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Bay board welcomes ‘visionary’ Llanelli project




Swansea Bay City Region ‘very excited’: Cllr Meryl Gravell

Swansea Bay City Region ‘very excited’: Cllr Meryl Gravell

PLANS to regenerate Llanelli with a £60m Wellness and Wellbeing Village have been warmly received by Swansea Bay City Region board members.

The local authority, supported by the ARCH Programme, has plans to create a new state-of-the-art leisure centre housed on the Delta Lakes development, aimed at improving the wellness of the area through education, research, innovation and improved primary care services.

ARCH (A Regional Collaboration for Health) is a partnership made up of Hywel Dda and ABMU health boards and Swansea University who are working together to create a healthcare system fit for the 21st Century.

The ARCH ethos of improving the health and wealth of South West Wales has been a starting point for Carmarthenshire Council to build on the Delta Lakes project to create facilities which will include life science research, clinical trials programme expansion, as well as the possibility of occupational therapy, primary care medical services, day centre facilities and a hydrotherapy pool amongst other proposals.

The Llanelli Wellness and Wellbeing Village will become the West Wales hub for the expansion of the work of Swansea University’s Institute of Life Science (ILS). The ILS, a key element of the ARCH project, has already created more than 800 jobs, attracted circa £200m of investment, created over 40 new enterprises and supporting more than 270 others in the region. This pioneering work will now expand into the Hywel Dda area as part of ARCH with the Delta Lakes site providing a base for ILS@Hywel Dda

The Carmarthenshire Councilled Llanelli Wellness and Wellbeing Village project comes under the ARCH umbrella. Councillor Meryl Gravell, who is also the chair of the ARCH Wellness and Wellbeing working group, has said the ambitious Llanelli plans have been welcomed by the Swansea City Bay Region board.

The Swansea Bay City Region encompasses the four local authority areas of Neath Port Talbot, Swansea, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire. It aims to bring together business, local government and a range of other partners, to work to a common goal of creating economic prosperity for the people who live and work the City Region.

Councillor Gravell, who sits on the City Region board, said: “The Llanelli project was warmly received at the latest City Region Board meeting last week. The visionary plans were discussed positively, and further meetings with potential investors will be going ahead over the next few weeks.

“The board is very excited by this new concept for Carmarthenshire. “This wellness village could be a life-changer for many people and will certainly make a difference not only to the whole ARCH region, but especially to Llanelli as it will create well-paid jobs and attract investment opportunities, as well as help keep our communities healthier.”

Hywel Dda University Health Board Executive Director of Commissioning, Therapies & Health Science Kathryn Davies and ARCH lead for the health board (pictured) told board members: “The Delta Lakes project has progressed at pace. Carmarthenshire Council is fully engaged with ARCH and our aims.

“This project is now far more than just a leisure centre in Llanelli.

“The site will provide ARCH with a West Wales base to develop the essential research component of ARCH, under the Institute of Life Science (ILS) work, and also expand our clinical trials programme into the Hywel Dda area.”


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Llanelli and Germany meet again for Oktoberfest 2019




Fans of beer, music and dancing are in for a treat as Oktoberfest comes to Llanelli this October.

Bringing the German beer festival closer to home, Oktoberfest celebrates its first year in Llanelli this 5th and 6th of October. With a Bavarian Oompah band, German beer, food and an Oktoberfest themed venue, it is sure to be a fantastic event.

Popularly known as the world’s largest beer festival, the traditional Oktoberfest is held annually in Munich, Germany. With more than six million people travelling from all over the world to attend the Munich event, Iceqbe Events are now hosting the festival in Llanelli.

Iceqbe plan to bring the Bavarian atmosphere to the same venue that the town was once twinned with Germany in 1989. Taking place in the Selwyn Samuel Centre, the event is hopeful to attract both Llanelli locals as well as those who live further afield, supporting the Welsh town.

In preparation for the crowd, the biggest German beer festival to hit Llanelli will take place in a 220 people capacity venue, with the two-day festival spread into three separate beer-drinking sessions. 

Recently nominated for the Great British High Street award, this up and coming town is overflowing with welsh culture and international events, including Pride which took place in Llanelli earlier this year.

Iceqbe’s Co-Founder and Operations manager, Stefan Diamond, explains why they chose the town to host their event.

“We are thrilled to be hosting our very first Oktoberfest event in Llanelli,” said Stefan.

“I’ve lived here for seven years now and know first-hand what a great atmosphere this town brings to events like this. 

“With the town’s connection to Germany, it felt like the obvious choice for our event location. We can’t wait for beer-lovers across the UK to come together for a weekend of dancing, food and fantastic Bavarian beer!”

Co-founder of Iceqbe events, Luke James, explains what they’re hoping to achieve from the event.

“As the majority of event companies continue to outsource their staff, customer service levels have dropped whilst food and drink prices have skyrocketed,” he said. 

“We want to change that. We manage everything in-house which allows us to have full control over everything, from the venue to staffing. Our priority is to provide an amazing, safe and great value experience.”

Oktoberfest is sure to have people flocking in, with the opportunity to win tickets for you and five friends via their social media channel. To find out more about Oktoberfest, visit

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PH Balance help arrest alleged sex offender




A 51-YEAR-OLD male was arrested in Llanelli last Sunday (Sept 08) in connection to an alleged sexual offence.

Paedophile Hunting group PH Balance South Wales admitted to being involved with trapping the suspect through the use of a decoy. According to PH Balance’s recent Facebook post, the man had arranged a meeting with PH member Dobby who was acting as as a 14-year-old boy online. The man had shown up to the Llanelli town centre to allegedly take the young boy shopping. 

Dyfed-Powys Police arrived swiftly on scene and placed the alleged offender in handcuffs before taking him to the station in the back of a police vehicle.

A spokesman for Dyfed-Powys Police told the Llanelli Herald: “On Sunday, September 8, we received allegations from a group in respect of a man in the Swansea area, which related to offences involving children. Officers arrested a 51-year-old man on suspicion of meeting a child following grooming, at Eastgate Llanelli, the same day.”

The spokesman added: “The man has been bailed from police custody with conditions.”

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Becoming Deputy Chief Constable ‘a huge privilege’




CLAIRE PARMENTER has been announced as the new Dyfed-Powys Police Deputy Chief Constable, describing it as a ‘huge privilege’.

DCC Parmenter, who grew up in Llanelli but now lives in Carmarthen, has worked her way through the ranks since joining the force as a PC 26 years ago.

She said: “Becoming the Deputy Chief Constable within my home force is a huge privilege for me, I hope this will inspire other officers and staff to achieve whatever they want across the service.”

Her policing career began in Ammanford in 1993, having just completed a BA (HONS) degree in Education at Cardiff.

“I was thinking of a career in teaching or policing, and decided to do my degree before making the choice,” DCC Parmenter said. “Policing was always in my heart, so when it came to it, it was an easy decision.”

As well as serving in a variety of uniform roles, DCC Parmenter has undertaken a number of secondments across UK Policing and beyond.

These include a role as national field officer with the National Policing Improvement Agency, becoming operational Chief Inspector in Avon and Somerset Police, and contributing to the national implementation of neighbourhood policing, for which she received a chief constable’s commendation.

She was promoted to Superintendent in 2010 and became lead for the Joint Emergency Services Group in Wales, leading and developing a number of blue light collaboration and resilience programmes, working closely with Fire and Rescue, Welsh Ambulance Service Trust and Welsh Government.

“I’ve always tried to look at the wider landscape of policing and how we work with partners to improve services to our communities,” she said. “These secondments have given me exposure to different ways of working and has broadened my outlook.”

DCC Parmenter returned to uniformed policing in 2012 and took up the role of Superintendent of specialist operations.

She later took over as BCU Commander for Carmarthenshire and Powys, and later took up the post of Chief Superintendent Head of Uniformed Policing for the force.

She is an accredited Strategic Firearms and Gold Public order commander and has won a Stonewall National award for her support of LGBT staff.

A mother of two, DCC Parmenter’s drive and dedication has not only led her to become a chief officer, but has also had a positive influence on her teenage daughters.

DCC Parmenter said: “My youngest daughter is 14 and she’s also keen to join the police. It’s nice to know that she looks at my career positively and can see how policing can make a real difference.

“I’m very proud to be a chief officer in the force I am from. Being able to effect the delivery of services in my home area, and to serve people in the area I live ensuring the best possible service, is a huge privilege.”

Looking ahead, DCC Parmenter’s aims are to keep delivering across Dyfed-Powys Police, and to ensure the force continues to improve and innovate.

She added: “I know Dyfed-Powys communities and staff very well, and I think we have got all the ingredients to be an absolutely outstanding force. I look forward to being a part of the chief officer team to deliver that.

“I’m really grateful to our staff and colleagues across the force, who have supported me throughout my career.”

Chief Constable Mark Collins said: “Claire has shown outstanding commitment to our communities over many years and I am delighted to have her as my Deputy Chief Constable.”

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