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​​Local artist of the week – Adwaith

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11924306_1633605270224410_2827830900035981505_n(1)THE HERALD spoke with the delightful all-girl Welsh-medium band Adwaith from Carmarthen this week.

Adwaith’s sound is a mixture of folk, indie and alternative with harmonies being a key element throughout their songs. The band’s main influences lyrically are The Staves, but they tell us that they take a lot of inspiration from Fleet Foxes and First Aid Kit too.

Their live shows are very chilled and relaxed, which makes them quite different from the many Welsh rock bands in the area.

The girls from Adwaith all grew up playing instruments or singing, but it was the Welsh music scene which sparked their interest in music.

“The Welsh music scene has become more popular in recent years because of events such as Maes B and Gwyl Crug Mawr. I think that’s what has really inspired us to get this band together.”

Gwenllian, Hollie and Chelsea started creating music together as a three piece last August, but the girls found their drummer, Heledd, at the first gig they played soon after.

Starting off as a three piece, Adwaith played folk instruments such as the guitar and mandolin, but they have slowly introduced some electric guitar and bass into their music over the last couple of months.

They told us that the added drums has taken their music “to the next level” and boosted their sound, too.

“We’re just having fun experimenting and finding our sound,” they said.

We asked the girls how they fit into the west Wales music scene, to which they replied: “There aren’t many bands with our sound in the area and very few all-girl bands. So I believe people are very intrigued to see what we have to offer.”

We went on to discuss the male-dominated music industry and the girls spoke about what it is like to be an all-girl band in such a heavily male field.

“We’ve had a tonne of messages saying how great it is to see an all-girl band. It’s something different that people seem to have a lot of interest in!”

We then spoke about the benefits and drawbacks of being in a Welsh-medium band.

“The Welsh music scene is very small compared to the English music scene but everyone knows each other! It sounds cliché but it’s one big community and everyone supports each other.

“The downfall is that there aren’t as many gigs because of the lack of Welsh speakers in the area but we hope by introducing Welsh music, we can change that!”

Adwaith advise that we should also be listening to Ffug, Ysgol Sul, Mellt and Cpt. Smith, who are all from west Wales.

“What’s the best advice you have been given so far?” we asked.

“The best advice we’ve been given is to not change our sound for anyone. We need to keep the originality and not lose our quirkiness or naivety.”

They added that the advice they would give to someone thinking of creating their own music would be to “do it!”

“It’s not a massive money maker and it takes a lot of your time, but it’s worth it when you get praised for your music and when you meet a load of new, awesome people.”

When we went on to ask what the most memorable response to their music has been, Adwaith said: “I guess being asked to play in Clwb Ifor Bach at the end of this month when we’ve only just started off. The response has been really great and we hope it continues to grow.”

Adwaith are playing a gig at The Parrot on Friday (Jan 15) and then they will play at Clwb Ifor Bach in Cardiff on January 30.

They said that they are hoping to get some demos recorded soon and they may release an EP later in the year.

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How Wales created 19 new field hospitals in less than 8 weeks…

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Across Wales the Welsh Government is supporting the NHS to create new field hospitals and rapidly increase bed capacity.
Health boards have repurposed existing buildings, including the Principality Stadium, a holiday park and even a television studio to provide an additional 6,000 beds.Field hospitals are designed to support the NHS during the coronavirus pandemic by providing extra bed capacity but they will also help normal hospital services be restarted and support social care services.Last month, the first patients were admitted to Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig at the Principality Stadium, in Cardiff.

Four to six weeks

Here is how Wales almost doubled its bed capacity in less than eight weeks…The time it has taken to nearly double hospital bed capacity in Wales, creating field hospitals across the nation.

19 field hospitals in Wales
This includes the repurposing of Bluestone Holiday Park and Parc y Scarlets in west Wales and Venue Cymru in north Wales.

1,500 beds at the Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig
Making it one of the largest field hospitals in the UK.

Five days
The length of time it took to plan Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig, which overlapped with the build phase.

3,000
The number of planning hours, involving more than 20 different disciplines, it took to plan Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig.

£166m
Welsh Government funding for the set up, construction and equipment for field hospitals in Wales.

138,000
The number of pieces of equipment have been provided to help support field hospitals, including beds, imaging equipment, syringe drivers and medicines.

Three North Wales field hospitals have the name Enfys
Meaning rainbow – the symbol of hope and thank you to the NHS during the pandemic.
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7-year-old Mattie from Pembrey takes on home Pen y Fan-tastic challenge for Action for Children

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Plucky Mattie Denman will climb the equivalent of Pen y Fan in the drive at her family home in Pembrey on Friday 22nd May to raise funds for Action for Children.

Mattie (7), has always wanted to climb the highest mountain in South Wales and is unable to currently because of the coronavirus pandemic.  As the family exercise at home every day, she decided she wanted to do the 6-mile equivalent journey there while she waits for the chance to do it for real.  Mattie chose Action for Children as her mother, Sian, works for the charity in Carmarthenshire.

Mattie said: ‘My Mammy works for Action for Children and I want to help as well because lots of families need help.  My older brother and sister help Action for Children, so I asked Mammy if I could do something. We exercise everyday walking up and down the drive and I have always wanted to climb Pen y Fan, but we have never done it.

‘Mammy said I could pretend I am walking it and people will give money to the charity. I said brilliant, that is what I am going to do and I am super excited to do it. I will use mammy’s step counter and I hope I can help children that need support especially because it is so hard for some families because of coronavirus.’

Proud mum and family support practitioner for Action for Children, Sian, added: ‘Mattie has a lovely heart and really wanted to do something and I’m very proud she chose Pen y Fan as her home challenge.  Action for Children has been going the extra mile during the coronavirus pandemic continuing to support vulnerable families through phone and video sessions as well as food and help with the basics from our Emergency Appeal Fund. 

‘It is a tremendously challenging time for our families and every bit of money will directly help those in our communities who need it most.  I hope as many people as possible will donate to Mattie’s brilliant fundraising effort, it’ll make it even more special when we finally get to climb Pen y Fan for real.’

If you want to support Mattie’s Pen y Fan challenge please go to: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/mattiesclimb

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Housebuilder launches Coronavirus move in package

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A South Wales housebuilder has launched new incentives which mean homes are ‘ready to move into’ during the Covid-19 crisis – without the need for tradespeople or delivery people.

People in Wales are allowed to move into new build houses during the lockdown – and many people have successfully done so.

However, the limitations of social distancing can add extra stress when it comes to having things like dishwashers, washing machines and turf installed in the new property.

That’s why Persimmon Homes West Wales has launched a new incentive package which gives purchasers the chance to buy a house with white goods and flooring already in place.

Sharon Bouhali, sales director at Persimmon Homes West Wales, said: “Our sales advisors have done a terrific job in talking with customers and guiding them through the buying process remotely, without the need of face-to-face meetings.

“It’s been a huge challenge, but we’ve risen to it – and Persimmon has sold more than 120 properties in South Wales during the lockdown period. We have customers moving into their new homes every week.

“But, understandably, some people are cautious about having too many tradespeople and contractors enter their home, even if they are doing their utmost to abide by social distancing rules.

“That’s why we have launched these new packages which mean people can turn the key, unpack and get on with enjoying their new home.”

The package includes carpets and vinyl throughout, turf in the back garden, sliding wardrobes, integrated fridge freezer, integrated washer/dryer, integrated dishwasher and £500 discount towards removal fees.

The deal is on offer at Glas Y Felin in Bridgend, Parc Yr Onnen in Carmarthen, The Bridles in Llanelli, Peterson Park in Pontyclun, Parc Brynderi in Llanelli and Allt Y Celyn in Rhos.

Persimmon’s marketing suites in Wales remain closed for the time being. Visit www.persimmonhomes.com or call 01792 229800 for details of homes available.

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