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MP supports bowel cancer screening petition

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BEN LAKE MP for Ceredigion supported Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer to hand in a petition started by Lauren Backler, calling for the bowel cancer screening age to be lowered from 60 to 50, in line with Scotland and international best practice. The petition has been signed by more than 445,000 people.

Lauren, 27 from Eastbourne, started the petition in honour of her mum who sadly died from the disease at 56 years old. Ben Lake MP joined Lauren along with MPs from across the political divide. They were also accompanied by supporters of the charity that were diagnosed with bowel cancer in their 50s or those that have lost loved ones from the disease after being diagnosed in their 50s.

Currently, people registered with a GP and aged 60-74 in Wales, Northern Ireland and England will receive a bowel cancer screening test in the post every two years. In Scotland, people aged 50 – 74 are invited to be screened.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in Wales. Every year more than 2,200 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer in Wales and over 900 people die from the disease.

In the UK, around 4,500 people are diagnosed with the disease aged 50-59 and just over 1,200 die from the disease in this age group every year.

Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer are calling for additional NHS staff and resources to deal with the increase demand on services this would cause in endoscopy and pathology. Including rolling out the already-delayed faecal immunochemical test, known as FIT, which is easier to complete, and provides a more accurate bowel cancer screening result.

The Welsh Government have confirmed that they will replace the current screening test with the FIT test from 2019, but have not yet committed to lowering the bowel cancer screening age to 50.

Ben Lake MP said: “Screening is the best way to diagnose bowel cancer early when it’s easier to treat, and as such I am proud to be supporting this campaign. This an initiative that could save hundreds of lives and I am committed to helping make this a reality for people in Wales.”

Asha Kaur, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Ben Lake for supporting our call for an equitable bowel cancer screening service across the UK. We must do more to save lives from bowel cancer, after all it’s preventable, treatable and curable if diagnosed early. We urgently need an optimal bowel cancer screening programme that includes lowering the screening age to 50 years old and implementing FIT at a sensitive level.”

 

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Police call for vigilance to report illegal raves

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE is asking farmers and local landowners to be on the alert over the next few months for warning signs of any illegal gatherings planned for their land over the summer.

Gatherings – such as illegal raves – can cause considerable anxiety to the community and if they are not dealt with swiftly, they are difficult to stop or otherwise control, due often to the sheer numbers of persons involved and the safety aspects surrounding breaking up such an event.

Superintendent Robyn Mason said: “There is little doubt that these type of events are very well planned, organised and that local knowledge is important in drawing down the main group to a particular ‘vulnerable’ field, or area of land which has been targeted previously as a suitable venue.

“Farmers, landowners and local communities are encouraged to report any suspicious activity immediately to the Police; this may be an unusual numbers of vehicles, especially camper vans, vans or trucks in the locality, illegal trespassers who may be doing ‘recce’ of sites in advance of the event.

“I can assure local communities that Police will take the appropriate action to deter illegal gatherings and deal robustly with any criminal offences discovered or disclosed.”  

Members of the public are also urged to be vigilant of persons who approach landowners or enquiring for land, in the guise of hiring for apparently acceptable activities such as gymkhanas and scouts/guides events.

Please contact Police on 101 with reports on any suspicious activity.

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Wheelchair-bound man jailed for child sex offences

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A CHILD sex offender from Ystrad Meurig has been jailed despite being wheelchair-bound.

Dean Harper, aged 61, had distributed child pornography and tried to entice a 10-year-old girl into sexually abusing herself and sending him photographs.

Harper, of Sisial y Pin, Ffair Rhos, admitted downloading 317 indecent images of children in the most serious category A, 400 in category B and 500 in C.

He also admitted sending images in all three categories to a third party, all on a single day in October, 2016.

Harper also admitted attempting to incite the girl into sexual activity knowing that she was only 10-years-old.

Kevin Jones, prosecuting, told Swansea Crown Court that the distribution of the images alerted the police who raided Harper’s home and removed computer equipment.

An examination of his internet activity revealed he had made contact with a girl via social media and swapped messages with her.

The judge, Mr Recorder Peter Griffiths told Harper his offending was serious and a jail sentence was inevitable despite his disability.

Harper was jailed for a total of two years and ordered to register with the police as a sex offender for 10 years.

He was also made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order which will restrict his contact with young people and his internet activity after his release from prison.

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Royals set to visit Ceredigion during summer visit

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AS PART of their annual summer visit to Wales, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will be visiting Ceredigion next month.

From July 2-6, Charles and Camilla will tour the country, undertaking over 20 engagements across the country.

On July 3, The Prince of Wales will visit Dà Mhìle Distillery, Llandysul, the first organic distillery in the UK approved by the Soil Association, where he was previously gifted the thousandth bottle to be produced by Dà Mhìle.

The Prince of Wales will also visit St. Gwenog’s Church, Llanwenog, and view their unique carvings created by Joseph Reubens, a Belgian World War One refugee. His Royal Highness will also meet members of their local community.

The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall’s fourteenth annual Summer visit to Wales will feature celebrations to mark the 70th Anniversary of The National Health Service and the marking the 150th anniversary of the Heart of Wales railway line amongst other events.

A Clarence House spokesperson said: “The Prince and The Duchess are really looking forward to their annual summer visit to Wales where they will be celebrating key anniversaries for the National Health Service, the Heart of Wales railway line and the 90th anniversary of Gwent Association of Voluntary Organisation. Their Royal Highnesses relish the opportunity to meet members of the community who are making a difference to Welsh life.”

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