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Programme of activities completed over summer

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A COMPREHENSIVE summer programme of activities was delivered over five weeks of the summer holidays by Ceredigion Youth Service. Workshops, activities, day trips, events and projects were organised and delivered to young people aged 11 to 25 from across the county.

This year’s provision focused on topics such as employability and upskilling, health and well-being, participation, integration, sport and leisure and the environment. Young people had the opportunity to develop new and existing skills such as self-esteem, confidence, communication and problem solving, all in non-formal, fun environments where they were able to meet new people, gain accreditation and try out exciting activities.

Principal Youth Officer for Ceredigion Youth Service, Gethin Jones, said, “This year the Summer Programme has proved a big success again. We have been able to continue to offer both targeted and open access opportunities for young people during school holidays, as well as term time so that support and engagement are available to young people throughout the year. The programme offered a range of fantastic opportunities for young people from all across the county to get involved with. Now that the Autumn term has started, we welcome young people back to our term-time sessions at our youth clubs across the county. We’ll have open access provision to a range of activities so make sure that you pop in to see what’s on offer.”

The summer programme included water sports activity days, an upskilling and employability programme, mountain biking, pottery, pizza making, a nature activity day, an international exchange trip to Italy and a visit to Chester Zoo.

Councillor Catrin Miles, Cabinet Member responsible for Learning Services, Lifelong Learning and Leisure said, “It’s positive to hear that the summer programme of events was a success and clearly beneficial to our young people over the summer period. It’s a credit to Ceredigion that we have a quality youth service which is inclusive to all young people aged between 11 and 25. With the delivery of such a variety of activities, there is something to suit everyone with Ceredigion Youth Service.”

To find out more about what Ceredigion Youth Service has to offer, visit their website at www.giceredigionys.co.uk, social media pages @GICeredigionYS or get in touch on 01545 572352 or youth@ceredigion.gov.uk.

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All four nations must have a say on farm funding, Ben Lake MP

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PLAID MP calls for legal guarantees that Welsh farming will have a say in post-Brexit funding decisions.

Ben Lake MP has called for an equal say for Wales in any decisions on post-Brexit farm funding.

Mr Lake made the call in his submission to the Bew Review, which is looking into how agriculture will be funded if the UK leaves the EU. The call for evidence for the Review closed this week.

Mr Lake called for a new body to oversee agriculture spending, that would ensure each of the four nations would have an equal say on farm funding going forward.

Agriculture policy is currently almost entirely set at a devolved or European level. The European Union Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), for example, sets out the financial frameworks for food production. The devolved governments – and the UK Government on behalf of England – are then responsible for the administration of funding.

If the UK leaves the EU, a new mechanism for deciding the size and allocation of agriculture funding within the UK will have to be created.

The UK Government has already conceded that any future funding allocation should not be determined by the Barnet Formula – the population based funding calculation used to decide how much devolved government receive from the UK Treasury. Wales has significantly higher rates of employment and productive farmland in proportion to its population size.

Mr Lake has suggested that an amendment be included in the Agriculture Bill to create an intergovernmental agency and framework as a way of ensuring not only that Wales gets its fair share of UK funding, but also that multi-annual frameworks can be introduced.

Ben Lake MP said:

“I hope the Bew Review is the first step to a sensible proposal for agriculture funding if the UK leave the EU.

“Throughout the Brexit process, Wales has been ignored. Wales is only talked about by the UK Government when they want to take powers away or renege on promises of funding. That is why we need a legal lock on our say in farm funding post-Brexit.

“In this most crucial of sectors, Wales must have an equal say when discussing future funding models. If these frameworks are to be sustainable, they need to be the products of joint agreement. At present there is no appropriate body to oversee the policies in the four nations of the UK, and neither is there a dispute mechanism that is trusted by the four administrations and the four industries.

“Welsh farmers were promised not a penny less and I will keep fighting their corner in Westminster until that is confirmed in law.”

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RSPCA Cymru launch information appeal after shetland pony found with overgrown hooves

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RSPCA CYMRU is appealing for information after a shetland pony – believed to have been abandoned – was found in a poor condition, with severely overgrown hooves near Aberystwyth.

The pony was found among other shetlands in a field in the Bronant area, but did not belong to the owner of the other ponies.

RSPCA inspector Julie Fadden said: “This poor shetland had very overgrown hooves and must have been in a huge amount of discomfort and pain. The hoovers were inches long and were curled.

RSPCA Appeal after pony found in field in Aberystwyth

“The pony was believed to have been dumped there at the beginning of April. He was then collected World Horse Welfare on Friday 12 April.

“However, sadly due to his condition it was decided by a vet that the kindest thing would be to put the pony to sleep to prevent any further suffering. Sadly his feet could not be treated as they were so far gone.”

“If anyone has any information about this pony please contact us in complete confidence on 0300 123 8018.”

If you find any animal in distress call the RSPCA on 0300 1234 999.

To support the RSPCA’s work and help our officers continue investigating animal cruelty please donate by visiting www.rspca.org.uk/give.

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Not on our patch: No Easter rave thanks to police and partners

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CLOSE partnership working between Dyfed-Powys Police, Gwent Police, Natural Resources Wales, local authorities, Brecon Beacons National Park and LandMarc saw off three raves this Easter.

23 potential sites across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire and Powys were patrolled over the bank holiday weekend, in an operation known as Flamenco.

As part of #OpFlamenco, police urged members of the public to report suspicious activity immediately, so gatherings could be disrupted before they grew.

An event in the Brechfa forestry, Carmarthenshire, was thwarted when Natural Resources Wales staff spotted a suspicious bag of stones, and ribbons tied to gates and hedges, designed as a signpost. Police seized the items and the gathering was cancelled.

One resident in Gwynne Fawr, Powys, reported vehicles arriving in the valley, allowing three Dyfed-Powys Police units and a Gwent Police unit to attend and disperse five vehicles from the area.

A gathering of 14 vehicles was moved from the Tal-Y-Bont on Usk reservoir, Powys, after a report from a Welsh Water Ranger alerted police. A sound system was packed away but a number of people were made to stay in a layby because they were too intoxicated to drive away.

On Twitter, PS 298 Owen Dillon said: “Dispersed a small gathering at the Takybont on Usk [sic] reservoir after call from @DwrCymru then turned vehicles back from Gwynne Fawr assisted by @gwentpolice to disrupt their plans. Officers left to cover the road. #OpFlamenco.”

Illegal raves are extremely disruptive for communities and cause damage to farmland and the countryside. Dai Rees, land management team leader from Natural Resources Wales, said:

“Our forests and countryside should be available for everyone to enjoy but illegal raves can damage the environment, impact on wildlife and leave it in a dangerous state for other people.

“These events cause misery for visitors and local communities, and we’re already taking measures to make it more difficult for people to organise them on our land. But spotting the signs early and reporting them is also really important and means that we can take action early to stop large gatherings forming.

“Working together with the Police and local communities has proved invaluable and we continue to encourage people to report anything suspicious to the Police on 101.”

In a Tweet, Temporary Deputy Chief Constable of Dyfed-Powys Police, Claire Parmenter, thanked the police officers and staff who worked on the operation, saying:

“Thank you to all the Dyfed-Powys Police officers and staff that have worked over the Easter break, some excellent proactivity and several illegal raves prevented through partnership working and intelligence sharing, diolch.”

Efforts to crack down on the events are continuing in the coming months, working to tackle the issues that unlicensed events bring, such as:

· Safety concerns: people are under the influence of drink and drugs with no first aid or medical facilities at hand. It is difficult and sometime impossible to get ambulances to casualties.

· Drink and drug driving.

· Rubbish and human waste left at sites and the subsequent hygiene issues this brings.

· Risk of fires.

· Criminal damage and theft.

· Illegal drug dealing.

· Underage drinking.

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