blank
Connect with us

Coronavirus

Suspended sentence and £15k fine for Cinema & Co owner

Published

on

The owner of a Swansea independent cinema who refused to follow COVID rules has been given a 28 day suspended prison sentence and fined £15,000 at a hearing in Swansea Magistrates Court.

Swansea Council originally instructed Cinema & Co to close on Friday 19 November saying that that the business had not completed a COVID risk assessment, staff had no training on how to prevent transmission of COVID-19 and there was no implementation of the COVID pass scheme.

Advertisement

It was also noted that there was no signage advising customers to wear face coverings and there was inadequate cleaning products to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

A separate closure notice was also brought by the Welsh Government on Friday 26 November, however the business ignored this and repeatedly reopened.

Ms Redfern previously described the Welsh Government’s COVID pass regulations as “discriminatory and unlawful”.

Anna Redfern, who was accompanied in court by former Senedd member Neil McAvoy had issued a press release prior to the hearing stating that she would be pleading not guilty to all charges.

However once before District Judge Neale Thomas, Redfern pleaded guilty to contempt of court charges after failing to comply with the orders of the previous court hearing on 30 November. She also admitted to criminal damage and failing to comply with enforcement officers.

Advertisement

The court heard that following the previous court order for her to close, the cinema had opened on December 1, 2, 3 and 5. Ms Redfern also sent a letter to the council indicating that she would not be complying with the closure notice.

The council took further action to enforce the closure on 10 December by bolting the cinema’s shutters to the floor.

In court, District Judge Thomas said: “Ms Redfern makes choices and she ignores the law and expects the law to treat her with special dispensation. The consequences were entirely foreseeable.”

Besides the £15,000 fine, she was also ordered to pay the council’s costs of £9,000. This fine was a 30% reduction of what she could have faced, thanks to her guilty plea. She has 56 days to pay.

Outside the court, Anna Redfern said she would now comply with all measures in order to reopen her business. She also said that she would be taking time to look after her terminally ill mother and her son.

Advertisement

Broadcast media were prevented from recording Ms Redfern’s statement by her supporters who confronted them.

Following the court decision, a spokesman from Swansea council said: “Throughout this period we have tried to support Cinema and Co to do everything needed to keep the public safe when visiting the venue.

“Hundreds of businesses in Swansea have done what they have needed to, for the benefit of their customers and their staff.

“We have tried to work with Cinema & Co to ensure their business is safe. However, all our efforts, including enforcement were not taken on board.

“We hope Cinema and Co will now work with us to introduce measures so that it can operate safely.

Advertisement

“We will continue to work with all businesses in the city while the pandemic is ongoing to ensure they are safe and do not put the health and wellbeing of visitors at risk.”

(Lead image: Cinema & Co)

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Coronavirus

Face coverings retained in health and social care settings

Published

on

By

First Minister Mark Drakeford has confirmed the legal requirement to wear a face covering in health and care settings will remain in place.

Speaking after the latest three-week review of the coronavirus regulations, the First Minister said the public health situation was improving following the recent spike in cases caused by the BA.2 sub-type of omicron.

Advertisement

But Covid case rates remain high so maintaining the use of face coverings in health and care settings will help to protect to some of the most vulnerable people in society, staff and visitors.

The First Minister also urged everyone to continue to take measures to reduce the spread of coronavirus by following a set of simple steps to protect one another and keep Wales safe.

These include self-isolating if ill or testing positive for Covid-19; wearing a face covering in crowded indoor places, meeting outdoors wherever possible; keeping indoor areas well ventilated and washing hands regularly.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “The pandemic isn’t over but we are seeing encouraging signs the recent high levels of infections across Wales are falling.

“There are steps we can all take to protect ourselves while coronavirus is still circulating and reduce the spread of the virus even further. This is particularly true in places where some of the most vulnerable people in society are being treated and live, which is why we will retain the legal requirement to wear face coverings in health and social care settings.

Advertisement

“More generally, ensuring you are up-to-date with your Covid vaccinations and spring booster – if you are eligible – is really important. If you have Covid symptoms or test positive, please stay at home and help break the chain of transmission.

“Together, we can carry on keeping each other safe and keeping Wales safe.”

The next three-weekly review of coronavirus regulations will be carried out by 26 May.

Continue Reading

Coronavirus

Schools’ Covid guidance aligned to businesses and other workplaces

Published

on

By

The Minister for Education and Welsh Language, Jeremy Miles, has announced that Covid-19 measures for schools in Wales will be brought into line with guidance for businesses and other organisations.

The Welsh Government has written to schools in Wales this morning to inform them of the changes.

Advertisement

Since September last year, schools have applied measures to stop the spread of Coronavirus according to local circumstances, based on the Local Covid-19 infection control decision framework for schools. Schools will no longer be advised to use the framework.

The change is in line with the Welsh Government’s long-term Covid-19 transition from pandemic to endemic. The risk from coronavirus is now considered in the same context as other communicable diseases, such as flu.

The First Minister has announced that the remaining coronavirus restrictions will be removed from 9 May, if the public health situation remained stable. The changes to the guidance for schools will also come into effect from 9 May.

Schools and other education settings will continue to be advised to work with local authorities and public health advisors to ensure that measures remain appropriate and proportionate and reflect local risks and circumstances.

A checklist will be provided to support schools and settings in considering which control measures remain proportionate. Special schools will continue to follow the advice for children and young people with higher clinical risk and clinically extremely vulnerable adults.

Advertisement

Speaking at the Welsh Government’s weekly press briefing, Jeremy Miles said: “In line with the wider public health guidance published at the last three-week review, we have today written to headteachers to signpost the impending changes to our advice for schools, which reflect the move from pandemic to endemic. This will ensure school guidance is more closely aligned with the rest of society.

“We all know that Covid-19 has not gone way. It remains vitally important we reduce the spread of the virus where we can – this includes, for example, following self-isolation guidance, and for education settings to continue to undertake robust risk assessments.”

Continue Reading

Coronavirus

Health board extends shuttle bus between Llanelli and COVID vaccination centre

Published

on

By

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.

Advertisement

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.

Advertisement

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)

Advertisement
Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending

Copyright © 2021 Swansea Bay News