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More trees removed due to Ash Dieback near Hendy

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Carmarthenshire Council say work is continuing throughout the county to remove diseased ash trees on council land – with the latest felled overnight adjacent to the A4138 Hendy link road.

Specialist contractors worked through the night to remove the dead or dying trees, which were causing a hazard to motorists and pedestrians according to the council.

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Ash dieback is a fungal disease, it spreads from the leaves through to the branches, causing the tree to die. Dead branches and entire dead trees can become very brittle and fall, posing a serious risk to the public.

Now the council are reminding landowners with diseased trees it is their legal responsibility to make sure their trees do not pose an unacceptable risk to people and property.

They also warn that landowners also need to adhere to the law to avoid harming birds their eggs and nests when undertaking any work.

Where private trees are deemed an “imminent threat” and landowners have already been contacted by the authority, they are now being served with a Legal Notice to remove the trees.

The council say that failure to comply with the notice will lead to the authority removing the risk and charging the tree owner for the work.

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The authority added that it has a legal duty under the Highways Act to keep roads safe for users and ash dieback is a serious issue for both the council and landowners.

They also stressed that this is a dangerous and specialised job and the council have employed qualified and experienced tree surgeons to complete this work.

Carmarthenshire County Council Director for Environment, Ainsley Williams, said: “Unfortunately we have had to start serving legal notices on landowners who have failed to remove these diseased trees.

“We have a legal duty under the Highways Act to keep our roads safe for users and ash dieback is a serious issue for both the council and landowners.

“Landowners should also ensure that they comply with the provisions of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 in respect of the avoidance of harm to birds their eggs and nests when planning to remove them.”

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Carmarthenshire County Council is also pushing forward with its tree planting program to help mitigate against some of the losses.

Recently 120 trees have been planted at the Parc Dewi Sant site in Carmarthen with plans to plant more later this year.

Preparations for tree planting are also underway at other large sites in the county.

(Lead image: Creative Commons / M J Richardson)

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Natural Resources Wales

Tywi Valley communities asked for views to shape new commemorative woodland

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Natural Resources Wales (NRW) are asking communities surrounding the Tywi Valley in Carmarthenshire for their views to help inform the next steps in shaping the design for the commemorative woodland at Brownhill.

NRW has launched a second consultation to seek people’s feedback on how they will achieve the proposed objectives for the site.

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The next round follows on from the feedback received from the first round of public consultation which ran from 1 March – 26 April earlier this year.

NRW say that having listened to the responses from first round of public consultation, the Welsh environmental body has set out a proposal for the site. This includes three distinct areas that will prioritise different objectives: a conservation space for wildlife to flourish, a woodland space for commemoration that is fully accessible, and a growing space to deliver sustainable opportunities for food, trees, and nature.

The new woodland will form part of the Welsh Government Woodland Estate which is managed by NRW on behalf of Welsh Government, and the National Forest for Wales.

Residents will also have an opportunity to join staff from NRW at a drop in event 14 of July at Llansadwrn village hall in Carmarthenshire, to share their feedback.

Miriam Jones-Walters, Specialist Advisor Land Stewardship at Natural Resources Wales said: “We were pleased to be able to engage with so many residents through our initial on-line consultation and community drop-in session at Llangadog in March earlier this year and have the opportunity to listen to people’s views and ideas on the proposals for Brownhill.

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“It’s crucial for us to provide people living and working in this area with every opportunity to share their views on plans for this site. We have already received some fantastic suggestions about what people would like to see from the site. As a result we have been able to divide it in to three main areas, setting out objectives for each.

“We think this is an exciting opportunity to work in partnership (with, for example, a community group, a young farmer or someone else) to test out and demonstrate land use proposals to tackle the climate and nature emergency, integrated with productive agriculture.

“We’re keen to hear people’s feedback on the objectives and would encourage people to come along on the 14 July and talk to us or take part in our online consultation and have their say.”

The consultation opens on 23 June and closes on 28 July. 

The community drop-in event will be held 12:00 – 7:00pm on 14 of July at Llansadwrn reading room, SA19 8HH in Carmarthenshire,

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Armed Forces

Swansea dignitaries mark Armed Forces Day

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The Lord Mayor of Swansea Cllr Mike Day and other local dignitaries honoured those who’ve served their country in the armed forces at a special ceremony at Swansea’s Guildhall Rotunda this morning.

Cllr Day along with the council’s Armed Forces Champion Cllr Wendy Lewis, HM the Lord Lieutenant Louise Fleet JP and the High Sheriff of West Glamorgan Stephen Rogers paid tribute to those who have served.

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Dignitaries at the Armed Forces Day event at Swansea’s Guildhall (Image: Swansea Council)

The tributes took place on the Guildhall Rotunda at 11am and also present were representatives from the armed forces, reservists, veterans and local cadet units.

The Lord Mayor said: “Armed Forces Day gives us the opportunity to celebrate our armed forces and give thanks for our serving personnel and those who have served in World Wars and other conflicts and to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for us to enjoy the freedom we have today.”

“Our Armed Forces deserve the respect and admiration of us all and we are immensely proud of them.”

(Lead image: Swansea Council)

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Charity

Mayor of Llandovery raises over £2k for air ambulance after surviving freak cycling accident

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The Mayor of Llandovery in Carmarthenshire has raised over £2,000 for Wales Air Ambulance after surviving a freak cycling accident that left him unconscious at the side of the road and saw TWO air ambulances sent to his aid.

Mayor Handel Davies and his wife Margaret raised £2,280 during the annual Mayors Charity Ball.

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The successful ball, which included an auction of rugby related paraphernalia and a raffle, also raised funds for Llandovery Hospital League of Friends.

Over 110 guests enjoyed an evening of entertainment, which included ‘an excellent address’ from Wales Air Ambulance chair of trustees David Gilbert. Over £4,500 was raised during the evening for the two good causes.

The Mayor and Mayoress presented the cheque to David Gilbert at a recent base visit at the Wales Air Ambulance’s headquarters in Llanelli.

The mayor has had personal experience of the essential service the Wales Air Ambulance provides after the Charity’s medics were called out to him during the pandemic.

Handel was involved in a freak accident when a dog ran out in front of him whilst out cycling. He was knocked unconscious for 15 minutes and despite two air ambulances being called out to him, luckily for Handel he didn’t need to be airlifted to hospital.

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Mr Davies said: “A sheepdog literally appeared from nowhere at full speed in the blink of an eye hitting the front wheel of my bike at right angles causing me to fall immediately. It happened so quickly I do not remember hitting the road, but the eyewitness commented that had I not been wearing a helmet I would not have survived. The shattered interior of the helmet is evidence of this.

“It took 6-9 months to really recover and get over the impact, which following another serious cycling accident when I was 18, has led me to decide to ‘hang up’ my bicycle and instead attend ‘spin classes’ at the local leisure centre.”

A cheque for £2,280 was presented to Wales Air Ambulance by Mayor of Llandovery, Cllr Handel Davies

The Wales Air Ambulance Charity needs to raise £8 million every year to keep its emergency helicopters in the air and its rapid response vehicles on the road.

The 24/7 emergency service offers advanced critical care and is often described as a ‘Flying ED’. The on-board consultants and critical care practitioners are highly skilled and carry some of the most pioneering medical equipment in the world. They can deliver blood transfusions, administer anaesthesia, and undertake emergency operations at the scene of the incident, before flying the patient directly to specialist care. 

Reflecting on why the 24/7 Charity was chosen to benefit from the Mayor’s charity Ball, he added: “I have the utmost respect for the incredible and invaluable work the Wales Air Ambulance undertake and as we live in a beautiful part of north Carmarthenshire next to road which is very popular with both cyclists and motor bikers, over the last 25 years we have seen many accidents along this stretch of the A4069 particularly at weekends.

“It seems that almost every weekend during the summer months a Wales Air Ambulance flies overhead to attend to an incident.”

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Jane Griffiths Wales Air Ambulance’s Community Fundraising Manager said: “It was lovely to meet the Mayor and Mayoress of Llandovery during their recent base visit. They’ve raised a fantastic amount for two important causes and we’re extremely grateful for them choosing the Wales Air Ambulance as one of the charities to benefit from the Mayors Charity Ball.

“It’s lovely to hear that the mayor has recovered from his freak accident, and we wish him well for the future. Your support of our lifesaving Charity is much appreciated and will help us to continue to be there for the people of Wales when they need us most.”

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