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Llanelli lorry driver wins £100,000 in Halifax Savers prize draw

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One lucky Halifax saver will be celebrating in style this festive season after he found out he’d won the top £100,000 prize in the Halifax Savers Prize Draw. 

Timothy Davies, an HGV driver from Llanelli, Wales, received the news and said he was “completely overwhelmed.”

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Over the moon!

Mr Davies, 61, has banked with Halifax for 26 years and couldn’t believe his luck when bank colleague Sam Borsden-Doyle of Llanelli branch told him he was the winner of £100,000. 

Mr Davies said: “I have never won anything in my life and I never thought I stood a chance of winning. I am shocked and completely over the moon – my partner didn’t believe me!

“I plan to use the money to help with my daughter’s education and purchase a buy to let to help me when I retire. I will also use it to pay for laser treatment on my eyes and I hope to plan some travel. In the meantime, we are planning an extra special Christmas this year.

“I am truly overwhelmed to receive £100,000 and I want to thank everyone at Halifax.”

The Halifax Savers Prize Draw* rewards over 1,600 savers every month, with prizes ranging from £100 all the way to £100,000.  

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The draw is now in its 10th year and, over the past decade, Halifax has paid prize money of over £75 million to nearly 160,000 customers. Over £6 million has been won in 2021 alone.

Russel Galley, Managing Director, Halifax, said: “We’ve been running our Savers Prize Draw for a whole decade now and we’re thrilled for Tim as one of our recent £100,000 top prize winners – it’s always wonderful to hear how much of a difference the prizes make to people’s lives. The whole team are always so excited when we make calls to our winners each month and we’ve certainly made lots of them, as we’ve now given away over £75 million to nearly 160,000 customers. We’re looking forward to congratulating many more winners in 2022 and beyond.”   

(Lead image: Halifax)

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Business

Stormtrooper costume, six bridesmaids dresses and a trumpet: Lost and Found at Travelodge’s in Wales

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A Stormtrooper costume, a trumpet, a marriage certificate, six Bridesmaid dresses and a Galleon made of matchsticks make the 2021 Travelodge Lost & Found audit for Wales.

Where would you find a Stormtrooper costume, a trumpet, a marriage certificate, six Bridesmaid dresses and a Galleon made of matchsticks? Where else but Travelodge’s Lost & Found offices in Wales!           

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Today, the UK’s first budget hotel chain, Travelodge, has revealed some of the interesting items left behind in its 582 hotels over the last 12 months incorporating its 26 hotels in Wales. With millions of people annually staying in a Travelodge hotel across the length and breadth of the UK, detailed below are some of the unusual treasures that have been left behind in Welsh properties: 

  • A lucky Buddha diamond necklace
  • A stained glass door
  • A 6ft flower arch made from white roses
  • A marriage certificate 
  • A family of garden gnomes
  • A collection of Ronald Dahl books
  • A Christmas village made of lego
  • A Chewbacca costume
  • A suitcase full of business receipts 
  • A vintage pocket watch
  • A Bridegroom’s top hat
  • A set of four palm trees
  • A Japanese parasol
  • A surfboard
  • A work contract
  • A Louis Vuitton dog carrier

With the Staycation being a top holiday choice in 2021, Travelodge hotel staff have reported a significant rise in items being left behind in their hotels over the last 12 months.  Some of the interesting finds include a business plan left behind in Cardiff M4 Travelodge, a set of four palm trees abandoned in Swansea Travelodge and a Christmas village made of Lego, which a customer forgot in Bridgend Pencoed Travelodge.

The housekeeping team at Swansea Central Travelodge were pleasantly surprised when they entered a room to be greeted by a 6ft flower arch made of white roses sitting on the bed, while a customer staying at the Llanelli Central Travelodge left behind his prized collection of garden gnomes.  A Louis Vuitton dog carrier was also left behind in Rhyl Seafront Travelodge.

The 2021 Travelodge Lost & Found audit has also revealed a growing trend of wedding-related items being left behind by brides, grooms and wedding guests across the company’s hotels.  A newlywed couple staying at Swansea M4 Travelodge were in such a rush to get to the airport to catch their honeymoon flight to Dubai that they left behind their wedding certificate!

A bridesmaid staying at Cardiff Llandeyrn Travelodge had the important job of taking six bridesmaid dresses to the wedding venue, due to being too focused on her ‘bad hair day’. Luckily, the hotel manager managed to get them to the wedding on time for the vital ceremony. 

A forgetful groom staying at Bridgend Pencoed Travelodge was in deep trouble with his future wife when he forgot to complete his bespoke wedding outfit with the Top Hat he’d left behind in the hotel. Luckily, the hotel team, who love a challenge, stepped in and got the hat to the church in time!

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With more road warriors staying at Travelodge hotels than ever before, the hotel chain has seen a rise in items being left behind by workers across all sectors. This includes a suitcase of receipts left behind in Llanelli Crosshands Travelodge Plus, a work contract forgotten at Halkyn Travelodge and a portfolio of shop front designs being left at Leeds Central Travelodge.         

Shakila Ahmed, Travelodge Spokeswoman said: “In 2021, following Freedom Day, we welcomed back millions of customers to our 582 UK Travelodge hotels including our 26 hotels in Wales and we saw a significant increase in bookings. This has led to a range of interesting items being left behind by our customers across our UK hotels. This year’s Lost & Found audit includes a rise in holiday themed items, wedding props, precious sentimental items, smart gadgets and beloved pets.   This includes a Stormtrooper costume, a trumpet, a marriage certificate, six Bridesmaid dresses and a Galleon made of matchsticks.

“When it comes to why so many of our customers forget their treasured items, it’s basically due to us all being time poor, juggling multiple tasks and being in a hurry to get from A to B. In the rush, valuable possessions are easily forgotten.”

Listed below are the top 30 interesting items left behind at some of Travelodge’s 26 hotels in Wales in 2021

ItemTravelodge Hotel
A Stormtrooper costumeCardiff Travelodge
A magician’s black book of tricksCardiff Central Queen Street Travelodge
A trumpetCardiff Airport Travelodge
A galleon made of matchsticksCardiff Atlantic Wharf Travelodge
Six bridesmaid dresses Cardiff Llandeyrn Travelodge
A business plan Cardiff M4 Travelodge
A pop-up tuck shop     Cardiff Travelodge
A collection of Christmas jumpers Cardiff Whitchurch Travelodge
A lucky Buddha diamond necklaceCaerphilly Travelodge
A stained glass doorNewport Central Travelodge
A 6ft flower arch made from white rosesSwansea Central Travelodge
A marriage certificate Swansea M4 Travelodge
A family of garden gnomesLlanelli Central Travelodge
A collection of Ronald Dahl booksLlanelli Crosshands Travelodge
A Christmas village made of LegoBridgend Pencoed Travelodge
A Chewbacca costumeLlanelli Central Travelodge
A suitcase full of business receipts Llanelli Crosshands Travelodge
A vintage pocket watchSwansea M4 Travelodge
A Bridegroom’s top hatBridgend Pencoed Travelodge
A set of four palm treesSwansea Travelodge
A Japanese parasolRhyl Seafront Travelodge
A surfboardColwyn Bay Travelodge
A work contractHalkyn Travelodge
A Louis Vuitton dog carrierRhyl Seafront Travelodge
A cuckoo clockLlanudno Travelodge
A jeroboam of Moët & Chandon champagneRhyl Seafront Travelodge
A portable beach hut Bangor Travelodge
A mini jukeboxHalkyn Travelodge
A Victorian dolls houseColwyn Bay Travelodge
A pearl necklace that was a wedding gift 50 years agoRhyl Seafront Travelodge

Listed below are the top ten most popular items left behind in Travelodge hotels during 2021:

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  • Chargers for mobile phones, smart devices, kindles and laptops
  • Mobile phones, tablets and Kindles 
  • Books
  • Teddy Bears
  • Toiletry bags with contents
  • Jewellery
  • Clothing
  • Toys
  • Business papers / notebooks / presentations  
  • Gifts / presents

All items left behind in Travelodge hotels which have not been claimed within three months are donated to the local British Heart Foundation Charity Shops, Travelodge’s nominated charity partner.

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Carmarthenshire

Police officer uses miracle spray to save life of Llanelli drug overdose victim

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A police officer equipped with a miracle spray has saved the life of an overdose victim in Carmarthenshire.

PC Gareth Rees, one of several officers across the force carrying nasal spray Nyxoid in a trial launched on Wednesday, 1 December, was called to a man in an intoxicated state shouting for help on the floor in Llanelli late at night earlier this month.

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By the time PC Rees arrived the man was unconscious and his breathing was laboured.

Identifying this as a sign he was suffering an overdose, PC Rees administered the spray.

“Within five to ten seconds he was conscious,” said PC Rees.

“It’s quite amazing how it works so quickly, it definitely made a difference for this man.”

The man involved has been positively dealt with and referred to Dyfed Drug and Alcohol Service (DDAS) who have been commissioned to support Dyfed-Powys Police.

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The trial is operating in Llanelli, Aberystwyth, Pembroke Dock and Llandrindod Wells for six months, with the ambition of reducing deaths from drug overdoses.

APB Prevention and Population Health Improvement Strategy Manager at Hywel Dda UHB, Craig Jones, said, “Response officers are quite often the first on scene to an overdose and by providing them with Naloxone, they will be in a position to save lives.

“Numbers of drug related deaths in Hywel Dda have fallen since 2020 and we see this as another initiative to keep the data moving in the right direction. The fact that an officer utilised his training and used Naloxone to save a life just 9 days into the trial is very rewarding and shows the impact this initiative will have.”

Chief Inspector Christina Fraser, who is leading the pilot, said the force had been using Naloxone within custody suites for many years but the introduction of the Nyxoid nasal spray, meant officers could easily use it whilst out on patrol. 

She added: “We have trained officers on a voluntarily basis to carry and utilise Nyxoid spray as part of our first aid provision.

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“We went live with the pilot on 1st December and I am pleased to report that we have been notified of its first successful use.

“It is really heartening to see the use of Nyxoid making a difference in saving peoples’ lives.

“I am extremely proud of those officers who have put themselves forward to be trained in the use of and carry Nyxoid and grateful to our partners DDAS, Kaleidoscope, Hywel Dda and Powys Health boards for their support on this trial.”

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Business

Wilko confirms plans to close Llanelli town centre store

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Wilko has confirmed that it intends to close it’s St Elli Centre store in Llanelli town centre in August.

The retailer said that “with regret”, it had briefed its team members in Llanelli of the decision to close the store because favourable lease terms cannot be agreed with the landlord.

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A spokesperson from Wilko said; “We have been looking at our options, but the reality is that we have been unable to reach an agreement with the landlord that makes this store commercially viable.

Jerome Saint-Marc, Wilko CEO comments; “Our history is steeped in serving our customers and communities going back to 1930 but there’s no denying the way people shop with us and where they want to shop with us is changing.  As a business we’re evolving and this includes working with landlords for more favourable terms, as well as looking at locations and store formats. We’ll continue to pull together to make our business better to secure the future of over 16,000 team members”.

“We’ll be doing everything we can to support our affected team members who will be offered any available positions in nearby stores.  We apologise to customers but will continue to offer them everything they need in nearby stores or via wilko.com.”

Wilko’s second store in Llanelli at Parc Trostre will remain open.

(Lead image: St Elli Centre)

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