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AM visits gym to hear success story

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LLANELLI AM Lee Waters met with gym owner Keri Mckibbin last week to hear how his Burry Port fitness centre is transforming the lives of local residents.

The gym, a community fixture for more than 60 years, has built a strong reputation for supporting people at all levels of fitness with often remarkable results.

Visiting the gym following their recent participation in Sports Wales’ ‘More Than Sport’ campaign, Mr Waters met with Sherry Croft to discuss her personal experience of becoming fit.

Until a year ago, Sherry, 54, was an agoraphobic – plagued with knee problems and diabetes. But since joining the gym her life has completely turned around. Following a double knee replacement, in April 2016, Sherry, joined Mckibbin’s Gym, determined to tackle her weight gain. It was a real struggle at first because of Sherry’s agoraphobia (a fear of being outside). But in just a year, she has lost nearly nine stone in weight, has reversed her type 2 diabetes and says she has never felt more confident.

Sherry said: “Before my husband died, I was 10 years shut in. I had high blood pressure, cholesterol, type 2 diabetes and severe depression. Coming to Keri’s gym has literally changed my life, it’s such a comfortable, safe place, I never feel intimidated here.”

“I’ve lived in Burry Port for 17 years, but because of my depression and agoraphobia I didn’t know a single soul. Since coming to the gym, I’ve made a lot of friends – we’re so close, we really support each other. And we have a lot of fun!”

“All I’d say to anyone that’s struggling with some of the issues I’ve had is to come give it a go. The first step is the biggest leap – but once you’re here, you’ll never want to turn back.”

Keri Mckibbin, owner and personal trainer at the gym, said: “Sherry is an inspiration to us all – about what you can achieve if you push yourself. It’s been wonderful to see the changes in her as she’s grown more and more confident each day. But it’s not just Sherry who’s turned her life around – I’ve had cancer sufferers, severe back problems, and heart issues.

“I pay close attention to each person’s individual needs, designing a highly personalised training programme that supports them to achieve their goals.”

Lee Waters said: “It’s the personal touch that Keri offers that clearly makes all the difference. He’s a friendly, supportive man who’s passionate about fitness. He knows every person who comes into his gym and he’s 100% committed to helping them achieve their fitness goals.”

“We need to find more ways of supporting people to access their local gym. GPs have begun to refer people to local leisure centres, but we need a mix of approaches as the huge, strip-lit impersonal environment of a leisure centre isn’t for everyone.

“I’ll be writing to the Health Secretary to push the importance of giving local gyms a chance.”

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Detectives ask for help following an assault outside a Llanelli bar

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DETECTIVES from Dyfed-Powys Police are looking to speak to several men to help with its enquiries following an assault outside a Llanelli bar.

At around 3am on Monday, 29 August, a man was attacked outside the Met Bar in Station Road. He was left with a fractured eye socket, cuts and bite marks.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org. Quote reference: DP-20220829-062.

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Prince and Princess of Wales to visit Wales

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THE PRINCE and Princess of Wales have planned a trip to Wales to visit a variety of communities across the nation and learn about the work of key charitable organisations. 

The Prince and Princess have a deep affection for Wales, having made their first family home in Anglesey, and have thoroughly enjoyed their previous visits and the warmth and kindness shown by the Welsh people. 

Their Royal Highnesses are looking forward to spending more time in Wales over the next few years, they hope to strengthen their relationship with communities in all parts of Wales. 

During their first engagement, Their Royal Highnesses will visit the RNLI Holyhead Lifeboat Station, where they will meet crew, volunteers and some people who have been supported by their local unit.

Holyhead is one of the three oldest lifeboat stations on the Welsh coast and has a remarkable history of bravery, having received 70 awards for gallantry. 

Their Royal Highnesses will then take a short walk to the Holyhead Marine and Cafe Bar, where they will meet local people, including representatives of small businesses and organisations, including the Coastguard and Sea Cadets. 

In their second engagement, the Prince and Princess of Wales are expected to visit Swansea. 

Their Royal Highnesses will visit St Thomas Church, a re-developed church in Swansea which supports people in the local area and across the City and County of Swansea. 

Over the last two years the church has been transformed into a thriving community hub and is home to a vast array of services, including:

  • A foodbank which supports over 200 people per week
  • Swansea Baby Basics which distributes essential items for vulnerable mothers across the city, such as toiletries and clothes
  • Facilities for the homeless including food, showers and toilets
  • A not-for-profit cafe and community training kitchen
  • A surplus food distribution network which collects food from supermarkets at the end of each day and distributes it from the church to prevent food waste and to help end food poverty

As part of their visit, Their Royal Highnesses will meet those volunteering at the church across different initiatives including Baby Basics and the foodbank. Their Royal Highnesses will also spend some time meeting members of the public gathered outside the church. 

The Princess of Wales has previously worked with Baby Banks and the in summer of 2020 brought together 19 British brands and retailers to donate over 10,000 new items to more than 40 baby banks nationwide, operated by Baby Basics, Little Village and AberNecessities. 

Her Royal Highness has visited a number of baby banks across the UK, including in London, Sheffield and West Norfolk where she has spent time speaking with families about their experiences of using their local baby bank services, as well as helping unload donations. 

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Road closed after man suffers serious injury in Burry Port

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OFFICERS from Dyfed-Powys Police are investigating after a man suffered a serious injury in Station Road, Burry Port.

Officers were called to a report that the man had suffered an injury at around 10.45pm on Saturday, 24 September. He has been taken to hospital.

A 39-year-old man was arrested at the scene on suspicion of assault. He remains in police custody.

A road closure is in place for scene preservation and is likely to remain for a number of hours.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org. Quote reference: DP-20220924-360.

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