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£400,000 to help with storm damage

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storm helpPEMBROKESHIRE is to receive £400,000 from the Welsh government to ensure that the county’s tourism industry can be open for business by Easter after the recent storms and flooding. It is part of a £1.6 million fund being allocated for projects in Ceredigion, Gwynedd, Anglesey, Swansea and Monmouth County Council areas.

Economy Minister Edwina Hart announced the new fund on Thursday as she and Finance Minister Jane Hutt visited Aberystwyth. This funding follows the additional £2million announced last week by Minister for Natural Resources Alun Davies to fund emergency repairs to flood defences that were damaged in the recent storms.

Announcing the fund, Mrs Hart said: “The Welsh Government is supporting the tourism industry in Wales to be strong and resilient and a crucial part of our economy. Tourism is already worth an estimated £5billion a year to Wales and we are determined to do everything we can to ensure the sector continues to grow.

“Latest figures revealed 2013 was a very successful year for tourism in Wales, with increases in visitor numbers and visitor spend well ahead of those for Britain as a whole. And this week Wales was voted by Rough Guide readers as one of the five top countries to visit in 2014 – this is all great news for the Welsh tourism industry as we head towards Easter and the traditional start of the main tourist season.

“Our new Visit Wales advertising campaign will be launched in March with a view to attracting even more visitors to Wales for the summer of 2014.

“This funding will help speed up repairs to damaged infrastructure that could have had a negative impact at the start of the tourism season in Wales. We want to ensure areas affected by the winter storms are fully open for business by Easter at the latest, and preferably by half term and that potential visitors are aware of this.”

Finance Minister Jane Hutt said: “We want to support communities who were hit by the recent bad weather in whatever way we can. We are already investing significantly in improving flood defences across Wales but we know there is more immediate work that needs urgent attention. By providing this extra funding now we can help the tourism industry get back on its feet ready for the peak seasons.”

Funding will be allocated to the following local authorities: Ceredigion £560,000; Gwynedd £400,000; Pembrokeshire £400,000; Anglesey £80,000; Swansea £80,000; and Monmouth £80,000.

The funding is anticipated to support tourism related infrastructure projects within local authorities and to promote the message that Wales is “open for business”.

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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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