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Rainscape road closure threatening local businesses

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THE ONGOING works to rectify Llanelli’s long-standing flooding problems in the Tyisha area have led to some small businesses saying that they have suffered loss of trade due to road closures.

Construction of the Rainscape project, which is designed to address the large volume of stormwater getting into the foul sewer by creating a 1.1km long surface water sewer along with pumping stations and other connecting schemes, is predicted to last until December. The works have seen a section of Marsh Street closed to traffic.

Plaid Cymru Town Councillor for the Tyisha Ward Terry Davies told The Herald that ‘at least five’ businesses had raised concerns with him about lost trade.

“We can’t ignore the fact that businesses within the locality are fighting to stay lucrative – they rely totally on passing trade for turnover,” he explained.

“Coupled with low profit margins, they’re feeling the pinch after weeks of this road closure. They need easy access to their premises which has now been restricted by the Rainscape plans. The restrictions are said to be in effect until December of this year.

“The problem needs to be looked at in more depth to ensure traffic flow is available to all the businesses or we’re going to lose them and the employment that they offer. The Tyisha area of this town and county is the most deprived and this will make a massive impact on our community if we lose the businesses, we can’t let that happen.”

After concerns were raised, Morgan Sindall – the contractor carrying out the work for Dwr Cymru -has agreed to a temporary revision of the traffic management system in Caersalem Terrace which is said to have helped. Last week saw the street revert from a one way traffic system to a two-way street.

Cllr Andre McPherson, who represents the Tyisha Ward on Carmarthenshire County Council, told The Herald that businesses were being helped to apply for compensation if they could show that the works had affected their business.

“Over the last 12 months we have had several meeting with Rainscape on the process that is taking places in the Tyisha ward,” he added.

“As part of this we have had concerns about the financial impact to the businesses, and with this in mind we discussed with the aforesaid business what they needed to be done to help them through this disruption.”

Cllr McPherson explained that adverts were being placed in the local media to inform customers that the businesses were open as usual.

“All business have our contact information, and we are in contact on a daily basis to make this disruption is kept to a minimum,” he added.

However, Cllr Davies suggested that compensation would not completely resolve the issue.

“Losing the trade to contractors means they’ll go to other competitors. These businesses have taken years to develop and I fear for their closure,” he remarked.

“The access now at Caersalem terrace has helped but traffic will stop at the businesses there for deliveries and to collect materials. The street is far too narrow for this. The reason Caersalem was turned into a one way system was because of traffic congestion and difficulty in turning off Station Road.”

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Police investigating mobile phone thefts

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TWO incidents of recent thefts of mobile phones from stores in Llanelli and Carmarthen are being investigated by Dyfed-Powys Police.

Four Apple iPhones were stolen from Currys & PC World store at Parc Pemberton, Llanelli, at around 7.15pm on Monday, August 13.

A second incident took place at the Carphone Warehouse store at St Catherine’s Walk, Carmarthen on Tuesday, August 14, at around 9.30am where 10 mobile phones were stolen.

They are strongly believed to be linked.

In both incidents, three men – believed to be in their 20s – made threats to staff and stole mobile phones.

In the Llanelli incident, one of the suspects was white, medium build, around 5’5” and was wearing a black jacket, grey trousers and a black baseball hat.

The second suspect is white, slim build, around 5’8” with a beard. He was wearing a white T-shirt, black knee length shorts, white trainers and a black baseball cap with a red stripe to side and emblem.

The third man involved is white, slim build, 6’ with a beard. He was wearing a bright blue long-sleeved T-shirt, black shorts, white trainers and a black baseball cap with a red stripe to side and emblem.

In the Carmarthen incident, the three men were wearing light coloured clothing, shorts, trainers and baseball caps.

DI Wayne Bevan said: “Anyone who witnessed either of these incidents, or saw three men matching these descriptions behaving suspiciously in the area, to contact police immediately by calling 101.

“We are investigating all lines of enquiry to catch these offenders and any support from the public could help us find these men and put a stop to any further incidents in our town centre stores.”

Anyone with information that can help officers with their investigation is asked to report it by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

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Consultation on future of gas network for west Wales enters final week

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PEOPLE from west Wales are being urged to have their say as a public consultation on the future of the local gas network is set to close on Friday (Aug 17).

Wales & West Utilities look after the pipes that bring gas to homes and businesses across Wales and the south west of England. The company has received almost 20,000 responses to its consultation but is now urging as many people as possible to take two minutes to pipe up and shape its plans for the future. Everyone who completes the consultation will be entered into a weekly draw to win a £100 Amazon Gift Card.

The company is asking people to give their views on issues such as the gas emergency service, investment to keep the gas network safe and reliable and how it supports those most in need. It is also seeking views on preparing the gas network for a greener future, making sure it can continue to deliver essential services for generations to come.

Wales & West Utilities charge for their services through consumer gas bills. Currently, their services make up 20% of an annual gas bill – so for the average gas bill of £630, that’s £128 a year – or 35 pence per day.

Graham Edwards, Chief Executive at Wales & West Utilities, explains: “The pipes we look after are mostly underground and out of mind, but we provide an essential service in keeping people safe and warm in their homes and powering businesses. Now, as we plan for the future, we want as many people in West Wales as possible to have their say on the future of their gas network and the services we provide.”

“This consultation is about ensuring our customers’ views are heard so that we plan and work towards getting the balance right between investing to maintain and improve our services and preparing the gas network for the future, while keeping bills low.

“We understand the financial pressure households across the area are under and we remain committed to keeping our portion of the gas bill to a minimum – we have already reduced the cost of our services since 2013 from £145 to £128 today.

“We’re looking forward to hearing customer feedback from West Wales as this will play a vital role in shaping our business for the future.”

Wales & West Utilities also connects around 11,000 homes and businesses to the network each year. And, for customers in need of extra support, the company has a scheme offering low-cost gas connections and financial help for appliance repairs. There is also a priority register to make sure people in vulnerable situations are prioritised when things go wrong.

To have your say on the future of your gas network and the services Wales & West Utilities provides please go to PipeUpOnline.co.uk or Facebook.com/wwutilities and be in with a chance to win a £100 Amazon.co.uk Gift Card.

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Police appeal following shed burglary

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POLICE are investigating a report of a burglary which occurred in Heol Westfa, Felinfoel, Llanelli sometime between 10.30pm on Friday (Aug 3) and 6am on Saturday (Aug 4).

A number of items were stolen from a shed at the property. They include:

  • a black and decker work bench in grey, with distinctive marks
  • a 50 m extension lead black and red
  • a grey Trojan electric sander
  • a black and decker power hammer drill in a grey hard box
  • a rechargeable black and decker power drill and screw driver, the drlll was black and red in a green hard box
  • a black and red carry box in plastic containing several screw drivers, and other manual tools
  • a black and decker green hedge trimmer 60cm in a black sleeve,
  • a bosch power saw in a hard blue box.

Anyone who has been offered the opportunity to purchase these items or anyone with information that can help officers with their investigation is asked to contact police by calling 101.

If you are Deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

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