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Council announces more play areas in the pipeline for city communities

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Children from even more communities across Swansea will be gaining on the swings and the roundabouts in the coming months

Swansea Council has unveiled detailed plans for even more play area upgrades in communities across the city as part of its £5m play area fund.

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Work has started at Loughor foreshore, Melin Mynach and Craig Cefn Park on top of others at Llangefelach, Coed Bach, and Pennard. A new play area for Penllergaer has been completed

The projects are in addition to those announced for popular outdoor destinations at Blackpill and Bracelet Bay, which are expected to have new equipment installed and ready for the busy Easter school holidays in April. 

Morriston Park’s play area is getting an upgrade too and is due to be officially opened next week.

Robert Francis-Davies, Swansea Council’s Cabinet Member for Investment, Regeneration and Tourism, said: “During the pandemic outdoor play areas in their local parks were a haven of enjoyment for children and their parents amid very difficult times.

“Swansea Council was there for them during that period and we’re determined to be supporting them still as we emerge from the pandemic. We’re the only local authority in Wales that’s given a commitment to upgrade all its play areas.”

The new generation of play areas springing up all over Swansea feature equipment chosen in collaboration with local communities and range from traditional swings, slides, roundabouts to trampolines, zipwires and climbing frames.

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Cllr Francis-Davies said: “The new play area and equipment we’re putting in will be a brilliant boost for children looking forward to a great free day out. We’ve already completed more in places like Gorseinon and Gowerton.

“And there’ll be more to come this year as the scheme is extended to cover additional locations around the city including Mayhill, Uplands, Bonymaen and Llansamlet.”

Andrew Stevens, Cabinet Member for Business Improvement and Performance, said: “Our parks remained open throughout the pandemic and it was noticeable just how popular and important play areas were in enabling children to get out of the house, enjoy exercise and a breath of fresh air safely.

“We’ve been inspired by that to dip into the council’s dedicated £20m Economic Recovery Fund to help create the play areas alongside Welsh Government grants and great support from ward members dipping into their budgets.”

(Lead image: Swansea Council)

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Gorseinon

Popular Gorseinon 10k run returns after almost 20 year absence

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The much-loved Brisco 10k run is returning to the streets of Gorseinon in May 2023.

The event, which was last run in the early 2000’s returns after almost a 20-year absence. Local running event company, Front Runner Events will manage and run the event, which will look to replicate the fun and community spirit of the original fun run.

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The return of the popular run is thanks to the efforts of local councillors Andrew Stevens, Nicola Matthews and Jan Curtice (pictured above)

Cllr Robert Francis-Davies, Swansea Council’s Cabinet Member for Investment, Regeneration and Tourism, said: “As a council, we are delighted to see the Brisco 10k is returning to Gorseinon. The event has been missing from the annual calendar for too long.” 

Councillor Andrew Stevens said: “It has been a long-term pledge of ours to bring back this race to the community of Gorseinon. To see the Brisco 10K return next year is wonderful news, the event has always been well supported by the community and we look forward to welcoming the runners back next year. 

“With the backing of a local company, Brisco and the support of Front Runner Events, the event will see hundreds of runners taking part from all over the city and helping us re-establish the event as an annual race.

“It is wonderful to see this race return to the streets of Gorseinon after so many years away. Seeing local businesses working together with Swansea Council and the town council is wonderful. Events like this are for the community and seeing the community working together to support the return of the race is great”. 

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David Martin-Jewell, Managing Director of Front Runner Events added:  “We are extremely proud to be able to bring this historic race back to the streets of Gorseinon and Swansea. The Brisco 10k has a special place in the hearts of runners in the city and we are excited to be part of the recreated event and bring it into the 21st century.

“This event has a great heritage throughout the city and will hopefully see the new generation of runners from the likes of 3M’s and Swansea Harriers compete for the bragging rights at the event. There are some fantastic runners in the city and the local clubs will want to earn the bragging rights at winning the first one”

Councillor Jan Curtice said: ‘This is great news for the community of Gorseinon and is wonderful that we can realise our pledge to see this much-loved event return. We (with the town council) have been committed to helping establish events such as this for the area. We hope that this will be a great day for everyone. 

“The Brisco 10k will also help local running clubs and provide vital fund-raising opportunities for charities throughout the area. Building on the heritage of the original race, it will certainly help raise the profile of the event, and help attract a new, younger generation of runners to the sport. 

Nick O’Kelly, Operations Manager of Brisco said: “We are proud to return as the headline sponsors of the 10k. We have wanted to see it return for years, so we are delighted to support the event again. 

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The event will take place on April 30th, 2023, and more specific details will be available from frontrunnerevents.co.uk in due course.

Front Runner Events are the organisers of the JCP Swansea Half MarathonM&D Care Llanelli Half MarathonCardiff Metropolitan University Cardiff 10K and the Great Welsh Marathon

They were recently announced as the new organisers of the Port Talbot Half Marathon.

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Clydach

Funding secures additional 49 life-saving defibrillators for Swansea communities

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An additional 49 easily accessible life-saving defibrillators are being installed at retail locations in communities right across Swansea in the coming months.

Swansea Council is working with the charity Heartbeat Trust UK to increase public access to this vital equipment and to become the UK’s first ‘defib-friendly’ city.

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The Council has agreed more than £60,000 in grant funding that will enable the Charity to place and insure defibrillators in locations that have 24-hour access in all 36 council wards.

These will include additional machines in retail locations in the city centre, high streets in communities including Morriston, Clydach, Gorseinon, Pontarddulais and Sketty and outside community shops or pubs in more rural locations such as Gower.

Swansea Council Leader Rob Stewart said: “This equipment can easily mean the difference between life and death when someone suffers from a medical emergency such as a heart attack and we want to ensure all our residents have as much support as possible.

“There has been an increase in number of accessible defibrillators in Swansea in recent years and the Council will continue to play it’s part in growing the coverage”

Deputy Leader Andrea Lewis, who has driven the initiative, added: “Heartbeat Trust UK is already doing a fantastic job working with our communities in Swansea.

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“This grant will ensure we can get these machines installed all across the city and help save lives. Our ambition is to be Britain’s first defib-friendly city where no-one is far from a defibrillator.

“I’m confident residents in all our communities will welcome this additional support as part of our partnership with Heartbeat Trust UK.”

It is anticipated that all 49 additional machines will be in place within the next few months.

Henry Gilbert, Chair of Heartbeat Trust UK, said: “We are proud to be partnering with Swansea Council to make this city ‘defib-friendly’ in terms of the strategic placement of defibrillators in all communities, generating greater awareness of their locations and providing CPR / Defibrillator training.

“Out of hospital cardiac arrests is one the top causes of death in the UK. The timely intervention of CPR and defibrillation can improve the survival rate from less than 3% to as much as 75%. This initiative will definitely save lives in Swansea.”

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(Lead image: Wikimedia / Tanja-Denise Schantz)

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Gorseinon

CCTV upgrades planned for four Swansea communities

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two gray bullet security cameras

Mumbles, Pontarddulais, Gorseinon and Uplands are to get new CCTV systems as part of a major upgrade of city-wide facilities.

The work comes alongside further upgrades for existing facilities in the city centre, council housing estates and Morriston.

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It’s also intended for plans to be brought forward to develop a network of free on-street community wi-fi services in the coming years in the wake of the network that’s already proved popular in the city centre.

The move will also see the council’s existing central CCTV control room upgraded.

Andrew Stevens, Cabinet Member for Business Improvement and Performance, said: “The programme of CCTV upgrades and new installations will start this year. It’s a project that aims to support our communities in the years ahead, support the police and other emergency services to help keep people safe.

“The opening of Swansea Arena alongside all the other city centre developments coming in the next few years means we need to upgrade our CCTV systems there.

“If the Morriston upgrade and new systems for Mumbles, Pontarddulais, Gorseinon and Uplands are a success we’ll also look to develop plans for other district centres.

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He said: “We’ve already been doing a lot of important work behind the scenes on developing our CCTV plans. Specialist CCTV consultants are helping draw up the plans for the first wave of projects so we can go out to tender soon.

“It’s our ambition to begin work on installing upgraded CCTV and some of the new schemes this year.

“Developing public wi-fi services for district centres are still at an early stage. But we’ve seen how popular the service is in the city centre which is why the council is keen to extend its network to other areas over time.”

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