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Barclays closure set to leave Aberaeron as a ‘no bank town’

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LOCAL elected representatives have expressed their frustration following an announcement by Barclays that their Aberaeron branch would be closing.

Barclays has announced it is to close its branch on Sgwâr Alban, Aberaeron on May 31st, 2019, citing a substantial fall in the number of in-branch transactions and increasing use of online and telephone banking.

The decision to close the branch will leave the town without a single bank branch – following the previous closure of NatWest and HSBC.

Customers were informed by the Barclays that branches at Lampeter and Aberystwyth would remain open, and were also encouraged to use the Aberaeron Post Office as to partake in some banking duties.

Barclays’ decision to close the branch in Aberaeron follows the banks’ previous closure of branches locally in Llandysul and Tregaron.

Elin Jones AM said: “With this closure announcement by Barclays, Aberaeron has joined Llandysul, Tregaron and others as ‘no bank towns’ – causing significant inconvenience and disruption to loyal customers and small businesses.

“As well as the loss of services, I am also concerned as to the impact the closure of the bank will have on the cash-point provision, and the subsequent impact this may have on residents and business.

“Alongside Ben Lake MP I have written to Barclays calling for an urgent meeting to further discuss their decision and its implications.”

Ben Lake MP added: “It is bitterly disappointing to learn of yet another bank branch abandoning our communities. This announcement again reiterates the need for a fundamental re-think of the way banking services operate in rural areas.

“Poor broadband means that online banking is not an option for everyone, and even where connectivity is sufficient, online services are unable to meet everyone’s needs, or cater for what remains a largely cash-orientated local economy.

”One possible solution to maintain access to banking services in rural areas is for banks to co-locate in banking ‘hubs’, rather than vacate our high streets. This is a proposal that I am putting forward in a Bill which is currently before Parliament, and alongside greater resources for Post Office services, one that I hope other MPs will support.”

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New Quay RNLI lifeboat crew trains with lifeguards

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NEW QUAY lifeboat station hosted a special training evening with the lifeboat crew and Ceredigion’s RNLI lifeguards last week.

Pete Yates, one of New Quay RNLI’s inshore lifeboat helms, worked closely with Ceredigion lifeguard supervisor, Tirion Dowsett, to plan scenarios for the teams to practice working together in casualty care situations.

A large scale scenario included four casualties to be dealt with by the inshore lifeboat crew and two lifeguard teams on a nearby beach, whilst a third lifeguard team and lifeboat crew members dealt with a separate scenario at the lifeboat station.

Pete said: “It was a great evening of training. We had 9 lifeguards and 13 lifeboat crew in attendance.

“The main scenario included casualties suffering from hypothermia and propeller injuries. A second scenario involved a mechanic suffering head injuries in the forepeak of the all-weather lifeboat and requiring extraction on a stretcher.

“On completion of these scenarios we all gathered back at the station where one of our senior crew members sprung a great act at being a diabetic having a hypo, and being suitably angry and aggressive.”

Roger Couch, New Quay RNLI’s Lifeboat Operations Manager, added: “It was great for our lifeboat crew members to work with the lifeguards as it builds a deeper understanding of each other’s roles and encourages teamwork between us. This is of great benefit when dealing with real life casualty care situations.”

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Coastguard rescues dog stuck on cliffs

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LAST TUESDAY (Aug 27), New Quay RNLI’s inshore D-class lifeboat, Audrey LJ, was tasked by Milford Haven Coastguard to assist the Coastguard with a dog stuck on the cliffs near New Quay.

The volunteer crew launched the inshore lifeboat at 1.50pm with four crew members on board and made their way south down the coast.

Brett Stones, New Quay RNLI’s helm said: “We located the dog on the cliffs by Castell Bach, near Cwmtydu. We stood by while the Coastguard team caught the animal. The dog was unharmed and safe with the Coastguard so we were stood down.

“However, while returning to station we were then tasked to a small vessel with engine failure. We towed the stricken boat with three people on board back to New Quay. We rehoused the inshore lifeboat and it was ready for service by 2.40pm.”

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New maintenance Lorries cut carbon emissions

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The Ground Maintenance Team has purchased three new lorries to support ground maintenance services in Ceredigion.

The new lorries will move Ceredigion County Council’s Ground Maintenance Service’s equipment to and from the grounds that they look after. The lorries will also take cut grass away for composting. This provides the most efficient way of maintaining the areas that the team is responsible for.

Councillor Dafydd Edwards is the Cabinet member responsible for Highways and Environmental Services together with Housing. He said: “The new vehicles replace ones which had provided excellent service for almost 20 years. They are fitted with Euro 6 engines which are considerably more efficient and better for the environment.”

The Grounds Maintenance Team is also incrementally introducing electric-powered mowers, blowers, hedge cutters and strimmers into its fleet. This equipment is better for the environment, is easier to use and causes less noise and vibration.

The new lorries support Ceredigion County Council’s commitment to be a net-zero carbon council by 2030.

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