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Sunday, February 28, 2021

Vicar's hopes for a return to normality after Covid-19

* St Collen's Church.

Llangollen's vicar says he hopes St Collen's Church could be open again for public worship by Palm Sunday (March 28) or even earlier.

Father Lee Taylor expresses his hopes for a return to normality following pandemic restrictions in an update on the church's Facebook page.

His post. yesterday (Saturday), says: "As you may be aware, churches in Wales have been legally allowed to open for communal worship (provided they pass a thorough and up-to-date Risk Assessment) but the advice from the Welsh Government, local health authorities and from the Diocese was to find 'alternatives to in-person worship' which is what we have done.

"At the current time, more than a third of the adult population of Wales has now had their first vaccine. The Welsh Government said on 11th February that the vaccination rollout in Wales would slow sharply. However, it is hoped that this will accelerate again in March.
"Although the picture on the horizon is looking hopeful, we must remember that we are still in lockdown under Alert Level 4. There is a long way to go until everyone is vaccinated.

"The UK government has said that the fightback against this disease rests with every single one of us. We must continue to follow the rules and 'hold our nerve' for the next few months. None of us is safe until all of us are safe.
"So we need to wait a bit and see what happens over the next few weeks until the next review from the Welsh Government on Friday 12th March.
"It is worth reminding you that the guidance published for the Church of England is not always going to be the same as that in the Church in Wales.
"It is hoped that we can gather together for public worship at St Collen’s in time for Palm Sunday, or even earlier than this.
"I know this is frustrating for many but our first concern is everyone's safety.
"Let’s all stay as safe as possible until we can again meet with confidence."

Saturday, February 27, 2021

County's social housing rents increase by 1.5%

Denbighshire Housing has increased rents by 1.5 per cent.

It says the change is in accordance with Welsh Government policy for social housing rents and will come into effect from Monday, April 5, with an average weekly rent increase of £1.38.

Councillor Julian Thompson-Hill, Denbighshire County Council’s Lead Member for Finance, Performance and Strategic Assets, said: “The decision was made after careful consideration as we understand the difficult circumstances households have experienced during 2020 and the early part of 2021.

“We had to demonstrate we are using our resources efficiently, that we provide value for money and consider the affordability of our rents before the decision was approved by the Council’s Cabinet. In a survey, 89 per cent of Council tenants said their rent provides value for money, while rents are the lowest on average for social housing landlords in Denbighshire.

“The long-term business plan for how we manage and maintain our £300million worth of housing stock is based on an annual rent increase linked to inflation.

“Denbighshire Housing is investing in our stock for the benefit of our residents and the longer term improvement of our housing stock.  Alongside carefully investing the rents from our tenants we maximise opportunities to leverage in grant funding to support our strategic aims.

“Over the last five years Denbighshire Housing has installed 1,100 new heating systems, 465 new roofs, 325 new windows, 2,550 properties have been painted externally, 125 air source heat pumps have been installed, 775 kitchens and bathrooms have been installed, £2 million has been spent on disabled adaptations and £1.9 million has been invested on estate and neighbourhood improvements including 17 new play areas.

“The housing budget has been calculated to ensure we can deliver our services, the capital investment programme to maintain the quality standard of our homes and develop our new build programme.”

The council has set a target to create 170 new council homes by 2022 under its Corporate Plan with work already under way on 18 two-bedroom and 4 four-bedroom semi-detached houses on land above Tan y Sgubor, Denbigh and four, one-bedroom apartments on the site of the former Bodnant School canteen on Caradoc Road, Prestatyn.

Denbighshire Housing  provides advice for all families who need additional support with household finances.

Roadworks planned for Princess Street

Latest local roadworks report from is:


Princess Street, Llangollen, Denbighshire

01 March — 03 March


Delays likely - Road closure




Works description: LAYING NEW SUPPLY - 6M PUBLIC 13M PRIVATE...


Responsibility for works: Wales & West Utilities Ltd


Current status: Advanced planning


Works reference: XY254004000164980



Friday, February 26, 2021

Welsh Government confirms earlier vaccine key target dates

An updated vaccine strategy for Wales has been published, confirming earlier key target dates.

The updated targets are to offer the vaccine to all current priority groups by the middle of April and to the wider adult population by the end of July. 

The updated strategy also confirms Wales, in line with the other UK nations, will follow the interim advice of the JCVI on prioritisation for the wider adult population.

Health Minister Vaughan Gething said: “A huge amount of progress has been made in rolling out the vaccine since our strategy was first published only six weeks ago.

"I am pleased to confirm we have brought forward two key target dates, but I must emphasise again that this is based on getting the required supply from the UK Government.

"It is encouraging that the UK Government has brought forward some of Wales’ supply allocation, but from the information available to us at this point there are concerns with both the type of supply and the timing of its delivery.  We have always said that we could go even faster were the supply available.”

He added: “Today’s update also reflects on some of the achievements of our programme to-date, and provides information on the significant and really encouraging evidence that is beginning to emerge around vaccination.  While we remain cautious, there really does appear to be much cause for hope thanks to the success of our vaccination programme.”

* The updated strategy can be found here:

St Collen's bells will toll for Captain Sir Tom

The funeral of NHS mega-fundraiser Captain Sir Tom Moore is taking place tomorrow (Saturday). 

The exact time has not been released but at twelve noon, to mark the occasion, a single bell will be tolled one hundred times at St Collen's and at churches throughout Wales and England.

New law aims to give tenants greater protection

New legislation has been passed in the Senedd to give tenants more protection, stability and security in their homes.  

The Renting Homes (Amendment) (Wales) Bill will also bring greater clarity on landlord and tenant responsibilities, helping to avoid disagreements and difficulties.

The changes mean that from spring 2022, rental contracts in Wales will change so that:

  • Tenants will have the security and stability of a minimum 12 month contract; 
  • Minimum notice periods will be extended from two to six months in the case of “no fault evictions” – with landlords only able to serve notice six months after tenants have moved in;
  • Rental contracts will be simplified and standardised with model contracts available;
  • Although the notice period that landlords have to give will be longer, they will still be able to seek to repossess their property if a tenant is in breach of contract.

Housing and Local Government Minister Julie James said: "This law will make renting a home in Wales fair, simple and efficient, and it will directly affect the lives of the one in three people who rent a home in Wales. 

“Thanks to our efforts, tenants will have greater peace of mind when renting. Everyone has the right to feel secure in their own home and to be able to plan for the future.

“There will also be clear benefits for landlords. Clearer and easier to understand contracts will reduce disputes and legal costs and the new regime will provide a better way for landlords to deal with abandoned properties.”

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Have your say on active travel in Llangollen

The county council is inviting feedback on where people would like to see improvements to walking and cycling in Llangollen.

This is one of the towns in Denbighshire selected by the Welsh Government to take part in a  exercise being run by the council in partnership with Sustrans Cymru as part of the government’s Active Travel Network Map consultation (ATNM).   

The ATNM is a plan of routes the council will use to inform where improvements to walking and cycling should be made within the county and it will help to make journeys on foot or by bike across Denbighshire easier and safer for everyone, particularly those who don’t currently walk or cycle often and people who use mobility aids.

Cllr Brian Jones, the council’s Lead Member for Waste, Transport and the Environment, said: “Active travel helps reduce carbon and improve air quality along with improving health and wellbeing, so this is an excellent opportunity for Denbighshire residents to tell us what they would like to see included on our future Active Travel Network Map.

“In order to design a network that works for everyone, we would like to get the views of as many people as possible, particularly those who don’t currently walk or cycle as this will help make sure the routes built for walking and cycling work for the whole community.”

* For further information on how to provide feedback go to the Active Travel page at


Work "proceeding well" on new pocket park at Wenffrwd

* Contractors at work on the new Pocket Park off the A539 at Wenffrwd.

The man in charge of the project has given a progress report on work to create a pocket park close to a main road into Llangollen. 

The facility is being built on the former council refuse tip at Wenffrwd off the A539.

First phase of the work involves the development of a small car park and new access road which was due to be finished early this year.

Next phase means the development of trails around the site and possibly onto the canal.  

There is also an aim to create a link back to Llangollen Health Centre along part of the old railway line.

Giving an update, David Shiel, area manager for the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, which is overseeing the project, said: "Works are proceeding well at Wenffrwd – the car park and new access road are now more or less complete.  

"We are currently working on new trails around the site which include some lovely wooded areas with fantastic views across the River Dee and along valley from the old railway line.  

"We would hope to have these works complete in the next few weeks so that the site can be open for Easter – should Covid-19 restrictions allow."

He added: "GH James from North Wales have been the main contractors and have done a brilliant job over the last few months despite the challenges of snow, floods and Covid lockdown.

"The AONB Ranger team have also been working really hard to manage and make safe the woodland areas, clear the pathways and improve wildlife habitats.     

"Links back to Llangollen and a possible link to the canal will be the next phases of works which we would hope to take forward later this year."

Government to take big cat sightings seriously, says story

A story in the Oswestry and Border Counties Advertizer says the Welsh Government will take big cat sightings seriously and investigate them after a spate of encounters in North Wales, including Llangollen, in recent months.

Last month, the Advertizer's sister-paper, the Denbighshire Free Press, reported a sighting of a big cat near Valle Crucis Abbey when a man described seeing a mystery animal stalking the edge of a field near the abbey.

* To see the latest story, go to:

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

More testing and faster jab delivery, says Minister

Health Minister Vaughan Gething (pictured) has today announced expanded testing and faster vaccine delivery to help Wales re-open safely. 

He confirmed Wales will aim to offer the vaccine to all eligible adults by 31 July and will publish an update to the national vaccination strategy on Friday.

Workplace and community testing will also be expanded.

The scheme for workplaces to carry out testing and set up their own test sites is now being extended to public and private organisations with more than 50 employees.

Mr Gething said: “Our vaccine and testing programmes are key to safely re-opening up our society and economy.

"Our vaccine programme continues at pace and on Friday I’m publishing a revised vaccine strategy with detail on how we will, subject to supply, offer every eligible adult in Wales the first dose of the vaccine by the end of July.

"Workplaces with more than 50 employees will now be eligible for support to regularly test their workforce, helping reduce the spread of the virus and allow them to operate safely.

"We have already set out our revised plans for the careful and cautious re-opening of Wales’ society and economy. The measures announced today will play an important part in achieving that as safely and quickly as possible.”

The revised vaccine strategy will provide more details on current and forthcoming priorities, including – subject to vaccine supply – the bringing forward of target dates for key milestones

The support available to workplaces in Wales to introduce a testing scheme includes the provision of rapid lateral flow devices, training, access to an online testing portal and clinical standard operating procedures and guidelines.

The community testing programme will use Lateral Flow Devices. Everyone who attends will be given a test using the devices, which can turnaround results within 20 -30 minutes. Anyone who tests positive via a LFD test will be asked to return home so they can self-isolate immediately and arrangements will be made for a follow-up PCR test.

Although community testing will initially be available in three local authorities, further discussions are taking place with partners in North Wales and it could be rolled-out more widely based on local circumstance and need identified.

Denbighshire climate change strategy approved by council

A plan to tackle climate and ecological change has been approved by Denbighshire County Council.

In 2019 the council declared a climate change and ecological emergency which included a commitment to make the authority net carbon zero by 2030, enhance biodiversity across the county and produce a clear plan to guide the work.

The council’s Climate and Ecological Change Strategy, which covers the years 2021/22 – 2029/30, sets out how the authority aims to become Net Carbon Zero and Ecologically Positive by 2030.

The strategy includes targets to reduce the council’s carbon emissions from a range of sources, including a 50 per cent reduction from the energy and water used in council owned buildings, as well as targets to increase the amount of carbon absorbed by the land the council owns at the same time as creating more diverse habitats for plants and wildlife.

The work has been guided by the Climate Change and Ecological Emergency Working Group, set up as part of the emergency declaration, and is made up of two representatives from each political party represented in the council and the two Lead Members for climate and ecological change.

Llangollen councillor Graham Timms, the council’s Climate Change and Ecological Emergency Working Group Chair, said: “I’m delighted the strategy has been approved by full council. 

"The strategy sets out what we mean by the goals net carbon zero and ecologically positive council, how the council is currently performing on both, what we hope 2030 will look like for the council having achieved our goals and the changes and actions we hope to deliver over the next nine years.”

Cllr Brian Jones, the council’s Lead Member for Waste, Transport and the Environment, said: “This is another positive step for the Council in its work to protect the environment and reduce our carbon footprint.

“We have already achieved a lot, we have reduced carbon emissions from our buildings and fleet by 15 per cent since 2017, the Council now only uses renewable electricity for its own buildings after switching to a renewable only energy provider for its schools, leisure centres, libraries, council offices and depots and we are over halfway to reaching our target of planting 18,000 trees by 2022.”

* You can read the strategy online at

Young Llan director works on star-studded online play

* Eleri Jones performs I D Hooson's The Red Poppy in the Llangollen VE-Day film. 

A young actor and director from Llangollen is helping to put on a star-studded online production of the Oscar Wilde classic The Picture of Dorian Gray.

Eleri Jones, daughter of former deputy town mayor and councillor Issy Richards, is currently a trainee director at Theatr Clwyd in Mold.

In association with a number of other regional theatres across Britain, Theatr Clwyd is to present a version of the famous play online from March 16-31 helmed by its artistic director Tamara Harvey and assisted by Eleri.

She’s no stranger to Llangollen audiences after two high-profile appearances in the town.

In 2018 she was compere for the annual Festival of Remembrance at the Town Hall where she also presented a tribute to the Welsh poet known as Hedd Wyn who was killed in the First World War.


Then in May last year during the town council’s acclaimed film to mark the 75th anniversary of VE-Day she performed local poet I D Hooson's The Red Poppy against the backdrop of 75 ceramic poppies placed near the war memorial on Centenary Square.


The production of Dorian Gray on which she worked has a\n all-star cast including Joanna Lumley, Stephen Fry and Russell Tovey.

It is written by Henry Filloux-Bennett based on the novel by Oscar Wilde.

In a profile pic-obsessed, filter-fixated world where online and reality blur, influencer Dorian Gray makes a deal for his social star never to fade. For the perfect self he broadcasts to the world to always remain.

But as his mental health starts to decline, as corruption and murderous depravity start to creep into his world, the true and horrific cost of his deal will soon need to be met.

Eleri graduated from Manchester University with a First Class BA in Drama and Screen Studies.


She then received a scholarship to the Drama Centre London gaining an MA in screen acting with merit.


Her screen credits include DI Banks for ITV and Chewing Gum for Channel 4.


She joined Theatr Clwyd in 2019 and assisted on its productions of the Mold Riots and the panto Jack And the Beanstalk.


As a youngster Eleri she was part of the Croeso Team welcoming visitors to Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod.


* Tickets for the production can be bought at 

Police boss suggests giving free cannabis to prisoners

* North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones.

A campaigning police boss is calling for jails to trial giving free cannabis to prisoners to help them overcome their drug problems and reduce prison violence.

North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones, a former police inspector, says  the radical idea could also prevent overdose deaths in prisons.

In 2018 a prisoner called Luke Morris Jones, 22, from Blaenau Ffestiniog, died at HMP Berwyn after taking Spice.

Speaking during an interview for the Guardian newspaper, Mr Jones said if justice authorities were serious about reducing harms and violence in prisons, “they should be addressing the causes” such as the cheap synthetic cannabinoid spice that is rife and can be deadly, as opposed to cannabis.

Use of illegal drugs is widespread in prisons and many prisoners lawfully receive heroin substitutes such as methadone and buprenorphine to manage their dependence.

Others that are commonly prescribed include strong analgesics such as pregabalin and gabapentinoids – all of which are addictive and potentially dangerous drugs.

It was revealed by the Guardian last month that more than 300 prison officers and outside staff have been dismissed or convicted for bringing prohibited items – which can include drugs, tobacco and mobile phones – into jails in England and Wales over the past five years.

In the UK the use of cannabis recreationally  is against the law but it has been legalised to be used for medical purposes.

But, says Mr Jones,  access to full extract oil through the NHS is virtually impossible.

Mr Jones said: “Opioids are a damn sight more dangerous than cannabis. If they’re on opioids, why can’t they be prescribed cannabis?

“Let’s supply cannabis in controlled conditions and see if offences reduce.

“The aim of the game is to make prisons safer. If they’re serious about reducing violence in prisons they should be addressing the causes and that’s psychoactive substances. Plus there’s a whole range of issues that cannabis would be geared to reduce the risk of.” 

Using recreational cannabis remains illegal in the UK but the plant has been legalised for medical use, though with significant restrictions.

The idea of trialling free cannabis in prisons was floated in 2018 by the pharmacologist Dr Stephanie Sharp.

She said that leaving prisoners to smoke spice was “condemning them to death” and that allowing then to smoke cannabis would be “much safer”.

More generally, Mr Jones has also  called for cannabis to be regulated to cut out organised crime and allow people to grow a limited amount of it for their own personal use.

He believes that prohibition is counter-productive and it should be legally controlled just like alcohol and tobacco which caused more harm to individuals and society in general.

He added: “It is a nonsense to criminalise people who take cannabis for recreational use and cause no harm to anybody else.

“The best way to reduce the role of organised crime in the supply of drugs is to put it in commercial hands and to price it appropriately so people don't need to go to the illegal market.

“Commercial organisations have taken over the medicinal cannabis market and are selling prescriptions at a vast cost even though it is cheap to grow.  That’s just “exploitation in my book.

“My view is that people should be allowed to grow a limited number of cannabis plants for their own use.”

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Health centre's Covid jab update

Llangollen Health Centre has this evening (Tuesday) given an update on the Covid-19 vaccination situation.

It says: "We’ve been told today that we are due to receive more vaccines early next week.

"As ever we are advised not to start booking patients in until the vaccines are actually in our fridge so as soon as we have taken receipt of them we will start contacting patients.

"If you are in the 65 - 69 year old age group and have not yet had the vaccine we will be contacting you by phone initially in descending order of age.

"I will provide a further update next week to keep everyone informed.
"I have asked the Health Board to provide a statement to explain the delay in vaccine delivery which I will share with you once I receive it.
"Thank you for your patience.
Practice Manager."

Welsh Government sets out its post-pandemic vision

The Welsh Government is setting out how it will work to reconstruct and rebuild Wales’s economy in the aftermath of the pandemic, making it "more prosperous, equal and green than ever before".

The Government will today publish its Economic Resilience and Reconstruction Mission which sets out how it will work to rebuild Wales’ post-Covid economy so that it "values and prioritises wellbeing, drives prosperity, is environmentally sound, and helps every person in Wales to realise their potential".

Priorities include strengthening the everyday sectors of the Welsh economy, increasing the incidence of fair work across Wales and reinvigorating our town centres.

There is also a focus on supporting firms to innovate and diversify, speeding up business decarbonisation and investing in climate resilient infrastructure.

The Welsh Government is also announcing an additional £270m for the Development Bank of Wales’s Flexible Investment Fund, bringing the total invested through this fund to £500m by 2030. 

Boosting the fund aims to improve the supply of long-term, accessible business finance and help more firms to grow and expand. 

The fund can make debt and equity investments of between £25k and £10m, including 15 year loans, to SMEs and non-SMEs.

Economy Minister Ken Skates said: “This last year has been incredibly difficult for everyone and while our vital work to combat the virus goes on, it is important to consider what comes next.

“We have an opportunity to look to the future and reconstruct the economy with the fundamental goal of achieving long term well-being with dignity and fairness for people.

“We will do this by strengthening the everyday economy, delivering on our Covid Commitment to support people in improving skills and gaining employment, and by helping businesses meet the challenges and opportunities of today and tomorrow. We will also maximise sustainable investment in Wales and fortify our pursuit of fair work and social value with businesses and organisations who receive public funding.

“The additional £270m funding for the Development Bank will support businesses the length and breadth of Wales, creating and protecting thousands of jobs for individuals as we seek to deal with the long-term challenges of Covid and Brexit.”

As part of the mission, the Welsh Government says it will maximise future major investments through ‘magnet projects’, which will attract longer term investments and provide important employment, skills, and innovation and development opportunities.

The Economic Contract will also be refreshed and strengthened helping businesses to embed fair work, low carbon and climate resilience into their operations.

The Minister added: “We have a clear, ethical and coherent vision for economic resilience and reconstruction that is anchored on social justice and with the commitment of the people, communities and the businesses that make up our economy, I know that we can succeed in building a prosperous and fair economy and future that works better for everyone.”

Ian Price, CBI Wales Director, said: “The goal to deliver a competitive and sustainable economy that raises living standards, promotes higher pay, and delivers the revenues we need to support public priorities is the right one for Wales.

“But the Welsh Government can’t do that alone. From promoting diversity and inclusion to improving mental health, championing green behaviours to inspiring the next generation; business must continue to be a true partner of government. At its best, business is an engine of progress that will play a crucial role in overcoming the pandemic and building a better Welsh economy.

“Additional sources of accessible finance are welcome and represent an important investment in the Welsh business community, one that will be repaid through jobs, growth and, ultimately, delivering a more prosperous Wales.”

Ken Skates MS speaks out on Covid-19 vaccination supply

Following a growing number of complaints about people aged 65-69 not being offered the Covid-19 vaccine, Clwyd South MS Ken Skates has issued a statement about the situation.

It says: "After the news last week that Wales had reached its first target ahead of schedule, vaccination of the next set of priority groups is already under way locally. ​

"The First Minister has been clear that the temporary drop in UK supply had already been planned for in Wales and that the reduction will affect the whole of the UK - not just Wales or our area. 

"We have factored this into our vaccination plans - it won’t affect planned appointments and it won’t delay when people are due to get their second dose.

"The Welsh Government will continue to do everything it can to continue leading the way on vaccine roll-out and to achieve our next targets on time. 

"The well-publicised temporary supply issues affecting the UK are short-term and we will soon be able to begin ramping up the roll-out again to the kind of significant daily numbers we have been seeing regularly until recently. 

"We remain confident of similar success with the next phase of the roll-out if the UK Government is able to deliver our supplies." 

Invite goes out to online Pengwern Vale meeting


Natural Resources Wales and the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty are hosting an online meeting for residents and visitors to Pengwern Vale from 7-9pm on Wednesday March 10.

They want to hear people's views about how they can create a community landscape that benefits everyone’s enjoyment and wellbeing for generations to come. 

A spokesperson for the organisers said: "We want to hear your views on how we can all work together to make a positive contribution to Pengwern Vale both now and in the future.

"The area’s amazing heritage, culture and natural landscape is there for all to see - but with climate change it needs everyone's help to secure its future for residents, farmers, and wildlife."

* To register for the meeting or for more information, email:

Hospice aims to build hot air balloon to mark 25 years of care

* Nurses at Nightingale House with their balloon messages.

Nurses at Nightingale House are getting behind the hospice’s 2021 campaign to build a hot air balloon in celebration of 25 years of patient care. 

The opportunity to sponsor a dedication or celebration on a panel of the exclusive balloon runs until the end of April, when the balloon will begin to be manufactured. 

Clinical staff have been coming up with their own ideas of what they will be putting on their panels. Some have decided on inspirational quotes, another is a celebration of the arrival of their new nephew, whereas some have decided that their pets should take centre stage. 

Kay Ryan, Day Services Lead, said: “There is quite a buzz about the Build a Balloon campaign within the clinical team. It’s something we have never seen before and believe it’s a great way to help lift the community spirits at this very challenging time. I know it will mean a great deal to our supporters to be a part of something special and that will help fund the care that we provide.” 

The hospice has a long association with hot air balloon events in Llangollen and in recent years in Oswestry. It is hoped that the balloon will take to the skies in the summer, but no launch date has been released due to current lockdown restrictions. 

Community and Event Fundraiser, Sarah Povey said: “This is an incredibly exciting and unique campaign. To know that when we look up and see the Nightingale House balloon floating above us that we as a community have worked together to bring it to life will be a magnificent feeling.

“Build a Balloon has always been about representing our wonderful supporters and corporate partners and a celebration of the difference the hospice makes to those with life limiting illnesses within our communities or for those who use our hospice facilities on Chester Road.” 

* If you would like to sponsor a Build A Balloon panel for Nightingale House then you can do so by going on line at

Monday, February 22, 2021

Care home visiting booth allows friends to reunite

* Olwen Lloyd and Janet Kenyon Thompson 
use the visiting booth.

A visiting booth has been installed at a Denbighshire care home.

The booth, at Dolwen in Denbigh which is managed by Denbighshire County Council, was designed and built by staff member Erfyl Jones, who is a support worker at the home.

The booth has allowed residents at the care home, who have been unable to mix since December, to reunite.

Once restrictions around visiting care homes have been changed, the booth can be used by families and friends visiting loved ones.

Dolwen residents Olwen Lloyd and Janet Kenyon Thompson were the first to use the booth after it was installed on February 11.

Cllr Bobby Feeley, the council’s Lead Member for Well-being and Independence, said: “I would like to thank Erfyl for his work designing and building the visiting booth which has been a great boost for residents. 

“It has helped residents interact with friends from different sections of the home, which for safety reasons have been kept separate.  I’m pleased to see how much joy this has brought to our residents.

“Once the regulations around visiting care homes change, this booth will provide friends and family the chance to visit their loved ones in a safe way.”

Latest column from Citizens Advice

Latest column from Denbighshire Citizens Advice is:

Coronavirus Scams 

Q: “I’m really worried about my elderly relatives being targeted by coronavirus scams - are there any warning signs that I can tell them to look out for? What should they do if they think that something is a scam?” 

A: Unfortunately, we’ve seen an increase in scams since the beginning of the pandemic, so it’s good to be thinking about the steps you can take to help protect friends and family. 

Common scams we’re seeing are about bogus testing kits, coronavirus vaccinations and government refunds or fines. You should watch out for messages about coronavirus from unusual email addresses or phone numbers, and shouldn’t click on any links. Be aware that you won’t be asked to pay for coronavirus vaccinations - they are provided for free by the NHS. 

Here are some general warning signs to look out for: 

      You suspect you’re not dealing with a real company – for example, if there’s no postal address

      You’ve been asked to transfer money quickly or to pay in an unusual way – for example, by iTunes vouchers or through a transfer service like MoneyGram or Western Union

      You’ve been asked to give away personal information like passwords or PINs

      You haven't had written confirmation of what's been agreed 

If you think something is a scam you should hang up the phone, close the website, or shut the front door. Never feel pressured to make a decision straight away, and don’t give out personal details or money unless you’re certain that they can trust the person. If you feel threatened or unsafe you can ring 999. 

For help with online scams, contact a Citizens Advice Scams Action adviser by calling 0808 250 5050. For more information about other types of scams, visit the Citizens Advice website.  

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Young 'Uns' retro spectacular cuts through lockdown gloom

* Above and below, some scenes from last night's show.

Last night a lockdowdy, rain-soaked Llangollen got a timely reminder – as if it needed it – of what a talented bunch of performing youngsters it has right here on its doorstep.

Unable to stage one of their usual entertainment extravaganzas due to the pandemic a bunch of members from the Young ‘Uns, the Operatic Society’s junior section, took over the internet airwaves to put on a riveting retrospective of their productions ranging back over the last decade.

And it cut through the gloom of a wet February Saturday evening in style.

Behind it was one of its favourite performers of recent years, Shea Ferron, who, in the spirit of an old Hollywood movie, got some of his mates from the team – present and past – to put on the show right here.

He arranged all the pretty complex technical bits to do the live streaming on Facebook while another Young ‘Uns star, Celyn Orton-Jones, helped him anchor the all-singing, all dancing 90-minute spectacular.

Professional performer Ruby Snape appeared as a guest presenter.

The team summoned up others - like them still in their late teens or early twenties – to reprise magical musical memories from smash-hit society shows such as Annie, The Vackies, Beauty and the Beast, Oliver!, Half a Sixpence, Honk, Bugsy Malone, Joseph and his Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Grease and Wizard of Oz.

Among the cast, who had been in one or more of these productions, was  Aled Morris, Katie Clark, Kamil Grzelak, Ethan Le-Cheminant, Ethan Roberts, Grace Roberts, Heledd Edwards and Cassius Hackforth, now at drama school. 

Apart from providing the online audience with some fantastic memories of the shows many of them had been lucky enough to see live, the cast also clearly had a great time getting together with old friends to relive some of the highlights of their recent performing past.

But then having a cool time with your mates and entertaining people into the bargain is what the Young ‘Uns has always been about.

Now Shea and the team has led the way maybe the adult Llan Operatic Society should think about doing a similar thing for some of its more recent shows. Just a thought.   

* You can still catch the show, here: