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Logic Festival returns to Swansea

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THIS SEPTEMBER, Logic Festival returns to Swansea, with Ynysforgan Farm hosting nearly 5,000 people across five arenas and over 70 artists performing.

The Festival can be seen as the spiritual successor to Escape In The Park, and will be headlined by a top name in dance music, Judge Jules, once voted best DJ in the world by DJ Mag.

Escape Into The Park was the biggest dance festival on the Welsh calendar, started by Jonathan Wignall and Danny Slade in July 1995. Mr Wignall owned nightclub Escape at the time, whilst Mr Slade worked there. They decided to launch a festival based on the club at Singleton Park, bringing in both top names in the industry as well as local talent looking to make a name for themselves.

Stars such as Tiësto, Chipmunk and Pendulum all performed over the years, as attendances rose from 5,000 to 25,000 people.

The festival was sold to a company called Angel Music Group in 2009, and continued as before until 2011. But in 2012, the festival was cancelled, releasing a statement saying: “Like many other UK festivals, Escape Into The Park is taking a year off in 2012.

“This year is looking to be very busy for the public with a combination of a summer of Olympic sporting activity and the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations in June.

“Therefore, we believe this is the perfect timing for us to take a year off to sit back and reassess the format of the festival with a view to coming back stronger than ever next year.”

Yet Escape Into The Park didn’t return, with many feeling that its sale changed the festival for the worse, with an influx of commercial acts lessening the event’s appeal.

Slade said: “The company didn’t have their heart in Wales, they were only there for financial gain. They didn’t have a passion for the event.”

Jason Pufal, owner of Rainbow Rooms Bar and Nightclub in Gorseinon, was a circuit DJ in the 1990s. Memories of the event prompted him to do something to fill the void left by Escape Into The Park’s absence. Pufal launched Logic Festival, which started out as a small event held at the end of summer 2016 with a capacity of just 499, and is now expecting nearly 5,000 to attend this year.

“I’ve been in the game for roughly 20 years, as a DJ, club owner and now running a festival is the next stage.” said Pufal.

When asked about the suggestion of Logic acting as spiritual successor to Escape Into The Park, Pufal said: “Escape Into The Park was one of the most talked about events in Wales, and so it is an honour to be compared to it.

“I feel we have helped put dance music in Wales back on the map, as there was a void after Escape Into The Park ended, and there is nothing in Wales doing what we do.”

With regard to ambitions for this year’s event, he said: “It would be nice to sell out this year, and there are other fields nearby we can license, so if things go well we can up the capacity to 10,000 in the future.”

The return of a festival to Swansea is a boost to the Welsh music scene, as Slade said: “It’s positive, as it proves people are interested in going to festivals in Wales, this year we hope for a good turnout and to go on to become bigger and better.”

The arenas will be categorised as Trance, Hardcore and Hard Dance, House, Club Classics and Multi Genre. With direct access to the M4 corridor, Ynysforgan Farm is a prime location, with free on-site parking in an adjacent field, as well as a fully licensed bar and catering concessions.

There will also be a launch party between August 18-19 at the Dillwyn Arms Hotel in Herbert Street, Pontardawe, with N-Trance playing a headlining DJ set.

Logic takes place on Saturday September 8, with standard tickets costing £27.50 and final release tickets costing £32.40.

They are available by visiting www.seetickets.com and www.derricksmusic.co.uk

You can also call 07763 000382 or visit www.logicfestival.wales

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Llanelli bus depot to close after 100 years

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THE LLANELLI HERALD understands that the Llanelli Bus Depot at Inkermans Street will be closing its gates for good. 

The Bus Depot has served the local community for approximately 100 years, Drivers will now be sent to work from depots in Carmarthen, Swansea and Tycroes. 

All services will remain in the the town, this newspaper can confirm, and our reporter was told that there will not be any redundancies. 

One bus driver told us that he and he co-workers were “not completely happy”, but the unnamed source added “At least we still have jobs to go to.” 

Further updates are expected on this developing story.

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Two week national ‘Firebreak Lockdown’ announced for Wales from 6pm on Friday

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MARK DRAKEFORD, The First Minister of Wales has announced a two week ‘fire break’ lockdown from Friday October 23 at 18:00 HRS, to last until Monday November 9 at 00:01 HRS

Mr Drakeford said: “This firebreak is the shortest we can make it. It must be sharp and deep in order to have the impact we need it to have on the virus.”

All non essential businesses, including tourism businesses will be told to close.

Businesses have been told that they will be given £1000 each automatically to help with the economic impact of the shutdown.

Mr Drakeford added that children will be the priority and that childcare facilities will open as normal. Primary schools will open after half term.

Secondary schools will be closed for a week after half term to help control the virus.

Universities will offer a mixture of face-to-face learning and learning via video link. Students must stay at their university accommodation during the lockdown.

Responding to the Welsh Government’s announcement of a Wales-wide lockdown, Paul Davies MS, the Leader of the Opposition in the Welsh Parliament, has called the lockdown “not-proportionate” and is calling on the Welsh Government to be “open and transparent” on the evidence to support a lockdown and if the First Minister is committing Wales to rolling Wales-wide lockdowns every month.

Paul Davies MS said: “Sadly, the First Minster has failed to get public support for this second Wales-wide lockdown, failing to be open and transparent about the evidence to justify this lockdown and what his actions will entail for the future.

“The Welsh Government also has to be honest that this road they are taking us down is committing Wales to rolling Wales-wide lockdowns. This is not a two-week break to solve the pandemic, it is likely that we will see regular lockdowns across the rest of the year. The Welsh Government must be clear what actions they are taking during the lockdown to prevent further Wales-wide lockdowns which will have a significant impact on people’s lives and livelihoods.

“However, the main concern is that this national lockdown is not proportionate. The impact on businesses in areas such as Powys, Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion, who have the lowest rate of Covid-19 cases in Wales, will be severe at a time when they are desperately struggling to recover from the pandemic so far this year.

“The First Minister needs to urgently come to the Welsh Parliament and answer these questions, to face effective scrutiny by elected representatives and not run his government by media.”

Preseli Pembrokeshire MP, Stephen Crabb told The Herald: “The evidence to support an all-Wales lockdown is weak and I am sceptical that this so-called ‘fire-break’ will tackle the situation in those parts of Wales where infection rates have been out of control. The key issue for Welsh Government to address is what will be done differently after the firebreak ends in those parts of Wales where infection rates have spiralled out of control. Otherwise the whole of Wales risks being dragged back into a series of rolling lockdowns.

“As we saw earlier in the year, lockdowns come with huge costs in terms of harm to the economy and to people’s emotional and mental wellbeing. With the Welsh Government asking UK Government to fund this lockdown, I hope that as many businesses as possible get support they need quickly. Pembrokeshire’s hospitality businesses will be hit particularly hard by these latest restrictions and I will be fighting hard again to see that they are protected as the lockdown kicks in.”

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Drakeford to make decision on ‘fire-break’ lockdown in Wales by Monday

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WALES is facing a national lockdown lasting at least two weeks in plans described as a “fire-break” by the first minister.

He said a decision was likely to be made on Monday, while talks continue with health officials, scientific advisors and councils over the weekend.
“Doing nothing is not an option,” he said.

Responding to the speculation First Minister, Mark Drakeford, is set to announce a ‘circuit-breaker’ lockdown in Wales, Welsh Conservative health spokesperson, Andrew RT Davies MS said: “I implore the First Minister to think again before heading down this path.

“The decision to lockdown Wales once again will have devastating consequences – from an economic and public health perspective – and should be the last resort.

“Only yesterday, the former director of communicable diseases at Public Health Wales, Dr Roland Salmon, said a circuit-breaker is likely to fail and the Welsh Labour Government should listen carefully to his warning.

“Earlier this week, Welsh Conservatives called for the urgent resumption of shielding in Wales with a substantial package of support to ensure the financial, physical and mental well-being of those most at risk is protected.

“This should be the immediate action taken by ministers along with prioritising PPE and testing in the problem areas in Wales such as hospitals, care home, universities and meat factories.

“It’s not too late for the Labour Government to reconsider and choose a different approach in Wales.”

Mr Drakeford warned that 2,500 people were now being infected with coronavirus every day in Wales, with critical care units in hospitals full.

“A successful fire-break would re-set the virus at a lower level,” he added.

Together with a new national set of rules for the whole of Wales after the fire-break period we would have slowed the virus down enough to get us through to Christmas.”
Plaid Cymru has been calling on Mr Drakeford to introduce the circuit-breaker without delay, while Labour at Westminster says a similar approach should be adopted in England.

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