Closes: 17:00 hrs. Wednesday 24th December 2014

NB Our four one stop shops will close at 15:00 hrs on Christmas Eve
Re-opens: 09:00 hrs. Tuesday 30th December 2014

Closes: 17:00 hrs. Wednesday 31st December 2014
Re-opens: 09:00 hrs. Friday 2nd January 2015

 Monmouthshire County Council will mark Holocaust Memorial Day on Tuesday 27th January, focussing on the theme Keep the Memory Alive.  This year marks two significant anniversaries; 70 years since the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau on 27th January 1945, and 20 years since the genocide at Srebrenica in Bosnia.

The council will remember those who lost their lives, and also those who survived the brutalities, with a service for councillors and staff at County Hall, Usk led by Leader Peter Fox from 11am.  In addition, displays will be featured in the council’s main offices in Usk and Magor to raise awareness.

Also on 27th January, from 7pm to 8pm Caldicot Library will host an evening of readings with a short talk about Auschwitz and film clips of survivor stories.  Members of the Friends of Caldicot Library and Caldicot Local History Society will perform the readings.  Other libraries in Monmouthshire will present displays to mark Holocaust Memorial Day.

Councillor Fox said: “Holocaust Memorial Day is a time for us all to reflect and to remember the victims of Nazi persecution and murder, and subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.  I hope people will pause to pay their respects”.

Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust said: “Holocaust Memorial Day is about learning from the past to build a better future; it is about promoting equality, respect and understanding.  This year we are asking people to share the stories of those affected by genocide to ensure their legacies live long into the future and to keep the memory alive”.

The Holocaust Memorial Day Trust urges people to play their part to keep the memory alive and ensure the legacies of those who were murdered and those who survived live long into the future.

For further information visit

Monmouthshire County Council working in partnership with local equalities project Monmouthshire Voices held the second Access For All forum in County Hall, Usk last Wednesday (January 14th) for people living with disabilities.  Over 80 people attended to discuss public transport throughout the county.

Officers from the council’s transport unit attended, together with representatives from local bus companies as well as Leader Cllr Peter Fox and the cabinet member with responsibility for equalities, Cllr Phil Hobson.

Issues discussed included bus timetables, accessibility and mobility on public transport, the availability of the council’s community transport Grass Routes service and special educational needs (SEN) post 16 transport.

The Monmouthshire Voices project aims to enable people with disabilities to have their voices heard in the development and delivery of local services.  Project Officer Pennie Walker said: “It is really wonderful to see so many people attending the forum and speaking up about issues that affect them.  The council is obviously keen on engagement and its support is very much appreciated.  This is an ongoing process which will enable disabled people within the community to make a difference about the services they receive.  I am pleased it has proved popular.”

The forum was streamed live on the council’s Youtube channel and can be watched via – this service enables those unable to be at the meeting to engage.


  • Monmouthshire Voices is funded by the Big Lottery and is run by GAVO (Gwent Association of Voluntary Organisations) and the South East Wales Regional  Equality Council.

Monmouthshire County Council is to hold a briefing session for people involved in planning campaigns within the Monmouth constituency during the forthcoming general election.  The session will be held on Tuesday, 27th January 2015 at 6pm in County Hall, Usk.

While voting procedures have changed little since the last general election in 2010 there have been significant shifts in the registration process and these are likely to have a huge impact on campaigning.

The session will provide campaigners with key information to enable them to plan effectively at an early stage.  It will cover:

  • The role of the Returning Officer
  • the election timetable
  • qualifications and disqualifications
  • the nominations process and election agents
  • registration
  • postal votes
  • polling day and the campaign
  • the count
  • election expenses

Council Leader Peter Fox who has responsibility for the council’s electoral processes said: “This event is open to all involved in the 2015 general election campaign for the Monmouth constituency.  We hope that making people aware of the rules and procedures to be followed will make the campaign easier for everyone”.

Anyone wishing to attend the session should book a place by emailing or telephoning 01633 644212.

For further information, contact Amy Gullick on 01633 644212.

Caldicot Library to keep the legacy of holocaust victims alive

  Caldicot Library will host a Holocaust Memorial Day event on Tuesday 27th January 2015 from 7pm to 8pm.  All members of the local community are invited to join the commemoration which will feature readings performed by The Friends of Caldicot Library and film clips of survivor stories.

The theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2015 is “Keep the Memory Alive” and this year marks two significant anniversaries – 70 years since the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau on 27th January 1945 and 20 years since the genocide at Srebrenica in Bosnia.  The Holocaust Memorial Day Trust is asking the public to keep the memory alive, and ensure the legacies of those who were murdered and those who survived live long into the future.

Community Librarian Fiona Ashley said: “For Holocaust Memorial Day 2015 we are encouraging people to come together to remember those murdered during the Holocaust, under Nazi persecution and in the subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.  We hope people will come to our event on January 27th and reflect on how they can connect with others within our community”.

Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust added: “Holocaust Memorial Day is about learning from the past to build a better future; it is about promoting equality, respect and understanding.  This year, we are asking people to share the stories of those affected by genocide, to ensure their legacies live long into the future and to keep the memory alive.’

For further information visit


Two charities will benefit from a St Valentine’s Day Ball in Abergavenny hosted by the Chairman of Monmouthshire County Council, Councillor John Prosser.

The ball will be held in the town’s Angel Hotel on Saturday, 14th February and all proceeds will go to the Chairman’s chosen charities – Macmillan Cancer Care and Welsh Warrior/The Richard Hunt Foundation.

Live music will be provided by fun-fuelled covers band The Black Rat Effect and tickets – at a cost of £45 per person – include a reception drink, canapés and a three course meal.  Dress is black tie.

Councillor Prosser said: “All are welcome to attend a wonderful evening which will hopefully raise funds for two causes very close to my heart”.

Tickets are available from the Chairman’s Office, County Hall, Usk – telephone 01633 644020 or email

Monmouthshire County Council has arranged meetings aimed at creating local fund-raising committees to promote the smooth running of the 2016 Monmouthshire and District National Eisteddfod.  Volunteers are needed to offer their services to raise the funds that are vital in ensuring the success of the Eisteddfod.

Meetings will be held throughout Monmouthshire as follows:

  • Tuesday 20th January, 6.30pm, Ysgol Gymraeg y Fenni, Abergavenny
  • Thursday 22nd January, 6.30pm, Shire Hall, Monmouth
  • Tuesday 27th January, 6.30pm, Ysgol Y Ffin, Caldicot
  • Wednesday 28th January, 6.30pm, Drama Room, Chepstow Comprehensive School
  • Monday 9th February, 6.30pm, Council Chamber, County Hall, Usk

For more information, volunteers should ring 0845 4090 400, send an email to: or log onto – they will be warmly welcomed.

County Councillor Phil Hobson, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for the Welsh language said: “The success of the National Eisteddfod relies heavily on the support and invaluable contribution of volunteers”.

The Monmouthshire and District National Eisteddfod will take place in Abergavenny from 29th July to 6 August 2016.  It was last held in Monmouthshire over one hundred years ago, in 1913.

  • We have been out all night helping areas north of the county affected by flooding. There was a deluge of water between 9pm – 2am last night and more wet weather is on the way. We have been responding all night prioritising the supply of sandbags and checking culverts in affected areas. On the roads we dealt with several fallen trees blocking routes and general debris washed onto the carriageway making driving difficult. Culverts were unable to cope with the volume of water in some places and we have placed warning signs on affected roads. However road conditions will remain difficult and drivers are asked to drive with care – surface water on the roads will continue to make driving conditions difficult. Anyone with concerns should contact their local Monmouthshire One Stop Shop to report problems.

Monmouthshire County Council is alerting parents and guardians of children due to start primary education next September that the closing date to apply for school places – 23rd January – is looming.  Parents failing to meet this deadline face the significantly increased risk of failing to secure a place at their preferred school.

Children born between 1st September 2010 and 31st August 2011 are eligible to start reception classes in September 2015 and parents are asked to complete their applications before the 23rd January 2015 closing date.  This will give them the best chance of ensuring that their child attends their preferred school.  Parents resident in Monmouthshire must apply to the council even if their preferred school lies outside the county’s borders (excluding schools in Newport where applications are to be made directly to the city council).

Parents may apply using the council’s online application system.  For more information, visit:  Alternately, parents may request an application pack by telephoning the council’s admissions team on 01633 644508 or emailing:

The completion of an application form expressing written preference for a school is a legal necessity set out in the School Admissions Code of Practice.  In addition, while each school within the county serves a specific catchment area, parents or guardians should not assume that their children will automatically gain entry.  Parents who submit application forms by the deadline on 23rd January will be informed which school their child will attend no later than 1st April 2015.

Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for schools and learning, Cllr Liz Hacket Pain said: “It’s vital that parents apply for school places on time. Applications which are not submitted by 23rd January will be considered after those received on time.  That means parents who apply late are at greater risk of being allocated places for their child other than at their preferred school – even if they have other children already in the school.”

Contact the School and Student Access Unit on 01633 644508 or email for further information.

Council to engage with Bulwark and Thornwell residents over 20mph zones

 Highways officers at Monmouthshire County Council are to engage with the public over proposals to establish a 20mph zone in the Bulwark and Thornwell areas of Chepstow.  An exhibition of the proposed 20mph zone covering both Bulwark and Thornwell will be held at Bulwark Community Centre between 5pm to 7pm on Thursday 15th January where the community will be invited to give their views and officers will be available to answer questions.  Subject to responses at this event, a further exhibition may be held before a final decision is made on proposals.

Cabinet member with responsibility for road safety, Councillor Bryan Jones said: “I would urge the community to attend this exhibition and make their feelings known on plans to reduce the maximum speed limit in Bulwark and Thornwell.  These proposals have been developed as part of a commitment given by the council to introduce wider 20mph zones within residential areas and follow representation from the community and town councils who wish to see slower speeds within their community.  The Bulwark and Thornwall 20mph zone has been identified as a pilot scheme which, if successful, will be rolled out to other areas throughout Monmouthshire”.

Highways officers, the cabinet member and local members will consider the points raised at the exhibition before finalising the 20mph zone proposals for formal consultation, approval and implementation.

Contact Traffic and Network Manager Paul Keeble – – for further details.

Monmouthshire County Council is to hold an open evening for jobseekers looking for employment in a position that will support people to help them live independent lives.  The council aims to recruit a number of care and support assistants and the open evening – to be held at Monmouth’s Monnow Vale Health and Social Care Facility on Thursday, 15th January between 5.30pm and 7pm – will allow people interested in these posts to find out more, to meet the homecare and support team and ask questions.

The council is looking for applicants who wish to make a positive contribution in a dynamic team with a genuine interest in the well-being of others.  Full training will be provided in all aspects of the role and previous caring support experience is not necessary.  The posts will be based in Monmouth and will involve travel in the local area.  Hours are negotiable, and weekend enhancements are available.

Further information is available from the Homecare Duty Team on 01291 638928 or 01600 773113.