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Energy firm wasted council’s time and money

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THE COMPANY behind the proposed ‘Pyrolysis Plant’ at Cwmgwili Clean Power Properties (CPP) faces paying significant costs after pulling out of an appeal regarding a proposed plant in Hampshire.

CPP’s application to build a pyrolysis plant at Cwmgwili was unanimously rejected by Carmarthenshire County Council’s planning committee on February 4.

The company still have the right to appeal to the planning division of Welsh Government. However, the Company’s recent appeal against a similar planning refusal in England has resulted in them being been fined for what amounts to wasting the council’s time and resources.

CPP has been applying to change the technology they are proposing at the few facilities with planning consent. They withdrew all of their Environmental Permit applications, and on several occasions CPP dropped planning appeals at the last minute. CPP has now been sanctioned twice for not giving proper reasons for withdrawing their appeals, raising questions about their operation.

The Herald can reveal that the Planning Inspectorate have now published the the Secretary of State’s decision of a costs application in relation to CPP’s aborted Micheldever Station planning appeal.

That appeal was against the Council’s decision to refuse planning permission for the construction and operation of an 8 MWE Pyrolysis Advanced Conversion Technology (ACT) plant including a 2 MWE Anaerobic Digestion Plant associated office, visitor centre, with new access road and weighbridge facilities, solar panels, associated landscaping and surface water attenuation features.

Carmarthenshire County Council and the Welsh Assembly Government may wish to be mindful of what the Secretary of State has said in reaching a decision to order costs.

In a letter to CPP, the Secretary of State concludes, “[I] can reach no other conclusion than the appellants acted unreasonably by withdrawing the appeal when they did, causing the Council to incur wasted or unnecessary in the appeal process. An award of costs will therefore be made.”

Further correspondence sets out the order for CPP to pay Hampshire County Council costs as follows : “The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, in exercise of his powers under section 250(5) of the Local Government Act 1972, sections 78 and 322A of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 and all other powers enabling him in that behalf, HEREBY ORDERS that Clean Power Properties and Network Rail Infrastructure Ltd shall pay to Hampshire County Council their costs of the abortive appeal proceedings before the Secretary of State, limited to those costs incurred from 9 February 2015; such costs to be assessed in the Senior Courts Costs Office if not agreed.”

On its website, the company claims: ‘We aim to secure consents and develop projects at 20 to 30 sites across the UK. This programme could generate enough renewable energy to power up to half a million homes, which is a significant contribution to meeting the UK’s overall renewable energy and climate change targets’.

Among the twelve locations actually listed on its website are both Carmarthenshire and Micheldever.

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News

Family of power station worker calls on former colleagues to help with asbestos claim

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THE WIFE of a Carmarthenshire man, who was just 66 when he died of an asbestos-related cancer, is calling on colleagues who worked with him in the 1970s to help understand where and how he contracted the disease.

Peter Colton, from Llanelli, died in July 2021 after being diagnosed with the asbestos-related disease, mesothelioma.

He worked as a conveyor and weighbridge operator for the CEGB at Carmarthen Bay Power Station. During his time at the power station, his duties included offloading coal wagons and conveying coal to the boilers.

It is possible that Mr Colton was exposed to asbestos during those years and now his family has sought the help of local asbestos specialists J.M Parsons, to investigate a claim for compensation.

Ann Colton, Mr Colton’s wife, wants answers. She said: “Peter was diagnosed with mesothelioma and died just six weeks later. He had been suffering from shortness of breath and just had no quality of life.

“It was devastating to see someone who had been so healthy and active slowly get worse and worse. We just want to know where and how he was exposed to asbestos and hope someone out there can help us.”

According to data from the Health and Safety Executive, annual mesothelioma deaths in Britain increased steeply over the last 50 years, a consequence of mainly occupational asbestos exposures that occurred because of the widespread industrial use of asbestos during 1950-1980.

Amanda Jones is one of the specialists at J.M Parsons, which is owned by Thompsons Solicitors. Thompsons has paved the way for asbestos litigation in the UK ever since it brought about the first successful asbestos disease claim to the House of Lords in 1972, 50 years ago.

She said: “We would be grateful to hear from anyone who remembers working with Peter Colton in Carmarthen Bay Power Station in the 1970s or anyone who worked in the same field as Peter beyond the 1970s.

“Such individuals will be invaluable to Mr Colton’s family as they may be able to add important information that will assist us in building a civil claim. We hope that we will then be able to answer questions about the conditions that Mr Colton worked in during his working life.”

Anyone with information should contact Amanda Jones on 01554 779940, or via email at amanda@jmplaw.co.uk.

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Business

Carmarthenshire cheese maker secures Co-op listing

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Caws Cenarth award

A CHEESEMAKER from Carmarthenshire has secured its first listing with the Co-op as part of the retailer’s continued focus on local and community sourcing.

Family-owned Caws Cenarth, which has cheese making in the family dating back to 1903, will now see two of its cheeses listed in more than 20 Co-op stores across the region.

Made on farm in Glyneithinog, Caws Cenarth will supply Co-op with its Organic Caerffili – which has a light and lemony taste with hints of sea salt – and, one of its best known cheeses the Organic Perl Las Mini – which is described as a blue cheese, golden in colour, with a creamy, gently salty taste that grows stronger with maturity.

Carwyn Adams, whose parents rekindled the family tradition for cheese making in 1987 with the creation of Caws Cenarth, said: “We are absolutely thrilled. I shop in our local Co-op and regularly thought how nice it would be to see our cheese on the shelf and, now that is to become a reality. Working with Co-op will support our business development, and raise awareness of our cheeses, not only across the region, but also further afield as visitors to the area often look for local produce to take back home with them as gifts or to remind them of their stay in the area.”

Jo Wadsworth, Co-op’s Community Buying Manager, said: “We are delighted to welcome Caws Cenarth onto our shelves. We know that our Members and customers value the quality and provenance of locally produced food and drink and, here at the Co-op we are focussed on supporting local suppliers as part of our commitment to creating value and making a difference in our local communities.”

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Education

Carmarthenshire Council offers career opportunities through new Care Academi 

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Cllr Jane Tremlett, Cabinet Member for Social Care

CARMARTHENSHIRE County Council has launched a new Care Academi which offers exciting opportunities to those looking for a career in social work or social care.

Open to all ages, the Academi will provide training, support and guidance to successful applicants, enabling them to earn while they learn and choose a career path that suits them best.

With a blend of on-the-job training and education, there are various opportunities to explore the variety of social care and social work roles on offer.

All applicants must have a minimum of two GCSEs (grade A* – D) or equivalent in English, Welsh or Maths.

Cllr Jane Tremlett, Cabinet Member for Social Care said: “Our new Care Academi offers fantastic opportunities to those looking for a career in social work or care.

“Successful applicants could achieve a degree in social work or a level five management qualification, but there are also opportunities throughout the programme to find an alternative role that suits you best if completing a degree isn’t for you.

“If you are motivated, have a positive attitude and are looking for the first exciting step in a new career then we want to hear from you and welcome your application.”

For more information or to apply please visit www.Carmarthenshire.gov.wales/careacademi 

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