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Ammanford

Picture-perfect tribute to long-serving hospital volunteer Morfa

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A long-serving volunteer is in the frame for well-deserved recognition of her many years of selfless service supporting patients in Swansea.

Morfa Owen has made the regular journey from her home in Ammanford to Morriston Hospital for the last 20 years.

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Originally volunteering for the WRVS, Morfa can now be found three days a week on the hospital front desk, where she helps patients and visitors needing directions or help with a wide range of inquiries.

The 79-year-old retired optical receptionist was selected to represent the health board’s volunteers in a unique NHS portrait series created by Swansea freelance illustrator Amy Jackson.

Amy put out a call on social media for NHS workers to send photographs, which she turned into portraits through a painstaking process called dotwork – which, as the name implies, uses dots to create an image.

Many of the resulting portraits were of frontline staff from around the UK, including some from Swansea Bay.

It was the health board’s Arts in Health team that suggested a volunteer representative – and Morfa said she was really pleased to take part.

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“I’m thrilled with the image and I requested a copy for myself, which I have at home,” said Morfa, who started volunteering with the WRVS in Morriston in 2002.

Morfa volunteers three days a week at Morriston Hospital’s front desk (Image: Swansea Bay NHS)

She joined the health board’s volunteering service in 2014 and, she says, has no intention of retiring anytime soon.

“I really enjoy my volunteering role, listening to people who share their problems, and directing them to where they need to be.

“They all have a different story. I get a lot of pleasure out of it, helping people who come from far and near to this hospital.

“I was an optical receptionist in a private practice before retired, so I’ve always dealt with the public.

“Being asked to take part in the portrait project was a bit of a shock but I was very pleased to be able to do it. If it helps others to volunteer, well, all the better for that.”

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Amy Jackson’s dotwork portrait of Morfa (Image: Swansea Bay NHS)

Swansea Bay’s Volunteer Services Manager, Katie Taylor, said: “Morfa is an example of the dedication and commitment shown to the health board day in day out by its team of volunteers.

“She has given countless hours of her time to support the community in and around Morriston.

Artist, Amy Jackson (Image: Swansea Bay NHS)

“It’s lovely to see this portrait and have her contribution recognised as well as shine a light on the role of volunteers throughout the pandemic.”

Amy said her NHS portrait series was heavily inspired by the pandemic.

“The past year has shone a light and proven how important the NHS is, and always has been.

“This was my attempt at illuminating just a small number of staff, to celebrate all of the hard work they have done and will continue to do,” she added.

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Ammanford

Leading insurance broker announces new sponsorship deal with Ammanford Cricket Club

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One of the UK’s leading independent insurance brokers, Towergate Insurance Brokers, has teamed up with Ammanford Cricket Club for their current season.

The partnership sees Towergate Insurance Brokers sponsor the upcoming Premier League match at home against Neath on 30 July, receiving exclusive access to one of the club balconies for 12 invited guests, featuring in the coin toss and appearing on the website and in match day programmes.

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In return, Towergate Insurance Brokers is providing essential funds to help cover the costs of running the club, maintaining the playing surface and ground at Ammanford Park, as well as donating two prizes of fourball golf at St. Pierre and Machynys for the club’s charity day which takes place later in the season.

Ammanford Cricket Club runs three senior sides on a Saturday, Cup teams on a Sunday and a midweek side, in addition to ten junior mixed teams, two girls’ teams and Friday evening All-Stars programme. They are focused on developing grass roots cricket, having over 150 juniors registered with the club.

Their first team plays in the South Wales Premier League and is captained by Alun Evans, ex-Glamorgan, and NZ Northern Districts player, for the 13th year running. They also have two allocated Glamorgan players available to their squad, Billy Root and Andrew Salter.

Peter Davies, Club Chair, said: “We’re really pleased to have Towergate Insurance Brokers on board as a sponsor this season, supporting our club as we continue to grow stronger after the pandemic.

“Towergate is well known here in south west Wales and have strong links with the sporting world, so having an association with such a large company will hopefully help enhance the wider attraction of the club.”

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Howard Phillips, Account Executive, at Towergate Insurance Brokers, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Ammanford Cricket Club this season, helping them continue to provide cricketing opportunities to so many in the town.

“This partnership was a natural fit for us as we have a lot of expertise in providing insurance to sporting clubs and associations, having worked with the Cardiff Devils and West Wales Rugby Union already this year.

“We look forward to watching the first team in the South Wales Premier League, particularly seeing Andrew Salter and Billy Root in action, and wish them the very best for the rest of the season.”

Towergate Insurance Brokers, which has over 60 offices nationwide, has a strong Welsh presence and a long-standing relationship with sporting teams across the country, having sponsored ice hockey team the Cardiff Devils since 2019.

(Lead image: Ammanford Cricket Club)

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Ammanford

Man who filmed rape of Ammanford woman on victim’s phone jailed for 10 years

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A man who filmed himself raping a woman on his victim’s phone has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

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

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Hassan, who was midway through his trial at Swansea Crown Court after denying any wrongdoing, changed his plea to guilty after the jury was shown the video of the attack.

He was back before Swansea Crown Court today and was sentenced to 10 years in prison .

Senior Investigating Officer DI Melanie Havard said the victim had shown great strength and determination throughout the investigation and trial.

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

“We appreciate this is not easy for anyone to do but the victim has expressed her gratitude to the officer in the case for her support and empathy throughout this process.

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“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.”

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

You can report it to Dyfed-Powys Police online, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101.

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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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