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Carmarthenshire

Work starts on Llanelli Pentre Awel ‘health and wellbeing’ development

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Work on the multi-million pound Pentre Awel project at Delta Lakes in Llanelli is underway.

Site clearance and ground investigation works started this week as contractor Bouygues UK began delivering Zone One of the development.

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Carmarthenshire Council say this development is the first of its kind in Wales to bring together life science innovation, community healthcare and modern leisure facilities.

The council is leading the delivery of the scheme in partnership with Hywel Dda University Health Board, and local universities and colleges, as part of the £1.3billion Swansea Bay City Deal.

Pentre Awel will be developed in four zoned phases – Zone One will benefit from over £70million of public sector investment to provide transformational social and economic benefits to people in the region.

Estimated for completion in 2024, it will include a state-of-the-art £27million leisure centre; a £1.3million hydrotherapy pool; education, research and business development space; a clinical research and delivery centre with community level clinical trials; and a well-being skills centre delivering health and care training.

Councillors have this week received an update on progress of the first phase of the two-stage design and build contract awarded to Bouygues UK, including detailed costings to ensure affordability as well as site clearance and exploratory works to refine the design.

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Discussions are also underway with tenants to design and develop internal configurations.

The council and Bouygues UK are now engaging with local suppliers and trades to highlight a huge range of opportunities to get involved with the construction of Zone One, and will be hosting the first of several ‘meet the buyer’ events at Parc y Scarlets on March 30.

Work is also underway to engage with the Regional Learning and Skills Partnership, schools, colleges, universities, and local employment agencies to ensure employment and training opportunities for local people are maximised during the construction phase.

Leader of Carmarthenshire County Council and Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Cllr Emlyn Dole, said: “This contract is one of the highest valued tender exercises the council has ever undertaken, putting key focus on social value to ensure that local people and businesses will reap the benefits.

“It is great to see good progress being made on the pre-commencement stage with the start of Zone One preliminary works on site, fresh designs developed with the input of future tenants, and the first of many events to engage with local suppliers and businesses.

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“We are grateful to Bouygues UK for coming back to us so swiftly with detailed costings, bearing in mind the continued volatility in the construction industry as a result of world events.

“Pentre Awel is a transformational project, and we’re pleased that local people and benefits are already starting to see the benefits.”

The exciting Pentre Awel project includes integrated care and physical rehabilitation facilities, a well-being skills centre which will focus on health and care training, a clinical delivery centre to deliver multi-disciplinary care, and a new state-of-the-art leisure centre, along with landscaped outdoor public spaces for walking and cycling.

A hotel, a range of social and affordable housing, assisted living accommodation and a nursing home are being planned for later phases of the scheme.

Memorandums of Understanding have been signed with Cardiff University, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea University, and Coleg Sir Gar, for the delivery of courses on site. Cardiff University will be the strategic partner for the delivery of innovation and business on site.

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(Lead image: Carmarthenshire Council)

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Ammanford

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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Carmarthenshire

Women’s Tour of Britain returns to Carmarthenshire

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The countdown is on before the world’s top women riders will race through Carmarthenshire as part of the Women’s Tour of Britain.

Some 108 cyclists will race through the County to the finishing line on top of the Black Mountain between Llangadog and Brynamman as part of the stage five event on Friday, June 10.

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The route will be starting from Pembrey Country Park at 10.45am and riders competing for the title will go through Pinged, Carway, Pontyberem, Horeb, Llansawel, and Llangadog.

A rolling road closure will take place along the 65-mile route which will come into action at 10.45am until 1.50pm.

Roads will be re-opened once the cyclists have passed through. A full road closure will be in place over the Black Mountain from 5am-5pm.

The event will be broadcast on ITV4 and across Europe with a helicopter camera crew following the race.

The Women’s Tour departs on Monday, June 6, and coincides with the final day of a four-day Bank Holiday weekend in the UK to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee. The race will culminate with a prestigious finale six days later on Saturday, June 11.

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Pembrey Country Park previously hosted the Grand Départ of the men’s Tour of Britain as well as the overall finish of the Women’s Tour in 2019.

Carmarthenshire County Council’s Chief Executive, Wendy Walters said: “We are thrilled that we have again been chosen to host this top cycling event. Previous years have brought an immediate economic boost to the tourism sector as well as providing a great deal of positive media coverage.”

(Lead image: Carmarthenshire Council)

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Dyfed Powys Police

Man banned from driving for 12 months for fishing offence

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A man from Merthyr Tydfil who travelled to the River Loughor, near Llanelli to fish using a barbaric and illegal method, has been banned from driving for 12 months as part of his sentence.

Vu Quang Tien pleaded guilty to an illegal fishing charge and also to a charge of obstruction of a Natural Resources Wales (NRW) Fisheries Enforcement Officer on 26 April at Swansea Magistrates Court.

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Mr Tien and two other anglers were witnessed by NRW Fisheries Enforcement Officers deliberately using the illegal foul hooking method of fishing – also known as snatching – at the river Loughor on 15 August 2021. NRW officers attended the site after several reports of illegal fishing were made to NRW’s 24/7 incident call centre by concerned members of the community.

When approached and questioned by NRW officers, Mr Tien and his accomplices showed significant hostility and reluctance to share identification documents which eventually had to be extracted by use of reasonable force.

All of Mr Tien’s fishing tackle and fish, along with his associates’ fishing tackle was seized by NRW Officers at the time of the incident. The district judge on the day at Swansea Magistrates Court gave permission to NRW to confiscate these items permanently from each of them.

The District Judge disqualified Mr Tien from driving for 12 months due to seriousness of the incident, and the premeditated and deliberate action of travelling such a distance to commit the offence.

He was also ordered to pay a total of £2,334 in fines, NRW costs and a victim surcharge.

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Mark Thomas, Fisheries Enforcement Officer for NRW, said: “We would like to again thank Dyfed Powys Police, the local communities and also the law-abiding anglers in the area for their continued support in reporting these illegal fishing activities.

“Foul hooking is a truly barbaric form of fishing carried out by a small minority of anglers in Wales, who have no regard for fish welfare.

“NRW and the Police take these incidents seriously as do the courts.

“Hopefully, the small minority of anglers who may in future, think of using any illegal fishing methods will take heed of the heavy fines and driving ban in this case issued by the courts.”

(Lead image: Natural Resources Wales)

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