ABERYSTWYTH businesses have voted in favour of introducing a Business Improvement District (BID) in the town centre.
The ballot was won by 97 votes in favour, with 84 businesses voting against the proposal. 45% of those eligible to vote did so, which is slightly higher than the national average of 40%. It is hoped that the BID will improve Aberystwyth as a destination to work and visit.
A voluntary steering group comprising of Aberystwyth businesses under the banner of Advancing Aberystwyth was set up and has led the process to establish the BID. The group will now form a ‘not for profit’ company from all eligible businesses in the town – those that will be paying the levy – regardless of how they voted in the ballot. The BID company will deliver targeted projects and services that are new, unique and not delivered currently by any other agency or organisation.
Advancing Aberystwyth seeks to develop a five year programme of improvements in the town centre by collecting a levy from all eligible businesses. It is envisaged that there is the potential to collect just over £700,000 between 2016 and 2021 to invest in a comprehensive programme of improvements. Every effort will be made to match this sum with funding from other sources.
It will be funded by a 1.25% levy on the rateable value (RV) of all eligible hereditaments, or business units, within the defined BID boundary if that business has a RV of £6,000 or more. Businesses with a RV below this threshold will be exempt from voting and paying the BID levy.
Councillor Gareth Lloyd, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Economic and Community Development, said: “By voting in favour of the BID, Aberystwyth business owners have demonstrated their appetite to make changes locally on the issues that are of importance to them and, in so doing, to improve the town centre. This is an exciting time for Aberystwyth, and I am very grateful for the efforts of Advancing Aberystwyth for their perseverance in bringing the BID to fruition.”
Tony Bates from Morris & Bates Solicitors is a member of theAdvancing Aberystwyth Steering Group, he said: “Now the hard work really begins and I do hope that we can attract to the Board of the new BID company people with vision, business acumen, and a real belief in Aberystwyth as a wonderful place to live and work. Paradoxically I should also like to see business people who voted “no” in the ballot to come forward in order that we may have a Board of Directors comprising a dynamic and wide ranging spectrum of ideas and personalities.”
The programme will focus on access and connections such asimproving access and availability of parking and installing free Wi-Fi. It will look at marketing and promotion and deliver PR campaigns and build relationships with the local press. It will create a stronger business community by developing business incentives and mentoring schemes, and strengthen relationships by working with local authorities, and existing initiatives to tackle crime.
All these services will be in addition to those already provided by Ceredigion County Council and Aberystwyth Town Council.
Ceredigion County Council’s Apprenticeship recruitment campaign is now live
THE council’s 2019 Apprenticeship programme is now open for applications until Sunday 22 September.
A council apprenticeship gives learners the opportunity to build skills and confidence while earning a salary and gaining a nationally recognised qualification. With roles available in Business Administration, ICT Technical Support and Social Care teams, there is an opportunity for everyone.
The first year of the programme is nearing an end and has been a great success. Alanah Lloyd recently completed a Business Administration Apprenticeship. She said: “I would recommend doing an apprenticeship at Ceredigion County Council to all my friends. I enjoyed the balance of real responsibilities and having the space to keep on learning.”
Maria Lloyd, Alanah’s mother said: “When Alanah was successful with her application I was delighted. It gave her the opportunity to show her work ethic and continue with her education in an organisation where there is career progression. Alanah has now gained a permanent position at the council. I would highly recommend apprenticeships to other parents.”
Lynne Connolly, Apprenticeship and Work Experience Coordinator, Ceredigion County Council said: “This year we are continuing to demonstrate our commitment to ‘grow our own’, offering opportunities for school and college leavers to continue education in a working environment and for members of the community looking to return to work or change career. All our apprentices are paid well above the minimum apprentice wage which reflects how much we value their contribution.”
To apply and find out more visit career.ceredigion.gov.uk or contact us at email@example.com.
Overall ‘excellent’ performance at Mynach Primary School
A RECENT Estyn report on the primary school in Mynach has given the ‘Excellent’ status to each of the five inspection areas.
It was noted in the report that the school had attained ‘Excellent’ status in standards; wellbeing and attitudes to learning; teaching and learning experiences; care, support and guidance; and leadership and management.
The report notes, ‘A particular feature is the opportunities for Key Stage 2 pupils to plan and deliver lessons for the rest of the class, focusing on specific skills.’
Joyce George is headteacher at Ysgol y Mynach. She is also headteacher at Pontrhydfendigaid Primary School and Sir John Rhys Primary School. She said, “As a headteacher, I am extremely proud of the results of the survey and very grateful to the staff, governors and those who work effectively together as a team to ensure a first class education for all pupils. I am proud of the fact that the inspectors identified pupils’ literacy, numeracy and information and communication technology skills as excellent.
It was also noted that a pioneering feature of Ysgol Mynach is the way in which teachers adapt and develop the curriculum in order to raise pupils’ independence. Working together as a wider partnership with Ysgol Pontrhydfendigaid and Ysgol Sir John Rhys, Ponterwyd is a great advantage and an opportunity to share expertise, co-design and share ideas which extend and widen the experiences of pupils across the schools.”
Councillor Catrin Miles is the Cabinet member for Learning services. She said: “The Estyn report shows that Ysgol Gynradd Mynach has achieved exceptionally high standards. The hard work and dedication of the headteacher, staff, governors and of course the children is very evident. The school shows that a way of working together with neighbouring schools in a progressive way can produce excellent results. Everyone in the school deserves congratulations.”
The report notes that the school is an extremely close community. It also notes that the head teacher has a progressive vision that is continually focused on maintaining and raising standards of pupils’ achievement and wellbeing.
Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn visits Machynlleth
ON Thursday 15 August Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn addressed around 200 local Labour Party members from Mid, West and North Wales at Machynlleth Bowling Club. Tickets for the event had all been taken within 24 hours, and an additional video link was live streamed into the club bar to allow those who could not get into the packed venue the opportunity to hear him speak.
Mr Corbyn was joined by Christina Rees, Shadow Secretary of State for Wales, and West Wales Regional AMs Joyce Watson and Eluned Morgan, Welsh Labour Minister for International Relations and the Welsh Language.
Eluned Morgan AM’s passionate introductory remarks highlighted Welsh Labour’s ongoing commitment to improving outcomes in education, health, housing, jobs and the environment. She urged immediate action from international UK and international governments on the climate crisis, declaring ‘The emergency is now!’
Mr Corbyn made clear that he is expecting a general election to be likely very soon and proceeded to outlined the scale of the current crisis the UK is facing, with 14 million now in poverty in the world’s 5th richest economy, and child poverty predicted by some to rise as high as 40%.
He went on to congratulate Welsh Labour on the great work that has been possible in Wales to insulate the Welsh people from the worst of the effects of Tory austerity, protecting vital NHS services and preventing the worst of school cuts, but he explained that there was only so much that could be done without the full support of a Labour government in Westminster.
“Things will be very different under a Labour government” Mr Corbyn added, saying that Labour will invest in people, with principles of equality and social justice and to demonstrate his state of readiness, with great vigour declared: “I’m up for an election anytime”.
He expressed grave concern over the effects that a reckless No Deal Brexit would have on the UK economy with particular reference to the devastating effects on Welsh industry and agriculture. He promised that Labour will do everything they can to prevent a no-deal, including the offer of a second referendum with Remain as an option, and the formation of a national unity government to prevent further political chaos.
Outlining his commitment to green industrial development Jeremy Corbyn stated that a Labour government would support the creation of the Swansea Tidal Lagoon which would bring valuable new green transitional jobs to Wales which would lead the world on renewables technology.
Mr Corby thanked everyone present for their efforts in Wales and reaffirmed his commitment to core Labour values of equality and social justice. He received a standing ovation and stayed after the event to chat and have photos taken with supporters.
A Ceredigion Labour spokesperson commented: “Jeremy Corbyn spoke passionately and inspiringly. He was full of praise for our outstanding efforts in the 2017 election and said he would be visiting Ceredigion during the next General Election campaign.”
The following day Mr Corbyn visited the Centre for Alternative Technology in Machynlleth to see new renewable energy technology in action and learn about pioneering methods of sustainable building and farming. He also confirmed that he would not stand in the way of any future discussion of a Welsh Independence referendum, and that he was open to considering all options for Wales’future.
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