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146 jobs at risk in Llanelli town centre

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Office closing: 146 jobs are at risk (pic. Alan Evans / The Herald)

IT HAS been announced today (Jan 26) that the Department for Working Pensions office in Llanelli could close next year.

The closure would affect  146 employees at the office, however staff are being offered positions in Pembroke, Cardiff or Merthyr.

The office is classed as a ‘back of house’ service, with today’s announcement including plans to merge 78 small Jobcentre Plus offices in urban areas and closing 27 of the ‘back office’ buildings. It is hoped that more efficient and larger sites can be developed to replace them.

Nia Griffith MP said: “The proposed closure of the DWP offices is a real blow to the staff and their families and to the wider community in Llanelli.

“This Tory government’s plans for changes in the benefit system is already in complete disarray, and now is no time to be losing experienced staff.

“It’s no good pretending that staff can be redeployed – if they are being offered Cardiff or Pembroke – that is just not going to be a realistic proposition to many people who have family commitments.

“Town centre jobs are vital for Llanelli, and this will mean another hit to town centre businesses and the wider local economy.

“We need to fight this all the way and I will be pursuing UK government ministers as a matter of urgency.”

Lee Waters AM also commented on the news, saying: “This is awful news for the town and for all the people directly affected.

“The UK government has been talking this week about a new strategy to spread wealth across the UK and this type of action achieves the opposite.

“This will hit the local economy and impact on the way important public services are delivered.

“Nia Griffith and I will be seeking meetings to find out more and to see what help can be offered to all those who will lose out.”

Mid and West AM Simon Thomas has tabled an emergency question in the National Assembly about the closure.

Mr Thomas said: “I’ve asked the Welsh Minister to make a statement about the 146 job losses in Llanelli. These cruel Conservative cuts will have a negative impact on Llanelli. We should be trying to encourage more activity and footfall in the town centre as the Plaid led Carmarthenshire Council is doing, not take more people out of Llanelli town centre.”

Speaking to the Llanelli Herald following the announcement of the job losses, Steve Donoghue, PCS full time officer and Llanelli Rural Mayor said: “PCS is opposed to office closures unless they pose no issues for our members and no issues for our customers. Unfortunately many of these proposals will cause serious difficulties for many members and will impact seriously on customer service.

“In these cases we will oppose the closures and campaign to keep the sites open. PCS will provide full support to all branches and members in dealing with these announcements.

“We will, where necessary, work to maximise redeployment options for members and will oppose any moves to make staff redundant. The PCS will be considering all options in response to these announcements.

“These cuts are a further nail in the coffin of Llanelli. As well as the decline of industry, over the last decade we have seen hundreds of well paid jobs in the Civil Service being taken away from one of the poorest parts of Wales.

“The loss of the MoD Llangennech and the Tax office are just a two of these. We will mount a campaign to retain these DWP jobs, not only for our members but also for the vital services that the provide to the public.”

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1 Comment

  1. Wendy Dunne

    January 26, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    At the same time as feeling sorry for people who will find it harder to find jobs now due to the job loses,i cant say im sorry to see the place close,i tell you why, back in 2010 i was called to an employment interview at the jobcentre by the Cyrenians of Swansea,i was called into the glass room upstairs and there was a volunteer fron the Cyrenians there,he had no paper work of any kind and thats all was on the desk was a giant paper clip he told me that he was not allowed to use the computer,he sat down and i sat down,i told him about myself and that i wanted to try being a Kitchen assistant,he asked me would i be interested in working for a soup Kitchen and i replied yes i would try that to get experience temporarily.There was a wire running from the computer that ran down the back of the table and onto the floor leading to my chair,The man who was a childrens entertainer from Cockett Swansea got up off his chair and pressed a key on the keyboard of the computer and i felt an electrical charge go through my body and through my head which rendered me motionless,when i was in that state he said to me “Kill her”i didn’t know what he was talking about and was frightened and confused,he then got up again and pressed another key on the computer keyboard and the electrical charge stopped and i felt the electric leaving my head and body,i know it seems unbelievable but it’s true,he was there to emply me as an assassin,why i do not know,at the time i had had a lot of trouble with my sister in law Mary Nurse who was the most arrested woman in Wales at one time,she passed away in 2010 from alcoholism,i was so frightened,I went home not able to tell anyone not even my husband,a few weeks went by and i just had to find out what was going on so i wrote to the Cyrenians of Swansea and who did i get a relpy off but Theresa May Home secretary-i didnt know who that was at the time,the penny dropped later,not long after that i recorded what happenned to me in a short story called Mafia Town available on Amazon and Kindle,i changed the names for fear of being bumped off,i was in over my head.Since then iv’e been trying to find out the truth and just a few weeks ago i plucked up the courage to let our MP for Llanelli Nia Griffith know what had happenned to me,it is very serious what happenned to me not long after the meeting and just a few short weeks after being employed as a kitchen assistant by The Wallich homeless charity where Paul Sheridan of Sant Pauls Close was the owner-i helped start up a sandwich business from scratch under my manager Louise Byrd,i was taken from my home in the middle of the night and used as an assassin,i was brutely gang raped and forced to eliminate the men who had raped me,it was so horrific and traumatic i was in disbelief what was happenning to me,im a mother and grandmother and ive enevr done anything to deserve being treated like that,i was heavily drugged and woke up in my bed feeling like id been tampered with and my head was spinning around and i was dizzy and lightheaded,it was all done in a short period of time,iv’e been trying to be heard ever since, but even C.I.D officers who know what happenned to me wont come and approach me in the cold light of day and tell me what happenned.So no i wont be sorry to see the place close,maybe they will open up a new Employment office somewhere else,if C.I.D are reading this i ask you please can you come and tell me why this happenned to me. sincerely W.L.Dunne.

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Logic festival is back with a bigger and better line up

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FANS of dance music in South Wales are in for a real treat this year as Logic Festival is returnins to Swansea on Saturday September 7.

The festival is now in its fourth year, and this time its bigger and better with bigger name DJs, more arenas and three licenced bars to keep you refreshed and ready to party. New for 2019 there are also six arenas of which one is a chill out area and the bigger name DJ’s make this the best event that Wales has to offer, without a doubt.

For those of you that know the Logic Festival history it will come as no surprise that the owners have gone all out for 2019 to bring a diverse line up of world class DJs playing alongside the best that Wales has to offer in DJ talent, with some returning names that had such a great time in 2018 that they just had to come again and witness the legendary Logic Festival atmosphere for themselves, first hand.

Returning this year are headliners in the both the Trance and Hard Dance arena’s, Judge Jules and Darren Styles. Making first appearances in the Trance Arena are Dance Anthems legend Dave Pearce, German superstar Scot Project and all the way from Israel is BLiSS the DJ/ guitarist who jams along to his own tracks! Not to be outdone the Hard Dance arena features sets from UK hard dance legend Andy Whitby and flying in from Germany is the infamous Uberdruck. He will be playing alongside two Italian Hardstyle titans Technoboy and Francesco Zeta who again have flown in specially for Logic Festival 4.

And completely new for 2019 is the Clubland Classix arena where revellers can hear some of the biggest and best dance anthems ever made being played by the likes of: Ian Van Dahl who will be performing a live PA, and DJ sets from N – Trance, 4 Strings, Flip and Fill, Breeze and Scott Brown. This is a welsh festival exclusive so don’t miss out on the only chance you will get in 2019 to see so many heroes of Clubland all under one roof.

With a bigger line up, comes a higher capacity and more amenities for the public like two extra bars that have been custom built to stop the bottleneck effect that the extra numbers will bring with the event, more toilets on site so that queuing can be avoided and for the first time ever, a proper chill out arena has been added playing laid back vibes all day which has been inspired by the Balearic sound of ibiza, the party capital of Europe.

When asked to comment on all of the new improvements, the festival organiser and Logic brand owner Jason Pufal said: “No expense has been spared this year to make Logic Festival 4 the best event it could possibly be, as a thank you to all of the loyal customers who come every year and make the event so special.”

“In preparation for the bigger crowd that we are expecting this year, due to the fact that we have in effect supersized Logic Festival 4, everything about the event will be improved for 2019 and we are greatly looking forward to opening the gates for 12 hours of solid dance music based entertainment.”

So if you want to witness the best in dance music in six fully covered arenas in 2019, there is only one destination to head for and that is: Logic Festival 4, Ynysforgan Farm, Morriston, Swansea on Saturday September 7th, with the gates opening at 11am. We hope to see you there amongst a crowd of thousands!

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Innovative Llanelli school’s quality recognised by major award

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CLOSE to a year after its official opening, a state-of-the-art Llanelli school has been recognised for excellence.

Ysgol Pen Rhos, a £10.2 million primary school in the Seaside area of the town, was highly commended in the school project of the year category at the prestigious Education Buildings Wales Awards.

Officially opened in June 2018, the school features facilities including a flying start nursery, solar panels and classroom terraces for outdoor lessons.

A 3G pitch has also been made available for school and community use, as well as hard and soft landscaping areas. Features including brickwork and pitched roofs have been incorporated to reflect the industrial heritage of a neighbouring terrace of houses, alongside the use of more contemporary features like metal and wooden cladding. The project also delivered community benefits including training and local employment.

Ysgol Pen Rhos was funded by Carmarthenshire County Council’s Modernising Education Programme and the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools initiative.

The school was initially developed and then delivered and project managed by Carmarthenshire County Council’s in-house Property Design Team, working with HLM Architects. Ysggol Pen Rhos was constructed by T Richard Jones (Betws) Ltd.

Created from the merger of the former Copperworks Infant Nursery School and Lakefield Primary School, Ysgol Pen Rhos caters for 420 pupils and 60 nursery children.

Cllr David Jenkins, Carmarthenshire County Council’s Executive Board Member for Resources, said: “Receiving an award for the quality of the school’s design and build is worthy recognition for an outstanding team effort that involved the council and its partners, as well as staff and pupils.

“The inclusion of environmentally friendly features also means the school will be sustainable for many years to come, with the availability of outdoor learning and landscaped areas sure to inspire pupils now and in future.

“This work has led to a facility that provides a world class learning environment, while celebrating Llanelli’s rich industrial heritage.

“Ysgol Pen Rhos is among many completed or planned projects in Carmarthenshire that show how seriously we take our commitment to providing the county’s children and communities with top quality facilities that meet the needs of the 21st century.”

Joe Cudd, Head Teacher of Ysgol Pen Rhos, said: “This award recognises the hard work of an exceptional team of people. Ysgol Pen Rhos is a wonderful place to learn.

“Our school is at the heart of the Seaside community and a place where we can realise our children’s dreams. We hold 480 futures at Ysgol Pen Rhos in a building that inspires, nurtures and is filled with the voices of the future.”

Ysgol Pen Rhos is located on the regenerated site of the former Copperworks Sport & Social Club and the Draka wire factory.

Other schools in the Llanelli area which are expected to be on the move in future include Ysgol Heol Goffa, which is relocating to a new facility at an adjoining site to Ysgol Pen Rhos.

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Llanelli MP calls for designated parking for horse riders

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LLANELLI’S MP Nia Griffith has joined local horse riders in calling for designated parking for equestrian transport around Pembrey Country Park.

Ms Griffith explained, “Pembrey is a beautiful spot for horse riding, and I know how much locals and tourists alike value the ability to ride here safely.

“The Carmarthenshire Riders Group have raised concerns about the difficulty of transporting horses to the park due to the lack of designated equestrian parking. It can be difficult to reverse horseboxes into the small spaces which are available, and many are getting blocked in by cars parking in front.

“It’s time this issue was addressed, so I’m joining them in calling for some designated parking for horseboxes around Pembrey Country Park. This would make it much safer for horse riders, but also pedestrians and other drivers who can be endangered by long vehicles reversing nearby.

“I know that the County Council are listening to the public on this, so I hope they will take into account the needs of horse owners and address the parking issue in Pembrey.”

Carmarthenshire Labour Leader, Cllr Rob James, added “I wholeheartedly support the equestrian community on their call for designated parking for horse riders and I believe it is a much-needed facility in Pembrey.

“As a Labour Group we will seek to work with our Member of Parliament and Council Officers to make it a reality as soon as possible.”

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