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Carmarthen

New lease signed for Carmarthen Mart

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The future of Carmarthen Mart has been secured with the signing a new leaseholder with the promise of new investment and new jobs for the area.

Nock Deighton Agricultural LLP, which runs the successful Newcastle Emlyn Livestock Market, has won the tender to run the mart at Nantyci.

The company is set to make substantial initial investment in upgrading the facilities, and intends to create 19 local jobs, in addition to providing work for local auctioneers. 

Cllr David Jenkins, Carmarthenshire Council’s Executive Board Member for Resources, said: “The Carmarthen Mart is an important element of Carmarthenshire’s rural economy, and we are pleased to be able to offer this opportunity to Nock Deighton. The company has a long history, a great track record of running large livestock markets – including the very successful mart at Newcastle Emlyn – and a strong commitment to localism. The company is an excellent fit for Carmarthen Mart and we look forward to a long and successful association with them as we move the mart forward.”

The Nock Deighton company is 190 years old and currently runs the large Bridgenorth Livestock and Auction Centre in Shropshire. 

Since taking over Newcastle Emlyn livestock market in 2018 they have increased throughput by over 60 per cent, turning a declining market into a thriving one.

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A representative of Nock Deighton said: “The Partners of Nock Deighton Agricultural LLP are delighted to have been granted the opportunity of running Carmarthen Mart in the very near future. 

“We are very much looking forward to developing the business, alongside our existing marts at Newcastle Emlyn and Bridgnorth, and in doing so providing good quality employment for local people – something we are committed to and looking forward to.

“We hope to provide a high quality service for all our customers, in what is the premier livestock facility for the rural communities of west Wales and further afield.”

The mart at Nantyci has two auction rings with associated livestock pens for cattle, sheep and pigs together with modern purpose-built facilities including a reception and mart office, café area and bar.

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(Lead image: Carmarthenshire Council)


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Carmarthen

Movie ‘Save the Cinema’ to be shown at Carmarthen’s Lyric Theatre – the subject of the film

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Carmarthenshire County Council has secured a two-week showing of Sky Cinema original movie Save The Cinema at Carmarthen’s Lyric Theatre – the very subject of the film.

Welsh Government Covid-19 restrictions meant that plans to premiere the film at Carmarthen had to be called off, but the council has since brought specialist equipment in to allow people to see the film being screened in the very place it was filmed during 2021.

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The film is based on a true story inspired by the life of Carmarthen hairdresser Liz Evans who called on Hollywood to save her local cinema.

The film stars Golden Globe-winning Samantha Morton as the main character, supported by Oscar-nominated Jonathan Pryce, Harry Potter star Tom Felton and Keith Allen among others. Filming started last year and parts of the town were transformed to look like the early 1990s when the film is set.

Carmarthenshire County Council has been working closely with Sky Cinema throughout the production, supporting the filming of key scenes at The Lyric, in streets around Carmarthen, in council offices in Ammanford, and in other areas of the county such as Laugharne and Llandeilo.

The film has boosted the local econonmy by around £750,000 already, with more economic benefit expected in the coming months.

The council say that supporting filming in Carmarthenshire is one of the council’s key aims because of the money it brings into the county.

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Council leader, Cllr Emlyn Dole said: “We were delighted to host the production of this fantastic film earlier this year, with scenes filmed in Carmarthen, Ammanford, Laugharne and Llandeilo. And now to screen it in the place where it was filmed is just the icing on the cake. Carmarthenshire has proven itself again and again to be a desirable destination for the media and it’s enjoying a growing reputation as a filming location for major television dramas and movies, with several award-winning productions finding their home here in Carmarthenshire. Attracting national and international productions such as this has a major impact on the growth of our economy and ensures that our communities reap the benefits.”

Tickets for the screenings in The Lyric, from January 14-30, can be booked at www.theatrausirgar.co.uk. Bookings will only be allowed for maximum groups of six, and seating will be socially distanced. A Covid Pass will be required.

The film is also showing on Sky Cinema from Friday, January 14.

(Lead image: Sky / Ffilm Cymru)

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Carmarthen

First look at Carmarthen bus station revamp and ‘green roof’ bus shelter plans

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People are being given the chance to help shape the revamp of Carmarthen town centre’s bus station.

Carmarthenshire County Council, working with transport engineering group Atkins, has secured funding to improve and enhance the bus station in Blue Street.

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Feedback from investigations and user surveys show that the existing bus shelters are too small and do not provide sufficient shelter for waiting passengers.

These are being replaced with two new continuous shelters to provide better weather protection and ‘green-roof’ canopies to help capture carbon and attract bees and butterflies.

A small number of hornbeam trees that are constrained by the current shelters will need to be removed, however a larger range of new trees and ornamental shrubbery will be planted to compensate and add more greenery to the Blue Street area.

Further improvements will include the widening of the central reserve and enhanced landscaping of the area to bring people closer to nearby shops and businesses.

The council and Atkins are now seeking public views to help them shape final design proposals.

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Members of the public, town centre businesses and stakeholders, public transport operators and users, and anyone else with an interest in the scheme, is being invited to provide feedback on the plans and ask questions about the scheme.

Cllr Hazel Evans, Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “Encouraging people to use public transport and sustainable travel options is a key priority for the council.

“These improvements will not only enhance the bus station but also support our commitment to tackling climate change by introducing more green infrastructure, helping capture carbon emissions and attract a diversity of wildlife.

“The work ties in with other town centre improvements to encourage people into town and provide more safe space for people and businesses as part of our post Covid-19 economic recovery plan.

“A few small trees that are currently constrained will need to be removed as part of these works, but we look forward to bringing the county’s first green roof bus shelters to Carmarthen and planting more trees than we are removing to capture more carbon emissions than the current bus station can.”

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Construction is due to start in January and will take around three months to complete.

The council and Atkins will work with local businesses to ensure minimal disruption around delivery times and peak periods, with parking and loading bays maintained throughout the works.

Signage and information will be posted in advance and during the works to redirect buses and passengers to temporary stops just around the corner in Lammas Street, near the Rose and Crown.

People can view and feedback on the proposals by visiting the council’s website.

(Lead image: Carmarthenshire Council)

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Trading underway at popup shops in Carmarthen and Llanelli

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Christmas shopping is well underway at Carmarthenshire County Council’s 100% Sir Gâr pop-up shops in Carmarthen and Llanelli.

Local independent businesses have been given free retail space to sell their products in the heart of the two town centres at the busiest trading time of the year.

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The council has secured temporary use of the former Debenhams store in Carmarthen and no.1 Stepney Street, Llanelli.

Businesses selling handmade gifts and crafts, food and drinks, jewellery, clothing, homeware and more have taken advantage of the free retail space and trading has already been busy since they opened on December 1.

It is the second time the council has created pop-up shops to offer opportunities to local producers and traders following the launch of 100% Sir Gâr.

The initiative started as a virtual shop window on the council’s Discover Carmarthenshire website last year as a way of supporting local businesses to recover from a long period of lockdown and restrictions on retail.

Leader of the council, Cllr Emlyn Dole, said supporting local businesses was key to reviving and strengthening Carmarthenshire’s economy following the pandemic.

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“We’re really pleased to be able to offer this opportunity to small local businesses,” he said. “I’ve had the opportunity to call in to both pop-up shops and see the range of products and gifts for sale.

“What is rewarding is seeing the difference this opportunity makes to a small businesses. I hope that people will come out and support them. Every purchase made is money in the pockets and tills of local people, and I know how much they appreciate it.”

Council Leader Emlyn Dole at the Llanelli pop-up shop (Image: Carmarthenshire Council)

As well as the free pop-up shops the council has also agreed to allow free parking in its Carmarthen and Llanelli town centre car parks during December – in Carmarthen the local council and business representatives chose Sundays and in Llanelli they chose Saturdays.

This is in addition to the free parking periods in the council’s short stay car parks all through the year – in Carmarthen this is from 3.30pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and in Llanelli from 10am to 4pm on Mondays and Tuesdays.

The 100% Sir Gâr pop-up shops are open as follows:

1 Stepney Street, Llanelli

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  • Dec 1-18: Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays from 10am-4pm; Saturdays 10am-3pm
  • Dec 21-23: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10am-4pm

St Catherine’s Walk, Carmarthen

  • Dec 1-12: Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 9am-5pm; and Sundays 11am-4.30pm
  • Dec 15-23: Every day 9am-5pm (11am-4.30pm on the Sunday)
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