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Major award for Wales Rugby League



WALES RUGBY LEAGUE has achieved two major awards as they continue to build and improve the organisation.

The national governing body has been awarded the Level 3 Safeguarding Standard, as well as being awarded the highest grading in the Sport Wales Self Assurance process for the fourth year in a row.

The Safeguarding Standard was awarded jointly by Sport Wales and the NSPCC’s Child Protection in Sport Unit. In gaining the Level 3 Standard, Wales Rugby League successfully presented to the panel and submitted evidence relating to 30 separate safeguarding criteria.

National Development Manager Idris Evans is delighted that the two organisations have rubber stamped the work undertaken over the last 12 months to improve safety within Rugby League in Wales.

He said: “We have worked very hard over the last 12 to 18 months to get where we are now – writing new and re-writing old policies, up-skilling staff and volunteers and sharing information with clubs so that children and young people can feel safe playing the sport of Rugby League in Wales.

“We have had some great support from our team of safeguarding volunteers across Wales in Martin Roddy, Mark Jones and Mark Parry, as well as the support from the Board through Chris Thair.

“To date, we are one of only a handful of sports in Wales to pass the Level 3 Standards and are ensuring we provide an environment where young players can feel safe, protected and listened to. It’s about having the right resources in place to make people feel safe, but also being able to have procedures and practices ready if things do go wrong.

“We’d also like to thank the NSPCC and Sport Wales for their support in gaining this standard.”

Anne Tiivas, the director of the Child Protection Sports Unit, said: “We would like to congratulate Wales Rugby League on achieving Level 3 of the Safeguarding Standards. We thank the organisation for your contribution to creating a safe environment for children and young people that works towards the framework for safeguarding and protecting children in and through sport in Wales.”

The self-assurance process is undertaken annually by all the main sport’s National Governing Bodies in the UK. Each NGB must upload evidence and explain how they meet 62 separate criteria on governance, financial management, human resources, policy, risk management and strategy. The results of which show the Sports Councils whether the NGB is fit for purpose and safe enough to receive lottery and public funding. For the last four years, Wales Rugby League has received the highest grading of green.

Wales Rugby League CEO Chris Thair said: “Receiving awards and recognition from three separate bodies in the same month is testament to the fantastic work taking place within Wales. This journey is far from complete and there remains much work to be done but it does show we are on the right road.

“The self-assurance grading just reinforces our own beliefs. We have good governance, are led well, have small financial reserves alongside good financial management and a clear direction of travel. Most importantly, we have some good people involved who will ensure this will continue into the future.

“The advanced safeguarding standard from the NSPCC means Wales Rugby League cover the two main aspects of safeguarding in a good manner. We are proactive to prevent issues taking place in the first place; however, we will react in the most suitable way when required. The award shows rugby league in Wales is a good environment for children to be involved in.

“We wish to dedicate the Level 3 safeguarding award to ex-WRL board member Martin Roddy, whose health is sadly suffering at the moment. Martin has been the long-time stalwart of safeguarding within our organisation and the main instigator in ensuring it is of the highest priority. We are extremely grateful.

“Finally, to hear John Kear say at a recent meeting and subsequently in a public interview with Sky Sports that Wales Rugby League is the best organisation he has been involved in speaks volumes for our culture and practices.

“As he stated, we are not a cash rich organisation and have much lower revenues than all the other nations and clubs John has coached in the past. These comments reflect how we always try to do things in the right way with good values and practice, are supportive as a board and is a wonderful reflection upon the staff and players involved in the national team. They are a special bunch of people who will rightly go into 2017 Rugby League World Cup with a great deal of pride.”

Wales Rugby League still have some remaining shirt sponsors for the World Cup and if by reading this, your business would like to hear more, then email Chris Thair on chris.thair@walesrugbyleague.

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Canolfan Carwyn Sports Centre and Brynamman Lido to be transferred to a community groups



A MULTI- SPORTS facility, at the heart of the Gwendraeth Valley, has been taken over by a local sports group, the Baton Twirlers.

The management of Canolfan Carwyn Sports Centre, which is owned by Carmarthenshire County, has been transferred to the Baton Twirlers Association Cymru (BTAC) via a lease agreement and will allow the public to continue to use the facilities at the centre.

Whilst Canolfan Carwyn Sports Centre is now the official home of BTAC its facilities are available for the local community and sports groups to be used.

An official reopening of the Centre, which bears the name of one of the Gwendraeth Valley’s most famous sons, under the new management of the BTAC was held on Sunday, October 2.

Speaking at the event, Jessica Shore Director of the Baton Twirlers Association Cymru (BTAC) said:

“We are thrilled to have worked with Carmarthenshire County Council to secure this sports centre on behalf of the local community and it’s a pleasure to welcome the public here today. We are looking forward to working with and hosting various community and sports groups at the Carwyn James Sports Centre.

“It also was very important to us to provide a home for baton twirling in Wales, and we will make great use of the excellent facilities here.”

Cllr. Gareth John, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Leisure, Culture and Tourism said “This is a great success story for the BTAC, the Gwendraeth Valley and the council as we have secured the future of the Carwyn James Sports Centre for the local community.

I would like to thank Baton Twirlers Association Cymru for their work and enthusiasm during the process of transferring management of the Sports Centre to them, as a community group, and I wish them the very best for the future.”

Plans approved to transfer management of Brynamman Lido

On Monday, October 3, the council’s Cabinet approved plans to lease the Brynamman Lido, which is held in trust by the Carmarthenshire County Council, to Brynamman Lido Limited under its asset transfer programme.

Under the proposed lease, Brynamman Lido Limited will take over the management of the lido with the intention to reopen the swimming pool for sporting, recreational and leisure activities.

Following the approval of the plans by the Cabinet, Cllr. Gareth John commented:

“We are pleased to be working with the local group in Brynamman to transfer the management and maintenance of the lido to the community.

“The transfer of this asset will allow Brynamman Lido Ltd to apply for funding via grants that would not be available to the County Council, and we will continue to work with them and provide support along the journey to reopening the lido to the community.”

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Latest recruit to Llandeilo’s Ashmole & Co team ‘converts’ his spare time into being a rugby referee



Ashmole & Co have scored a try with their newest Trainee Accountant. The firm is delighted to announce that Aled Jones has recently started working for the successful accountancy team in the Llandeilo office.

Aled, who lives in Pontyberem, is a community rugby referee in his spare time. He referees senior rugby games on Saturdays and Junior rugby games on Sundays including cup matches. He is also involved in the Scarlets Cup Final at Parc y Scarlets and the Carmarthenshire cup finals.

Before joining Ashmole & Co Aled was a Personal Banker with Barclays Bank for five years. He studied AAT Level three at Coleg Sir Gar. Aled went to primary school in Pontyberem and secondary school in Ysgol y Gwendraeth.

Day to day with Ashmole & Co, Aled prepares and inputs clients’ sales and purchase invoices onto the accounting software; completes clients’ VAT returns and assists senior members of the team with the preparation of accounts. The most rewarding part of the job for Aled is hearing that the clients are happy.

Welcoming Aled to the team, Ceri Llwyd, Partner in the Llandeilo Ashmole & Co office, said, “We are delighted that Aled has joined our team in Carmarthenshire. He has fitted in well and is a pleasure to work with. I’ve told my rugby mad sons that they have to behave now when they play rugby on a Sunday in case Aled is their referee! It is great that he gives up his spare time to help local rugby clubs in this way.”
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Aled said, “I am grateful to Ashmole and Co, who are one of the most established and largest teams of chartered, certified accountants and auditors in south and west Wales, to give me this opportunity.”

Ashmole & Co offer financial support to a significant number of junior and professional sports teams across south Wales. The Llandeilo office has recently shown its support to Llandeilo RFC by contributing towards new tops for the juniors.

Ceri added, “As a rural firm that works with businesses in the area it is a pleasure for us to be able to lend our support to local sports teams.”

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Llangennech prove too strong for Penclawdd



LLANGENNECH earned their fourth win in as many matches on Saturday (Oct 22) as they beat Penclawdd 38-10.

Jordan Saunders got the scoring underway with the first try of the game and Thomas Davies added the extras.

Penclawdd then levelled the scoring with a try from Daniel John Guarneri and Marcus Brown added the extras.

It remained 7-7 until half time with conditions proving tricky for both sides.

In the second half, Aaron Howles got the try to put Llangennech ahead but the conversion was missed.

Joseph Hutchings then extended the visitors’ lead with their third try and Davies added the extras to take the score to 7-19.

Penclawdd then responded with a penalty from Brown as the home side looked to get back into the game.

However, Llangennech soon had their fourth try and a bonus point as Howles touched down for his second try of the game and Davies added the extras.

Louis Rees then scored an unconverted try before replacement Hefin Jones went over for Llangennech’s sixth try, converted by Davies.

On Saturday, October 29, Penclawdd travel to Aberystwyth for their second game in the Division 1 Cup.

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