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Domestic abuse victims in Wales to be given more time to report assaults



DOMESTIC abuse victims in Wales and England to be given more time to report assaults.

New measures targeted directly at keeping women and girls safer will be added to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill last week (Jan 4) the UK Government has announced.

Under the changes, victims of domestic abuse will be allowed more time to report incidents of common assault or battery against them. Currently, prosecutions must commence within six months of the offence.

Instead, this requirement will be moved to six months from the date the incident is formally reported to the police – with an overall time limit of two years from the offence to bring a prosecution.Domestic abuse is often reported late relative to other crimes; so this will ensure victims have enough time to seek justice and that perpetrators answer for their actions.

The UK Government says that today’s announcement builds on measures already in the Bill to better protect women such as ending the halfway release of offenders sentenced between four and seven years in prison for serious sexual offences – forcing them to spend two-thirds of their time in prison.

In December, the legislation was amended to make clear that a new legal duty requiring public bodies to work together to tackle serious violence can also include domestic abuse and sexual offences.

It means that these crimes should be taken as seriously as knife crime and homicide, with police, government, and health bodies required to collaborate locally, so that they can develop more holistic strategies to protect people from harm, including through early intervention.

Home Secretary, Priti Patel, said: “My commitment to making our homes, streets and communities safer for women and girls is clear.”

“Every department in government is working to address and tackle all issues relating to violence against women and girls.”

“The Government has a focussed strategy, dedicated to providing essential support for survivors, the prevention of crimes against women and girls and bringing perpetrators to justice with the full force of the law.”

“Our actions include the new Domestic Abuse Act, with important changes to our laws; a newly created national police lead responsible solely on violence against women and girls, and millions of pounds have been invested in direct safety measures through the Safer Streets Fund.”

“These are all important public confidence measures and changes to ensure the safety of women and girls in public spaces.”

The UK Government has also said that taking non-consensual photographs or video recordings of breastfeeding mothers will be made a specific offence punishable by up to two years in prison.

It covers situations where the motive is to obtain sexual gratification, or to cause humiliation, distress or alarm.

Similar legislation introduced by the UK Government in 2019 that criminalised “up skirting” has led to more than 30 prosecutions since it became law.

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Appeal to get Pilgrim sculpture back on its feet nearing target



The forlorn sculpture.

A FUNDRAISING appeal to raise £7,500 to re-erect a sculpture of a pilgrim on the hilltop above the ruins of the famous Strata Florida Abbey in the Cambrian Mountains is within £700 of hitting its target.

The Pilgrim, or Y Pererin in the Welsh language, was created by artist Glenn Morris and erected on Penlan, the hill overlooking Strata Florida Abbey, near Pontrhydfendigaid, in 2012.

Sadly, the sculpture collapsed in high winds in 2019 and now lays forlorn on the hilltop, located between Devil’s Bridge and Tregaron.

This sculpture, created as part of a temporary exhibition, has become a popular and iconic part of the Welsh landscape, with strong connections to Welsh culture, language and identity.

Following its collapse, the sculpture is now missing from the skyline of Strata Florida and the fundraising appeal aims to rebuild a new stronger, permanent Pilgrim to stand the tests of time.

The Pilgrim/ Y Pererin sculpture before it collapsed.

Planning permission for the new sculpture has already been secured and Glenn Morris is eager to begin the project.

The World Monuments Fund has offered to provide match funding if the community raises £7,500 by February 3. Anyone wishing to contribute to the fundraising target can donate online at .

An extra fundraising event for the Pilgrim appeal is being held on February 18. A 3.5 mile walk along a mixture of logging roads, farmlands and through ancient forest to reach the 12th century Cistercian abbey ruins of Strata Florida will be followed by a guided exhibition tour and Welsh tea.

This pilgrimage will be led by Guided Pilgrimage, a not-for-profit company providing a range of Celtic pilgrimage experiences in West Wales.

Strata Florida was a thriving community 900 years ago. Today, the conserved ruins of the old abbey church and part of the cloisters are in the care of Cadw, the Welsh Government’s heritage agency, and can be visited by the public from Easter to late autumn.

The remains are only a small fraction of what was once a much larger abbey, stretching over an area of 126 acres where the rest survives below ground as a well-preserved archaeology.

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Specialist INTACT PCSOs support more than 235 referrals



PCSO 8040 Laura Edwards and the INTACT team have set up ‘Round 2’, a diversionary boxing scheme for young people in our community. (Credit - Milford Haven Police)

INTACT is our multi-agency partnership programme to tackle Serious Violence and Organised Crime in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire and Powys – and aims to keep our communities safe together. 

One of the priorities of the programme is early intervention and prevention, and this work is undertaken by our dedicated team of INTACT PCSOs who were appointed in April 2021.

The team are very much a ‘specialist NPT’, and have supported more than 235 referrals through a project called 121 Trusted Adult Work (supporting children, young people and vulnerable adults to access the right help at the right time) or group interventions since the pilot started in May 2021. 

They have also contributed to problem solving around the management of Organised Crime Groups and have educated more than 5,000 people about the signs and harms associated with different types of Serious Violence and Organised Crime.  

A young man from Pembrokeshire turned his life around, gained employment and the interventions and support he needed before potentially engaging in the use and supply of Class A Drugs through an INTACT PSCO.

After being the subject of a Section 23 Misuse of Drugs Act warrant, where he was found in possession of a small amount of cannabis, he was issued with an Adult Community Resolution, with the condition to engage fully with the INTACT Early Intervention and Prevention team. 

He fully engaged with them, and the team signposted him to Futureworks, specialising in employment and skills services, and supported him to access appointments at the Job Centre. As a result he secured employment. But he was also supported in finding the medical and social support he required, and his wellbeing and behaviour has improved greatly.

‘Round 2’ is another great example of early intervention in Pembrokeshire, providing opportunities for young people through boxing.  

It is a boxing intervention for young people who have been identified by the INTACT team as vulnerable to exploitation or harm. The ninety minutes sessions are held every Tuesday, and during this time, participants engage in a boxing training session.

They also learn useful skills to help them in everyday life such as discipline, managing emotions and calming strategies that come hand in hand with boxing.

The intervention is designed to be an engaging and innovative diversionary activity for young people who may be at risk of falling into wrong crowds or paths. As well as boxing training, sessions are delivered on the risks of County Lines – a term used to refer to the distribution of drugs across the country, where many young and vulnerable people are exploited and pulled in to work for dealers higher up the criminal chain.

The team have succeeded in securing more funding for this popular initiative, meaning many more people will benefit from this intervention in the future. 

Sessions will be held weekly at Pembroke and Pembroke Dock Boxing Club, which is located at 19-22 Water Street, in Pembroke Dock.

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Ceredigion County Council to mark Holocaust Memorial Day



HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL DAY is held annually on 27 January to coincide with the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi concentration and extermination camp.

It’s a day for everyone to remember the victims of genocide world-wide, including honouring the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust, the millions of people killed under Nazi Persecution and in the genocides that have happened since in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

Ceredigion County Council will illuminate three of Aberystwyth’s most iconic buildings in a show of solidarity, respect, and honour to all victims of genocide. From Wednesday 26 to Friday 28January 2022, the Bandstand on Aberystwyth’s seafront, Aberystwyth Castle and the Alun R. Edwards Centre will be lit up purple.

The theme this year is One Day, which provides us with an opportunity to imagine one day in the future without genocide or to learn from one day in history.

Ceredigion County Council Leader, Councillor Ellen Ap Gwynn, said: “On Holocaust Memorial Day let us all take the opportunity to pause, reflect and learn lessons from the past and apply them to the present day to create a safer and better future for everyone.”

Together we bear witness for those who endured genocide and honour the survivors and all those whose lives were changed beyond recognition.

You can learn more about Holocaust Memorial Day and this year’s theme on the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust website:

Plaid Cymru MP for Ceredigion will sign the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Book of Commitment this week, and in doing so he will pledge his commitment to Holocaust Memorial Day and honouring those who were murdered during the Holocaust as well as paying tribute to the extraordinary Holocaust survivors who work tirelessly to educate young people today.

Commenting ahead of the anniversary, Ben Lake MP said: “Holocaust Memorial Day is an important opportunity for people from Ceredigion to reflect on the darkest times of European history. As the Holocaust moves from living history, to history, it becomes ever more important that we take the time to remember the six million Jewish victims and also pay tribute to the survivors.”

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