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Llanelli

Swansea community café and Llangennech rugby club secure funding thanks to housebuilder

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A community café in a Swansea park and juniors at Llangennech RFC are both celebrating after bagging donations from a leading housebuilder.

The Friends of Ravenhill Park have received £899 for new kitchen units and worktops, while Llangennech RFC Juniors Section has scored £1,000 to develop its own kitchen area for a new tuck shop.

The donations come from Persimmon Homes West Wales in Penllergaer, which hands out two grants of up to £1,000 to groups in its operating area every month.

Ravenhill Park, Swansea (Image: Friends of Ravenhill Park)

Marianne Guppy, of The Friends of Ravenhill Park, said: “This money is a huge boost to us at a difficult time.

“We usually organise events and activities for all ages and abilities but due to Covid-19 we have mainly been supporting the more vulnerable and isolated members of our communities.

“Since July we have been opening up our small community coffee room in the park and erecting canopies and gazebos for use by our less able and vulnerable community members as safe spaces where they can meet others outside.

Ravenhill Park, Swansea (Image: Friends of Ravenhill Park)

“Unfortunately, after over 30 years of cleaning and general wear and tear parts of our small galley kitchen has become unusable.

“To comply with health regulations and to enable us to continue to give our community a place they can meet and socialise, we must replace our units and worktops.

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“We can now move forward with that project. Thank you, Persimmon.”

Llangennech RFC’s ground (Image: Llangennech RFC)

Clark Hartnell, of Llangennech RFC Juniors Section, said: “We have over 180 children training and playing with us from ages six to 16.

“Before Covid-19 we secured the lease on a playing field for our team to train and play at and started to build facilities, including storage and toilets.

“Due to the pandemic we have been unable to do any fundraising and as such are behind our schedule. Specifically, we wish to develop a tuck shop on site to provide refreshments for visiting teams with teas, coffees and bacon rolls for parents and water, and hot dogs for the children at the end of the game.

“This will enable us to raise funds on game days to ensure that we can continue to develop and provide a fantastic place for local children to develop their sporting and social skills.”

Sharon Bouhali, sales director at Persimmon Homes West Wales, said: “The Covid-19 crisis has left many community groups and charities in desperate need of funding.

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“We’re proud to be able to support good causes within the areas in which we operate.

“All 32 regional businesses within Persimmon donate up to £2,000 each month. That’s up to £64,000 a month – and £768,000 a year.”

New Persimmon Homes development at The Bridles, Trimsaran near Llanelli

Visit persimmonhomes.com/charity to apply for Community Champions funding.

Persimmon is currently selling stunning new-build homes in Llanelli at The Bridles development and in Johnstown at Parc Yr Onnen.

(Lead image: Llangennech RFC Juniors – Llangennech RFC / Facebook)

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Dyfed Powys Police

Man banned from driving for 12 months for fishing offence

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A man from Merthyr Tydfil who travelled to the River Loughor, near Llanelli to fish using a barbaric and illegal method, has been banned from driving for 12 months as part of his sentence.

Vu Quang Tien pleaded guilty to an illegal fishing charge and also to a charge of obstruction of a Natural Resources Wales (NRW) Fisheries Enforcement Officer on 26 April at Swansea Magistrates Court.

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Mr Tien and two other anglers were witnessed by NRW Fisheries Enforcement Officers deliberately using the illegal foul hooking method of fishing – also known as snatching – at the river Loughor on 15 August 2021. NRW officers attended the site after several reports of illegal fishing were made to NRW’s 24/7 incident call centre by concerned members of the community.

When approached and questioned by NRW officers, Mr Tien and his accomplices showed significant hostility and reluctance to share identification documents which eventually had to be extracted by use of reasonable force.

All of Mr Tien’s fishing tackle and fish, along with his associates’ fishing tackle was seized by NRW Officers at the time of the incident. The district judge on the day at Swansea Magistrates Court gave permission to NRW to confiscate these items permanently from each of them.

The District Judge disqualified Mr Tien from driving for 12 months due to seriousness of the incident, and the premeditated and deliberate action of travelling such a distance to commit the offence.

He was also ordered to pay a total of £2,334 in fines, NRW costs and a victim surcharge.

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Mark Thomas, Fisheries Enforcement Officer for NRW, said: “We would like to again thank Dyfed Powys Police, the local communities and also the law-abiding anglers in the area for their continued support in reporting these illegal fishing activities.

“Foul hooking is a truly barbaric form of fishing carried out by a small minority of anglers in Wales, who have no regard for fish welfare.

“NRW and the Police take these incidents seriously as do the courts.

“Hopefully, the small minority of anglers who may in future, think of using any illegal fishing methods will take heed of the heavy fines and driving ban in this case issued by the courts.”

(Lead image: Natural Resources Wales)

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Llanelli

Unlicensed Llanelli dog breeder made thousands of pounds selling puppies illegally

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An illegal dog breeder from Llanelli made thousands of pounds by selling his puppies on Gumtree and Free Ads websites.

Llanelli Magistrates Court heard that unlicensed Ashleigh Price of Llwynhendy pocketed between £34k and £57k from the sales of 10 litters over a 16-month period.

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It is illegal to advertise three or more litters of puppies from the same premises within a 12-month rolling period without a dog breeding licence.

In a prosecution led by Carmarthenshire County Council, the court was told that council officers visited the premises in Parc Richard following complaints received from Citizens Advice Consumer Services in July last year that the 25-year-old had kennels in his garden and that he was illegally breeding dogs.

Checks with both websites revealed four accounts in Price’s name and two in his wife’s and that litters made up of Jack Russell’s, Labradors, Cocker Spaniels and West Highland Terriers were advertised on the sites between April 2020 and November 2021. Most of the adverts stated they were family pets.

In mitigation, Price said that he wanted to make more money due to him being on weekly benefits of £120 and that he acted alone and set up accounts in his wife’s name. He denied making £35k saying that he ‘haggled’ the price and that some of the dogs were given away to family and friends. He also said he had no record of how much the dogs were sold for.

Price was fined £500, ordered to pay £750 costs and £50 victim surcharge.

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(Lead image: Google Maps)

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Coronavirus

Health board extends shuttle bus between Llanelli and COVID vaccination centre

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Hywel Dda University Health Board (HDUHB) has extended the free shuttle bus service between Llanelli town centre and the mass vaccination centre in Dafen to help people access their COVID-19 vaccination as easily as possible.

The shuttle bus, provided by Dolen Teifi, will continue to run between 10.30am to 4.40pm, seven days a week – with no service at 12.00pm from town or at 12.15pm from the mass vaccination centre to allow the drivers a lunch break.

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People can board the shuttle bus on the hour and at half-past the hour at Church Street, outside Llanelli Magistrates Court.

The shuttle bus will leave the mass vaccination centre quarter past and quarter to the hour, returning to the town centre and dropping passengers off opposite Llanelli library.

Bethan Lewis, Interim Assistant Director of Public Health for Hywel Dda UHB, said: “We need as many people as possible attending their COVID-19 vaccine appointments, or dropping in if eligible.

“This shuttle bus service is one of many additional resources and services being put in place across the Hywel Dda region to help support more people to receive their COVID-19 vaccination. I am pleased the shuttle bus service has been extended to help people reliant on public transport to access their COVID-19 vaccine.”

On 21 February 2022, the JCVI published a statement, recommending an additional spring booster.

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Strict COVID-19 safety measures are in place to ensure the safety of drivers and passengers on this service, including wearing face coverings unless medically exempt.

A maximum of 14 passengers are allowed per journey with a screen in place between driver and passengers.

The health board say that passengers should only use this service if they are fit and well on the day.

They add that before travelling without an appointment to Dafen mass vaccination centre, people should check the health board’s website for up-to-date information such as vaccine eligibility and drop-in opening times.

(Lead image: Hywel Dda NHS)

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