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Anger with the NHS after tragic suicide



Tragic: Holly Elizabeth Greenway

THE DEATH of a 21-year-old female was discussed at the Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire Coroners’ Court on Thursday (Feb 4), giving the conclusion that she had taken her own life.

Holly Elizabeth Greenway of Pencnwc Cwmfelin Boeth, Whitland, passed away on April 23, 2015.

Carmarthenshire Coroners’ Officer, Malcom Thompson told the court: “Holly attended Ysgol Dyffryn Taf School where she was bullied. This caused her extreme embarrassment, and she left school having taken no exams.

“When she left she had a boyfriend in Haverfordwest, who she moved in with. However, the relationship was abusive and she was controlling, and she experimented with cannabis, and spent time moving back and forth from Pembrokeshire to Carmarthenshire.

“She moved in with her sister in 2013 and it became apparent that she was paranoid and had mental health issues, and was sectioned at Bryngofal. She was convinced she was being frequently raped by a man, and could see and smell things that wouldn’t be there.”

Mr Thompson described Holly’s behaviour as volatile, and explained that she was released from Bryngofal with anti psychoticmedication, however did not take it.

He explained that on April 23 at 1.30pm, her mother Elizabeth had gone to see a friend. Holly was left at home with her step-dad, who has mobility problems, and at 4.30pm her mother returned home.

Holly had remained upstairs for the majority of time, but had gone out. Her step-dad assumed she had gone for a walk, which she often used to do. However, when her step-dad went to the barn to feed the dog, he found Holly suspended by her neck.

Holly’s mother, Elizabeth Greenway, told the court: “I text Holly’s social worker to say how worried I was about her that day. I went out to get her some sanitary items, brought them back for her, and then went to see a friend.”

She explained how Holly’s care worker, Claire Young, had said she didn’t feel that Holly should have been released, from Bryngofal.

It was thought that Holly was suffering from psychosis, however Mrs Greenway felt that was an ‘umbrella term’.

She said: “We had spoken to Claire about Holly possibly having schizophrenia. Why didn’t she get an MRI scan or get a diagnosis? Her social worker had told me that Holly would not be released after her assessment. Then, there would be a slow return to home, with a one day trial a week.

“Two days later, she returned home. All I had was a phone call to say she was on the way.”

The court heard how Holly had been scratching at her arms and face whilst in care, and was finding it hard to cope after being ‘kicked out’ of Bryngofal just before Christmas in 2014. Holly was unhappy with her medication, as they made her eat uncontrollably, making her put on weight quickly.

Therefore, Mrs Greenway’s issue lies with the Hywel Dda University Health Board, especially due to the ambulance taken an hour to get to her when she was found in the barn.

She said: “I tried to resuscitate her. I put Dave on the phone and we kept getting cut off because of the poor signal, but they had all of our information.”

David Earl Taff, Holly’s stepdad, had his statement read out to the court: “I’d been at home all day with Holly. She was ranting and raving, and always says she’s been raped by an invisible person.

“She’s really good when she’s on her medication, but when she’s off it, she’s bad.”

The court heard how Holly had said she wanted to die, however this was not something new for Holly to say. Mr Taff had seen Holly ‘muttering something under her breath’, before leaving to go for, what Mr Taff believed, was a walk.

The post mortem conducted by Dr Petia Nadeva, concluded that Holly had died as a result of asphyxiation from hanging. A small trace of alcohol was found in her blood, which could have been produced by her body after she had died.

Also in Holly’s blood was 31mg of THC per milliliter, and 75mg of THC per milliliter, which is consistent with the use of cannabis. Therefore Holly could have been experience one, or more of the effects of the drug.

Mrs Griffiths of the Hywel Dda University Health Board, said that since Holly’s death, communication between services and community mental health services have become more robust, after the health board ‘pulled together a detailed action plan’ to ensure this didn’t happen again.

Mrs Greenway told the court that the plan should have been in place anyway.

Coroner for Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire, Mark Layton said that it is clear that Holly had a long standing mental health issue, and gave the conclusion that Holly killed herself. Mr Layton offered his condolences to the family.

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Carmarthenshire’s sensory garden: why locals should embrace this wellness trend



WITH ‘#sensorygarden’ 499.1k views on TikTok – locals have the advantage of experiencing a sensory garden on their doorstep at the National Botanic Garden of Wales. Wildlife experts explain why you should visit.

Wildlife expert Sean McMenemy shares how sensory gardens can do wonders for our wellness whilst providing a safe haven for wildlife and encourages Carmarthenshire locals to visit their local sensory garden this autumn.

A sensory garden is an outdoor space that stimulates the five senses of sight, smell, touch, hearing and taste, and can be created in your own garden. Sensory gardens at home remain relatively rare, but the trend is growing with the TikTok hashtag ‘#sensorygarden’ amassing 499.1k views*. 

Carmarthenshire, dubbed the Garden of Wales, has a huge array of beautiful green spaces to explore. It’s home to the National Botanic Garden of Wales which spans a huge 568 acres, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. The stunning Great Glasshouse features a sensory trail that explores the largest single-span greenhouse in the world! From fluffy flowers from South Africa to a strongly scented Australian plant, it’ll engage all your senses. 

Having recently gifted King Charles with a beautiful oak sapling, the National Botanic Garden of Wales care deeply about the nation’s natural heritage. For those visiting the garden, the paths are wheelchair accessible with manual wheelchairs available on site. Open 10am – 6pm every day of the week.

Wildlife expert and founder of bird food provider Ark Wildlife, Sean McMenemy, explains the benefits of sensory gardening: “Sensory gardens provide a great deal of physical and mental benefits for different people and purposes. From getting vitamin D from sunlight to improving physical fitness by maintaining a garden, there are several physical benefits. Mentally, you can benefit from a mood boost and relaxation by spending time surrounded by calming stimulation.

“Sensory gardens can also have huge benefits for children, older people, those with learning disabilities and those who struggle with their physical and mental health. You can also create a sensory garden for your pets and garden wildlife!”

Top tips for creating your own sensory garden

If you do have the outdoor space, creating your own sensory garden is therapeutic in itself and doesn’t need to be a complicated process. The most important thing is to ensure that the garden engages all five senses. 

Melody Estes, landscape design gardening supervisor, says: “Whether you’re new to gardening or a seasoned pro, you can always improve your garden by adding some sensory elements.” 

Here are some tips from Melody for creating a sensory garden:

Sight – Plant colourful flowers that change with the seasons.

Sound – If you have a fountain or water feature on your property, consider adding some relaxing music to play alongside it. You could also place chimes near your front door to welcome people in.

Smell – Use scent. Consider planting scented flowers or herbs like lavender, rosemary and thyme that will give off a lovely aroma when they bloom.

Touch – Mix textures. The texture of plants can be as important as their colour and shape. Try using plants with soft leaves like ferns or grasses that are texturally different.

Taste – Planting herbs, fruits and vegetables not only provide tasty treats, but is a sustainable source of food.

Sean McMenemy adds: “Sensory gardens are an easy way to engage with wildlife and the outdoor environment. Growing your own plants and vegetables provides countless ways to learn about the natural world.

“You can bring your sensory garden to life by using bird feeders to attract beautiful feathered friends into your garden. They’ll bring the sound element to your sensory garden naturally. Fragrant flowers will attract colourful butterflies and other pollinators to your garden, giving you something to observe whilst helping nature to thrive.”

Some people may not have the time, money or space to create their own sensory garden. However, those with balconies and window ledges can still plant colourful, sweet-smelling flowers and edible plants. This mini sensory garden can still provide the benefits and satisfaction of an outdoor garden.

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Prince and Princess of Wales to visit Wales



THE PRINCE and Princess of Wales have planned a trip to Wales to visit a variety of communities across the nation and learn about the work of key charitable organisations. 

The Prince and Princess have a deep affection for Wales, having made their first family home in Anglesey, and have thoroughly enjoyed their previous visits and the warmth and kindness shown by the Welsh people. 

Their Royal Highnesses are looking forward to spending more time in Wales over the next few years, they hope to strengthen their relationship with communities in all parts of Wales. 

During their first engagement, Their Royal Highnesses will visit the RNLI Holyhead Lifeboat Station, where they will meet crew, volunteers and some people who have been supported by their local unit.

Holyhead is one of the three oldest lifeboat stations on the Welsh coast and has a remarkable history of bravery, having received 70 awards for gallantry. 

Their Royal Highnesses will then take a short walk to the Holyhead Marine and Cafe Bar, where they will meet local people, including representatives of small businesses and organisations, including the Coastguard and Sea Cadets. 

In their second engagement, the Prince and Princess of Wales are expected to visit Swansea. 

Their Royal Highnesses will visit St Thomas Church, a re-developed church in Swansea which supports people in the local area and across the City and County of Swansea. 

Over the last two years the church has been transformed into a thriving community hub and is home to a vast array of services, including:

  • A foodbank which supports over 200 people per week
  • Swansea Baby Basics which distributes essential items for vulnerable mothers across the city, such as toiletries and clothes
  • Facilities for the homeless including food, showers and toilets
  • A not-for-profit cafe and community training kitchen
  • A surplus food distribution network which collects food from supermarkets at the end of each day and distributes it from the church to prevent food waste and to help end food poverty

As part of their visit, Their Royal Highnesses will meet those volunteering at the church across different initiatives including Baby Basics and the foodbank. Their Royal Highnesses will also spend some time meeting members of the public gathered outside the church. 

The Princess of Wales has previously worked with Baby Banks and the in summer of 2020 brought together 19 British brands and retailers to donate over 10,000 new items to more than 40 baby banks nationwide, operated by Baby Basics, Little Village and AberNecessities. 

Her Royal Highness has visited a number of baby banks across the UK, including in London, Sheffield and West Norfolk where she has spent time speaking with families about their experiences of using their local baby bank services, as well as helping unload donations. 

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Carmarthenshire farmer dies following attack by bull near Llandeilo



A FARMER has died following an incident with a bull on a farm in Llandeilo.

The 58-year-old, named locally as Maldwyn Harrier, was attacked by the animal during a TB test on Friday morning.

Police have confirmed that they were called to a farm in the Penybanc area of Llandeilo, Carmarthenshire, and are investigating alongside the Health and Safety Executive. 

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