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Teenage arsonist blacked out the centre of Llanelli

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A TEENAGE arsonist blacked out the centre of Llanelli and caused £100,000 worth of damage when she set fire to an electricity sub station.

Alisha Dann, aged 18, was caught at the scene by a passing police officer but he could not put out the flames.

The fire spread to offices of Carmarthenshire County Council before being extinguished.

Dann, of Old Castle Street, Llanelli, admitted arson while being reckless as to whether life would be endangered. She was sentenced to two years in a young offenders’ institution.

A 16-year-old girl admitted the same offence. She was made the subject of a youth rehabilitation order for two years.

Craig Jones, prosecuting, told Swansea Crown Court how Keith Marshall had been visiting a community centre in Old Castle Road shortly before 10pm on November 13 last year.

He noticed the two girls holding black plastic rubbish bags but thought nothing of it.

A short while later he saw them again, but without the bags, and immediately spotted smoke coming from the sub station.

He alerted a passing police officer and both tried to put out the flames.

“By now there were loud bangs and popping coming from the station,” added Mr Jones.

The officer stopped the two girls and noticed the juvenile place a mobile telephone down her bra.

It was later discovered she had sent a text message saying she was going to cause a fire.

Mr Jones said the blaze completely destroyed the sub station, causing £72,101 of damage and at one stage blacking out the centre of the town.

The flames also spread to the Ty Elwyn offices of the county council, where a further £25,000 worth of damage was caused.

Mr Jones said the juvenile told officers she had taken ‘street valium’ and collapsed in the back of a police car. Officers then had to resuscitate her.

The court heard that Dann already had a conviction for arson, having set fire to a flat in 2015.

Barristers for both girls said they had had particularly tragic upbringings.

Judge Geraint Walters said of Dann that it was remarkable that at the age of 18 she now had two convictions for arson as well as for other offending.

“This was a wicked act by two feral youths and there was some planning involved,” he added.

Judge Walters told the juvenile she may well owe her life to the officers who resuscitated her.

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Education

St. Michaels School celebrates excellent A-Level results

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St. Michael’s pupils with their A-Level results

ST. MICHAEL’S School, Llanelli, is extremely pleased to announce another year of successful A-Level results, with 80.2% of all grades awarded either an A* or A grade.

The vast majority of pupils have earned a place at their chosen university to study courses such as Medicine, Veterinary Medicine and Economics.

This is the first year that traditional exams have resumed since the Covid-19 pandemic began with the majority of lessons in the first part of the A-Level being delivered online rather than in a classroom environment. This makes the results even more of an achievement considering the circumstances.

Headmaster Mr Benson Ferrari said: “We offer our sincere congratulations to our outgoing Year 13 class on the publication of their A-Level results, demonstrating that our pupils have worked so hard despite the challenges of returning to a conventional assessment approach.

“They approached the situation with resilience and dedication, which has resulted in grades that are truly representative of their ability.  I am confident that they will all go onto achieve great things at university and in their working lives.  

“We wish them the best as they move to this new and exciting stage of their education.  The preparation which St. Michael’s has provided will be built upon, along with our values and principles providing a lasting framework to tackle the challenges ahead.”

In 2020, St. Michael’s School was awarded The Sunday Times Welsh Independent School of the Decade and this was in part due to the excellent exam results that the school receives each year. 

St. Michael’s was also ranked 13th in The Times 2019 Co Ed League Table for UK Independent Schools, which was the last time that the results were published. The school hopes that this year’s results will continue to secure their place in the 2022 league table which will be published later this year.

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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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