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Carmarthenshire

£6.5million investment in obesity and pre-diabetes ‘will benefit both young and old’ during pandemic battle

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More than £6.5million is being invested in combatting obesity and diabetes in Wales, in a bid to support those most likely to be severely affected by the pandemic.

The funding, outlined following the Welsh Government’s Budget, will be targeted at both children and older people to support them in reaching and maintaining a healthy weight.

It comes ahead of the publication of the refreshed 2021-22 Healthy Weight: Healthy Wales (HW:HW) Delivery Plan on 18 March, in light of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The funding will be made up of £5.5m going towards specific HW:HW programmes and £1m towards a pre-diabetes programme.

Over £4m will go into developing a system-based approach which will contribute to preventing illness and reducing the impact of poor health and inequality, and allow health boards to develop their services in line with a revised obesity pathway.

More than £600,000 will go towards improving physical inactivity amongst older people, which will help support recovery from the pandemic to encourage healthy behaviours, as well as improving the health of those most likely to be severely affected by coronavirus.

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Sport Wales will work through Local Authorities to deliver targeted provision of physical activity opportunities to over 60s who are currently inactive or the least active.

Among the local authority areas that has been able to begin their enhanced over 60s programme already with online workouts is Carmarthenshire.

Earlier this year, Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, made a virtual visit to a Carmarthenshire County Council ‘Actif Anywhere’ online session to sample what’s on offer.

In a multi-pronged approach, more than £600,000 will also be targeted at improving the health of children and young people where there are higher levels of health inequalities and a high proportion of the child population who are obese.

Three pilots will be run to learn how to help families engage with the support available and drive behavioural change, in an effort to tackle the stigma of childhood obesity and families being reluctant to engage with support and advice services.

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Pippa Britton, one of the Healthy Weight Cymru Ambassadors, said: “As someone with a disability, I know that maintaining a healthy weight and being active can sometimes seem like an uphill struggle, and the last thing we want to have to do is face any struggle alone.

“The pandemic has been really isolating and that hasn’t helped, especially in the dark winter months when it is hard to get outside.

“I think it is really great that the Welsh Government has realised this and the funding through Healthy Weight: Healthy Wales will go a long way towards supporting change.”

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A further £1million funding has been outlined to support the development of trials of a pre-diabetes prevention programme. The funding will support robust testing of trial areas over a two year period, before it can be scaled up and a preventative intervention programme run across Wales.

Research has shown there is good evidence that identifying pre-diabetes can strongly influence behavioural change and produces high motivational levels to enable change. It is hoped this will meet the challenge of rising Type-2 Diabetes, improving the health of the population affected and providing value based healthcare in the system.

For 2019-20, there were approximately 192,000 people in Wales with type 2 diabetes – around 7% of the adult population in Wales.

Eluned Morgan MS

Minister for Mental Health and Wellbeing, Eluned Morgan, said: “We have seen the coronavirus doesn’t discriminate who it targets, but those who are in poor health are much more likely to be severely affected by this awful virus.

“By striving to improve the health of the elderly who are inactive, we can help them reach a healthy weight and reduce the chances of them facing further health problems.

“We are also committed to tackling childhood obesity and breaking the stigma of families who are afraid of reaching out for the help and intervention available when they need it.

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“We know there are high rates of diabetes in Wales and hope this funding will allow us to take early action to prevent illness, as well as reduce the impact of poor health and inequality.

“This funding will help us achieve our goals in the Healthy Weight: Healthy Wales programme and our efforts to combat obesity and diabetes.”

(Lead image: Artem Podrez / Pexels.com)


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Ammanford

Man who filmed rape on Ammanford victim’s phone changes plea mid trial

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A man who filmed himself raping an Ammanford woman on his victim’s phone has changed his plea to guilty midway through his trial.

Cameron Hassan, aged 31, of no fixed abode, attacked the woman, raping her as she slept on 21 August 2021.

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Hassan had been on trial at Swansea Crown Court after denying any wrongdoing. However, after the jury was shown the video of the attack and hearing the victim was going to give evidence yesterday (Tuesday, 10 May), Hassan changed his plea to guilty.

Investigating Officer DC Sophie Lambert from Dyfed Powys Police said the victim had shown great strength and determination throughout the investigation.

“I must commend her tremendous courage in coming forward and the tenacity shown throughout the investigation,” she said.

“We hope this case demonstrates that Dyfed-Powys Police acts on serious allegations such as rape and sexual assault with officers working tirelessly to secure justice for victims.

“If you are suffering because of similar abuse, please contact the police, or if you would rather speak to someone in confidence, New Pathways are an independent charity that will support you through every step of the investigation.”

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New Pathways can be contacted at 01685 379 310 or email enquiries@newpathways.org.uk

(Lead image: Google Maps)

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Carmarthenshire

Women’s Tour of Britain returns to Carmarthenshire

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The countdown is on before the world’s top women riders will race through Carmarthenshire as part of the Women’s Tour of Britain.

Some 108 cyclists will race through the County to the finishing line on top of the Black Mountain between Llangadog and Brynamman as part of the stage five event on Friday, June 10.

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The route will be starting from Pembrey Country Park at 10.45am and riders competing for the title will go through Pinged, Carway, Pontyberem, Horeb, Llansawel, and Llangadog.

A rolling road closure will take place along the 65-mile route which will come into action at 10.45am until 1.50pm.

Roads will be re-opened once the cyclists have passed through. A full road closure will be in place over the Black Mountain from 5am-5pm.

The event will be broadcast on ITV4 and across Europe with a helicopter camera crew following the race.

The Women’s Tour departs on Monday, June 6, and coincides with the final day of a four-day Bank Holiday weekend in the UK to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee. The race will culminate with a prestigious finale six days later on Saturday, June 11.

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Pembrey Country Park previously hosted the Grand Départ of the men’s Tour of Britain as well as the overall finish of the Women’s Tour in 2019.

Carmarthenshire County Council’s Chief Executive, Wendy Walters said: “We are thrilled that we have again been chosen to host this top cycling event. Previous years have brought an immediate economic boost to the tourism sector as well as providing a great deal of positive media coverage.”

(Lead image: Carmarthenshire Council)

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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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