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What next for Wales?



Leanne-WoodLEANNE WOOD visited Carmarthen on Friday (Jun 11) as part of her tour of Wales where she poses the question ‘What next for Wales?’ The Plaid Cymru leader held an open meeting at the Carmarthen Quins rugby club. Fresh from a string of high profile public appearances during the 2015 General Election campaign she addressed a large audience of supporters, which included local councilor Alun Lenny.

Prior to her address the Plaid Cymru leader paid a special tribute to Elwyn Williams, the Plaid Cymru election candidate, thanking him for his hard work for Plaid Cymru in seeking to represent people in Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire. Following the tribute to Elwyn Williams Leanne Wood told the audience: “With a Conservative government in Westminster now governing alone, it is more important than ever that we have a Welsh Government that is willing to stand up for Wales. Plaid Cymru can do just that. As Elwyn Williams and the rest of the team of Plaid Cymru candidates showed during the election campaign, we will be a strong voice for Wales.”

Focusing on next year’s Welsh Assembly elections Leanne Wood told the audience: “In Wales we face the prospect of our position being weak, of our voice not being assertive let alone heard. Plaid Cymru wants Wales to come together to have a seat at the top table in the UK so that when those big decisions are made on the economy, our voice is respected. The UK is not one nation, it is made up of nations and they deserve respect. If Plaid Cymru wins the Welsh general elections next year we will prioritise health, education and the economy above all other matters. I want the next Welsh general election to be one where the focus on Labours poor record of delivery to be contrasted with Plaid Cymru’s positive proposals for change.” Commenting on the main issues facing the people of Wales she said: “People want to see improvements in their lives, in their GP surgery, their school, their hospital and in their workplace. Plaid Cymru’s programme for the Welsh Government will be about delivering that.”

Plaid will be hoping for better results in the Welsh Assembly elections and it was evident from the support at the Quins club that Carmarthen is already gearing up to rally behind any prospective candidate putting themselves forward to fill the vacant position in Carmarthenshire West and South Pembrokeshire following the withdrawal from the candidacy by the charismatic former darling of Plaid Nerys Evans.

Leanne Wood told the Herald: “Ahead of next year’s Assembly election, the Party of Wales will be speaking to as many people as possible to explain why we need a change of government in Cardiff Bay, a strong and ambitious government that will always do what it best for Wales.”

Plaid Cymru councilor Alun Lenny stood up and commented on the proposed austerity cuts and said: “If Emlyn (Dole) was here his mantra is ‘know where the money is’ of course we have only been in leadership a couple of weeks. Our deputy leader Dai Jenkins spent 30 years in procurement in the private sector and is busy looking for where the money is now. Obviously people expect things to happen and they will happen when we know how much wriggle room we have. We will work within the constraints but we will be looking closely at how much money is available and how we can use it.”

Plaid’s education spokesman Simon Thomas answered a question on education in Wales and commented on the benefit of adopting the recommendations in the Donaldson report. He said: “What Donaldson says is that we give the power back to the teachers back to the profession and we structure the curriculum in a way that doesn’t follow strictly where a child should be according to age but where they develop naturally, always encouraging them. The Welsh language is a second language in many parts of Wales. Rather than having Welsh for half an hour at the end of the day it will be running through the curriculum. It will be much more naturally introduced through things like having P.E. in Welsh.”

Leanne Wood gave the Herald and exclusive video interview, which can be seen on the Herald’s Facebook pages and website.

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RNIB brings LEGO® Braille Bricks toolkits to children in Carmarthenshire



CHILDREN with vision impairment in Carmarthenshire are set to benefit from LEGO® Braille Bricks toolkits thanks to the Royal National Institute of Blind People’s (RNIB) work with the LEGO Foundation.

The toolkits have so far been distributed to Ceredigion Council, Swansea Council, Conwy Sensory Support Service, Carmarthenshire Council, Bridgend Council, Neath Port Talbot Council and Rhondda Cynon Taf.

LEGO Braille Bricks introduce a new way to help children with vision impairment develop tactile skills and learn the braille system. The kits are made up of approximately 300 LEGO bricks that are specially moulded so that the studs on top reflect individual letters and numbers in the Braille alphabet. The bricks also feature printed letters, numbers and symbols so that they can be used simultaneously by sighted peers, classmates, and teachers in a collaborative and inclusive way.

The kits are being brought to the UK by RNIB, which worked with the LEGO Foundation to develop and test the Braille Bricks and will distribute toolkits to schools and home-schooled children in Carmarthenshire from September.

RNIB Director of Services, David Clarke said: “We are excited to bring the LEGO Braille Brick toolkits to UK classrooms to help children learn how to read and write braille in a fun and engaging way. Braille is an important tool and these inclusive toolkits will make a real difference to children with vision impairment, allowing them to play and interact with their sighted classmates.”

RNIB has also trained teachers and support staff working with children with vision impairment in the teaching concept. Although the toolkit is intended as a playful introduction to braille for younger children aged from four up, it has also proven to have learning opportunities and benefits for children in secondary school.

Senior Play & Health Specialist at the LEGO Foundation, Stine Storm, said: “We are thrilled to launch the first wave of the LEGO Braille Bricks program and get the toolkits into the hands of children. With LEGO Braille Bricks, students and educators can tailor their activities in countless different ways to meet their needs and learning goals in a fun and inclusive manner. The possibilities for learning through play are endless, and we look forward to seeing how LEGO Braille Bricks can inspire children of all ages along their journey to learn braille.”

The UK is one of several countries that LEGO Braille Bricks will launch in this year. The toolkits, or sets of bricks, are not on general sale and can only be ordered by heads of service from local sensory services. Heads of service can also nominate an education professional from schools for children with vision impairment, or a QTVI (qualified teacher of children and young people with vision impairment), to place an order on behalf of their area. For more information visit

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Police appeal for witnesses after 20-year-old pedestrian tragically killed on A40



DYFED-POWYS POLICE is appealing for witnesses to a fatal road traffic collision on the A40 west of Carmarthen on Saturday (Sept 26) in which a 20-year-old man, a pedestrian, lost his life.

The police have asked The Pembrokeshire Herald to publicise this appeal.

A spokesman for the police told this newspaper: “At around 9.40pm, a white VW Transporter was in collision with a pedestrian on the A40 westbound, near the junction of Llangynog, Carmarthen.

“The pedestrian, a 20-year-old male, died as a result of his injuries.

“It appears the pedestrian had left his vehicle, a black Seat, following a single-vehicle collision further along the westbound carriageway shortly before.

The police have asked that if anyone has any information on either or both collisions, or may have been travelling along the A40 at the relevant time, please contact the serious collision investigation unit, quoting reference DPP-20200926-339.

This can be done by email:, by phone on 101 or by text: If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

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Tir Coed build outdoor classroom for Cross Hands Primary



The local charity Tir Coed teamed up with Cross Hands Primary School to design and install a locally
grown woodland shelter to enable primary school pupils to benefit from outdoor lessons-even when
the rain pours!

Last year Cross Hands Primary School received funding from Carmarthenshire is Kind for their
intergenerational project. The project brought the schoolchildren together with older people in the
community. Through intergenerational activities, everyone involved increases social connectedness,
reduces social isolation, learns from one another and has a great time!

Before the lockdown, Tir Coed was contracted to lead a group mainly made up of parents from the
school on a shelter-building course. The attendees would gain knowledge and skills and the children
and the older people would be able to use the shelter, a third generation now included in this
fantastic project. The plans, however, had to change due to restrictions and in an effort to have it
ready for the children when they returned to school, three intrepid Activity Leaders braved the wet
August weather to build the beautiful shelter .

Studies have shown that being in the outdoors significantly reduces the risk of spreading the Corona
Virus. With this addition to their already impressive outdoor area, it is hoped that more learning can
take place outside the classroom. Deputy Head, Emma Walters said, “It looks amazing! I am very
impressed with the shelter and I cannot thank Tir Coed enough for organising this. Additional
covered space in the outdoors will mean that we can take more learning into our lovely nature

If you would like to find out more about the work of Tir Coed or have a project you would like our help
with you can contact Nancy, the Carmarthenshire Coordinator:

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