C A R M A R T H E N S H I R E County Council’s top brass came face to face with the Army’s top brass in an Army Engagement event held at Parc y Scarlets on Thursday (Jul 14). A large Army presence gathered outside and inside the stadium, giving invited local businesses and community organisations the opportunity to engage with them.
The man in charge of events was Colonel Lance Patterson, the Deputy Commander of 160th Infantry Brigade.
Colonel Patterson told The Herald that he had been in the Army for 28 years. He is a former pupil of Bryngwyn School in Llanelli and a graduate of Leicester University. Colonel Patterson said that he had gone straight into the army from university where he attended Sandhurst and received his commission.
Speaking about the event, he said: “I am here to talk about what the British Army does now and what we are doing in Wales. We have a team from London and Wales here and we are focussing on communication. We are setting out where your taxes a being spent. We have a covenant between the nation and the army, which is aimed at looking after our servicemen and women. If you are serving in the army, you can get free access to swimming pools. There are a number of issues surrounding serving men and women and their families. Children of servicemen are in local schools and families live in the local community.”
Questions were asked by a number of community organisations about what they could do to offer more support to the Army. The reply was that the Army does quite well with its own in -house services and that anyone interested in working with the army should seek advice from the County’s Armed Forces Champion, who happens to be County Councillor David Jenkins.
Inspector Rhys Williams from Dyfed -Powys Police asked if the Army Engagement team worked with the police force on their ‘Be the Best’ programme. He said that it would be something he would be interested in finding out more about.
Speaking to The Herald after the event, Inspector Williams said that he was at the event to find out what opportunities there were for working with the Army Engagement team. He said: “We have some reserves in the police force and it is possible for people to juggle being a police officer with being in the reserves. There are obviously benefits for both parties given the quality of training both the police and army provide.”
During a multimedia presentation, the audience saw and heard the story of Paul, a homeless man who had been introduced to one of the Army’s programmes in the community, where he had been referred by the Department of Work and Pensions onto a scheme and was now holding down a job with a local builder who had become a partner with the Army engagement team.
The Herald asked Colonel Patterson what changes were ahead for the army as a result of Great Britain leaving the EU. He said: “As far as a the British Army and NATO are concerned, it is business as usual. Our commitment to UK security remains the same.”
Lottery win for local neighbours
Two people in Ferryside are celebrating today after winning £1,000 each thanks to their lucky postcode.
The neighbours netted the windfall when SA17 5YP was announced as a Daily Prize winner with People’s Postcode Lottery on Wednesday 8th April 2020.
People’s Postcode Lottery ambassador Judie McCourt sent her well-wishes to the winners. She said: “Congratulations to our winners! What a great surprise for them, I hope they enjoy their winnings.”
A minimum of 32% of ticket sales goes directly to charities and players of People’s Postcode Lottery have raised over £500 million to date for thousands of good causes in Britain and beyond.
This draw was promoted by Maggie’s which has received over £16.1 million in funding from the players of People’s Postcode Lottery. Maggie’s runs a network of cancer support centres across the country. These centres bring people together to help combat the isolation and distress that often accompanies a cancer diagnosis.
Many good causes close to the winners have also benefitted from players’ support, and local charities can next apply for funding in August.
Scarlets’ grassroots clubs show community spirit in delivering vital food packages
Scarlets community clubs have been working together to help deliver vital food packages across the region.
Volunteers from grassroots clubs and WRU girls hubs across Ceredigion, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire have been helping take the food packages to vulnerable members of society who are self-isolating during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The clubs have teamed up with the Scarlets Community Foundation — the charity arm of the Scarlets — and Carmarthen-based food wholesaler Castell Howell, while Scarlets players Osian Knott, Kieran Hardy, Ryan Conbeer and Jac Morgan have also lent their hand to the operation.
More than 300 packages were due to be delivered on Monday and Tuesday (April 6 & April 7), with the initiative highlighting that even without any action on the field, rugby clubs remain at the heart of their community.
Scarlets Community Foundation manager Caroline Newman said: “We have been overwhelmed with the support that we have received from local clubs, the number of people prepared to volunteer to help the most vulnerable in our communities has been touching.
“People’s reasons for requesting packs have often been heart-wrenching and it really has made us appreciate what we have.
“The foundation has worked closely with Castell Howell to make sure the packages are ready to go to those whose need is greatest, managing to turn things around pretty quickly and I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in making this happen, our funder, Castell Howell, all the clubs, our helpline volunteer and the foundation members.
“Great teamwork which has made me proud to be part of the fantastic community that rugby creates.”
Here are the rugby clubs and WRU girls rugby hubs taking part in the initiative
Aberaeron, Aberystwyth, Amman Utd, Ammanford, Burry Port, Betws, Bynea, Cardigan, Cefneithin, Felinfoel, Fishguard & Goodwick, Furnace Utd, Haverfordwest, Kidwelly, Llandeilo, Llandovery, Llandybie, Llanelli Wanderers, Llangennech, Llangwm, Merched Mynydd Mawr, Milford Haven, Narberth, New Dock Stars, Newcastle Emlyn, Neyland, Penybanc, Pontyates, St Clears, Stradey Sospans, Tenby Utd, Tumble, Tycroes, Whitland, Yr Hendy.
First two cases of coronavirus in Carmarthenshire confirmed
THE FIRST two cases of coronavirus have been found in Carmarthenshire, the Welsh Government announced today.
The two patients in the Carmarthenshire local authority area had recently returned together from northern Italy.
It comes as the Hywel Dda Health Board which serves the area opened two centres to test for coronavirus, one in Cardigan and one in Carmarthen.
The health board announced it had opened the testing centres to “help protect the health of our communities”, while also saying that centres could be opened in other areas across the health board.
The Chief Medical Officer for Wales, Dr Frank Atherton, confirmed that a total of nine patients in Wales had tested positive for coronavirus (COVID -19) today, bringing the total to 15.