Miscellany, 09.12.2019

PLEASE APPRECIATE THAT I GET SENT MORE INFORMATION AND LEADS THAN I CAN USE. I TRY TO RESPOND TO EVERYONE WHO CONTACTS ME BUT I CANNOT POSSIBLY USE EVERY BIT OF INFORMATION I’M SENT. DIOLCH YN FAWR

People often say to me, ‘Jac, you’re a miserable old sod, why don’t you give us some good news, eh?’ To which I usually respond, ‘Because this is Wales!’.

In Wales, what passes for ‘good news’ is invariably political propaganda, what the media calls ‘human interest’ stories, or else straightforward bollocks.

If you want to read that the ‘Welsh Government’ is thinking of asking Ferrari to open a factory in Tredegar, or that a Denbighshire farmer’s wife has found the bracelet she lost some years ago (while being pleasured by an itinerant Kiwi sheep-shearer), then you’re in the wrong place.

I don’t make up the stories that appear here. They happen and I report them. If you don’t like them then do something about it – get rid of those responsible.

BRYN LLYS

I have reported on this barely credible story a number of times. If you want to catch up then start here (scroll down), then here (ditto), and here.

In a nutshell, a gang of crooks from England (Yorkshire, if you must know) bought an old farmhouse outside Nebo, near Caernarfon; they’ve done work without planning permission (or exceeded what permission they had), to the point where a monstrous new building has appeared and the old farmhouse has been demolished.

Cyngor Gwynedd has issued planning enforcement orders and a pre-trial hearing was scheduled for Caernarfon in early September. I’m told the gang turned up in court claiming they had no legal representation. So the case was rescheduled for Llandudno in late November. It’s now been put off until March, when Andrew Battye, Jonathan James Duggan, Shane Baker and Aaron Hill will probably demand another adjournment.

And by which time they will have done all the work they plan on doing.

Old and new. Click to enlarge

For the gang has plans that exceed even throwing up the ugliest house in Gwynedd, because there’s talk of glamping, zip wires, and God knows what else. For which of course there is no planning permission. Another difficulty is access, which has resulted in the Bryn Llys gang intimidating neighbours who object to them cutting down trees and demolishing hedges that belong to other people.

In recent weeks, a concrete bridge has been put in place, lorry loads of slate waste have been brought to the site and a road laid to provide a new access to Bryn Llys from the village of Nebo.

I hear from one source that while delivering this material a tipper truck belonging to Gwynedd Skip Hire of Caernarfon touched an overhead power cable. There was one hell of a bang, one or more of the truck’s tyres blew and Nebo, Talysarn and parts of Penygroes suffered a power cut.

Another source reports that the driver’s mate touched the body of the tipper and got “zapped” quite badly, he was said to be “black all over”. This of course was reported and has been taken up by HSE. I’m not sure if the police are involved.

Latest report says all is quiet, and suggests that local contractors may be getting reluctant to be involved with the Bryn Llys gang.

What an absolute shambles! Which doesn’t look like getting better any time soon.

Why is it that honest people are pounced on by planners for making a genuine mistake but crooks like these can brazenly flout the system for years?

What’s more, it’s nothing more than money-laundering in plain sight. What a system! What a country!

ONE PLANET DEVELOPMENTS

First stop, Parc Teifi on the outskirts of Aberteifi (Cardigan town), when we find a group of planet-savers who were given five acres of land for just £1 by our wonderful ‘Welsh Government’ under its Community Assets Transfer scheme.

The project was to be known as the Naturewise Community Forest Garden, and a company was set up.

When first announced earlier this year there was mention of ” . . . a horticultural large allotment type use, managed by a single body, run by volunteers for the wider benefits of the community”. Project leader Alpay Torgut also enthused about local involvement and “public events to involve as many people as possible”.

The ‘involvement’ desired soon became clear – unpaid volunteers and paying customers to fund what was increasingly obviously a One Planet Development.

The next step has to be getting people to pay to work there. Click to enlarge.

Why do I suggest that it’s a One Planet Development? Well look for yourself at the structures being erected on the site.

The one I show below is being used to house some kind of display, which could obviously be much more at home in a smaller structure. Though the structure we see would be an ideal roundhouse of the type favoured by OPD dwellers.

Note that the photograph – for which I thank Wynne Jones – was taken in July. Things have moved on since then.

Click to enlarge

And now there’s a truly curious twist.

The land was given to the group led by Alpay Torgut under the Community Assets Transfer programme. The project is called the Naturewise Community Forest Garden. And yet the community cannot access the site because of a padlocked gate. (Again, I am indebted to Wynne Jones.)

The ‘Welsh Government’ has the key – but refuses to open the gate!

Click to enlarge

Having consulted my crystal ball I predict that Torgut and his gang will soon be applying – and getting – retrospective planning permission for a OPD.

Next up is the OPD planned for Penybanc, Llandeilo, reference E/39554. On the surface this looks like a straightforward single OPD application, but things might not be that simple.

The OPD is planned for land to the south east of Caergroes farm in the Monordeilo and Salem ward of Carmarthenshire. The first point of interest is that the applicants, Matthew and Claire Denney-Price, don’t actually own the land. The land is owned by a Gwyn Jones of Trimsaran, who bought it last year.

To help you get the lie of the land I’ve compiled the illustration you see below.

The OPD is planned for the field on the right within the red boundary. Click to enlarge

There have been many submissions made to the council for and against the application. Of those in favour most live ‘away’ or just don’t give their locations, while local submissions are almost all opposed to the project. Some of the later go into considerable detail, often arguing that there is no way that the family unit of two adults and four children could sustain themselves on such a small area by sticking to the plan submitted.

Others worry that this application is the first for a settlement on adjoining land.

Someone who contacted me pointed out that the address given by Matthew and Claire Denney-Price on the planning application is 7 Yr Hen Marchnad, Llangadog. (Though I’m told that Claire Denney-Price is the only person on the electoral roll for this address.)

What struck my source was that at 9 Yr Hen Machnad was found Freedom Green Energy Ltd, certainly until the company moved its address to Brecon in March 2018. This company trades as FGE Biomass. My source suspects there may be a connection between this biomass company and the OPD application. Anybody out there know?

Finally, in this little excursion into the world of OPDs, news reaches me that all may not be well at one of the older communes. For I hear that smallholdings at Lammas are on the market. Certainly Berllan Dawel is for sale at £300,000+.

As I’ve reported before, all is not well in paradise. For two main reasons.

One is that the whole premise of OPDs is flawed, and economically unviable. The second reason is that when you put together, in close proximity, so many people absolutely sure that they – and they alone – know the correct way of doing things, then friction is inevitable.

UPDATE 11.12.2019: I’ve been informed of yet another OPD application. This one at Llyn Adain Gwydd, at Llangarthginning, near Meidrim, in north Carmarthenshire. The reference number is W/39846. (Type the number in here.)

The second line in that great song, You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive runs, ‘That’s the place where I trace my bloodline’, and that applies here; for my great-grandfather David Jones left Meidrim for Swansea in the late 1870s.

What’s strange about this application is that it comes from a Neil Moyse, who already lives in a OPD at Tir y Gafel, Glandwr, in Pembrokeshire. So are they now building OPDs to rent?

FOREIGN AID

Let me now lead you into the never-never land of Wales’ foreign aid programme. Or maybe it’s a maze. Though let me start by explaining that this section was prompted by someone sending me a tweet, one that started bells ringing. Here’s the tweet.

Click to enlarge

The bells rang because SSAP is the Sub-Sahara Advisory Panel and it’s had a couple of mentions on this blog, first in Wales: Corruption and Poverty and then in Bawso and friends.

The SSAP is both a charity (1159990) and a registered company. The Charity Commission tells us that it operates ‘Throughout England and Wales’ and then lists a number of African countries from Algeria to South Africa. (I haven’t checked the atlas, but it looks most African countries get a mention.)

And there was you thinking our tribunes down Cardiff docks had no international strategy. Shame on you! The ‘Welsh Government’ even has a Minister for Ugandan Affairs, and she’s doing a wonderful job.

Apart from organising self-congratulatory bun fights, such as the one in the tweet above, it’s difficult to know what the SSAP does. But before you get too worried let me put your minds at rest by telling you that funding in year ending 31 March 2019 was a mere £68,638, down from £97,899 the previous year.

Which could prove a bit tricky, because staff costs went up from £52,668 to £73,952 in the same period, when staff numbers increased from 2 to 3. Leaving nothing over to do anything really . . . except organise awards ceremonies and the like. So, basically, this is just another third sector scam providing sinecures for Labour Party hangers-on.

The accounts also tell us that while the main funder is Comic Relief the other major funder is the Welsh Centre for International Affairs (WCIA). So who are they? The introductory blurb tells us, ‘We want a worldwide Wales where everyone here contributes to creating a fairer and more peaceful world. We inspire people to learn and act on global issues through three programmes:’ which are then listed as, Global Learning, Global Action, Global partnerships.

All very worthy, no doubt, and vague to the point of vacuousness.

The CEO of the WCIA is Susie Ventris-Field, who’s worked her way up through the third sector – e.g. Chwarae Teg – and also spent time in Africa.

Susie is assisted by Emily who organises festivals such as the Green Man and Glasto. ‘Emily has a beautiful dog’, we’re told! Then there’s Philip, who ‘moved to Wales to join his wife in semi-retirement in 2014’. And Shaela, ‘who previously worked for the University of Leicester’. Amber is another who has come to live among us, and loves cats.

There may be one or two Welsh people hidden away in the cupboards but by and large the ‘Welsh’ Centre for International Affairs is yet another third sector body using Welsh public money to provide jobs for strangers doing ‘work’ of no benefit whatsoever to Wales. But then, isn’t that true philanthropy!

Talking of money, who funds the WCIA?

To answer that let’s start by looking at this clip (below) from the WCIA’s Charity Commission entry, which tells us that since it was registered in April 2014 income has gone up to £1,175,306.

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Which is not bad, when you think about it. In a time of economic recession, and with Wales having managed just fine up until then without it, someone decided that what we really needed was the Welsh Council for International Affairs.

So where does that money come from and how is it spent? Here’s the WCIA 2017-2018 Annual Report, which includes the accounts.

Click to enlarge

Taking the second set of figures first we see that just under two-thirds of the income goes on salaries for no less than 23 staff. That will be Susie . . . Emily who has the nice dog . . . Philip who moved to Wales because we needed him so badly . . .

And after paying all their salaries there was still £197,145 ‘cash at bank and in hand’. That’s a lot of readies, suggesting they’re over-funded and looking for ways to spend money they don’t need.

Looking at the income in 2018, £238,156 came from Wales for Peace, but the biggest chunk, £639,893 came from Hub Cymru Africa. So who are they, and where does their money come from? (As if you didn’t know!)

Wales for Peace it seems only existed during the World War One centenary period (which probably explains the WCIA itself being set up in April 2014), and ceased to exist in December 2018. It wasn’t registered with either Companies House or the Charity Commission. From what I can gather on the WCIA website funding  for Wales for Peace came from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Now let’s turn to the WCIA’s major funder, Hub Cymru Africa, which contributed £639,893 according to the latest accounts. Page 40 of the accounts tells us that this largesse came from the self-styled ‘Welsh Government’. In other words, us.

Click to enlarge

Just as we met Susie and her gang at the WCIA, at Hub Cymru Africa we find another galaxy of non-Welsh stars spending Welsh money on non-Welsh issues.

Yet because Hub Cymru Africa produces no accounts and has no official existence we have no way of knowing how much Claire O’Shea and the rest of the team earn, or how many employees there are. Which is wrong, because they use public money and so this information should be readily available.

To recap: We started out with the Sub-Sahara Advisory Panel. Funding levels there are not high, and all funding seems to be used paying staff wages.

One of the SSAP’s main funders is the Welsh Centre for International Affairs whose funding comes from Wales for Peace and Hub Cymru Africa. Roughly two-thirds of this funding goes on salaries. The larger funder, HCA, gets its money from the ‘Welsh Government’.

This system is of little use to the needs of Wales and Welsh people. It’s no more than virtue signalling on steroids. Steroids paid for with Welsh public funding. Instead of exposing and condemning this system Plaid Cymru desperately wants to be part of it, as we see with Helen Mary Jones at the SSAP bun fight.

The sting in the tail is that these people attracted to Wales by third sector money are often smarter than our politicians. (Which is not saying much, obviously.) And they exert undue influence in a country they regard as nothing more than a geographical expression.

This results in OPDs and other insanity to ‘save the planet’, or wanting to flood Wales with ‘refugees’ under the ‘Wales – Nation of Sanctuary’ project.

A country with homeless on the streets, where kids go to school hungry, where people die waiting for ambulances, apparently has millions of pounds to spare so that dilettante English activists and useless Welsh politicians can feel better about themselves.

Time to get rid of them all, and the colonial system they represent.

UPDATE 09.01.2020: The subject of foreign aid was raised in the Senedd yesterday’ Here’s a clip of the question, by Neil Hamilton, and the response from Rebecca Evans. Note the loud cheering at the mention of ‘Jac ‘o the North’!

THE CASE OF KEVIN O’NEILL’S PEANUT BUTTER

Someone has reported to me that the Labour Party in Merthyr is full of bullies, and engaging in dirty tricks. Of course, I refused to believe it, but my source was insistent.

I think the best way to tell you this is to copy and paste what I received, with a redaction here and a clarification there. So prepare yourselves, for I’m sure you will be as shocked as I was to read what follows.

“Since the May 2017 Local Elections where Independents took control of the (formerly) Labour-ruled Council, the Independent Councillors of Merthyr Tydfil have faced a barrage of Ombudsman complaints, uncooperative opposition members, false Facebook and Twitter accounts that have used intimidation, abuse and vulgar comments about the Independent Councillors but especially its Leader Kevin O’Neil and female Deputy Leader Lisa Mytton.

Unconfirmed reports from the Labour camp have talked of a split in the party with those who want nothing more than to ‘Disrupt and Destroy’ anything the Independent-led council tries to do for the good of Merthyr Tydfil.

In recent months the false accounts continued but the depths to which they and some of their party members will go unfolded in June 2019 when a whistle blowing member of Council staff couldn’t cope any more and they reported the verbal abuse and disregard for the two senior Cllrs that then culminated in the staff member entering the Cabinet office and kitchen opening the Independent Leaders food (a jar of Peanut Butter) and forcefully spitting in it while others looked on and returned it to the fridge.

A criminal investigation ensued and DNA was found in the jar, the DNA belongs to the wife of (a very prominent Labour councillor). His wife is an employed member of staff at Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council.

Is this what Labour have become? Is this how they treat those they feel politically threatened by? Is this what our residents and country want?

The Labour Leader must resign surely? The way Kevin O’Neill and other
hae been treated is simply despicable.”

Click to enlarge

To anti-Semitism, support for terrorists, bullying, ballot-rigging, lying and all the other crimes we can lay at Labour’s door we must now add gobbing in the council leader’s peanut butter!

O tempora! o mores!

ANNA THE FIBBER

To the city of my dreams now, and Anna Melita Redfern, who offered her company, Cinema & Co as an address for the local homeless to use so that they could register to vote in this week’s general election.

(There are of course other options for the homeless to register to vote, but these don’t get publicity for Anna Redfern.)

According to Anna she’s been running Cinema & Co in Castle Street for two years, yet Companies House tells us that Cinema & Co Swansea Ltd was only Incorporated 29 April 2019.

Image courtesy of WalesOnline. Click to enlarge

How do we explain this apparent contradiction?

By telling you that Anna had a different company at the same address. This was AR666 Ltd (previously Anna Redfern Ltd), and it traded as Cinema & Co. The company was wound up in July 2019. I’m told AR666 Ltd went under owing £32,496 to HMRC, plus phone bill, water rates, and various amounts to Swansea City Council.

Here’s an entry from The Gazette which suggests Anna may be a naughty girl for using the same name for her new company.

But I suspect Anna has a weak grip on reality, combined with an irresistible urge for self-promotion. A dangerous combination.

Other companies of which Ms Redfern is the sole director are The (Secret) Garden Swansea Ltd and Noah’s Sister Ltd. The name of the second of those hints at her being the sister of Noah Redfern, proprietor of Noah’s Yard a hip watering hole in the student quarter of the Uplands.

Noah Redfern previously owned the Monkey Bar down town and has since bought the Observatory on the seafront, though the bar he planned never materialised after a run-in with the council.

I suppose it should go without saying that Anna Melita Redfern was a finalist in the Welsh Women’s Awards 2019. Cinema & Co – which had just been liquidated – was shortlisted in the Small Business of the Year category. 

Only in colonial Wales!

UPDATE 14.12.2019: Noah Redfern makes the news himself when a planning inspector orders him to take down the ‘overbearing’ extension he’d built to an Uplands house.

I shall of course be publishing an analysis of the general election, and this will probably appear on Monday the 16th. Then, unless something really important happens, that should be it until 2020.

♦ end ♦

P.S. There was an earlier and slightly different version to this post that went out because I’d scheduled it and then lost my internet connection, which meant I could neither amend nor stop it. Take my advice and avoid Sky Broadband.

 

72 thoughts on “Miscellany, 09.12.2019

  1. Brychan

    In January 2018, the Guardian tells us that an Eco-Home at Lammas burnt down.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jan/04/grand-designs-27000-eco-home-in-wales-burns-to-the-ground

    They set up a crowd funding page to get money to re-build it.

    https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/jane-wells-2

    £35,270 case was raised for the re-build, but no such work took place. They just banked the cash and now have the site up for sale, without the structure having been rebuilt.

    http://www.simondale.net/

    What happened to the £32k they sponged? Simon Dale is a fraud as is the claim to have a self sufficient existence.

    1. I should have mentioned the fire. Which then leads on to the issue of whether these new buildings need to have sprinkler systems, which is what the ‘Welsh Government’ insists on nowadays.

      1. Wynne

        On 5 July 2019 Welsh Government official confirmed that sprinklers are now required on new build O P D’s. Whether or not this is enforced by Local Authority building inspectors [or private approved inspectors] is another matter. The response I received from Welsh Government is copied below.

        “Dear Mr Jones

        If the O P D’s are new dwellings in accordance with Regulation 37A of the Building Regulations 2010 (which would be the decision of the local authority or private approved inspector on the assessment of the application submitted) they would be required to install automatic fire suppression systems.

        Regards

        Colin Blick
        Building Standards Technical Manager
        Building Regulations
        Planning Directorate
        Welsh Government”

      2. Brychan

        Sprinklers will not extinguish fire within the walls. One of the problems with straw bale construction is that if the “gumbo mud” seal is compromised the moisture content of the wall will increase resulting in decomposition of the straw. It’s this decomposition results in increasing temperature and spontaneous combustion, ie, fire.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jO5W25csxGo{removetoplay}

        This can be avoided in all-year arid climates. In wet or seasonal climates, like Wales, it can be avoided using a cement based outer seal but that negates the ‘environmental credentials’ of the construction.

        The history of homesteading in the United States.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homestead_Acts#Homestead_Act_of_1862

        The fire brigade found no evidence of accelerant (owner arson), electrical fault (off-grid) or stove ember (property unoccupied). The cause of the fire was spontaneous combustion from within the structure. It is inherently dangerous to occupy these buildings. They are death traps. Fortunately, the West Wales Fire Service is on-hand to prevent casualties, but the sponger-occupants pay no contribution to this provision.

        https://www.jozikids.co.za/uploadimages/children-of-fire-mid2.jpg
        Straw house victim in Zambia.

        If any OPDers are reading this comment, consider yourself informed. I expect this evidence to be provided to the coroners inquest should your duty to keep your children safe be questioned. You don’t contribute to our fire service, our NHS or our education system, that yoke is carried by the host, the people of Wales.

        1. Bloody hell, Brychan, you always come back with the info. If as you say, it was spontaneous combustion because the construction method itself is inherently dangerous, then we move beyond sprinklers. Quite obviously building using the straw bale construction should not be allowed at all. Let’s hope the fire service gets involved at the planning stage in future projects using this method.

          1. Brychan

            There are two methods of mitigating the effect. (a) Installing a steel lattice for heat dispersal within the bale but this compromises the thermal barrier or (b) pre-coating the straw fibres with retardant slurry. This has been done commercially since the 1970s. Pressed panel sheets are often used in Scandinavia as a thermal barrier in roofing composite and also commercially in India as an insulating layer within recycled Tata Shaktee GC corrugated sheeting. The technology is not new, just ignored by OPDers. Perhaps they have the same disdain for brown skinned innovators as they do for the native population of Wales.

        2. And on the subject of fire, I just picked this up from the BBC Wales New website. Hippies al have wood-burning stoves, or else just burn wood in an open fire. I have remarked before that on a still winter evening there is a pall of smoke overhanging Corris from wood fires and joss sticks.

          Those responsible are the planet-savers drawn to the area by CAT. There are now a few hundred of them, making serious attempts to dictate the political, social and other agendas of Machynlleth and the surrounding area. It was no coincidence that George Monbiot, the sheep-hater, the ‘rewilder’, lived in Machynlleth for a while. It’s almost certainly where he formed his idea of taking over a vast tract of land and clearing off the sheep . . . and of course the farmers.

          1. Brychan

            Strange that Daniel Hooper (aka Swampy) is campaigning with Extinction Rebellion and says he’s going to vote Green Party to save the planet.

            Last month he was arrested for blocking the Valero refinery near Pembroke where he was arrested. He told Dyfed Powys Police and Haverfordwest magistrates court that he lived in a TeePee in Cwmdu near Llandeilo. This is in the Carmarthen East and Dinefwr constituency, where the ‘Remain’ pact is in place. There is no Green Party candidate there, only Plaid Cymru.

            https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-49977007

            Are we to assume he lied to the Police and the Court, and that his main residential address really at his parents house in Buckinghamshire where he is registered to vote? They do have a Green candidate. Is his ‘off-grid’ existence really just a sham?

        3. CapM

          ToBrychan
          You make a number of good points about the fire hazard of straw bale construction in a cool and wet climate. I still think that there is a place for straw bale construction in Cymru because of the potential to improve local economies as can other “alternative” building methods such as indigenous clom walling.
          However that place depends on the actual location of the building, probably few buildings entirely straw built, the technical expertise of the builder, commitment and ability/finances of occupiers to maintain the building and not least modify the way the home is used compared to a conventional house.

          It seems that at the moment a lot of straw bale homes are built by “cowboy” self builders on the cheap and without an appreciation of the long term input/cost required for their upkeep.

          1. Brychan

            Yes. Clom walling (straw fibres with retardant slurry as I have already mentioned) is native to pre-industrial Pembrokeshire, Gower and the Vale of Glamorgan due to the glacial clay being naturally impregnated over millennia with calcite from the limestone rock there. Similarly in parts of England where clay is steeped with chalk. However, in other areas the local clay does not have effective thermal properties nor does it have the ‘exothermic lime’ properties to ‘set’ during construction without liming the mix. It also needs to be sealed with lime.

            The argument against bricks/stone and mortar (as long as there is cavity construction to provide thermal barrier) is the amount of energy used to manufacture the raw material, but it’s important to discount this over the lifetime of the building. The earliest cavity walls of Wales can be seen at Segonitium and Caerleon (2000years), and my house (120years). I question whether any straw based construction has such longevity. There is of course, a very natural indigenous material to Wales, which can be used for cladding as well as roofing. A fraction of energy input of clay tiles.

            Slate.

            There is one basic flaw in these ‘eco-homes’. A detached house has four walls to loose heat. A terraced house has only two. Twice as efficient. But the eco-settlers appear to be driven by ‘grand designs’ rather than science. I was most amused by the introduction of bone meal and animal urine to the daub at Lammas, it’s this that provides a setting solution for the outer crust. There was me thinking they were vegetarians. I am also on hunt for the elusive Terylene Tree and Nylon Bush that they use to make eco-pods and teepees in Corris. Some say they are made of cotton canvass coated with hexamethylenediamine as weather proofing (manufacture). Perhaps this is filtered from the Afon Dulas? Somehow, I question their eco-credentials.

            1. CapM

              And there’s wood.
              I agree with you that a lot of “grand design” “eco homes” are self defeating.
              There are huge and multiple vested interests in house building that prevent new houses with significantly lower carbon costs being built. On top of that is the opposition to change by house buyers even if the change can improve their quality of life.

  2. Wynne

    Welsh Government officials being “helpful” as usual directing me to the Land Registry for information on how to gain pedestrian access to, what should be a community facility, at the Parc Teifi site, along a secretive private footpath owned by Welsh Government. Their reply to my enquiry copied below.

    “Dear Mr Jones

    Thank you for your email of 26 November addressed to my colleague Mark Stephens. This has been passed to me to respond to. You have requested a copy of a plan of the pedestrian right of way granted to Naturewise Community Forest Garden CIC at Parc Teifi Business Park, Cardigan. This plan is included with the Transfer documents, a copy of which is available to the public from the Land Registry at http://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/land-registry.

    Regards

    Mary Davies
    Property Surveyor”

  3. David Smith

    I’m guessing the Aaron Hill and Shane Baker of this consortium are the individuals who went moaning to the Daily Fail about “racism” over smashed windows in Caernarfon, and the political satirist-cum-rock legend who called you a “Right cunt” on Twitter and has amassed a voluminous following of about three people on YouTube for his gigs, respectively?

  4. Ellie Wales

    Let’s hope that the OPD bunch don’t get their hands on the old hospital site by the old Priory and St Mary’s Church in Cardigan. There’s already controversy about the future, with the NHS eyeing up a potentially lucrative site and the town claiming it was a gift from the people of Cardigan, which should now be returned to the town.
    The site is by the river and on a potential flood area, but there’s a suggestion that it will be developed for social housing. . . One to keep your eye on Jac!

    1. Wynne

      With regard to the former hospital site at Cardigan, I recently directed a request for information, under FOI Act, to Hywel Dda University Health Board. I requested a copy of their policy / process for the sale of surplus land. On receipt of the information, confirming their protocol, as endorsed by Welsh Government, I directed another request for a copy of the following documents:
      1] Planning application form for change of land use at Cardigan from hospital to affordable housing, and
      2] Development brief prepared.
      Currently awaiting reply. Interestingly, they have not acknowledged receipt of my further request for information. If the information is not provided, and if they do not claim an exemption under the FOI Act, I can request “internal review” after 20 working days. The matter can be referred if necessary to the Information Commissioner following the outcome of internal review. Can be a lengthy process if organisations are determined to withhold information.

          1. ‘Welsh’ Labour’s favourite housing association. I’m sure some nice little back-room deal was done there. The ‘smoke-filled rooms’ may have gone but only in the sense that there’s no longer smoke.

  5. Dafis

    Lovely postcard today from the Labour Party saying, indeed exhorting us, not to “let the Tories trample over Wales, Vote Welsh Labour” Issued by The Labour Party’s printer in Nothumberland.

    I tend to agree. What’s the point of getting Tories to trample all over Wales when Corbyn’s man Drakeford and his dimwit team are doing such a good job of trampling already. Be a shame to interupt them when they are so obviously adept at their task.

  6. Brychan

    Anyone who travels along the M4 between Margam and BritonFerry will be familiar with the 50mph average speed limit on the motorway.

    There are two sections to it.

    (a) The elevated section between Margam and Aberafan is not up to motorway standard and has a number of slip roads and a bit bendy. This speed limit is for safety.
    (b) An extension of the 50mph average speed limit from Aberafan to BritonFerry, which was introduced by the Welsh Government in the last year or so, because of ‘pollution’, specifically atmospheric particulates and NOx.

    Engineering – Most vehicle pollution of particulates and NOx is from HGVs, but these engines are tuned to be most efficient at normal cruising speed, at 60mph. At 50mph or below they are less efficient, and emit more pollutants per mile than at cruising speed.

    It’s not motorway traffic that causes the majority of the particulates on this M4 section, nor is it the steel works which has electrostatic precipitation in the stacks and operate at higher temperatures. The pollution in the western section comes from the Baglan Energy Park which houses a combined 582MW Gas Turbine Power Station and also on the eastern section from the 40MW Margam “Green” Energy Plant, which burns waste timber and other non-recyclable items.

    The Welsh Government promised to publish a study of particulates over this section of the M4, both prior and after the 50mph average speed limit extension but I cannot find the report or the data. It’s been suppressed.

    If anyone finds the hidden report, and data please post a link.

    Also, fans of ‘Green’ energy might not be aware that RCT council (and other valley councils) now sends all it’s black bag waste to an incinerator in Cardiff run by Viridor. The landfill site previously used at Bryn Pica near Aberdare, now imports domestic waste from as far away as Ceredigion to make up this loss.

    Llwydcoed, Aberdare.
    http://www.aberdareonline.co.uk/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/photographs/IMG_0699.JPG
    Landfill site and a 400Kv transmission line.

    Ironically you can see HGVs on the M4 loaded with wood which goes Margam and HGVs of black bags from Ceredigion with turn off the M4 and go up to Aberdare for landfill. Meanwhile, black bag waste from the valleys are being shipped in HGVs down the A470 to Cardiff for incineration. The Baglan power station gets its gas feed from a spur off the pipeline from Milford Haven. Imports of LNG from Qatar. This is gas not burnt in the new 2000MW power station at Pembroke, more than enough to feed all of Welsh energy needs.

    There are now two NEW waste incinerators proposed. Another one in Cardiff and one at Usk to burn imported black bag waste. This ‘clean electricity’ will then be re-exported to England.

    Welcome to ‘Green Wales”.

    1. Dafis

      That could be seen as funny if it wasn’t so serious. Is this madness down to lack of joined up thinking or is it a deliberate policy to turn Wales into ( or further into) an energy producing shithouse for our English neighbours ?.

  7. Wynne

    Just noticed your update regarding Meidrim OPD application. Good response to planning consultation from Joy Waters Clerk Meidrim Community Council.

    1. Excellent response also from the council in document dated 16.10.2019, appendices c – j. Basically, the council says that the area is too small to provide a living and what’s more, much of it is C2 flood risk. So, no way, Jose.

      1. Wynne

        If the local planning authority reject the application they will probably appeal to planning inspectorate.

        1. There’s a suggestion – and maybe the council sees it – that this is not a genuine OPD application. In which case, it will be interesting to see what the Planning Inspectorate has to say.

  8. Brychan

    You say – “Yet because Hub Cymru Africa produces no accounts and has no official existence we have no way of knowing how much Claire O’Shea and the rest of the team earn, or how many employees there are. Which is wrong, because they use public money and so this information should be readily available.”

    In detail, Hub Cymru Africa is made up of.

    Ms Claire O’Shea
    https://uk.linkedin.com/in/claire-o-shea-34b9098?

    Ms Emma Beacham
    https://uk.linkedin.com/in/emma-beacham-57736bb4

    Ms Beth Kidd
    https://uk.linkedin.com/in/beth-kidd-12249b54

    Ms Fadhili Maghiya
    https://uk.linkedin.com/in/fadhili-maghiya-3563b650

    Ms Aileen Burmeister
    https://uk.linkedin.com/in/aileen-burmeister-16b84b186

    Ms Cathie Jackson
    https://uk.linkedin.com/in/cathiejack

    £613,620 in 2017, and £624,893 in 2018 was donated to them by the Welsh Government, even though they publish no accounts, are not a registered charity or corporate entity. I wonder how much they pay themselves?

    1. It’s an incredible system. ‘Welsh’ Government gives money to third sector body A, which provides jobs for outsiders before passing on what’s left of the funding to third sector body B, which provides a few more jobs for outsiders before passing on what’s left of the funding to third sector body C. And so on.

      And the beauty of the system is that these can all be claimed as ‘jobs created’ – doing fuck all!

  9. Brychan

    Election highlights.

    Congratulations to Sinn Féin in Ireland and SNP in Scotland. Ireland votes for unification and Scotland votes for independence. As expected yoghurt knitting trendies in Islington don’t get traction in the north of England. The colony of Wales is now ruled by a clown.

    In Wales, Plaid Cymru stagnate.

    Conservatives beat Plaid Cymru into third place in Rhondda !!!!!!
    Tories win Ynys Môn as Plaid star flunks after local candidate ousted.
    Plaid relegated to fourth place in the Cynon Valley and Merthyr behind Brexit Party.
    Plaid loose more votes in Llanelli as the imposed candidate fails again.

    Is Adam Price going to resign?

    1. Big Gee

      A certain party – not a hundred miles from here – lost their deposits on all three of their candidates (don’t know what happened to the fourth that never stood). But I mustn’t dwell on that, for fear of being accused of ‘bitterness’ again! God help the gormless and uninformed, who accused me of ‘bitterness’ for exposing Plaid’s actions in the past. I hope no one mistakenly thinks I was associated in any way with this latest fiasco – a great effort is being made to stop me saying “I told you so” – but you didn’t heed the warnings did you? It seems they’ve lost their way badly since the grand cull through resignations. I hope they have a few bob left in their coffers to settle some other aged debts.

      The highlight of my night was to hear that the sixth former who up till last night led the Lib Dems, lost her seat, along with Dodds (Plaid Cymru’s little pet) in B & R. Great result!

      North of the border came the best news, with the SNP still rolling on in their indy tank. Fantastic.

      Nice to see the DUP getting a body blow in the North of Eire. Irish reunification took another little step towards realisation last night.

      Labour in Wales must by now be shitting a brick as they nervously look forward to 2021. Another bit of entertainment to look forward to when the time arrives.

      I’ve always been fundamentally repulsed by the English, psychopathic and cruel Tory party – who go against my natural grain, with their unjust and privileged views on social justice and equality, whilst making the rich richer and the poor poorer. However, I breathed a sigh of relief on hearing of their dramatic victory. Simply because it vindicates the will of the people and their democratic wish to be out of Europe. It was an overwhelming victory for the people over the establishment. It’s been sickening to see the way the politicians have ganged together to scupper what the people voted for. If that means putting up with ‘Bo-Jo’ for a few years – so be it. Looking further than the tip of our noses, this is good news for all the independently minded Celtic nations. The crack in the foundation of the Union has just spread a little wider.

      Thank God the last turf was placed on the grave of those progressive and annoying progressive liberal ‘remoaners’. It was pure ecstasy to see how the public delivered a kicking for them, and the sweetest kick of all was delivered to the Lib Dems.

      Labour also suffered because they dithered on the issue, and that dithering, if the truth be known, emanated directly from Corbyn, because in his heart of hearts he wanted out of Europe, and has said so throughout his lengthy political career. However, he’s sat on the fence and put up a show of opposition to the Tories on the issue, based purely on party ideology, which basically revolves around a historic hatred of the Tories. It’s a similar story with his hidden views on man made climate change. His brother Piers is a leading climatologist and is vehemently opposed to the climate change scam, so hotly promoted by the mainstream (false) news media. These days we can’t have a heavy shower of rain in Ceredigion, without it being reported as the biggest flood in recorded history for the county!! It’s a pretty safe bet that Jeremy supports his brother’s views on the subject, but daren’t reveal that. He’s had to shut up and hide in the shadows on a number of issues, and the petticoats that he’s tried to hide from view have been spotted by the public.

      The saddest result was seeing old Dennis Skinner go. The people need more like him, not because of his political viewpoints, but because he has a backbone, some brains and guts. He also sticks to his principles, something that cannot be said for the rest of the shower, who are too busy either arse-licking or climbing non principled greasy poles.

      As for Plaid – nothing to report, a stagnated status quo. They can consider themselves very lucky that their cockamamy anti Brexit pact with the Lib Dems – the Unionist, political prostitute that’s full of slime balls – didn’t blow up in their faces. But there again, Plaid circled the wagons some time back. An old ploy used by the pioneers to slow down their slaughter by the natives. It works well for a time, because it slows the event down, but finally the slaughter is inevitable. They are a product of the north Walian ‘goldish bowl’ – with the exception of Ceredigion, but Ben Lake’s saving grace here was that most people hated the Lib Dem’s stance on Brexit, more than they disliked Plaid. Interesting to note that the Conservatives came second, with the Lib Dems in a poor third. That highlights the Brexit effect on these elections. Nothing to do with everyday politics, just a blow-back from the people on a single issue, leaving lots of red faces covered in soot!

      Interesting to note the mainstream (false) news media’s failure to gain influence with their continual establishment bias, and support for progressive liberalism and of course their campaign against leaving Europe. Have you noticed their muted response to the way the people responded to the most pro Europe political party? They’ve made more noise over the Greta Thunderbug child abuse freak show!

      1. CapM

        “His brother Piers is a leading climatologist and is vehemently opposed to the climate change scam, so hotly promoted by the mainstream (false) news media. ”

        To describe Piers Corbyn as a “leading climatologist” is laughable.
        Please provide a link to his peer reviewed research (it should be easy as he’s only ever had one peer reviewed in fifty years!) so others can have a laugh too.

        1. Big Gee

          Another hysterical Corporal Jones type ‘Climate alarmist’ I see!

          Actually Piers Corbyn’s primary subject is astrophysics. He is a qualified astrophysicist. That does not make him any lesser of a climatologist.

          Check out: http://www.weatheraction.com/pages/pv.asp?p=wact48

          The point I was making was that Jeremy Corbyn is probably not a climate alarmist, given his brother’s stance on the subject. But as with Brexit, he’s hidden his true stance on it. Sod all to do with how qualified his brother is.

          The irrelevant bit is always nit-picked isn’t it?. Same old dreary habits that are so in vogue these days.

          1. CapM

            “Actually Piers Corbyn’s primary subject is astrophysics. He is a qualified astrophysicist. That does not make him any lesser of a climatologist.”

            Hey they both end in -ist so if he can do one he must be able do the other. It’s all the same science stuff isn’t it.

            Take care if you ever need to seek the attention of a psychiatrist or a proctologist.
            But then maybe it wouldn’t matter as both would likely come up with same diagnosis.

        2. Mel Morgan

          Rather than slip into the Look-out-he’s-behind-you trope on the subject of climate change, I would, (like you, I suspect) merely recommend to anybody genuinely interested in what is happening to the climate a constant and careful reading of relevant reputable scientific journals.

          1. Big Gee

            Absolutely right Mel! That’s where the scam is revealed. The so-called .consensus’ of opinion is not coming from respected and principled scientific sources. When it does come from a genuine scientific source, all you have to do is investigate where they get the main source of their funding. Tell the wrong scientific facts (i.e. the truth) and guess what happens to your funding? As is always the case – if you want to get to the bottom of things, follow the money.

            Science was hijacked a long time ago – you only have to see the research results in the medical community. Who funds the research? Big Pharma. Who finances the medical schools? Big Pharma. Who makes the profit? Big Pharma.

            Lipitor, the best-selling drug in the history of pharmaceuticals was – at it’s height – making $125 BILLION over 14 years for Pfizer. In recent times independent research has proven that statins make almost no difference to the incidence of heart attacks (it’s calculated that possibly, 1 in a thousand will have been prevented). However ask any doctor what they would prescribe for the delay of a heart attack is, and the ‘consensus’ will tell you it’s a statin drug like Lipitor. Which is proven, without doubt, to be false – but still believed.

            When the Deep State has an agenda, or a huge global company want to make money, their power and influence will see to it.

            Sadly, the same applies to the man made climate change scam. The real figures don’t support what the ‘consensus’ of opinion says.

            It only takes very little research to reveal this. Do the public do research? Sadly not, they repeat what they are told, which has been put over as official ‘fact’.

            A classic examples of how these fear mongering pantomimes are played out for us. Remember this documentary in 1976?

            This is proof that the mainstream media cannot survive without constant crisis chaos and fear mongering.The puppet master is the Deep State. Amazing how gullible and easily manipulated the public really are.

            “Scientists have discovered…” is becoming the most meaningless phrase in the English language. Scientists have also discovered that politicians actually have no brains! With no brain it’s so easy to swallow anything you’re told by ‘experts’.

            1. Mel Morgan

              The Deep State seem to have joined the company of the Tylwyth Teg, the Illuminati, the Elders of Zion, the Deacons of Bethania, the Rothschilds, George Soros, and extraterrestrial lizards from Babylon.

            2. CapM

              “With no brain it’s so easy to swallow anything you’re told by ‘experts’ “.
              It must therefore also be true then that with no brain it’s so easy to swallow anything you’re told by ‘non-experts’

              So who do those blessed with a brain trust?
              Whether that be about climate change or a blocked toilet. ‘expert’ or ‘non-export’?

            3. Big Gee

              If that’s your reaction Mel, then there’s no point in discussing the subject further.

              Three words sum it up for me: “Sheeple herding mentality”. There are none as blind as those who do not wish to see.

              End of discussion.

      2. Jonesy

        Agree a lot with you but not on climate change , species extinction and global warmnig. It’s happening, take note of seasons and an interest in nature

    2. Jonesy

      And wtf would take his place? There is no one. Its their stupid fault for banging on about Brexit, if they could not see the backlash happening they are thick as shit. See Dinefwr East Carms result, the fuck wit spawn of Julianna Hughes got14k votes, and if it were not for the Brexit party, Jonathon Edwards, a fantastic MP and man of true integrity cld have lost his seat. Thanks to their stupidity ,, they lost thousands of votes by PC voters who voted for Havard Hughes. If they don’t rethink things, they are finished. They have no community roots anymore and totally out of touch with their constituents and those who they need to win over, working class Welsh Brexiters

  10. Dafis

    Have watched several re-runs of Nicola Sturgeon’s celebration of her candidate’s win over the odious Swinson. Hope that Adam and the Plaid crew also watched and learned a lesson. That’s the way to deal with LibDems, not go all soft kissing their Anglo Brit asses.

    Ceredigion also did they right thing no thanks to Plaid’s drippy insipid leadership. Retaining Ben on a good majority(over 6k is very good in a historically marginal seat) is a wise move for a disadvantaged constituency. Having a soppy LibDem acting for them would have meant a quiet acceptance of all the shit shovelled out of London, and believe me there will be plenty of it.

  11. Dafis

    Glad that the 4 Plaid M.P’s kept their seats, close thing in places.

    Pleased to see their well connected media tosser in Ynys Mon get bumped out too as it has become evident that he is a really smelly “insider” content to schmooze his way around likes of Deryn and Cardiff Bay’s creepy cliques. Best stick to yapping on Welsh news good boy. No fuckin’ good as a representative of the people. Plaid would do well to pick a better person to unseat that Tory at next GE plan well ahead as she will give plenty of ammo to blow her out.

    1. Brychan

      I wonder if Plaid Cymru will now realise that they cannot parachute in a members of their creepy Cardiff cliques and expect to win seats.

      Will Aled ap Dafydd be returning to Riverside?
      Should have left it to Vaughan Williams.

      Will Mari Arthur be returning to the Roath Park?
      Should have left it to Sean Rees.

      It could have been so different with a candidate with form within the communities they seek to represent. Plaid could have had ‘breakthrough’ but all we see is stagnation.

      1. Dafis

        Shucks Brychan You’ve floored me there. I thought that Aled ap D and Mari were both good old members of the Pontcanna louche set.

        1. Mel Morgan

          Ah yes, the Pontcanna Set. They were a favourite bugbear of the Pooterish Dr. Tim Williams
          (What happened to him,by the way? Time was when his particularly eccentic effusions were rarely out of sight or hearing.)

            1. Mel Morgan

              If so, I wonder whether this is why he seems to have gone quiet. When did he move there?

            2. Mel Morgan

              And what lucrative career opportunities, we ask ourselves, might have attracted him?

            3. Mel Morgan

              It Will be almost as illuminating to trace his career trajectory as it will be to follow that of his erstwhile employer, Baron Ellis-Thomas of Nantconwy in the County of Gwynedd.

            4. Mel Morgan

              Very commendable. Here is half a crown for you, my good man. Make sure you do not fritter it away on ginger beer and sticky buns.

      2. Mel Morgan

        Is Riverside still such a convivial quartier populaire as it was? If I recall aright, it was once represented by Councillor Neil McEvoy.

        1. Dafis

          Sorry Mel can’t help there. I’m just vaguely aware that the Pontcanna quartier has a certain magnetism as far as Welshies of a certain type are concerned. To integrate effectively I am led to believe that it helps to be employed on a “tidy” salary in media, government, wider public sector, third sector, indeed anything where profit is a dirty word and personal wealth is denied as it doesn’t go down well with the arbiters of good taste and current orthodox thinking. Brychan probably knows more about the prevailing lifestyle yardsticks that one should observe to ensure acceptance among such clusters.

            1. Dafis

              I doubt if they see themselves as “Right” but tend to be “right” as in “righteous”. Probably claim to be “Left” but really pseudo socialist at best, and that’s only on a very good day!.

  12. Dafis

    Labour Party has engaged in a certain amount of internal recrimination due to the walloping received on Thursday. However this is quite refined compared with the blame game currently played by some Plaid spokesmen and their apologists. The fact that Plaid were Brexit deniers on a scale beyond 10 yet surprised by the slap they received across South Wales suggests an immaturity or myopia that will take undiscovered medication to shift.

    No one concedes that the pact with the Lib Dems was a disaster yet it could have poisoned Ben Lake’s chances. Great credit to him for winning so impressively which suggests his own personal standing in Ceredigion gave him the momentum to overcome his party leadership’s piss poor decision making capacity. No doubt we’ll get some more original thoughts out of the juvenile politicians’ handbook over the next week or two. In the meantime it would be good to see “leaders” formulate their ideas for meeting the challenges posed by a Boris led government and how his gaffes will be turned into momentum for independence. Oh, I forgot, that’s what they don’t want they just like the pretence.

    1. In addition to there being no honest inquiry into the failure the usual suspects are slagging off as fascists, etc those who voted Tory. We are dealing here with dangerously closed minds.

      My own analysis will be out on Tuesday, I hope.

      1. Brychan

        Here.

        A video of gate to platforms at London Paddington. You will notice in the background all the people running towards platform four. The video ends with the whistle being blown for doors closing on the Swansea train.

        Looks like he scraped it at the last minute.

    2. Brychan

      Fortunately for Ben Lake the LibDems committed suicide amongst the student vote in Aberystwyth when the LibDems dropped the call for a peoples vote on Brexit and sought to overturn the referendum result by imposition. Even the most strident remainers found this unpalatable. Plaid Cymru captured these votes in Ceredigion. There are two other seats from cities in England which has a dominant student population that also saw this effect. Brighton, where Caroline Lucas of the English Greens increased her vote, and Rosie Duffield in Canterbury the only seat in provincial England where Labour increased their vote. It is not, however, the basis for winning elections elsewhere. It’s important not to mistake a localised blip for widespread support.

      1. Significant in the English results is that the larger cities of the Midlands and North stayed Labour due to factors that highlight Labour’s problem: there are many students and young people, ethnic minorities, and also the ‘progressive’ middle class that voted Remain. There has also been investment in these cities. The parts of the ‘red wall’ that crumbled are the smaller cities and towns, the post-industrial and largely white areas.

        This is copying the USA, again. Trump won rural and ‘rust-belt’ areas, the white working class. And it leaves the Labour Party in a very similar position to the Democrats in the USA in that it is seen as a party run by a metropolitan, big city elite out of touch with ordinary folks in ‘the real world’.

        Labour in Wales should learn from this lesson, because it risks being outflanked by BJ. In yesterday’s Mule there was a big article by Shippo which concluded with the worry that the Tories might start eating into devolution with the funding promised to replace EU money being delivered from London rather than handed over to Cardiff Bay.

        If that happened and the Tories promised to invest the fresh funding in neglected communities – as is promised in England – acknowledging that there’s been too much focus on Cardiff – as he’s admitted of London – then there’d be few who’d object. And if devolution was unravelled in this way then the blame could be laid entirely at the door of those useless bastards in Cardiff Bay.

        1. Dafis

          Be careful now Jac. You could be morphing into a pro-Boris cove rather than the sharp political opportunist who sees Tory aggresion yielding a populace more agreeable to the ideas of Welsh independence. “My enemy’s enemy is my friend” is a handy very short term expedient but longer term beyond next year or so the actions of various Tory boys (and girls) must be used to build the case for liberty.

          Of course what could fuck this up big time is the presence of excessive numbers of Anglo settlers, rich and displaced, who share a largely passive dislike for anything Welsh. If that dislike becomes more strident and assertive combined with Plaid/AUOB/et al’s urges to be inclusive at all costs we could find that there’s not many left who want a serious punt at anything, opting instead for just going on marches and demos like some kind of social event. I detect a distinct absence of real motivation, even the degree of nastiness, that it takes to rear up and bite some bastard (metaphorically of course). I may be wrong but if it ain’t showing by end of 2020 I reckon 2021 will be an electoral washout and integration assimilation will follow rapidly.

          It’s still dark outside, clouds everywhere. Maybe that’s why I’m in such a pessimistic niggly mood today.

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