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Celtic car tour an international success!

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carvalleyAN ENTERTAINMENT and presentation night was held recently at The Snooty Fox Inn, Nr Narberth by the organisers of the first ever Celtic Classic Tour which had raised the very pleasing total of £3,720.50 which was divided, and cheques handed over to the two nominated charities, CRY (Dean Mason Memorial Fund) and Meningitis Now by the highest sponsors on the event Michael Davies & Alyson Williams and Nicola Robinson & Scott Lewis. 

Nearly 40 classic cars and some Classic Bikes had taken part in The 2014 Celtic Charity Classic Tour of Ireland and Wales, it proved to be a great success with entrants from all parts of Wales assembling at The Snooty Fox Inn, Nr Martletwy, Narberth on the Friday Morning and after enjoying a hearty breakfast, the Cars & Bikes were given a great send off from many enthusiastic wellwishers with the S4C cameras also present to record the event which featured interviews with some of the entrants including joint organiser Gareth Jenkins, which was then given a prime spot on The Welsh National News Programme Heno that same evening. The event in aid of C.R.Y. (in memory of Dean Mason) and Meningitis UK, was started by 7 year old Celyn Jones of Bethesda, Nr Narberth who had Meningitis as a 2 year old, (who also spoke in Welsh on Heno) and as she cut the ribbon each of the superbly turned out vehicles drove through a magnificent spiral balloon arch kindly donated by Floatations Balloons, Narberth.

As the impressive convoy headed down the A40 to the Fishguard Ferry Terminal there was a large turnout of people in Fishguard Town as the locals who had made a special request for The Tour not to by-pass the Town gave everyone an enthusiastic send off as they were about to leave Welsh soil and head for the Emerald Isle. After a lovely sailing across The Irish Sea everyone headed for their overnight stays, and after meeting up in Wexford Town in the evening many sampled the local Irish hospitality. The Saturday morning saw everyone meeting up outside The Wexford Racecourse, before heading to The Dunbrodey Famine Ship Visitor Centre in New Ross where The Wexford Sports & Classic Car Club were out in force to give everyone a lovely welcome and the cars were then displayed in the Quayside car park for a couple of hours and after the local New Ross Council Dignitaries thanked everyone for visiting New Ross, the Wexford Club then guided the Celtic Tour Convoy on a picturesque drive which took in part of the famous circuit of Ireland World Rally stages before arriving in Dungarvan Town Centre to be greeted by the local Yesteryear Club and even though the weather was a little wet a pleasant 2 hour stop was enjoyed by all before setting off for the next overnight stop in Kilkenny City.

Kilkenny proved a great place to be on a Saturday Night with nearly ever other bar playing all types of traditional Irish music, and with the Celtic Tour being well publicised in the City which was voted Ireland’s Heritage Town of 2013 a great welcome was again received from members of The Kilkenny Motor Club as well as the locals. What was meant to be a 12 noon start on the Sunday Morning for our much anticipated display outside the historic Kilkenny Castle (once home to the Earl of Pembroke) was brought forward an hour to 11am to accommodate The Irish Television cameras who had agreed to come and televise the event to be shown throughout Ireland as well as on Sky TV. The vehicles proved a great attraction on a lovely sunny Sunday afternoon in such a historic setting and as the crowds of all ages were fascinated by the great variety of classic and unusual vehicles that had come over from Wales many of the Irish folk also had their own interesting stories of some of the cars they had driven in years gone by, and before the tour left for our third and last overnight stop Nr Dublin, The Mayor of this great City as well as The Chairman of The Kilkenny Motor Club gave speeches when they not only thanked everyone who had come over to their City (described as the friendliest City in Europe) with their beautiful cars & motor cycles but also the effort everyone had made in raising money for two very worthy charities, joint organiser Norman Mason responded on behalf of The Celtic Tour by saying “What a great honour it was to be allowed to display our vehicles in such an historic setting and Kilkenny had certainly lived up to what we thought would be the highlight of what was turning out to be a great tour across the water to meet our Celtic Cousins”.

After a night of lovely Irish music provided by Bewleys Hotel in Newlands Cross, Nr Dublin, everyone was up early to catch the morning ferry sailing from Dublin Port to Holyhead, and when we arrived in Holyhead Port in North Wales around midday on the Monday we were greeted with more lovely weather which made the leisurely drive down through some of the most superb scenery Wales have to offer another great experience, before arriving back at The Snooty Fox at 6pm where a lovely buffet and presentation of certificates and awards were presented to everyone who had taken part in what had proved a challenging but very enjoyable trip of over 400 miles throughout the four days where many friends and memories that will last forever had been made. The First Celtic Charity Tour has been an outstanding success and plans are well underway for next year’s event, when it is hoped to take approximately sixty cars and bikes over the water to Ireland, so anyone who has an unusual or classic vehicle and would like to enter the 2015 event please contact Norman (07969 313892) or Gareth (07811 296325) or email classiccarrallies@yahoo. co.uk for further details.

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‘Check in, Catch up and Prepare’ All school’s in Wales prepare to enter next phase

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ALL children will have the opportunity to “Check in, Catch Up, Prepare for summer and September”, the Education Minister Kirsty Williams announced today as she published details of the next phase for schools in Wales.

It is proposed that all schools will start the next phase on 29 June, with the term extended by a week, therefore ending on 27 July.

In the next academic year, beginning in September, the intention is that the autumn half-term break will be expanded to two weeks.

In each school there will be a phased approach. Year groups will be split into cohorts with staggered starts, lessons and breaks. It is expected that this will mean, at most, a third of pupils present at any one time, though schools may need time to reach this level of operation.

There will be much smaller classes, providing secure dedicated time with teachers and classmates. This time will include online and personalised classroom experience, getting children and teachers ready for a similar experience in September.

Next week, the Welsh Government will publish guidance to support schools, as well as further and higher education institutions. This will include information on managing their facilities and logistical arrangements, including buildings, resources, cleaning and transport.

The Government is also today publishing a paper from its COVID-19 Technical Advisory Group, representing the latest understanding of the virus with respect to children and education.

Further Education colleges are ensuring that appropriate measures are being taken to re-open for face-to-face learning from 15 June. They will prioritise those students requiring licence to practice assessments and vulnerable learners. This follows close working with Government and the joint trade unions.

Guidance for childcare providers will also be published in the next week, supporting them to increase the numbers of children in attendance alongside schools.

Kirsty Williams said:

“My announcement today gives schools three and a half weeks to continue preparing for the next phase.

“We will use the last weeks of the summer term to make sure pupils, staff and parents are prepared – mentally, emotionally and practically – for the new normal in September.

“29 June means there will have been one full month of test, trace and protect, which will continue to expand. I can also announce that teachers will be a priority group in our new antibody-testing programme. As we continue to keep Wales safe, this approach will be critical.

“The evolving science suggests that warm weather and sunlight gives us the best opportunity to ensure more time in school. Waiting until September would mean almost half a year without schooling. That would be to the detriment to the wellbeing, learning progress and mental health of our young people.

“This is and has been a worrying period for us all. I know that many will feel apprehensive. We have not rushed this work and this decision.

“The three and a half week period before the next phase also gives us time to keep watch on developments elsewhere and provides further check-points to review evidence and the roll-out of testing.

“This is the best practical option that meets my five principles which underpin my decision making.

“I am also convinced that it is only by returning to their own school that we will see increased attendance from our more vulnerable and disadvantaged children.

“Working together we will secure equity and excellence for pupils as they check in, catch up, and prepare for summer and September.”

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Four further coronavirus cases confirmed in Hywel Dda area

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THE LATEST figures from Public Health Wales (PHW) reveal four new cases of coronavirus have been reported in the Hywel Dda Health Board Area.

As of today, June 2, Carmarthenshire identified three new cases, Pembrokeshire has one new case and none in Ceredigion, meaning the new totals stand at 732, 279 and 42.

Wales now has a total of 14,121, with 67 new cases and seven additional deaths recorded, bringing the death total to 1,354.

With Hywel Dda reporting 61 deaths to date.

Dr Giri Shankar, incident director for the Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak response at Public Health Wales, said: “Contact tracing continues in Wales as part of the Welsh Government’s ‘Test, Trace, Protect’ strategy. Contact tracing is the process of identifying people who have come in contact with an individual with Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) in order to prevent the risk of others spreading the infection in our communities.

“Anyone who has a positive Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) test will be contacted by a team of contact tracers, and asked for details of everyone they have had close contact with while they have had symptoms.

“Please keep a note of your activities so you can easily remember your whereabouts on a given day, along with who were in contact with. You do not need to have any concerns about providing names to the tracing team. This is for everyone’s benefit and we are grateful for your continued cooperation.

“If you are asked to self-isolate, you should also comply with this request to prevent further spread of the virus.

“Tracers are trained staff and personal information that you provide will handled in line with data protection regulations and will not be shared widely.

“Over the last few weeks, Public Health Wales has been setting up the methods and guidance for how contact tracing will operate. We will continue to work closely to support local health boards and local authorities in delivering contact tracing.

“Welsh Government’s revised lockdown arrangements also continue. People from two different households in the same local area can meet up outdoors, provided they continue to maintain social distancing and strict hand hygiene.

“The announcement adds that, as a general rule, people should not travel more than five miles from home. This will help to reduce the risk of coronavirus spreading as people begin to travel more.

“Revised lockdown arrangements also apply to people in Wales who have been told to ‘shield’ from the virus. They are able to go outside and meet people from another household, provided they keep a two-metre distance.

“Future relaxation of lockdown measures will also be dependent on everyone following advice set out in the ‘Test, Trace, Protect’ strategy, including self-isolating when required.

“Information about the symptoms of Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) to look out for is available on the Public Health Wales website, or members of the public can use the NHS Wales symptom checker.

“Anyone experiencing Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) symptoms can now apply for a home testing kit using the new UK online portal. For further information and a link to the booking website, visit: www.gov.wales/coronavirus or www.llyw.cymru/coronafeirws. This will be supported by a national 119 phone service, through which people can also order a home test.

“We are encouraging everyone to download the Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) Symptom Study app, which has been supported by Welsh Government. The app allows users to log daily symptoms to help build a clearer picture of how the virus is affecting people. For more information, including how to download the app, visit covid.joinzoe.com.

“As part of wider support measures for families, Public Health Wales is offering all parents, parents-to-be, grandparents and care-givers free access to a series of online courses designed to help them understand the development and emotional milestones of their children, covering everything from pre-birth to late teens.

“To get access users just need to visit www.inourplace.co.uk and use the code ‘NWSOL’ if you live in North Wales, and ‘SWSOL’ if you live in Mid, West or South Wales.

“Public Health Wales is also continuing working to address the negative impact of Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) on the social, mental and physical wellbeing of people in Wales. Our latest campaign, ‘How are you doing?’ is now live and offering practical advice from phw.nhs.wales/howareyoudoing.

“Anyone with a suspected coronavirus illness should not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. They should only contact NHS 111 if they feel they cannot cope with their symptoms at home, their condition gets worse, or their symptoms do not get better after seven days.

“Only call 999 if you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, do not call 999 just because you are on hold to 111. We appreciate that 111 lines are busy, but you will get through after a wait.

“We also want to reinforce the message from NHS Wales that urgent and emergency care services for physical and mental health are still open and accessible.

“For parents, if your child is unwell and you are concerned you should seek help. If you have urgent dental pain you should still call your dentist. If you have a health complaint that is worrying you and won’t go away you should call your GP practice. If you or a family member are seriously ill or injured you should dial 999 or attend your nearest Emergency Department.”

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Carers Week goes interactive

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CARERS Week runs from Monday 8 June to Sunday 14 June. It is an annual campaign to recognise the contribution that unpaid Carers make to families and communities. Carers look after a friend or family member who cannot manage on their own because they have an illness, poor health, disability, mental health issue or an addiction.

This year so far has been particularly challenging since many people have had to carry on caring while seeing support services change dramatically or pause with no idea when things will go back to any kind of normal.

The Carers Unit and partners have been working hard to bring to carers across the county a big variety of ‘treats’ to let carers know that they are being thought of and to show them appreciation. An extra special Carers week e-bulletin that’s bursting with boredom busting ideas and sanity-saving tools & techniques has been prepared.

Coleg Ceredigion students, working with the Carers Unit, has been preparing online messages of thanks, a family-friendly carer quiz, a student pen-pal project and are encouraging Carers to join them on Sunday, 14 June to raise a cuppa for Carers at 3pm.

The Carers Unit and all of its partners invite Carers to join them at one or more of the over 30 free online sessions that have specifically designed with unpaid Carers in mind. No advance booking necessary.

To find out more information and how to join in with the Carers week celebrations, go to the Carers pages on the council website www.ceredigion.gov.uk/resident/social-care-wellbeing/support-for-carers/carers-week-2020 council social media pages or contact the Carers Unit on 01970 633564 / carersunit@ceredigion.gov.uk

‘It takes a strong person to carry on caring – it takes a stronger, more resilient person to reach out to others.’

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