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Council accused of tree neglect

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screen-shot-2016-11-17-at-12-08-36A LLANELLI man has spoken out over what he says is a waste of ratepayer’s money through the neglect of expensive trees planted on council land.

Carl Gower from Llanelli contacted The Herald to express his frustration, claiming that he has been trying to get Carmarthenshire County Council to do something about fallen and neglected trees in Llanelli, as well as issues with rubbish mounting up in back lanes.

Mr Gower told The Herald: “For the past six months, I have been complaining to Carmarthenshire County Council with regard to a very expensive fallen tree at the North Dock, near the Sospan restaurant. I have had no replies, no action and I have been totally ignored by the council.”

Mr Gower, of Old Castle Road, said that he had approached his local County Councillor, John Jenkins, and also that he had approached his AM and MP, but that nothing had been done to date.

Speaking about the fallen tree, he said: “It is a total waste of ratepayers’ money and it is arrogance on the part of the Director Ms Mullins. This tree is worth at least £600 and it is sad to see such a fine tree being left to die through neglect by the council.”

Mr Gower alleges that there are many fine trees in the council remit that are planted and then left to die: “The trees on the Star roundabout are dying, as are many on the Llanelli link road.”

Speaking about what he says is a growing problem with rubbish in the back lanes of Llanelli, he said: “I have also tried in vain to get the Director to give me the council policy on cleaning back lanes. The council are spending large amounts of money on new refuse lorries, which are now unable to take garden waste, and ratepayers are expected to buy a container from the council.

“How are elderly people expected to move the large bins for collection?

“There has been no consultation. The council Directors have a total disrespect for rate payers who fund their large, bloated salaries.”

The Herald contacted Cllr John Jenkins and he gave the following statement: “Carl has highlighted several areas where the County Council have been, at best, slow to respond to his concerns. I have seen the council’s promises to see to his concerns but action is often not forthcoming.

“The case of the uprooted tree in North Dock has been reported as far up the chain as the Director and I agree with Carl that it is a waste of money and a huge frustration that nothing has been done to date.”

The Lliedi Ward councillor went on: “It may seem like a small matter to others but the waste of ratepayers’ money and inaction by the council demonstrates why so many people in Llanelli get frustrated by the council. The Director needs to make good on her promises to my constituent and see to his concerns.”

Cllr Jenkins told The Herald that he was thinking of carrying out some remedial work himself unless something was done.

He said: “I’m half tempted to replace the tree and invoice the council. Carl first brought the tree to the attention of County Council in December 2015. He contacted me in April this year. Short of replacing the tree myself, I don’t know what to do. It’s like hitting your head against a wall with some cases. Why don’t they just see to the tree? I’ve submitted a formal complaint to the council about this tree.”

The Herald contacted Carmarthenshire County Council for a comment.

Environment Director Ruth Mullen told The Herald: “I have arranged to meet with the resident to discuss his concerns. He has also received replies in relation to specific issues he has previously raised regarding street cleansing and trees. Officers are also carrying out an investigation on the tree referred to in his latest email.

“In relation to street cleansing in Llanelli, this is an important priority and we are taking forward a number of actions to develop solutions to some of the long-standing issues, particularly in relation to the back lanes, and also working closely with representatives of the community to resolve some of these issues.

“Our cleansing and enforcement teams will be working more closely together so that rubbish bags and other fly-tipping can be dealt with more quickly and efficiently. We are setting up ‘cleansing zones’ so that officers can take ownership of specific areas and allocate resources based on need; and looking at specific streets/areas with continual litter and fly-tipping problems to carry out a ‘task force day’ approach involving colleagues from other departments, such as public protection and housing. Officers are engaging with the community, and are also looking at the powers available to ensure landlords meet all their responsibilities. We are also working with the police to tackle anti-social behaviour, in particular street drinking.”

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New ward extension opens at Werndale Hospital

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WERNDALE Hospital opens its £1millon ward extension, featuring a suite of new spacious patient en-suite rooms and additional light and airy ward space for new nurses’ stations, new technology and medical equipment, in pleasant and comfortable spaces. 

Werndale is part of Circle Health Group, the UK’s largest provider of private healthcare. The group is carrying out a £125 million redevelopment programme across its 50 hospitals in the UK.

Werndale has a strong history in the village of Bancyfelin, where is has been serving the local communities of Wales for over 32 years.

James Davies, Wales and Scarlets rugby player, from Bancyfelin, cut the ribbon to mark the official opening on Monday 1st August. His nickname “Cubby”, is reference to his brother’s nickname, “Fox”; this refers to the Fox & Hounds pub their parents ran in Bancyfelin, the village where they grew up. Staff and consultants were given the chance to view the new extension, with a small gathering to mark the occasion and celebrate all the hard work that has gone into this project over the last 12 months.

Jacky Jones, Executive Director of Werndale Hospital said: “The investment programme is an exciting opportunity to expand what we can offer to patients at Werndale. Our staff and consultants are delighted with this expansion which will allow us to meet the private healthcare needs of patients and families in Wales and will decrease waiting times which will positively impact the patient’s experience. Having the new patient rooms here increases our ward capacity by 20%, it is a great investment”.

Gaynor Llewellyn, Director of Clinical Services said: “At Werndale we are committed to continuous improvement of clinical facilities and services. We continually invest in the hospital so that we can offer our patients and consultants reassurance when they visit us for treatments”.

Werndale Hospital is seeing increased demand for its services across all specialities particularly orthopaedic surgery, ophthalmology, and general surgery. Nearly 4,000 patients had surgery at Werndale Hospital, Bancyfelin during 2021 and the new investment will enable ward capacity to be increased by 25 per cent.

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M4 closed westbound following lorry fire near Swansea

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A SECTION of the M4 near Swansea was shut on Monday (Aug 8) due to a vehicle fire.

The westbound section of the motorway, between junction 47 at Penllergaer and junction 48 at Hendy closed.

Emergency services were called to the scene, and there was queuing traffic in the area.

Traffic monitoring service Inrix reported: “M4 Westbound closed, queueing traffic due to vehicle fire between J47 A48 (Penllergaer / Swansea West Services) and J48 A4138 Pontardulais Road”

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Police appeal after Llanelli assault: victim required hospital treatment

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DYFED POWYS POLICE is investigating an assault which occurred on Regalia Terrace, Llanelli, Carmarthenshire at about 12.05am, Sunday 3rd July.

The victim required hospital treatment.

Officers have carried out all possible lines of enquiry, and are now appealing for help from the public.

They would like to identify the person in the CCTV image, who may have information that could help the investigation.

Anyone who knows who the person is, or if you believe you are pictured, contact Dyfed-Powys Police.

This can also be done either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk or phoning 101.

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

Please quote reference DP-20220703-011

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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