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Imagining alternative futures for mid Wales

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The Pryce Jones building in Newtown, home to the first modern international mail order business. But what does the future hold for mid Wales post Brexit? This is the challenge posed by Imagining alternative futures for mid Wales

AS THE debate rages on about the UK’s future trading relations with the European Union post-Brexit, people in mid Wales are being invited to put forward their visions for the region.

On Thursday 9 November 2017 Aberystwyth University is hosting a day-long programme of events entitled Imagining alternative futures for mid Wales.

Sixth form students from schools and colleges across the region will meet during the day to discuss the diverse challenges it faces and devise possible solutions.

Amongst the questions they will address will be how to promote well-being, economic growth and environmental sustainability.

This will be followed in the evening by a public debate with Baroness Eluned Morgan, AM; Dr Marc Welsh, Aberystwyth University; Mr Barry Rees, Strategic Director: Learning and Partnerships Ceredigion County Council and Ben Lake MP.

Both events are organised by the University’s WISERD Centre for Welsh Politics and Society.

Event organiser Professor Rhys Jones from the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences said: “The challenges faced by mid Wales are numerous and replicated in many other rural areas around the world. New technology, globalisation and the dominance of trade by large multinational corporations with vast resources are changing the way we live our lives from day to day. And on top of that we have the uncertainty surrounding Brexit and what it will mean to a predominantly rural area dependent on industries such as agriculture and tourism.

“The key question is how can we respond to these challenges constructively and in practical terms.”

“The day event has been devised to provide students with the skills they will need to understand the challenges faced by the region and enable them to devise alternative solutions to these challenges. It will be fascinating to hear what these young people have to say, as they represent the region’s future.”

The public debate Imagining alternative futures for mid Wales takes place at 6.30pm on Thursday 9th of November 2017 at Medrus Mawr, Penbryn, Penglais Campus, Aberystwyth University.

The event is associated with two studies being conducted by researchers at Aberystwyth University; IMAJINE and GLOBAL-RURAL.

IMAJINE is a Horizon 2020 study of geographical inequalities and spatial justice in a series of regions throughout Europe.

GLOBAL-RURAL is a major European Research Council project examining the impacts of globalisation on rural regions.

Imagining alternative futures for mid Wales is organised as part of the Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) Festival of Social Sciences which takes place from 4–11 November 2017.

The Centre for Welsh Politics and Society and GLOBAL-RURAL are affiliated to WISERD, the Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods.

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Farming

Avian Influenza identified in poultry on Anglesey

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THE CHIEF Veterinary Officer for Wales, Christianne Glossop has confirmed the presence of avian influenza H5N1 in a small backyard flock of chickens and ducks at a premises on the Isle of Anglesey.

A 3km and 10km Temporary Control Zone Area have been imposed around the small infected premises, to limit the risk of disease spread.

The risk to public health from the virus is considered to be very low and these cases do not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.

A case of avian influenza was confirmed in poultry and wild birds in Wrexham County borough last month. There have been similar findings of avian influenza in the UK and Europe.

On Wednesday this week the Chief Veterinary Officers for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland agreed to bring in new housing measures to protect poultry and captive birds from avian influenza. These measures come into force on Monday, 29 November.

All keepers are strongly advised to be vigilant for signs of the disease such as increased mortality or respiratory distress. If keepers have any concerns about the health of their birds, they are encouraged to seek prompt advice from their veterinary surgeon.

The Chief Veterinary Officer for Wales, Christianne Glossop, said:

“This confirmation of a case of avian influenza in poultry on the Isle of Anglesey is further evidence of the need for all keepers of birds to ensure they have the very highest levels of biosecurity in place.

“We have announced new housing measures will come into force from next Monday to protect poultry and kept birds, but I must stress that this is at its most effective when combined with implementation of the most stringent biosecurity measures.

“Public Health Wales has said the risk to the health of the public from Avian Influenza is very low and the Food Standards Agency has made clear it does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.

“Temporary control zones have been imposed to help prevent further spread of the disease.

“Suspicion of avian influenza or any other notifiable disease must be reported to the Animal and Plant Health Agency immediately.”

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Business

Commitment to collaborative approach for Celtic Sea floating wind project

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A SUCCESSFUL Celtic Sea APPG Reception, attended by over 100 key representatives of Industry and MPs, was hosted by Cherilyn Mackrory and the Celtic Sea Developers Alliance at the House of Commons on Monday.
The event, which included speakers from The Crown Estate, Ireland’s Ambassador to the UK and the Secretary of State for Wales, Simon Hart promoted floating wind (FLOW), which will become a key global technology in achieving a cost-effective Net Zero.
Cherilyn Mackrory MP for Truro and Falmouth and Celtic Sea APPG Member said:
“It was fantastic to be able to bring together developers, supply chain partners and Parliamentarians to hear more about the exciting opportunities for floating offshore wind in the Celtic Sea and positive announcements have set the scene for our discussions.
Particularly, the Government’s commitment to floating offshore wind as part of the Net Zero Strategy, building on the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan to deliver 1GW of energy through floating offshore wind by 2030.”
Simon Hart MP, Secretary of State for Wales said: “The development of floating off shore wind projects in our waters could create thousands of sustainable jobs in Wales, boosting our economy and accelerating the UK’s shift to clean growth. I’m delighted to support projects in the Celtic Sea which will help the UK Government reach our aim of net-zero emissions by 2050 and to see Wales at the forefront of this exciting opportunity. “
In the UK, the Committee on Climate Change stated that offshore wind will become the backbone of the future energy system requiring 100GW of installed capacity by 2050, with floating wind set to deliver 50% of that target. Delivering 100GW of offshore wind will provide a huge economic opportunity across the UK.
The Celtic Sea will play a key role in delivering UK and Irish low carbon targets with an estimated 50GW of realisable wind resource, in turn, driving regional development, creating new supply chain opportunities, a just energy transition and a significant portion of the 29,000 jobs forecast by 2050.
The Celtic Sea Developers Alliance brings together FLOW developer interests from Cornwall and the Great South West, Ireland and Wales to strengthen collaboration between the three regions with the aim of realising the economic and low carbon energy opportunity presented by FLOW

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New Quay and Barmouth RNLI launch to capsized ocean rowing boat

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ON FRIDAY 26 November New Quay RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat launched on service at 8.15am following a distress call from an ocean rowing boat 18 miles north west of New Quay in gale force winds during Storm Arwen.  

The ocean rowing boat, with four persons on board, was travelling from Ireland to Aberystwyth in a training exercise to prepare for a trans-Atlantic crossing next year. Unfortunately, they had capsized and found themselves in difficulty so called for help. 

In north westerly gale force winds in excess of 30mph and gusting over 50mph (force 8 with gusts of force 9),Barmouth RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat was first to be tasked.As the casualty vessel drifted southwards,New Quay’s Mersey class lifeboat, the Frank and Lena of Stourbridge, with six volunteer crew members on board, was also requested to launch.  

First to arrive on scene was the Coastguard rescue helicopter who placed their winchman on board the vessel to assess the casualties. It was decided to airlift one person with head inquires directly to hospital. 

Daniel Potter, New Quay RNLI’s Coxswain said, “We made good speed heading north in gale force winds and rough sea conditions. We located the vessel and Barmouth lifeboat was already on scene and had established a tow. Unfortunately, the boat capsized again leaving three casualties trapped on board. We got alongside and pulled the three out of the water and provided casualty care. We then headed back to New Quay where the casualties received medical attention. 

“It was a great outcome in difficult conditions and a good example of lifeboats and the Coastguard working together in life threatening situations.”  

The lifeboat arrived back in New Quay at 11.35am and, having been washed down and refuelled, was ready for service again by 12.30pm. 

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