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Ceredigion’s Cozy Caron project wins award

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City Energy and Ceredigion County Council win a Welsh recognised award for tackling fuel poverty in Ceredigion with local residents.

Working together in partnership, Cardiff-based firm City Energy and Ceredigion County Council delivered significant benefits to 137 vulnerable residents in the area through the installation of energy-efficient measures in their homes last year. The success of the scheme has been recognised by GO Excellence in Public Procurement Awards Wales and both organisations were jointly awarded for ‘Best Contract Delivery’. 

Councillor Dafydd Edwards, Cabinet Member with responsibilities for Highways and Environmental Services, Housing and Customer Contact said: “It’s fantastic news that we’ve received recognition for our Cozy Caron project – it’s enabled so many of our residents to improve their heating. The struggle to keep homes warm can have a detrimental impact on a person’s health and wellbeing, so this project really has had a positive effect on the residents who received support. Congratulations to the Housing Services team for their hard work and dedication in running the project.”

The Cozy Caron Scheme targeted vulnerable residents and their families living in energy inefficient homes and provided first time central heating systems and insulation measures. The target areas were rural communities where the gas network did not reach, leaving families reliant on more expensive types of fuel, e.g. solid fuel and oil to heat their homes. This has provided a warm and comfortable home, with reduced fuel costs to households in fuel poverty or on low income and vulnerable to the effects of the cold.

Neil Llewellyn, Customer & Community Director at City Energy said: “I am incredibly proud of what City Energy and Ceredigion County Council have achieved to help reduce fuel poverty in Wales. We are grateful to the residents of Ceredigion for trusting us to make their homes warmer and lives better.”

The scheme was funded by National Grid’s £150m Warm Homes Fund and has received a huge response in applications from local residents. Over 82% of Ceredigion’s households are located off the main gas network, meaning the residents have to rely on more expensive non-regulated fuels. This has contributed to the number of households currently deemed as being in ‘fuel poverty’ within the county. Funding for phase 2 of the project has now been secured which will enable the Council to install a further 120 first-time central heating systems into energy inefficient properties in the county; these will be air source heat pumps and LPG gas systems. Further information on how to apply for the project will be made available soon on the Council’s website. Ceredigion residents can still receive support and advice on how to make their homes more energy efficient by visiting the ‘Energy Efficiency Schemes’ section on the council’s website.

Jeremy Nesbitt, Managing Director of Affordable Warmth Solutions who administer the fund on behalf of National Grid said: “We are excited about this investment from National Grid and are delighted that the scheme has been recognised with this award. Solving the issues associated with Fuel Poverty continues to challenge many of our stakeholders and the feedback we’ve already received provides evidence of how the Warm Homes Fund will make a positive difference to thousands of homes throughout Great Britain.”

The Warm Homes Project (Cozy Caron) on behalf of City Energy Network has also been shortlisted in the Residential Energy Project of the Year category of the Energy Awards 2021 which will take place in September 2021.

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Aberystwyth CID appeal following serious assault

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ABERYSTWYTH CID are investigating a serious assault that occurred in the Castle Street area of Aberystwyth at approx. 4.45pm on Tuesday, June 15 2021. Following medical treatment the victim is recovering at home. Police are appealing for any witnesses to the assault and anyone in the vicinity around this time, or immediately prior to the incident, that may have witnessed people acting suspiciously.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.pnn.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org. Quote reference: DP-20210615-268

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New Quay RNLI’s special artwork to honour local volunteers is unveiled

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ON SUNDAY (June 13) saw a special artwork unveiled at New Quay Lifeboat Station by RNLI’s Director of Lifesaving Operations, John Payne. The artwork was created by local amateur artist and wife of New Quay RNLI’s Lifeboat Operations Manager, Mrs Tina Couch who wanted to pay tribute to the special job the volunteers do, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Mrs Couch talking about the artwork said, “Last year some of the volunteers went above and beyond and worked hard in the community by delivering food parcels and medicines to those shielding in the area. I wanted to pay tribute to all the volunteers at New Quay Lifeboat Station so decided to paint a mural with a portrait of each volunteer. This artwork is to recognise all the hard work they did during the lockdown, as well as being on call 24/7 to save lives at sea.” 

John Payne, RNLI’s Director of Lifesaving Operations added, “It was an honour to unveil this wonderful piece of artwork, a great end to celebrating Volunteers’ Week. Our communities benefit enormously from our volunteers’ selflessness and this is a special way to reflect on their achievements. I would like to thank every one of you who make the RNLI what it is today, and recognise the sacrifices and efforts undertaken in giving your time, energy and positivity to the organisation.”  

While Mr Payne was visiting New Quay Lifeboat Station he had another presentation to make, a certificate of thanks to Steffan Williams who raised over £2,200 for the RNLI’s Mayday Mile campaign. Steffan, aged 12, a pupil in Ysgol Bro Teifi, paddleboarded not just one mile but accomplished 10 miles in under four hours and smashed his target of £100.  

Mr Payne said, “This is a great achievement for someone so young. Steffan has shown his determination in being a lifesaver, and he is definitely someone to watch in the future as he continues his volunteering within the RNLI.”  

Steffan recieving award

Steffan said, “I am so pleased that I’ve raised so much for the RNLI and want to thank everyone who has donated. It is a charity close to my heart as my Dad is a crew member and I want to join when I’m older too. They are all volunteers and need our help to pay for equipment and lifeboats.” 

If you would like to volunteer for the RNLI please visit the website to find out more: https://rnli.org/support-us/volunteer/how-you-can-volunteer/be-a-lifeboat-station-volunteer

Or if you would like to donate to New Quay RNLI to help the volunteers save lives at sea please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/new-quay-wales

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Strategic plan to strengthen Welsh medium education

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A CONSULTATION period will be held during the autumn term this year to increase the number of pupils in Ceredigion who will be able to develop and learn through the medium of Welsh.

During a Cabinet meeting held virtually on Tuesday, 15 June 2021, members discussed the Welsh in Education Strategic Plan for 2022-2032. The plan is a 10 year strategy which sets out the requirements to reach the Welsh Government’s target of achieving one million Welsh speakers by 2050.

Cabinet Members agreed to hold a consultation period during the autumn term of 2021 for eight weeks, incorporating views by pupils, parents, schools and governing bodies.

The strategy outlines aims which include increasing the number of nursery and reception age pupils in Welsh medium education; encourage more learners to study Welsh as a subject and subjects through the medium of Welsh; increase the provision of Welsh medium education for pupils with additional learning needs and increase the number of teaching staff who can teach Welsh as a subject and subjects through the medium of Welsh.

Councillor Catrin Miles, Ceredigion County Council’s Cabinet Member for Schools, Lifelong Learning and Skills, Support and Intervention, said: “The Welsh in Education Strategic Plan reinforces Ceredigion County Council’s aspiration to strengthen the position of the Welsh language through its Language Strategy. I’m pleased to see that a consultation period will be held this autumn to gather ideas in order to plan and develop Welsh medium education in our county.”

Councillor Ellen ap Gwynn, Leader of Ceredigion County Council, added: “I welcome this draft document which aims to create more opportunities for pupils across the county to take full advantage of Welsh medium education.”

Following the consultation period, feedback will be considered and the plan will be reintroduced to the Healthier Communities Overview and Scrutiny Committee and the full Council for consideration and final decision. The proposal supports the Council’s Strategic Objectives and the Welsh Government’s Million Speakers by 2050 Strategy.

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