couple of day to monitor the high tides and condition of its sea flood defences.

NRW has also contacted its partner agencies such as local councils and the emergency services to ensure that appropriate responses are in place should the need arise.

Richard Hancox, from Natural Resources Wales said: “Conditions across the coastline are likely to be extremely dangerous this weekend and we urge people to stay clear, and avoid visiting the coast during this time.

“We know people are tempted to try and take photos of these storms, but it really isn’t worth putting your life at risk. Sea spray and flood water can knock you off your feet easier than you might think, and the large waves can send debris flying onto shore.

“If anyone is concerned about the risk of flooding to their home, please check to see if flood warnings are available in your area, and visit our website for advice on how best to prepare.”

Flood alerts and flood warnings are updated on the Natural Resources Wales website every 15 minutes.

Information and updates are also available by calling Floodline on 0345 988 1188. People can also register for free flood warnings either by calling the Floodline number or at NRW’s website.

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​Major bequests for Aber research ​

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TWO major legacies to support postgraduate research have been announced at Aberystwyth University’s Founders’ Day held in the Old College on October 13.

The University revealed that Eleanor and David James had donated £2m to the institution where they both worked for 35 years, while former student Margaret Wooloff has bequeathed £400,000.

Both bequests will be used to fund postgraduate research at the University, in line with the wishes of the benefactors.

The legacies were announced as part of the University’s now annual Founders’ event, which echoes the celebrations held in the town back in October 1872 when the first students arrived at Old College.

The Vice-Chancellor of Aberystwyth University, Professor Elizabeth Treasure, said: “It is extremely fitting that these very special bequests have been the focal point of this year’s Founders’ Day event. They remind us how the University has been supported since its early beginnings by the generosity of the people of Wales and the wider world.

“Eleanor and David James, and Margaret Wooloff all dedicated their lives to the furtherance of knowledge and their valuable contributions to education in Wales will live on in their legacies. We owe them a huge debt of gratitude.”

The Director of Development and Alumni Relations at Aberystwyth University, Louise Jagger, said: “There is a very strong bond between the University and our family of alumni across the world. Eleanor and David James and Margaret Wooloff were all active members of the Old Students’ Association during their lives and we are immensely grateful to them for their support over the years. Their generous legacies will now enable the scholars of the future to pursue their particular fields of expertise and undertake research with impact, which is integral to our mission as a leading University.”

Members of the local community joined staff and students at the Old College to mark Founders’ Day.

The guest speaker at the event was Ceredigion MP Ben Lake who said: “The story of how Aberystwyth University – or the University College of Wales as it was originally called – is one in which we can all take pride as a nation. Driven by the vision of its founders, the dream of establishing a college with University status in Wales was made possible thanks to the generosity of ordinary people. The roots and foundations of the University reflect our values in Wales and it is vitally important that we commemorate and celebrate this very special heritage.

“May I take this opportunity to congratulate Aberystwyth on being named recently as the University of the Year for Teaching Quality by the Good University Guide – a well deserved accolade which is testament to the dedication of all its staff.”

In July 2017, the Heritage Lottery Fund announced that it had earmarked £10.5m for ambitious plans to redevelop Old College in time for the University’s 150th anniversary in 2022.

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