HELICOPTER charity Wales Air Ambulance has launched a £500,000 appeal to help build its new airbase for South Wales.
Having secured planning permission for a purpose-built site in Carmarthenshire, the charity is appealing to people and businesses across South West Wales to support the construction of their local air ambulance’s new hangar and helipad.
The site at Llanelli Gate will be the new home of the charity’s southern based helicopter and fundraising headquarters, which are currently split between two separate premises in Swansea.
It will be the first time Wales Air Ambulance has owned its premises. The initiative will save the charity tens of thousands of pounds annually in reduced costs, including in rent and fuel supply.
The new base will boast the latest technology and facilities for the aircrews. It is also the first time the charity’s head office will be positioned together with the aircraft.
South West Wales is one of the busiest regions for the air ambulance charity, with missions soaring in the summer months. From its three airbases, Wales Air Ambulance can reach anywhere in Wales within 20 minutes.
The charity, which has carried out more than 20,000 missions since its launch in 2001, is now appealing to everyone to help build the helicopter’s new home.
Wales Air Ambulance chief executive Angela Hughes said: “This is such a unique opportunity for Wales’ air ambulances, but we need your help: we need to raise £500,000 to construct the hangar and helipad.
“Supporters won’t be just helping us build the base; they will be helping to build our future too. Owning the site will save us money in the long run, meaning we can carry out even more lifesaving missions.
“Thankfully, we’ve secured a grant that will help towards the head office development, but the new airbase will be funded entirely by charitable donations from the people of Wales.”
The charity will save up to £40,000 a year by having its own fuel supply alone.
Aircrews will have advanced facilities for what has become one of the busiest air ambulance operations in the UK. This includes room for specialised daily training, purpose-built storage, aircraft servicing, and video conferencing with the charity’s other airbases in Welshpool and Caernarfon.
“The site at Llanelli Gate offers optimum flight coverage across the south, and favourable weather patterns to ensure our crews can take-off with reduced risk of fog,” added Angela.
“We’ll also have fast access to the M4 for when crews are doing shifts on rapid response cars.”
Wales Air Ambulance is an all-Wales charity that provides air cover for those who face life-threatening illness or injuries. The charity relies entirely on donations to raise over £6 million every year to keep its three helicopters flying over Wales.
Public Services Board seeks views to improve local well-being
CARMARTHENSHIRE’S Public Services Board (PSB) is seeking residents’ views to find out what matters to them and their local communities.
The PSB has developed its Well-being Objectives and draft actions to deliver them, based on feedback received on its Well-being Assessment. The results of a survey at that time gathered views and helped shape the PSB’s understanding of the economic, social, environmental, and cultural factors that impact the well-being of individuals and communities within Carmarthenshire.
Once again, residents are being asked to contribute to help public service partners develop Carmarthenshire’s Local Well-being Plan for 2023-28.
To help shape the future of well-being please visit: Current Consultations (gov.wales)
The survey closes on 25 January 2023.
Cllr Darren Price, Chair of the Carmarthenshire PSB and Leader of Carmarthenshire County Council, said: “To deliver what is important to our communities, we need to their feedback and input. This survey is an opportunity for our residents to tell us if we, as public services, are on the right track to help create a better future for our children’s generation, and the generations to follow, as we strive to reach this goal.”
Andrew Cornish, Vice-Chair of the PSB andChief Executive Officer / Principal of Coleg Sir Gar and Coleg Ceredigion said: “Thank you to everyone who has contributed to our work so far. Our Well-being Assessment gives us a strong foundation on which to build our Well-being Plan and I would like to encourage everyone to take part in our involvement work for the preparation of the Plan.”
Carmarthenshire’s Public Services Board is a partnership of public and third sector organisations working together to improve well-being across the county and includes Carmarthenshire County Council, Hywel Dda University Health Board, Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Natural Resources Wales and other organisations.
Llanelli prepares for Sunday’s Remembrance Day parade
LATER TODAY (Sunday, November 13) the town will honour those who have fallen in service over the decades.
A number of roads will be closed on the day, including Murray Street, Church Street and Vauxhall Road from its junction with the mini roundabout.
These will be shut for the parade between 8.30am and noon, however, pedestrian access for those wishing to reach individual properties in those streets will be maintained where possible throughout the duration of the closure.
Traffic will be diverted to Robinson Street, Arthur Street, Columbia Row, Anne Street, Bigyn Road, Stepney Place, Water Street, Thomas Street and Gelli Onn.
At 10am, police, organisations and others not marching in the parade will take up their respective positions in front of the cenotaph in the town hall grounds, while the civic party will assemble inside Llanelli Town Hall.
At 10.15am the parade leaves Drill Hall for the town hall with the mayor Cllr Philip Warlow proceeding to the Boer War Memorial where he will lay a wreath.
When the parade arrives at the town hall, the civic party will proceed to the cenotaph where the Lord Lieutenant of Dyfed Sara Edwards, will lay a wreath.
This will be followed by the chair of Carmarthenshire Council Cllr Rob Evans, laying a wreath on the Royal Welch War Memorial and then on the town’s cenotaph.
More wreaths will be laid by dignitaries and politicians and ex-servicemen and women A two-minute silence will then be observed at 11am.
Any service groups or individuals who wish to lay a wreath on Remembrance Sunday can contact Paul Wickers via email at email@example.com.
While community organisations are to contact Llanelli Town Council at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact should be made by Monday, October 31 at the very latest to confirm arrangements as no additional wreaths will be able to be accommodated on the day.
Llanelli choir launches fundraising naked calendar
MEMBERS of a Llanelli female choir have bared all to raise money for the town’s Ty Bryngwyn Hospice.
Côr Curiad has created a cheeky fundraising calendar for 2023 – the second one they have done.
With around 50 members, photos were taken across Llanelli with strategically placed items to spare their blushes – all in the name of a good cause.
Llanelli photographer Graham Harries was behind the lens for the project.
The choir’s musical director Alex Esney, who is Miss December in the calendar said: “Local businesses sponsored the calendar and so many of the photos were taken at their premises.
“So for example we went to LTC Mobility Ltd and had scooters carefully positioned in front of us, it was a lot of fun.
“I also want to thank Ffwrnes Theatre for opening up especially for me to go and have my photo taken with the piano there.”
Alex said the aim is to raise as much as possible for the hospice, adding: “We did a calendar a few years ago but we now have more members so we thought it was time to do it all again.
“The ladies decided to ‘bare all’ to raise money for the hospice which provides such great care and support for families in their time of need, including two of our own.
“I think we pulled out all the stops this year, getting their clothes off at local businesses in and around Llanelli.”