The council is aware that many businesses are not making the most of the support that is there for them.

If you occupy business premises in Monmouthshire with a rateable value of £12,000 or less, or you are a retail, leisure or hospitality business with a rateable value of £12,001 to £51,000 you should be registering for a business grant NOW. A number of those who have successfully registered are already in receipt of the funds. Unless you fill in the online form, you will not receive the help you could be eligible for.

If you come under the Small Business Rates Relief, and you currently don’t pay business rates, you are still eligible to register for the grants.

The grants of £10,000 and £25,000 (which will not need to be paid back) will be administered by Monmouthshire County Council and registrations will be processed as soon as possible, subject to checking.

Welsh Government business grants are available in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it is estimated that up to 2,000 potentially eligible firms in Monmouthshire are yet to fill in the online registration form.

These grants will not automatically be paid to you. We need your details, so register online.

Your first step to check eligibility by visiting https://businesswales.gov.wales/covid-19-grants and then register athttps://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/business-advice/  

The Welsh Government also has announced further financial support for businesses not covered by these grants. For more details and other available support  https://businesswales.gov.wales/financial-support-and-grants

People who are employed or self-employed are being encouraged to apply for financial support following the recent announcement from the UK Government. The packages of support are available to help protect incomes during the coronavirus outbreak.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

If it is both agreed between an employee and employer, workers might able to be kept on the payroll if they’re unable to operate or have no other work options. This is known as being ‘on furlough’. An employer could pay 80% of a person’s wages through the UK Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, up to a monthly cap of £2,500, companies can top it up by a further 20% to 100%. The scheme is expected to to be up and running by the end of April.

Further information is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-guidance-for-employees

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

Those who are self-employed and have been impacted by the coronavirus outbreak will also be eligible to receive a cash grant worth 80% of their average monthly trading profit over the last three years up to £2500 per month. HMRC will contact people if they are eligible and invite them to apply online, payments will be made in June with a lump sum backdated to March.

Further information is available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-a-grant-through-the-coronavirus-covid-19-self-employment-income-support-scheme

Monmouthshire County Council has taken the difficult decision to cease its garden waste collections from Friday 3rd April until further notice.  The council has strived to deliver its waste and recycling services as far as possible, but the number of colleagues within the collections team having to self-isolate in light of the COVID-19 pandemic has made this position increasingly demanding.  In addition, the government has requested non-essential services are locked down to preserve life and reduce the spread of the corona virus.

This follows last week’s closure of household waste recycling centres across the country. The council has tried to maintain other services as long as possible, but the safety of residents and collection staff is paramount.  Reducing non-essential services will allow the council to continue to operate priority waste collections.

Collections of residual waste, food waste and recyclables will continue for as long as possible and releasing garden waste vehicles will help maintain these core services.  Additional factors leading to the decision are that supermarkets are unable to store and issue garden bags and containers safely and the closure of certain parts manufacturers may reduce the number of council vehicles in operation.

Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again.

Supermarkets and other retailers will continue to stock the council’s red, purple and food waste bags.

Councillor Jane Pratt, cabinet member responsible for recycling and waste said: “We are acutely aware that a great many householders have only just paid for the garden waste collection service and that some are yet to receive their first collection.  This is not a decision that has been taken lightly.

“Our priority must be protecting the lives of residents and our dedicated team of workers while maintaining our core services as long as possible.  We ask that you bear with us.  We will do all we can to restart the service as quickly as possible.”

She continued: “I would ask that residents do not phone the call centre about garden waste collections at this time. Staff are fully engaged dealing with high volumes of calls regarding vulnerable residents with health conditions. Many of these have been told to self-isolate, so are in need of support to receive food and medical supplies. I am sure everyone will understand that these people’s needs must be prioritised.”

The resumption of garden waste collections will happen as soon as possible.

Meanwhile the council has suggested practical measures residents could adopt to help reduce garden waste. The cutting height of lawnmowers could be raised, while mowing more frequently without collecting clippings will help fertilise the ground and reduce the amount of waste for disposal.  Home composting offers a viable alternative for treating and storing garden material, provides a long-term soil improver and is a practical option while garden collections are suspended.

For further information on the council’s waste and recycling service visit https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-waste

Over the last few weeks, Monmouthshire County Council has been overwhelmed by the wonderful support offered by communities looking to help neighbours and friends during the COVID-19 outbreak. Community action groups have grown in their numbers and amazing acts of kindness have been witnessed. Over 30 community-led action groups have been set up across the county all with the aim of supporting others in this time of need.

Volunteering plays a vital role in the support network offered to the most vulnerable during this time and the council is encouraging more people to think about how they might be able to help their neighbours. It could be as small as a smile when passing by or offering to collect basic supplies like groceries – it all makes a big difference.

To build on this amazing generosity, Monmouthshire County Council’s Community & Partnership Development Team is asking anyone who might be able to offer their time to get in touch with them. The team can provide people with a DBS Check, information and guidance, training and link volunteers to people needing support. The aim of this support is to ensure the people offering the help and those receiving it, feel as safe and comfortable when doing so. The Community & Partnerships Development Team is also encouraging community action group leaders who haven’t yet contact them to get in touch in order to continue developing the network or opportunities.

Cabinet Member for Social Justice and Community Development, Councillor Sara Jones said: “In times like these, Monmouthshire’s greatest asset is its people and communities. We have witnessed amazing acts of kindness and communities coming together even stronger than before. Thank you to everyone who is putting yourselves and your time forward to help others.  I would like to encourage everyone to think about how you could help someone else in your community. Something as small as a phone call to an elderly neighbour or offering to put the bins out for those who are in isolation can make the world of difference.”

Monmouthshire County Council is also issuing advice to people who may be volunteering on simple dos and don’ts in order to keep everyone involved safe.

Do:

·       Pick up the phone to chat to anyone who’s self-isolating. Ask if they need any food/supplies/medicines to be picked up

·       Pick up any urgent or essential supplies during your one trip out that day – simple shop for others while you shop for yourselves

·       If they’ve got a smart phone/tablet teach them how to use it so they can see people – Digital Communities Wales has a team of expert trainers and advisors on hand to help get people on line  just phone them on 0300 111 5050

·       Encourage people to open the window to get some fresh air and listen to the birds

·       Keep washing your hands and follow all social distancing guidelines i.e. stay 2 metres apart

Don’t:

·       Go into people’s homes

·       Go within 2 metres of people (knock doors, and leave bags on the door step)

·       Don’t start being trusted with credit cards or taking money out for people who you don’t

·       know

There are many ways to get in contact – anyone wanting to offer their help is asked toemail Partnerships@monmouthshire.gov.uk where they will be directed to the correct team or telephone Monmouthshire’s central contact number (01633) 644696. People can also register their interest via ourmonmouthshire.org which allows users to share information, ideas, skills and resources. This platform hopes to support this community action and make offers of help much easier to access.

Following the recent temporary closure of the Post Office in Usk due to government advice, Monmouthshire County Council will now operate a free bus service for residents to allow them to access the service in Raglan.

From Monday 6th April Usk, residents will be able to book a place on the bus, which will run on a Monday and Wednesday between 10am and 12pm. A maximum of four people will be allowed per trip to enable social distancing.

Residents can book a slot by calling 0800 085801 24 hours in advance. The booking line is open Monday to Friday 9:00am to 4:30pm, so Monday bookings need to be made on a Friday.  This is a trial at this stage and will be reviewed.

Councillor Paul Jordan, Cabinet Member for Community Hubs said: “It’s great to see this innovative solution to ensure residents can continue to access these important services. We know that the Post Office is a lifeline for people at this difficult time so we hope this interim solution will help those residents continue to use the service.”

Although many have applied for Welsh Government business grants offered in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, up to 2,000 potentially eligible firms in Monmouthshire are yet to fill in the online claim form. The grants of £10,000 and £25,000 will be administered by Monmouthshire County Council and applications will be processed as soon as possible. There are concerns that businesses have wrongly assumed that the grants would be automatically applied. This is not the case. It is vital that any businesses that could be eligible apply online.

Monmouthshire County Council is encouraging business owners to take the first step and check eligibility by visiting the COVID-19 Welsh Government’s business grants website: https://businesswales.gov.wales/covid-19-grants and apply online.

The Welsh Government will advise on further financial support for those businesses not covered by these grants which are not a loan, they are non-returnable grants.  Firms with a rateable value of less than £12,000 are eligible to submit their details on-line for up to two premises, for a £10,000 grant per premise. Firms may still be eligible for the grant even if they don’t have any business (tax) rates to pay. Those premise with a rateable value between £12,001 and £51,000 have the option for grant funding of £25,000 for EACH property they pay business rates for.

Councillor Bob Greenland, Monmouthshire’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for enterprise said: “This is a vital lifeline for local businesses at a time of immense strain. I would encourage them to visit the website, check their eligibility and apply immediately. We have already had many applications, but it is clear that a greater number of businesses have not taken the first step of applying. The sooner this is done, the sooner more businesses can receive the help they deserve and need. Please pass this message on to other businesses in Monmouthshire. We do not want anyone to go under as a result of this crisis.”

For additional information visit: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/business-advice/  

 Monmouthshire County Council is functioning around the clock to support communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. With residents urged to stay safe and stay home to minimise the spread of coronavirus, councillors, staff and volunteers are working exceptionally hard to ensure key services continue to operate. Everyone, including the most vulnerable residents in the community, are being supported at this difficult time though there have been some inevitable disruptions to services to enable the council to focus on keeping the county’s residents safe. Home carers continue to visit people and provide necessary care, while meals are delivered to provide food and a friendly face to residents in need. Free school meals are provided to ensure that eligible students have access to a nutritious lunch each day. No changes have been made to waste collections and the council has requested residents to recycle as much as possible. All household waste recycling centres and Llanfoist’s Reuse Shop will be closed until further notice. In addition, new registrations for the garden waste service and the bulky waste collection service have been suspended. Specific local shops and supermarkets will stock Monmouthshire’s recycling bags for residents to collect. All schools have been closed and seven key worker hubs have been set up to provide childcare for key workers. These are sited in Abergavenny’s Deri View Primary and Llanfoist Primary, Dewstow Primary in Caldicot, Rogiet Primary, Thornwell Primary in Chepstow, Monmouth’s Overmonnow Primary and Raglan Primary. Councillor Richard John, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People said: “I am grateful for the work that is taking place across Monmouthshire to support children of key workers and our vulnerable learners. These are exceptional times and the way in which we do this will change and develop in the coming days, but we are committed to providing this support in a resilient and sustainable way.” The council has urged ratepayers to get in touch if they experience difficulty paying council tax – it may be possible to spread instalments over 12 months to reduce monthly payments or defer initial instalments to a later date. It can also look into the potential entitlement to Council Tax Reduction and free school meals for those on a low income or receiving benefits such as Universal Credit. The council is aiding businesses by undertaking daily payment runs and paying all invoices on the date approved rather than when they fall due, thus ensuring suppliers receive their money as quickly as possible. It has also published a newsletter on its website to advise businesses about how they can help to enable invoices to be paid swiftly. The council will administer Welsh Government business grants and will process them as soon as possible. The county’s businesses are advised to check their eligibility by visiting the Welsh Government’s COVID-19 business grants website. The Welsh Government will offer guidance on financial support for businesses not covered by these grants. Most businesses with a rateable value of between £12,000 and £51,000 can receive support for all premises. Businesses with a rateable value of £12,000 or less can receive support, subject to a maximum of two properties. Meanwhile, businesses are urged to submit their details via the online form on the council’s website to ensure information is up to date. The council’s community hubs in Abergavenny, Monmouth, Chepstow, Caldicot and Usk are all closed, as is Gilwern Library. In addition, all community education services have been suspended. Monmouthshire’s tourist information centres are closed, but the service may be accessed by phone and email: • Abergavenny Tourist Information Centre – abergavennytic@yahoo.com – 07854 997541 • Chepstow Tourist Information Centre – Chepstow.tic@monmouthshire.gov.uk – 01291 623772 Comprehensive visitor information is available on the VisitMonmouthshire.com website but the council’s key message for its tourism base is: ‘Please do not visit Monmouthshire at this time. Stay safe at home, and we’ll be here with a warm welcome when this is all over. Dream Now, Visit Later.’ Office-based staff are working remotely via the Microsoft teams system. Meanwhile, call volumes into the council’s contact centre have been high so more staff have been redeployed into this area to provide support. The council has set up an emergency response team which meets daily to deal with issues as they arise, while information to the public has been provided by a dedicated web section – https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/services/planning-for-emergencies/coronavirus/ – as well as its Facebook and Twitter social media channels. All building closures are itemised on: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/building-closures/ The council’s licensing team has ensured that closures to pubs and restaurants are followed in line with government policy. It has also closed the county’s taxi ranks. Cold nights have meant that gritting teams have been busy patrolling the county’s roads to ensure they’re safe for motorists. This is particularly important for key workers and emergency services who need to drive to carry out their duties. All MonLife leisure centres in Abergavenny, Caldicot, Chepstow and Monmouth are closed but no payment will be taken from direct debit members while they remain shut. Additionally, memberships have been automatically frozen so customers will not be affected adversely. Also, MonLife has created a YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJuPmBPWvKE2IkAznwMMiSA – which will regularly feature videos promoting fitness. MonLife youth clubs and youth centres are also closed but youth workers will remain active online to offer necessary support and information. Young people and their families can contact them using the online form: https://www.monlife.co.uk/youth-digital-support-form/ Council Leader Peter Fox said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has presented us with an extraordinary and unprecedented crisis but I’m proud of how all areas are working flat out to support people. Key workers continue to deliver essential services and I’d like to thank all employees as well as volunteers for their sterling efforts to keep us safe. It’s wonderful to see the many voluntary groups that are being set up all across the county. If anyone would like to get involved please contact: partnerships@monmouthshire.gov.uk “This is such a worrying time for people. My thoughts are with you and we are here to support you. Comprehensive advice for businesses is available at: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/business-advice/. If anyone is worried about their council tax you can find information at: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/council-tax-advice/ “I’d also like to thank the vast majority of Monmouthshire’s residents, businesses and organisations who have adjusted to this very difficult time by staying at home and maintaining social distancing. Continue to stay safe and stay home so together we can defeat COVID-19.”

Council’s trading standards officers provide advice to counter coronavirus scams Monmouthshire’s trading standards team is warning the county’s communities to be aware of people taking advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to carry out scams. The advice is in line with that given by National Trading Standards – the UK body set up to protect consumers and safeguard business from fraud. Reports have been received from other parts of the country that people have been offered miracle cures or non-existent vaccines for coronavirus while bogus emails have promised a refund on taxes in order to fraudulently obtain personal and bank details. Other scams include an offer to carry out shopping or collect medication and asking for money in advance before disappearing, and people impersonating healthcare workers to gain access to homes. Trading standards officers have issued the following tips to residents to avoid being caught out: • Be cautious and listen to your instincts. Don’t be afraid to hang up, bin it, delete it or shut the door. • Take your time; don’t be rushed. • If someone claims to represent a charity, ask them for ID. Be suspicious of requests for money up front. Check with family and friends before accepting offers of help if you are unsure. • If you are online, be aware of fake news and use trusted sources such as .gov.uk or NHS.uk websites. Don’t click on links in emails. • Only purchase goods from legitimate retailers and take a moment to think before parting with money or personal information. • Know who you’re dealing with – if you need help, talk to someone you know or get in touch with your local trading standards service. • Protect your financial information, especially from people you don’t know. Never give your bank card or PIN to a stranger. Residents who believe they have been scammed should contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040. If they need advice, they should call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133. Meanwhile, residents should contact their bank if they think their accounts have been compromised. Councillor Sara Jones, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for trading standards said: “The coronavirus pandemic has brought forward many good people who have offered their services for the benefit of society but the county’s residents should be aware that not everyone out there is trustworthy. Some will take advantage of this unusual situation we’re currently facing. Generally, we should exercise caution and if an unexpected offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true.”

Monmouthshire County Council shares plans to support small businesses  As the country takes steps to contain coronavirus virus with people staying at home and many small businesses closing with immediate effect, plans have been developed to help these enterprises continue to trade once the pandemic is over. Monmouthshire County Council will be administering Welsh Government Business grants. However, only business rate payers are currently eligible – for details see https://businesswales.gov.wales/coronavirus-advice. To apply visit: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/business-advice/ The Welsh Government will advise on further financial support for those businesses not covered by these grants and updates will be shared on Monmouthshire County Council’s website when they are available – the council advises it’ll be worth bookmarking the site for future reference. Key messages: In order to pay the grant the council needs to know the contact details, bank details and other relevant details of the county’s businesses. A council spokesperson said: “To help us help you, please complete the business registration form as a matter of urgency. As soon as grants become available we will be able to pay you directly.” A quick overview of the current grants available follows: • A grant of £25,000 will be available to retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000. • A grant of £10,000 will be available to all businesses eligible for Small Business Rates Relief with a rateable value of £12,000 or less. • A separate scheme and funding will be announced next week for those businesses which are home based, etc. Again the council will update its website with the information as soon as it is available. • In addition, retail, leisure and hospitality businesses receive 100% business rates relief for the financial year 2020/21. These will have already received their 2020/21 rates bill for this year as the government’s announcement was made after the bills had been produced. The spokesperson added: “ Don’t worry, the relief will be applied by the council and your account will be credited automatically. A new rates bill will be sent to you shortly.” o Support will also be available to enable businesses to pay 80% of their employees’ salaries based on their February payslips – further details will follow. o A new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has been announced which is designed to assist qualifying businesses during these unprecedented times. The scheme is also available to support long-term viable businesses which may need to respond to cash-flow pressures by seeking additional finance. The loan will be provided by the British Business Bank through participating providers during the Covid-19 outbreak. Search the Business Wales website for more information. o A new £500,000 fund is available for technology companies which provide digital support solutions for people who need to stay at home because of coronavirus. Search ‘Techforce19’ challenge for more information – funding of up to £25,000 per company is available. o Business Wales is also offering webinars aimed at Welsh SMEs (small and medium enterprises) affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. The ‘Covid-19 and Your Business’ series covers key topics in aid of every business owner and sole trader, who want to minimise the impact of the virus and improve the survivability of their ventures. To sign up visit the Business Wales website. Councillor Bob Greenland, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member for enterprise said: “We know that this is a very anxious time for everyone. I would like to thank Monmouthshire’s small businesses for supporting the country by staying safe and staying home. There are various options available to help businesses cope with the challenges ahead. Please contact us, we are here to help.” He added: “Don’t forget, there are things we can all do to help our local businesses to stay open. Where you can, buy locally on line. Many of our cafes, pubs and restaurants are also offering take away and delivery services so why not take a break from the store cupboard and treat yourself and save a local business while doing so.”

Advice on how to improve broadband during coronavirus

Many people may have been asked to work from home or will be relying on digital connectivity while they self-isolate.

Below are some practical steps that can be taken at a property to help boost speeds. Quick fixes for broadband:

  • Check your router – if you’ve had your router for some time, it may need an upgrade. Check with your internet provider to make sure you have the most up to date version.
  • Consider moving your router if you can – for maximum coverage place your router in the middle of the property and make sure it isn’t blocked by any dense structures.
  • Consider WiFi boosters, extenders or powerline networks – these are small and simple devices, that can improve the strength and range of a WiFi signal. They are plugged either directly into your router or into electrical outlets using antennas or cables to replicate and extend a connection. If you have certain rooms where the WiFi signal strength drops off, this could be a solution.
  • Mobile hotspots – this allows a mobile phone to be used as a source of WiFi. This is usually activated in your mobile phone’s settings. Check with your mobile phone provider first to find out if there are any costs for using this service.
  • MiFi devices – these are portable devices that allow you to connect to the internet from wherever there is a good mobile signal. Mobile signals are usually stronger in elevated rooms, or an attic, which may be an ideal location for this type of device
  • Try an alternative connection – where available, mobile/4G broadband can be a quick option for connectivity and this doesn’t mean using a mobile phone. A broadband router can be installed to connect your property to broadband via a 4G mobile network. In areas where a 4G signal might not be strong indoors, an external antenna can be attached to the side of your property. You don’t need cables or a phone line. There are now also unlimited data packages available with a number of providers. Boosting mobile signal indoors:
  • Cavity insulation, thick stone walls, metallic coated insulation materials and many other factors can have a detrimental effect on indoor mobile phone signals.
  • Femtocells may provide a possible solution. These are small, low powered mobile phone transmitters designed for indoor use, with a limited range of typically 200 metres. They are designed to provide a mobile phone signal at a property. Femtocells require an existing broadband connection and are provided by the mobile phone operators, either free of charge, or for a small fee.

Registration for Key workers only

Letter to parents: Preparations to support key workers through the provision of childcare

At the end of the school day on Friday 20th March 2020, all schools in Monmouthshire will close for the near future; we do not know when the return to school will be.

The Government has stated in its latest advice:

          If children can stay safely at home, they should, to limit the chance of the virus spreading. That is why the government has asked parents    to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and asked schools to remain open only for those children who absolutely need to attend.’

From Monday 23 March 2020, we are establishing nine provisions across the county that will enable us to provide support and care for the children of key workers across the county. 

This will enable those workers to continue to make their key contribution in the fight against COVID-19 and is in line with the strategic objectives of our response to the emergency.  We have chosen this scope of provision because it maintains the key objective of school closures i.e. reducing the transmission of the virus.

The nine schools (selected for their size and location) will be:

  • Deri View Primary School (Abergavenny)
  • Llanfoist Fawr Primary School (Abergavenny)
  • Dewstow Primary School (Caldicot)
  • Rogiet Primary School (Caldicot)
  • Overmonnow Primary School (Monmouth)
  • Kymin View Primary School Monmouth
  • Thornwell Primary School (Chepstow)
  • Pembroke Primary School (Chepstow)
  • Raglan Church in Wales Primary School (Raglan)

Monmouthshire will follow the UK Government’s definition of ‘key’ workers – this can be found here.  MCC will be sharing a registration form online this afternoon and all parents presenting on Monday morning are expected to present an id of a relevant service or industry sector.

The provision will be available for children in the following school years: reception to year 8 and will be open from 8.00 (breakfast club) – 3.30.

Members of staff from all of Monmouthshire’s schools will work in these settings not only the ‘host’ school.  The aim is to ensure that there is familiar face for all pupils.  It is our intention, through working with the schools to establish a shift pattern to ensure that there can be a continuity of provision capable of withstanding increasing illness and self-isolation.  Members of the CYP Directorate will also support these provisions and we will review our capacity and potentially look to utilise the skills and talents of our youth service.

Pupils eligible for FSM

From Monday 23March 2020, we will also be able to provide a lunch to all of our children who are eligible for a free school meal.  This will be made available from each of the schools above and will be either a hot meal or a packed lunch on a ‘grab and go’ basis.  This will be available between 12pm and 2pm. 

Secondary aged pupils who are eligible for free school meals and are not in one of the hub schools should collect their lunch from their normal school at the normal time.

The situation we face is challenging and dynamic, these plans, as set out above, are in place for the first week.  At all times we will be reviewing the capacity of this offer to ensure that it remains suitable to meet its objectives.  We have additional schools on standby to augment the service.

All schools across Monmouthshire have made proactive plans to identify all vulnerable learners and staff who are not working at these hubs will be responsible for maintaining contact with these learners during the time of school closures.

Please refer to www.monmouthshire.gov.uk for details of registration, these will be available later this afternoon.

Thank you for your patience as we have worked to develop these contingencies, as I have said we will keep them continually under review and we can develop this offer is necessary.

Yours sincerely

Will McLean

Chief Officer

Children and Young People

Monmouthshire County Council has taken the decision to temporarily close the Borough Theatre in Abergavenny and the council-run museums following advice from the UK government to avoid any unnecessary social contact.

Shows due to take place at the Borough Theatre will be suspended with immediate effect until at least 30th of April.

Museums in Abergavenny, Chepstow and Monmouth will close on Thursday 19th of March until further notice.

Customers will be contacted in relation to event cancellations and postponements. Teams are currently contacting people in the shows’ calendar order and customers are asked to be patient while the teams work through the volume of calls.

While the situation is ever-changing and developing, many of the council’s key services remain open including the community hubs and leisure centres.

Councillor Paul Jordan, who has the responsibility for museums and the Borough Theatre, said: “We understand that this decision to close our museums and the Borough Theatre comes as a disappointment but the health and safety of our communities is our main priority. We continue to monitor the situation and we will aim to get these services reopened as soon as it’s appropriate to do so. These are unprecedented times and the wellbeing and safety of our customers and our staff is paramount in making this decision. We appreciate your support and look forward to welcoming you back to the Borough Theatre Abergavenny again very soon.”

Monmouthshire County Council has issued a warning to watch out for fraudsters targeting the public amid the Coronavirus pandemic.

Fraudsters are increasingly targeting the public and organisations with emails, texts, phone calls and WhatsApp messages offering advice and treatment for the Coronavirus, as well as setting up fake websites selling products and offering ‘cures’.

Scammers have also been setting up bogus websites asking for donations for victims or promoting awareness and prevention tips. Cold callers have been contacting organisations suggesting they must have certain measures in place by a certain deadline.

To help members of the public protect themselves from becoming a victim of fraud, Cifas, The UK’s Fraud Prevention Service is advising:

  • Be sceptical if you receive an email, text or WhatsApp message about the Coronavirus, and never click on any attachments or links
  • Never provide personal data such as your full name, address and date of birth – scammers can use this information to steal your identity
  • Don’t allow yourself to be pressured into donating money, and never make donations by cash or gift card, or send money through transfer agents such as Western Union or Moneygram
  • If you think you’ve been the victim of a scam, then speak to your bank immediately and report any fraud to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040
  • You can get further information on dealing with scams and fraud by calling the Consumer Service telephone number 0808 223 1133, or contact Citizens Advice.

Trading Standards Wales advise residents to contact their local Council for information about services and assistance in their area.

 Carmine Tarquilio will represent Wales in the final of the National Care Chef of the Year competition to be held on 3rd June at Stratford Upon Avon College in Warwickshire. Carmine who prepares meals for residents at Monmouthshire County Council’s Mardy Park Resource Centre in Abergavenny was crowned Wales Care Chef of the Year at a competition held in Bridgend College on 13th March. The competition is designed to challenge chefs to create an innovative, tasty main and dessert menu suitable for someone in a care setting that clearly demonstrates nutritional understanding of the ingredients used, aptitude and flair in the combination of flavours, technical execution and presentation. Each meal is limited to a strict budget of just £2.25 per head and preparation in just 90 minutes! Organised by The National Association of Care Caterers (NACC), the competition’s UK finals will bring together chefs working in the care sector from across the country. Pauline Batty, NACC’s Welsh Regional Chair, said: “This competition highlights the positive impact nutrition and mealtimes have on the physical and emotional health and wellbeing of the elderly and vulnerable in care settings.” Penny Jones, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for social care, added: “I’m delighted that Carmine will represent Wales in the national finals in June and I wish him the very best of success. The council recognises that catering is an important element in the provision of care and that tempting nutritious food plays a crucial part in the lives of our residents and service users.”

In light of the changing circumstances surrounding COVID-19 and following yesterday’s announcement by the Government, the decision has been made to postpone the LDP engagement events until further notice.  The consultation period and opportunity to submit candidate sites remain open, but the deadline for both will be extended accordingly. We will reschedule the events that have not yet taken place and publicise the new deadline in due course.

Students and speakers strike the #EachforEqual pose

As part of International Women’s Day 2020, King Henry VIII Comprehensive in Abergavenny hosted workshops for its Year 9 students. Rhiannon Taylor, of Monmouthshire Inspire, launched the event by giving the students a snapshot of equality issues. “Across the world, around 15million girls will not receive an education, while the figure for boys is 10million. Out of 585 Nobel Prizes awarded for economics and science, only 49 have been awarded to women. Things are improving but there is still work to do” she said.

The event brought together inspirational speakers designed to help young women consider their future goals and feel a sense of empowerment.  These included Jayne Brown, from Big Ideas Wales, who talked about her career path. This has included working as a ski instructor, a fitness instructor and joining conservational projects. “If we help each other, as women, we can do anything,” she explained. “Decide what you want to do, and know that you can do it.” Any teacher or head teachers in schools, colleges and universities who’d like a role model to come in to speak to them should visit the Big Ideas Wales website.

Jayne Brown of BigIdeasWales

Meanwhile, successful property developer Mandy St John Davey said: “I’m a Valley girl. I took every challenge, I said no to nothing.” As National Chairman of Women in Property, Mandy works with women in the construction industry. Explaining the potential of careers such as becoming an engineer, an architect, a solicitor or in a construction role, she said: “Be the change, make your mark. You can be anything you want to be. The world is your oyster. Most importantly, always remember your value.”

Property developer Mandy St John Davey

In addition to a team from MonLife, who talked to the students about the pledges they wanted to make for themselves, such as to be kinder, to be happier, and to pursue their career goals, firefighter Kelly Christopher, of South Wales Fire & Rescue, was also on hand to share her experiences. She talked to the students about life as a female firefighter in what is a male dominated role, explaining that she does exactly the same job and finds it incredibly rewarding.

Youth worker and firefighter Kelly Christopher with a student

Cllr Sara Jones, Cabinet Member for Social Justice said: “I feel really proud to live in a county where people can achieve their goals whatever they might be – career, sport, volunteering – the list goes on. The International Women’s Day events were fantastic, with lots of advice for young people about how to plan for the future. I hope the young women who took part in the workshops today feel inspired to pursue their dreams – whatever they might be. I fully support this year’s International Women’s Day campaign which is committed to building a gender-balanced world. Everyone has a part to play.”

About IWD2020

The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day, on 8th March, was #EachforEqual highlighting the campaign for equality. People have been encouraged to strike the #EachforEqual pose. The race is on for the gender equal boardroom, a gender equal government, gender equal media coverage, gender equal workplaces, gender equal sports coverage, more gender equality in health and wealth … so let’s make it happen. Let’s be #EachforEqual.

Jenipher with the children

As part of Fairtrade Fortnight, 24th February-8th March, groups of children from 18 Monmouthshire schools joined forces for a conference at Raglan CiW Primary School. Learning and fun were combined in a series of workshops demonstrating the importance of knowing the origins of our food and drink, how it has been produced and its impact on our environment.

This year’s Fairtrade campaign has been a continuation of its call for cocoa farmers to earn a living income, as well as being an opportunity to share stories that show the positive impact that Fairtrade has on women working on the farms.

The children enjoyed tasting some of the many products available, while learning how to spot the Fairtrade badge. There was also a workshop that explained where food comes from around the globe, as well as a look at the story behind chocolate.

Fairtrade is also supporting more women cocoa farmers to take the reins and stand tall alongside men. Fairtrade standards make sure that they have a voice in their community, are represented in decision-making and benefit from fair trade. Independent income in the hands of women brings swift and positive change to communities.

The day’s special guest was a coffee farmer from Uganda, Jenipher Wettaka Sambazi, who gave a talk about the difference that the Fairtrade campaign has made to the lives of many families, including her own. As deputy chair of MEACCE (Mt Elgon Agroforestry Coffee Community Enterprise), Jenipher has been touring Wales during Fairtrade Fortnight, visiting schools, community groups and churches to share her story. 

“I am a mother of six and might not have been able to afford to send all my children to school if it wasn’t for Fairtrade. I have been able to take control of my family’s lives and now my farm receives a fair and just price for our coffee beans.” Jenipher explained. “The chance to share my story with some of the school children of Monmouthshire, showing them the role and importance of fair trade has been very rewarding.”

Councillor Sara Jones, Cabinet member for Social Justice & Community Development said: “Getting our county’s children questioning where produce comes from and how it has been produced is vitally important, so as adults they make informed choices. Hopefully, one day the vast majority of such goods will have been produced ethically, with the workers paid fairly for their efforts.”

Notes to editors

The schools that took part were:

Ragland CiW Primary School.

Osbaston CiW School, Monmouth.

St Mary’s RC Primary School, Chepstow.

Llanfoist Fawr Primary School, Abergavenny.

Llanvihangel Crucorney Primary School.

Pembroke Primary School, Chepstow.

Durand Primary School, Caldicot.

Magor CiW Primary School.

Thornwell Primary School, Chepstow.

Shirenewton Primary School.

The Dell Primary, Chepstow.

Trellech Primary School.

Cross Ash Primary School.

Chepstow School.

Usk CiW Primary School.

Gilwern Primary School.

Ysgol Y Fenni.

Goytre Fawr.

This year’s Fairtrade campaign has been a continuation of its call for cocoa farmers to earn a living income, as well as the sharing of stories that show the positive impact that Fairtrade has on the women behind your chocolate bar.

About Fairtrade

Fairtrade is the only organisation to guarantee a safety net of a minimum price for farmers in times of global price decline plus a premium, an extra amount of money that goes directly to farmers to invest in business or projects of their choice in their own communities. Residents and visitors are invited to the county’s Fairtrade events organised over the fortnight and look for the Fairtrade Mark to enjoy a taste of chocolate indulgence and support a move towards a living income.

@FairtradeUK  #Fairtrade #SheDeserves

For more information Fairtrade.org.uk

From Monday 9th March, Monmouthshire County Council will be consulting and engaging on its Preferred Strategy for the Replacement Local Development Plan 2018-2033. Public consultation and engagement will run from the 9th March 2020 to the 22nd April 2020 and will include a number of ‘drop in sessions’ throughout the County. Drop in sessions on the Council’s Preferred Strategy will be held in the following locations on the following dates:

  • Shire Hall, Agincourt Square, Monmouth – 11th March 2020 1pm-7pm.
  • Village Hall, Raglan – 12th March 2020 1pm-7pm.
  • St Michaels Centre, Abergavenny – 18th March 2020 1pm-7pm.
  • Drill Hall, Chepstow – 24th March 2020 1pm-7pm.
  • Ebenezer Chapel, Magor – 26th March 2020 1pm – 7pm.
  • Community Hub, Caldicot – 31st March 2020 1pm -7pm.
  • County Hall, Usk – 9th April 2020 1pm – 7pm.”
pupil at school

St Mary’s RC Primary School in Chepstow marked St David’s Day with an eisteddfod that demonstrated the talents of students and celebrated their sense of belonging to Wales.

Each class offered two songs, artwork or poems, with the reception class participating in a short play.  Drawing on their instruction from the Gwent Music Support Service, Year Five students gave a performance on penny whistles while their counterparts from Year Six students sang solos.  All pupils and staff wore red in the form of rugby and football tops as well as traditional costume to add colour to the day’s proceedings.

The school eisteddfod ended in the traditional manner with Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau, the Welsh national anthem.

Headteacher Joanne Weightman said; “This was a very successful event which was very much enjoyed by those participating and those in the audience.  We were pleased to carry on the tradition of holding an eisteddfod to commemorate St David’s Day/Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Sant with wonderful performances from our students.”

The most recent report for St Mary’s RC Primary indicates that under Mrs Weightman’s leadership, staff, governors and the whole school community have worked hard to develop a shared vision with changes implemented in terms of the learning environment, provision, planning and developing the Welsh ethos.  The impact of these changes is already starting to be evident.

Monmouthshire’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Councillor Richard John said: “It’s great to see that St Mary’s RC Primary School is making good progress in its journey towards improvement.”

Monmouthshire County Council has updated its corporate plan, ‘A Monmouthshire that works for everyone’. The updated corporate plan re-states the council’s purpose of building sustainable and resilient communities. With local politicians halfway through their term in office this offers an opportunity to reflect on some of their achievements to date while identifying a number of new commitments. Some of the new commitments include: • reducing the council’s carbon emissions to net zero by 2030 and working with communities; • completing the second phase of the Chepstow transport study, taking action based on the findings; • creating plans for the redevelopment of Usk and Caldicot town centres and beginning discussions on plans for Monmouth and Chepstow. Despite being the lowest funded local authority in Wales per head of population the plan shows real ambition and focuses on policy priorities that will deliver the council’s purpose, working efficiently and effectively while planning for the long term future of Monmouthshire. Commenting after councillors agreed the plan, Council Leader Peter Fox said; “The Corporate Plan is a really important document that provides direction and is our way of ensuring we are focused on delivering what matters to the people of Monmouthshire. Many of the things we are doing are incredibly ambitious and focus on the longer-term future of our county such as the commitment to move towards net zero carbon emissions by 2030. “The plan also contains new commitments, such as town centre regeneration and the second phase of the Chepstow transport study. I’m particularly pleased about the support it contains for rural businesses such as improvements in rural broadband and acting as a testbed for rural applications of 5G in sectors like tourism and agriculture.” The corporate plan also sets out how the council will meet its requirements under the Well-being of Future Generations Act. Residents can download a copy of the plan on the council’s website at https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/improvement/ They can also join the discussion on twitter @monmouthshireCC.

High tides are due.  We will be monitoring the situation and if necessary, will arrange for the A466 through Tintern to be closed for short periods on the following dates and times:-

  • Tuesday 10th March                Between 08.10 – 08.40 (approx.)
  • Tuesday 10th March                Between 20:35 – 21:05 (approx.)
  • Wednesday 11th March          Between 08:55 – 09.25 (approx.)
  • Wednesday 11th March          Between 21.15 – 21.45 (approx.)
  • Thursday 12th March               Between 09:35 – 10:05 (approx.)
  • Thursday 12th March               Between 21.55 – 22.25 (approx.)
  • Friday 13th March                    Between 10.15 – 10:45 (approx.)

The closure points will be as follows:

North End closure: Trelleck Road junction.

South End closure: Royal George junction.

Closure times are estimated based on the forecasted tide times.  Natural Resources Wales will be monitoring the situation and issuing Flood Warnings as necessary.  Road closures will only be temporary and only when tidal water actually overflows onto the highway.  The road will reopen as soon as the water has receded from the highway. 

St Mary’s RC Primary School in Chepstow marked St David’s Day with an eisteddfod that demonstrated the talents of students and celebrated their sense of belonging to Wales.

Each class offered two songs, artwork or poems, with the reception class participating in a short play.  Drawing on their instruction from the Gwent Music Support Service, Year Five students gave a performance on penny whistles while their counterparts from Year Six students sang solos.  All pupils and staff wore red in the form of rugby and football tops as well as traditional costume to add colour to the day’s proceedings.

The school eisteddfod ended in the traditional manner with Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau, the Welsh national anthem.

Headteacher Joanne Weightman said; “This was a very successful event which was very much enjoyed by those participating and those in the audience.  We were pleased to carry on the tradition of holding an eisteddfod to commemorate St David’s Day/Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Sant with wonderful performances from our students.”

The most recent report for St Mary’s RC Primary indicates that under Mrs Weightman’s leadership, staff, governors and the whole school community have worked hard to develop a shared vision with changes implemented in terms of the learning environment, provision, planning and developing the Welsh ethos.  The impact of these changes is already starting to be evident.

Monmouthshire’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Councillor Richard John said: “It’s great to see that St Mary’s RC Primary School is making good progress in its journey towards improvement.”

Monmouthshire County Council has launched a special task group to deal with the mass recovery operation following the unprecedented flooding experienced across the county.

Recovery Co-ordinating Group (RCG) ‘Attis’ has been set up in conjunction with neighbouring authorities in Gwent and agencies such as Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales.

The council and partners are working hard to assess the damage and impact on residents, businesses, infrastructure and the environment caused by Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis – with over 100 residential properties and a number of businesses already being identified as impacted by the floods in Monmouthshire.

With the cost of the recovery operation expected to run into tens of millions, the task group has already begun seeking financial assistance from the Welsh Government.

The task group is expected to be operational for a number of months, and possibly longer given the scale of the task, until the disruption has been rectified, demands on services have returned to normal levels, and the needs of those affected have been met.

To help the group carry out their response, anyone affected by flooding in Monmouthshire is being asked to get in touch with the council. A simple form can be accessed via the ‘My Monmouthshire’ app or on the council’s website. Staff across the county’s Community Hubs are also on hand to help anyone with the form if they do not have access to a computer.

The council has been overwhelmed by the generosity of people of offering support and donations. These offers have included donations of food, furniture and clothing, as well as offers of housing and transport. A number of people and businesses have also come forward to offer manpower to help with clean-ups and disposal of waste. Anyone who is able to offer support is also being encouraged to get in contact in order for all offers of help to be documented.

Council leader, Peter Fox said: “The impact on our beautiful county, residents and businesses from these extreme events has been devastating and the loss felt by those affected is going to be long-lasting. Through the establishment of RCG Attis we have already begun identifying what levels of support and advice are available to our residents and it will be these offers of support that start us on the long road to recovery. I could not think of a more appropriate name for this group than Attis – the Greek God of rebirth. In these unprecedented times, I’m extremely proud of our communities who have all rallied together to support their neighbours and offer everything from free sofas and food to getting stuck in with the clean-up of debris and waste. You have been remarkable. To those affected, I can reassure you we are working around the clock to get Monmouthshire back up and running.”

Free drop-in surgeries hosted by the Development Bank of Wales, Business Wales and Monmouthshire County Council next week will aim to help entrepreneurs and owners of firms discover more about funding for growth. The Funding for Growth drop-in surgery will be held in Chepstow on Tuesday 3rd March from 9.30am to 3.30pm with thirty minute appointment slots available on a one-to-one basis. Micro loan assistant investment executive Claire Vokes will be present at Chepstow Library (NP16 5EN) to discuss the range of funding available from the development Bank. Ms Vokes said: “Our flexible micro loans can help local businesses to grow. They are quick and simple to access and the money can be used to finance the purchase of a range of small business needs including much needed stock, plant, equipment or even new premises. It could also support cash flow for the purchase of another business. “By working in partnership with Monmouthshire County Council and Business Wales, we are able to provide loans from £1,000 to £50,000 for local businesses. In fact, if you have a business that has been running for two years, we can offer loans up to £25,000 with a decision in just two working days. “We’re keen to talk to as many local business owners and managers as possible so please do come along to our next drop in surgery.” To book a 30 minute slot businesses should email: Claire.Vokes@developmentbank.wales Councillor Bob Greenland, Cabinet Member for Enterprise at Monmouthshire County Council added: “We’re keen to support and encourage business growth and job creation. We’re delighted to recommend these helpful workshops to anyone hoping to boost their own business.”

Monmouthshire Trading Standards is warning people to be aware of rogue traders targeting residents affected by the recent flooding.

It is not illegal for handymen to canvas for work in this way, but it is important that people are cautious and don’t make hasty decisions about agreeing to have work done by traders who come directly to their doorstep. Rogue doorstep trading is an ongoing problem in the UK and work or services carried out can sometimes be unnecessary, of a poor standard, much more expensive than originally quoted or not done at all.

If your home has been damaged by the recent flooding or high winds, getting your house repaired will be something you will want completed as quickly as possible. Monmouthshire County Council Trading Standards have the following advice to help make sure that remedial work goes ahead as smoothly as possible:

Do not agree to have work done by anyone who cold calls or door knocks at your property

Cold callers rarely give householders their contact details or provide them with details of their legal right to cancel a contract within 14 days. They may also tell you that work is required when it is not. If things go wrong you are unlikely to be able to contact the trader again and will have no guarantee for the work.

Obtain at least three quotes for any work

Obtaining a choice of written quotes ensures you can have time to assess and compare the price of work and can make an informed choice about which tradesperson to use.

Check trade body approval or certification

If a tradesperson claims to be a member of a trade body or approval scheme check whether this is true on the scheme or body website. There are advantages to using a trader who is a member of a trade body or approval scheme as they will have been vetted and it is likely that there will be a complaints or arbitration procedure in place in the event that anything goes wrong.     

For certain work, such as electrical or gas work, traders must be qualified and approved as fit to do that work. For gas work, traders must be registered with Gas Safe and you can check who is registered via the Gas Safe website. For electrical work, traders must be registered with NICEIC or ELECSA and you can check who is registered via the NICEIC website and via the ELECSA website. Always check before you engage a trader that they hold the appropriate authorisation to complete work safely and certify it to Buildings Regulations. As well as ensuring the work is safe, you will be required to have certification if you sell your home in the future.   

Do not pay the full contract price upfront

Legitimate tradespeople will generally not expect to be paid anything until work is completed to your satisfaction. You may be required to pay an amount upfront if the work involves expensive parts or fittings but you should only pay the full amount once the work is completed. If work is not satisfactory, the law allows you to withhold a reasonable percentage to reflect any deficiencies in the work.

Speak to your insurance company

If you are insured, make sure you speak to your insurance company before arranging for work to be done. The insurance company may well have their own list of approved contractors or will want to see quotes before they agree to pay for work.

  • We hope that everything goes well with the repairs to your home but if you do need more specific advice at any stage you can ring the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133 (Consumer Service Welsh Speaking – 0808 223 1144). Alternatively, you can contact the Helpline via their website. The Citizens Advice website also has guidance on ways to find a trustworthy trader.

Residents and businesses impacted by flooding are being asked to follow important information as clean-up operations continue across the county.

Over 100 residential properties and a number of businesses have begun their recovery processes after devastation by flood water caused by Storm Dennis.

Flooding carries with it many dangers including contamination and the risk of debris remaining once the water has receded.

Anyone affected by flooding is asked to follow the guidance below:

  • The single most effective way of preventing infection is washing your hands after handling anything that has been in contact with flood water or sludge and silt.
  • If using a pressure washer to clean use face masks to prevent inhalation of aerosols
  • Dead rodents should be handled using rubber gloves and disposed of in secure plastic bags
  • Remove soft furnishings and fittings that are damaged and beyond repair.
  • Remove as much silt and dirty water as possible.
  • Wash down all surfaces with hot soapy water till visibly clean
  • Food preparation areas, food cupboards and refrigerators should be cleaned with hot soapy water then disinfected using bleach. Dispose of any wooden boards and utensils.
  • Dispose of all contaminated food, included anything defrosted. 
  • Allow all surfaces to dry – this will also help kill germs.
  • Contact Monmouthshire County Council’s Environmental Health team for further advice www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/environmental-health-2/

Monmouthshire County Council also encourages people to use the county’s waste and recycling centres to dispose of any items that might have been damaged in the floods.

Further advice can be sought from partner agencies including Natural Resources Wales, Public Health Wales and the National Flood Forum.

Council Leader, Peter Fox said: “As we begin to move into the recovery operation of these dreadful floods, it’s important residents and businesses take the advice we’ve issued to ensure they keep themselves safe and reduce the risk of other potential issues such as the spread of disease. There is plenty of advice available and I would encourage everyone to heed the warnings issued.”

For further information view our Flood Risk Management page

Updates

4 minutes ago

Monmouthshire

Our Careline team are out today visiting properties and leaving door side GSM Careline units with an easy install guide and a pre-programmed unit for ease. This is a new service for us and developed with safety and reassurance in mind. ... See MoreSee Less

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3 hours ago

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****Update on Services Provided ****

Please read below, we are still open for business by phone, text and email.
www.mindmonmouthshire.org.uk/
... See MoreSee Less

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4 hours ago

Monmouthshire

There will be another round of applause for our excellent colleagues in the NHS and tonight we will be putting our hands together for those who are also working on the frontline. 👏👏👏👏👏

To the social care workers, people looking after the children of key workers and the community groups who are all rallying together during these difficult times - tonight we clap for you too!

So at 8pm tonight let's all make some noise for these wonderful people!
... See MoreSee Less

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5 hours ago

Monmouthshire

A massive shoutout to Owendale Construction for stepping in to move a bed and enable a hospital discharge using PPE to ensure safety for all ❤️💪 ... See MoreSee Less

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6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you NEED TO REGISTER. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

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6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Good morning. Please stay home. Please stay safe.

💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

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18 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you need to register. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

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20 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire's cover photo ... See MoreSee Less

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21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

We are changing the way we provide free school meals to those who are eligible.

From the 6th April we will credit the parent/carers bank account with the equivalent amount for the cost of your child’s free school meal. This will be paid on a weekly basis in advance.

Please register via bit.ly/3bDCxxG
... See MoreSee Less

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21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Council Leader Peter Fox shares an important message with businesses. ... See MoreSee Less

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24 hours ago

Monmouthshire

An update to Public Transport in Monmouthshire - www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/buses-trains/ ... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” - Voltaire

Here's to our wonderful colleagues who continue to work through these difficult times! Thank you!
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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

IMPORTANT a fake letter has been sent to businesses. This is NOT genuine and is not from our Licensing team. Please disregard it, it is probably someone's idea of an April Fool's joke. 😔 ... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Many people in Wales have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales because they have an existing health issue – or care for someone who does. If you fall into this category, and have received the letter, it is very important you take extra steps to avoid catching coronavirus and these are explained in your letter.

The letter advises you to stay at home for 12 weeks and arrange for food and medical supplies to be delivered. Hopefully you have a family member, friend or neighbour who can help you with shopping and things like collecting prescriptions but we know that not everyone has this.

If you need some additional support then you will have been advised to contact us, your local authority. The help we can arrange will be specific to your needs, for example we may be able to put you in touch with a volunteer in your community who can help with these things or we may be able to help with the delivery of food parcels in future. There may be some support available from our social services teams.

Please give us a call on 01633 644644. We will take a few details and then pass you through to a colleague who will explore your specific circumstances and what we may be able to do to help you.
... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

It is important to look after your health at this crucial time: if you smoke the single most beneficial thing you can do to protect yourself from the impact of COVID-19 is to quit.

#QuitForCovid

Advice for quitting during outbreak updated here: ash.wales/coronavirus-smoking/
... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

***DONATIONS FOR OUR PATIENTS***

As we’ve needed to stop all visiting to our hospitals to limit the spread of Coronavirus, many of our patients are now running out of toiletries and clean night clothes.

We are very grateful to our communities for all the kind offers of donations, both for essential supplies and monetary donations, for the benefit of our patients and staff during these challenging times.

If you would like to donate, we would be very grateful for the following items (NEW items only please):

• Men’s and Women’s nightwear (pyjamas, nightdresses)
• Shampoo
• Shower gel
• Toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Denture cleaner
• Hand / facial wipes
• Hairbrushes / combs
• Shaving foam

* Please note we are unable to accept any food donations or any other items (including electrical) not included on this list.

Please do not take any donations to our hospitals.

The easiest and best way for you to donate is to use our Amazon ‘Wish List’ on Amazon, as you don’t need to leave your house and items will be delivered directly to us. Please use the link below to access the wish list:
www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2OJXR1CPZTN3J?ref_=wl_share

If you are not able to order from Amazon but still wish to donate, please could you contact the Person Centred Care Team on 01495 768677 or email: ffrindimi.abb@wales.nhs.uk who can advise where any donations can be dropped off.

Alternatively, if you would like to make a monetary donation to help your local NHS services then please go to the link below:
www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ABUHBCovid19

On behalf of our patients and staff, we would like to sincerely thank you!

#StaySafe #StayHome #ProtectTheNHS
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1 day ago

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Please note that from Friday 3rd April garden waste collections are stopped until further notice. Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again. This difficult decision has been made in order to protect the core recycling and waste collections as circumstances become more challenging. For more information: bit.ly/3anYgJp ... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

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Timeline PhotosRemember, you can still spread the virus before showing symptoms. Help save lives by following the rules. 🚶‍♀️📏📏🚶‍♂️ ... See MoreSee Less

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For further information view our Flood Risk Management page

Updates

4 minutes ago

Monmouthshire

Our Careline team are out today visiting properties and leaving door side GSM Careline units with an easy install guide and a pre-programmed unit for ease. This is a new service for us and developed with safety and reassurance in mind. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

3 hours ago

Monmouthshire

****Update on Services Provided ****

Please read below, we are still open for business by phone, text and email.
www.mindmonmouthshire.org.uk/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

4 hours ago

Monmouthshire

There will be another round of applause for our excellent colleagues in the NHS and tonight we will be putting our hands together for those who are also working on the frontline. 👏👏👏👏👏

To the social care workers, people looking after the children of key workers and the community groups who are all rallying together during these difficult times - tonight we clap for you too!

So at 8pm tonight let's all make some noise for these wonderful people!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

5 hours ago

Monmouthshire

A massive shoutout to Owendale Construction for stepping in to move a bed and enable a hospital discharge using PPE to ensure safety for all ❤️💪 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you NEED TO REGISTER. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Good morning. Please stay home. Please stay safe.

💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

18 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you need to register. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

20 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire's cover photo ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

We are changing the way we provide free school meals to those who are eligible.

From the 6th April we will credit the parent/carers bank account with the equivalent amount for the cost of your child’s free school meal. This will be paid on a weekly basis in advance.

Please register via bit.ly/3bDCxxG
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Council Leader Peter Fox shares an important message with businesses. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

24 hours ago

Monmouthshire

An update to Public Transport in Monmouthshire - www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/buses-trains/ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” - Voltaire

Here's to our wonderful colleagues who continue to work through these difficult times! Thank you!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

IMPORTANT a fake letter has been sent to businesses. This is NOT genuine and is not from our Licensing team. Please disregard it, it is probably someone's idea of an April Fool's joke. 😔 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Many people in Wales have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales because they have an existing health issue – or care for someone who does. If you fall into this category, and have received the letter, it is very important you take extra steps to avoid catching coronavirus and these are explained in your letter.

The letter advises you to stay at home for 12 weeks and arrange for food and medical supplies to be delivered. Hopefully you have a family member, friend or neighbour who can help you with shopping and things like collecting prescriptions but we know that not everyone has this.

If you need some additional support then you will have been advised to contact us, your local authority. The help we can arrange will be specific to your needs, for example we may be able to put you in touch with a volunteer in your community who can help with these things or we may be able to help with the delivery of food parcels in future. There may be some support available from our social services teams.

Please give us a call on 01633 644644. We will take a few details and then pass you through to a colleague who will explore your specific circumstances and what we may be able to do to help you.
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

It is important to look after your health at this crucial time: if you smoke the single most beneficial thing you can do to protect yourself from the impact of COVID-19 is to quit.

#QuitForCovid

Advice for quitting during outbreak updated here: ash.wales/coronavirus-smoking/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

***DONATIONS FOR OUR PATIENTS***

As we’ve needed to stop all visiting to our hospitals to limit the spread of Coronavirus, many of our patients are now running out of toiletries and clean night clothes.

We are very grateful to our communities for all the kind offers of donations, both for essential supplies and monetary donations, for the benefit of our patients and staff during these challenging times.

If you would like to donate, we would be very grateful for the following items (NEW items only please):

• Men’s and Women’s nightwear (pyjamas, nightdresses)
• Shampoo
• Shower gel
• Toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Denture cleaner
• Hand / facial wipes
• Hairbrushes / combs
• Shaving foam

* Please note we are unable to accept any food donations or any other items (including electrical) not included on this list.

Please do not take any donations to our hospitals.

The easiest and best way for you to donate is to use our Amazon ‘Wish List’ on Amazon, as you don’t need to leave your house and items will be delivered directly to us. Please use the link below to access the wish list:
www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2OJXR1CPZTN3J?ref_=wl_share

If you are not able to order from Amazon but still wish to donate, please could you contact the Person Centred Care Team on 01495 768677 or email: ffrindimi.abb@wales.nhs.uk who can advise where any donations can be dropped off.

Alternatively, if you would like to make a monetary donation to help your local NHS services then please go to the link below:
www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ABUHBCovid19

On behalf of our patients and staff, we would like to sincerely thank you!

#StaySafe #StayHome #ProtectTheNHS
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Please note that from Friday 3rd April garden waste collections are stopped until further notice. Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again. This difficult decision has been made in order to protect the core recycling and waste collections as circumstances become more challenging. For more information: bit.ly/3anYgJp ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Timeline PhotosRemember, you can still spread the virus before showing symptoms. Help save lives by following the rules. 🚶‍♀️📏📏🚶‍♂️ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

For further information view our Flood Risk Management page

Updates

4 minutes ago

Monmouthshire

Our Careline team are out today visiting properties and leaving door side GSM Careline units with an easy install guide and a pre-programmed unit for ease. This is a new service for us and developed with safety and reassurance in mind. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

3 hours ago

Monmouthshire

****Update on Services Provided ****

Please read below, we are still open for business by phone, text and email.
www.mindmonmouthshire.org.uk/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

4 hours ago

Monmouthshire

There will be another round of applause for our excellent colleagues in the NHS and tonight we will be putting our hands together for those who are also working on the frontline. 👏👏👏👏👏

To the social care workers, people looking after the children of key workers and the community groups who are all rallying together during these difficult times - tonight we clap for you too!

So at 8pm tonight let's all make some noise for these wonderful people!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

5 hours ago

Monmouthshire

A massive shoutout to Owendale Construction for stepping in to move a bed and enable a hospital discharge using PPE to ensure safety for all ❤️💪 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you NEED TO REGISTER. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Good morning. Please stay home. Please stay safe.

💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

18 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you need to register. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

20 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire's cover photo ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

We are changing the way we provide free school meals to those who are eligible.

From the 6th April we will credit the parent/carers bank account with the equivalent amount for the cost of your child’s free school meal. This will be paid on a weekly basis in advance.

Please register via bit.ly/3bDCxxG
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Council Leader Peter Fox shares an important message with businesses. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

24 hours ago

Monmouthshire

An update to Public Transport in Monmouthshire - www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/buses-trains/ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” - Voltaire

Here's to our wonderful colleagues who continue to work through these difficult times! Thank you!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

IMPORTANT a fake letter has been sent to businesses. This is NOT genuine and is not from our Licensing team. Please disregard it, it is probably someone's idea of an April Fool's joke. 😔 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Many people in Wales have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales because they have an existing health issue – or care for someone who does. If you fall into this category, and have received the letter, it is very important you take extra steps to avoid catching coronavirus and these are explained in your letter.

The letter advises you to stay at home for 12 weeks and arrange for food and medical supplies to be delivered. Hopefully you have a family member, friend or neighbour who can help you with shopping and things like collecting prescriptions but we know that not everyone has this.

If you need some additional support then you will have been advised to contact us, your local authority. The help we can arrange will be specific to your needs, for example we may be able to put you in touch with a volunteer in your community who can help with these things or we may be able to help with the delivery of food parcels in future. There may be some support available from our social services teams.

Please give us a call on 01633 644644. We will take a few details and then pass you through to a colleague who will explore your specific circumstances and what we may be able to do to help you.
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

It is important to look after your health at this crucial time: if you smoke the single most beneficial thing you can do to protect yourself from the impact of COVID-19 is to quit.

#QuitForCovid

Advice for quitting during outbreak updated here: ash.wales/coronavirus-smoking/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

***DONATIONS FOR OUR PATIENTS***

As we’ve needed to stop all visiting to our hospitals to limit the spread of Coronavirus, many of our patients are now running out of toiletries and clean night clothes.

We are very grateful to our communities for all the kind offers of donations, both for essential supplies and monetary donations, for the benefit of our patients and staff during these challenging times.

If you would like to donate, we would be very grateful for the following items (NEW items only please):

• Men’s and Women’s nightwear (pyjamas, nightdresses)
• Shampoo
• Shower gel
• Toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Denture cleaner
• Hand / facial wipes
• Hairbrushes / combs
• Shaving foam

* Please note we are unable to accept any food donations or any other items (including electrical) not included on this list.

Please do not take any donations to our hospitals.

The easiest and best way for you to donate is to use our Amazon ‘Wish List’ on Amazon, as you don’t need to leave your house and items will be delivered directly to us. Please use the link below to access the wish list:
www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2OJXR1CPZTN3J?ref_=wl_share

If you are not able to order from Amazon but still wish to donate, please could you contact the Person Centred Care Team on 01495 768677 or email: ffrindimi.abb@wales.nhs.uk who can advise where any donations can be dropped off.

Alternatively, if you would like to make a monetary donation to help your local NHS services then please go to the link below:
www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ABUHBCovid19

On behalf of our patients and staff, we would like to sincerely thank you!

#StaySafe #StayHome #ProtectTheNHS
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Please note that from Friday 3rd April garden waste collections are stopped until further notice. Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again. This difficult decision has been made in order to protect the core recycling and waste collections as circumstances become more challenging. For more information: bit.ly/3anYgJp ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Timeline PhotosRemember, you can still spread the virus before showing symptoms. Help save lives by following the rules. 🚶‍♀️📏📏🚶‍♂️ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Amazing people doing amazing work! Thank you!

#StayHomeSaveLives
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

A Lovely moment from last week. Thank You NHS!
💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Morning guys and gals. Please continue to keep helping out by staying at home, staying safe and looking after yourselves. We've all got to do our bit 💛💙❤️

#StayAtHomeSaveLives
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Thank you to all our NHS colleagues. Your caring and commitment goes above and beyond the call of duty 🙌👏💗 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Mind Monmouthshire are always there if you need a chat or some friendly advice. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

@MonmouthshireCC's childcare hubs have been fantastic again this week. We are now making plans for how we support key workers over the Easter holidays. Please go to www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/school-closures/
to access our eform and register.

Thanks to @Mon_Active for all your support
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Thank you for all your help in helping others.

If you are wanting to support those most in need during this difficult time, we can help.

More info can be found here: bit.ly/2WWK1b7
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

An update from our Careline team - Please contact us via phone 01633 644466 or Email Careline@monmouthshire.gov.uk, we are currently running a reduced service but we will respond as soon as we can. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire
View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Due staffing challenges related to the Coronavirus we took the difficult decision to temporarily close the Post Office last week. We explored a number options to keep it open but were unable to do so. We know that some people were disappointed to lose access to this service and so Monmouthshire County Council will now operate a free bus service for residents to allow them to access the service in Raglan.

From Monday 6th April Usk, residents will be able to book a place on the bus, which will run on a Monday and Wednesday, between 10am and 12pm.

A maximum of four people will be allowed per trip to enable social distancing. Residents can book a slot by calling 0800 085801, 24 hours in advance.

The booking line is open Monday to Friday 9:00am to 4:30pm, so Monday bookings need to be made on a Friday. This is a trial at this stage and will be reviewed.
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

For further information view our Flood Risk Management page

Updates

4 minutes ago

Monmouthshire

Our Careline team are out today visiting properties and leaving door side GSM Careline units with an easy install guide and a pre-programmed unit for ease. This is a new service for us and developed with safety and reassurance in mind. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

3 hours ago

Monmouthshire

****Update on Services Provided ****

Please read below, we are still open for business by phone, text and email.
www.mindmonmouthshire.org.uk/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

4 hours ago

Monmouthshire

There will be another round of applause for our excellent colleagues in the NHS and tonight we will be putting our hands together for those who are also working on the frontline. 👏👏👏👏👏

To the social care workers, people looking after the children of key workers and the community groups who are all rallying together during these difficult times - tonight we clap for you too!

So at 8pm tonight let's all make some noise for these wonderful people!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

5 hours ago

Monmouthshire

A massive shoutout to Owendale Construction for stepping in to move a bed and enable a hospital discharge using PPE to ensure safety for all ❤️💪 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you NEED TO REGISTER. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Good morning. Please stay home. Please stay safe.

💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

18 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you need to register. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

20 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire's cover photo ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

We are changing the way we provide free school meals to those who are eligible.

From the 6th April we will credit the parent/carers bank account with the equivalent amount for the cost of your child’s free school meal. This will be paid on a weekly basis in advance.

Please register via bit.ly/3bDCxxG
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Council Leader Peter Fox shares an important message with businesses. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

24 hours ago

Monmouthshire

An update to Public Transport in Monmouthshire - www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/buses-trains/ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” - Voltaire

Here's to our wonderful colleagues who continue to work through these difficult times! Thank you!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

IMPORTANT a fake letter has been sent to businesses. This is NOT genuine and is not from our Licensing team. Please disregard it, it is probably someone's idea of an April Fool's joke. 😔 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Many people in Wales have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales because they have an existing health issue – or care for someone who does. If you fall into this category, and have received the letter, it is very important you take extra steps to avoid catching coronavirus and these are explained in your letter.

The letter advises you to stay at home for 12 weeks and arrange for food and medical supplies to be delivered. Hopefully you have a family member, friend or neighbour who can help you with shopping and things like collecting prescriptions but we know that not everyone has this.

If you need some additional support then you will have been advised to contact us, your local authority. The help we can arrange will be specific to your needs, for example we may be able to put you in touch with a volunteer in your community who can help with these things or we may be able to help with the delivery of food parcels in future. There may be some support available from our social services teams.

Please give us a call on 01633 644644. We will take a few details and then pass you through to a colleague who will explore your specific circumstances and what we may be able to do to help you.
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

It is important to look after your health at this crucial time: if you smoke the single most beneficial thing you can do to protect yourself from the impact of COVID-19 is to quit.

#QuitForCovid

Advice for quitting during outbreak updated here: ash.wales/coronavirus-smoking/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

***DONATIONS FOR OUR PATIENTS***

As we’ve needed to stop all visiting to our hospitals to limit the spread of Coronavirus, many of our patients are now running out of toiletries and clean night clothes.

We are very grateful to our communities for all the kind offers of donations, both for essential supplies and monetary donations, for the benefit of our patients and staff during these challenging times.

If you would like to donate, we would be very grateful for the following items (NEW items only please):

• Men’s and Women’s nightwear (pyjamas, nightdresses)
• Shampoo
• Shower gel
• Toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Denture cleaner
• Hand / facial wipes
• Hairbrushes / combs
• Shaving foam

* Please note we are unable to accept any food donations or any other items (including electrical) not included on this list.

Please do not take any donations to our hospitals.

The easiest and best way for you to donate is to use our Amazon ‘Wish List’ on Amazon, as you don’t need to leave your house and items will be delivered directly to us. Please use the link below to access the wish list:
www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2OJXR1CPZTN3J?ref_=wl_share

If you are not able to order from Amazon but still wish to donate, please could you contact the Person Centred Care Team on 01495 768677 or email: ffrindimi.abb@wales.nhs.uk who can advise where any donations can be dropped off.

Alternatively, if you would like to make a monetary donation to help your local NHS services then please go to the link below:
www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ABUHBCovid19

On behalf of our patients and staff, we would like to sincerely thank you!

#StaySafe #StayHome #ProtectTheNHS
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Please note that from Friday 3rd April garden waste collections are stopped until further notice. Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again. This difficult decision has been made in order to protect the core recycling and waste collections as circumstances become more challenging. For more information: bit.ly/3anYgJp ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Timeline PhotosRemember, you can still spread the virus before showing symptoms. Help save lives by following the rules. 🚶‍♀️📏📏🚶‍♂️ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

A severe flood warning for the River Wye in Monmouth has been declared by Natural Resources Wales.

This means water levels are deemed extremely dangerous and are predicted to reach unprecedented levels.

Residents living on the River Wye and on nearby roads have been evacuated.

Monmouthshire County Council has closed the Wye Bridge in the centre of the town and are warning pedestrians and motorists to keep away from the area.

Anyone affected by the bridge closure or flooding is asked to use the rest centre that has been set up at the Shire Hall in the centre of Monmouth.

The council continues to work partner agencies, including Natural Resources Wales and the emergency services to assess the situation and ensure all the affected residents are informed and supported.

For further information view our Flood Risk Management page

Updates

4 minutes ago

Monmouthshire

Our Careline team are out today visiting properties and leaving door side GSM Careline units with an easy install guide and a pre-programmed unit for ease. This is a new service for us and developed with safety and reassurance in mind. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

3 hours ago

Monmouthshire

****Update on Services Provided ****

Please read below, we are still open for business by phone, text and email.
www.mindmonmouthshire.org.uk/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

4 hours ago

Monmouthshire

There will be another round of applause for our excellent colleagues in the NHS and tonight we will be putting our hands together for those who are also working on the frontline. 👏👏👏👏👏

To the social care workers, people looking after the children of key workers and the community groups who are all rallying together during these difficult times - tonight we clap for you too!

So at 8pm tonight let's all make some noise for these wonderful people!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

5 hours ago

Monmouthshire

A massive shoutout to Owendale Construction for stepping in to move a bed and enable a hospital discharge using PPE to ensure safety for all ❤️💪 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you NEED TO REGISTER. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Good morning. Please stay home. Please stay safe.

💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

18 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you need to register. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

20 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire's cover photo ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

We are changing the way we provide free school meals to those who are eligible.

From the 6th April we will credit the parent/carers bank account with the equivalent amount for the cost of your child’s free school meal. This will be paid on a weekly basis in advance.

Please register via bit.ly/3bDCxxG
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Council Leader Peter Fox shares an important message with businesses. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

24 hours ago

Monmouthshire

An update to Public Transport in Monmouthshire - www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/buses-trains/ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” - Voltaire

Here's to our wonderful colleagues who continue to work through these difficult times! Thank you!
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

IMPORTANT a fake letter has been sent to businesses. This is NOT genuine and is not from our Licensing team. Please disregard it, it is probably someone's idea of an April Fool's joke. 😔 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Many people in Wales have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales because they have an existing health issue – or care for someone who does. If you fall into this category, and have received the letter, it is very important you take extra steps to avoid catching coronavirus and these are explained in your letter.

The letter advises you to stay at home for 12 weeks and arrange for food and medical supplies to be delivered. Hopefully you have a family member, friend or neighbour who can help you with shopping and things like collecting prescriptions but we know that not everyone has this.

If you need some additional support then you will have been advised to contact us, your local authority. The help we can arrange will be specific to your needs, for example we may be able to put you in touch with a volunteer in your community who can help with these things or we may be able to help with the delivery of food parcels in future. There may be some support available from our social services teams.

Please give us a call on 01633 644644. We will take a few details and then pass you through to a colleague who will explore your specific circumstances and what we may be able to do to help you.
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

It is important to look after your health at this crucial time: if you smoke the single most beneficial thing you can do to protect yourself from the impact of COVID-19 is to quit.

#QuitForCovid

Advice for quitting during outbreak updated here: ash.wales/coronavirus-smoking/
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

***DONATIONS FOR OUR PATIENTS***

As we’ve needed to stop all visiting to our hospitals to limit the spread of Coronavirus, many of our patients are now running out of toiletries and clean night clothes.

We are very grateful to our communities for all the kind offers of donations, both for essential supplies and monetary donations, for the benefit of our patients and staff during these challenging times.

If you would like to donate, we would be very grateful for the following items (NEW items only please):

• Men’s and Women’s nightwear (pyjamas, nightdresses)
• Shampoo
• Shower gel
• Toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Denture cleaner
• Hand / facial wipes
• Hairbrushes / combs
• Shaving foam

* Please note we are unable to accept any food donations or any other items (including electrical) not included on this list.

Please do not take any donations to our hospitals.

The easiest and best way for you to donate is to use our Amazon ‘Wish List’ on Amazon, as you don’t need to leave your house and items will be delivered directly to us. Please use the link below to access the wish list:
www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2OJXR1CPZTN3J?ref_=wl_share

If you are not able to order from Amazon but still wish to donate, please could you contact the Person Centred Care Team on 01495 768677 or email: ffrindimi.abb@wales.nhs.uk who can advise where any donations can be dropped off.

Alternatively, if you would like to make a monetary donation to help your local NHS services then please go to the link below:
www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ABUHBCovid19

On behalf of our patients and staff, we would like to sincerely thank you!

#StaySafe #StayHome #ProtectTheNHS
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Please note that from Friday 3rd April garden waste collections are stopped until further notice. Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again. This difficult decision has been made in order to protect the core recycling and waste collections as circumstances become more challenging. For more information: bit.ly/3anYgJp ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Timeline PhotosRemember, you can still spread the virus before showing symptoms. Help save lives by following the rules. 🚶‍♀️📏📏🚶‍♂️ ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Amazing people doing amazing work! Thank you!

#StayHomeSaveLives
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

A Lovely moment from last week. Thank You NHS!
💛💙❤️
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Morning guys and gals. Please continue to keep helping out by staying at home, staying safe and looking after yourselves. We've all got to do our bit 💛💙❤️

#StayAtHomeSaveLives
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Thank you to all our NHS colleagues. Your caring and commitment goes above and beyond the call of duty 🙌👏💗 ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Mind Monmouthshire are always there if you need a chat or some friendly advice. ... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

2 days ago

Monmouthshire

@MonmouthshireCC's childcare hubs have been fantastic again this week. We are now making plans for how we support key workers over the Easter holidays. Please go to www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/school-closures/
to access our eform and register.

Thanks to @Mon_Active for all your support
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2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Thank you for all your help in helping others.

If you are wanting to support those most in need during this difficult time, we can help.

More info can be found here: bit.ly/2WWK1b7
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2 days ago

Monmouthshire

An update from our Careline team - Please contact us via phone 01633 644466 or Email Careline@monmouthshire.gov.uk, we are currently running a reduced service but we will respond as soon as we can. ... See MoreSee Less

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2 days ago

Monmouthshire
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2 days ago

Monmouthshire

Due staffing challenges related to the Coronavirus we took the difficult decision to temporarily close the Post Office last week. We explored a number options to keep it open but were unable to do so. We know that some people were disappointed to lose access to this service and so Monmouthshire County Council will now operate a free bus service for residents to allow them to access the service in Raglan.

From Monday 6th April Usk, residents will be able to book a place on the bus, which will run on a Monday and Wednesday, between 10am and 12pm.

A maximum of four people will be allowed per trip to enable social distancing. Residents can book a slot by calling 0800 085801, 24 hours in advance.

The booking line is open Monday to Friday 9:00am to 4:30pm, so Monday bookings need to be made on a Friday. This is a trial at this stage and will be reviewed.
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For further information view our Flood Risk Management page

Updates

4 minutes ago

Monmouthshire

Our Careline team are out today visiting properties and leaving door side GSM Careline units with an easy install guide and a pre-programmed unit for ease. This is a new service for us and developed with safety and reassurance in mind. ... See MoreSee Less

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3 hours ago

Monmouthshire

****Update on Services Provided ****

Please read below, we are still open for business by phone, text and email.
www.mindmonmouthshire.org.uk/
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4 hours ago

Monmouthshire

There will be another round of applause for our excellent colleagues in the NHS and tonight we will be putting our hands together for those who are also working on the frontline. 👏👏👏👏👏

To the social care workers, people looking after the children of key workers and the community groups who are all rallying together during these difficult times - tonight we clap for you too!

So at 8pm tonight let's all make some noise for these wonderful people!
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5 hours ago

Monmouthshire

A massive shoutout to Owendale Construction for stepping in to move a bed and enable a hospital discharge using PPE to ensure safety for all ❤️💪 ... See MoreSee Less

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6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you NEED TO REGISTER. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

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6 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Good morning. Please stay home. Please stay safe.

💛💙❤️
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18 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Business grants are available but you need to register. bit.ly/3aB3hPu. Do not miss out on support you could be eligible for. ... See MoreSee Less

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20 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire's cover photo ... See MoreSee Less

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21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

We are changing the way we provide free school meals to those who are eligible.

From the 6th April we will credit the parent/carers bank account with the equivalent amount for the cost of your child’s free school meal. This will be paid on a weekly basis in advance.

Please register via bit.ly/3bDCxxG
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21 hours ago

Monmouthshire

Council Leader Peter Fox shares an important message with businesses. ... See MoreSee Less

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24 hours ago

Monmouthshire

An update to Public Transport in Monmouthshire - www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/buses-trains/ ... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” - Voltaire

Here's to our wonderful colleagues who continue to work through these difficult times! Thank you!
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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

IMPORTANT a fake letter has been sent to businesses. This is NOT genuine and is not from our Licensing team. Please disregard it, it is probably someone's idea of an April Fool's joke. 😔 ... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Many people in Wales have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales because they have an existing health issue – or care for someone who does. If you fall into this category, and have received the letter, it is very important you take extra steps to avoid catching coronavirus and these are explained in your letter.

The letter advises you to stay at home for 12 weeks and arrange for food and medical supplies to be delivered. Hopefully you have a family member, friend or neighbour who can help you with shopping and things like collecting prescriptions but we know that not everyone has this.

If you need some additional support then you will have been advised to contact us, your local authority. The help we can arrange will be specific to your needs, for example we may be able to put you in touch with a volunteer in your community who can help with these things or we may be able to help with the delivery of food parcels in future. There may be some support available from our social services teams.

Please give us a call on 01633 644644. We will take a few details and then pass you through to a colleague who will explore your specific circumstances and what we may be able to do to help you.
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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

It is important to look after your health at this crucial time: if you smoke the single most beneficial thing you can do to protect yourself from the impact of COVID-19 is to quit.

#QuitForCovid

Advice for quitting during outbreak updated here: ash.wales/coronavirus-smoking/
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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

***DONATIONS FOR OUR PATIENTS***

As we’ve needed to stop all visiting to our hospitals to limit the spread of Coronavirus, many of our patients are now running out of toiletries and clean night clothes.

We are very grateful to our communities for all the kind offers of donations, both for essential supplies and monetary donations, for the benefit of our patients and staff during these challenging times.

If you would like to donate, we would be very grateful for the following items (NEW items only please):

• Men’s and Women’s nightwear (pyjamas, nightdresses)
• Shampoo
• Shower gel
• Toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Denture cleaner
• Hand / facial wipes
• Hairbrushes / combs
• Shaving foam

* Please note we are unable to accept any food donations or any other items (including electrical) not included on this list.

Please do not take any donations to our hospitals.

The easiest and best way for you to donate is to use our Amazon ‘Wish List’ on Amazon, as you don’t need to leave your house and items will be delivered directly to us. Please use the link below to access the wish list:
www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/2OJXR1CPZTN3J?ref_=wl_share

If you are not able to order from Amazon but still wish to donate, please could you contact the Person Centred Care Team on 01495 768677 or email: ffrindimi.abb@wales.nhs.uk who can advise where any donations can be dropped off.

Alternatively, if you would like to make a monetary donation to help your local NHS services then please go to the link below:
www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ABUHBCovid19

On behalf of our patients and staff, we would like to sincerely thank you!

#StaySafe #StayHome #ProtectTheNHS
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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Please note that from Friday 3rd April garden waste collections are stopped until further notice. Customers who have already paid for the service will have their permit extended when the collections service starts again. This difficult decision has been made in order to protect the core recycling and waste collections as circumstances become more challenging. For more information: bit.ly/3anYgJp ... See MoreSee Less

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1 day ago

Monmouthshire

Timeline PhotosRemember, you can still spread the virus before showing symptoms. Help save lives by following the rules. 🚶‍♀️📏📏🚶‍♂️ ... See MoreSee Less

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Monmouthshire has experienced the fourth day of a severe weather incident. The storm has impacted the whole county but has been most acute in Usk, Monmouth and surrounding areas. Water levels in Monmouth are still high and more bad weather is forecast so this position is likely to continue for the remainder of the week.

Monmouth has been significantly impacted over the last two days. Various roads and the Wye bridge are closed and are set to continue to be closed – residents are urged to travel with caution. There is standing flood water in the Monmouth area that poses a potential danger.

Hundreds of properties (residential and commercial) have been flooded. Several hundred people are either living in part of their home (upstairs) or have relocated to either hotel accommodation or are staying with friends / family.

A rest centre continues to operate from Shire Hall, Monmouth for any residents who require support.

The Wye Bridge will continue to be closed until the water level has gone down, the structure of the bridge has been checked and the decision is made that it is safe for people and vehicles to use the bridge again. This is a precautionary action.

Welsh Water Mayhill Water Treatment Works has been closed due to the flooding. Plans are in place to ensure people have access to water. A fleet of tankers will continually top up the distribution system and bottled water stations are established in case supplies drop off.

Monmouthshire County Council Leader, Peter Fox said: “My heart goes out to people across the county who have been impacted by the severe weather that we have been experiencing in Monmouthshire. I would like to thank all of our partner agencies who are working hard to keep people safe. Support and coordination from all emergency services has been excellent.

“The situation around Monmouth is challenging and dynamic. We have not been able to save all properties but all people are safe. Where people have required assistance to leave their home it has been provided and where people are choosing to stay we are helping where we can. There have been water based rescues and we are pleased to report everyone who has been rescued is safe albeit a number have been in need of care and support.

“This exercise is likely to run for several days yet. Residents are being advised to travel with care today as there is still a lot of water about.”

Following flooding across the county, a number of road closures remain in place.

i) The R90 Whitebrook Rd with the Jcn of the A466 at Bigsweir Bridge due to flooding and two abandoned vehicles.

ii) St Brides from Magor to the A48 at the Rock and Fountain Inn

iii) langrwywney to Gilwern at metal bridge.
Cripple creek overpass of A40
iv) Rockfield Road into Monmouth by the co op
v) Upper Gelli to Llanelly Hill village.
vi) Grosmont to Kent church

vii) R76, MITCHEL TROY ROAD TO PENRHOS ROAD, CWMCARVAN

This list is subject to change when decisions are made to reopen the relevant roads. The public are advised to check Monmouthshire’s social media accounts for the latest road updates.

Monmouthshire County Council has begun a major recovery operation in the wake of Storm Dennis and unprecedented flooding across the county.

The council is estimating 100+ residential properties have been affected by flooding. A significant number of businesses and public assets have also been affected.

Residents are being supported through the provision of temporary accommodation where necessary and guidance on flood relief support networks.

A number of services remain closed or affected while the clean-up begins, this includes a number of road closures and bus routes. Monmouth Leisure Centre has been badly flooded and will remain closed for the foreseeable future. The Wye Bridge in Monmouth has been reopened, with access to the underpass reinstated.

While further rain is forecast for this evening, rivers are expected to rise but the council has been advised this will not be significant. The public are being asked to remain vigilant and mindful of dangers such as falling trees and debris.

Council officers have been out visiting communities in Skenfrith, Usk, Osbaston and other parts of Monmouthshire offering advice relating to hygiene, insurance claims and support services.

Welsh Water’s contingency plans for water are fully operational and these are likely to remain in place for a number of days.

Anyone looking for support is being encouraged to contact a community-led relief group called ‘Monmouthshire Residents Affected By Flooding’, where they can receive support in the way of clothing, food and toys. The support group can be contacted via their Twitter page @Monflooding or by contacting lisa4@gmail.com.

Monmouthshire County Council, Leader Peter Fox said: “Understanding the true extent of the damage and loss to our county will take some time but our teams are working to ensure we support those residents and businesses that have been impacted. We met with the Welsh Government today and this gave us a chance to highlight the severity of situation in Monmouthshire. We had an opportunity to open up the dialogue on the appropriateness of flood defences in the county. We also had the chance to spend time with our emergency services thanking them for their time.

“We’ve been able to discuss some short term funding from the Welsh Government. Application and administration on how that would impact Monmouthshire is being worked on.  My heart goes out to all who have been affected by these devastating floods and I just wanted to thank our partner agencies and the public for all your efforts over the last few days.”

Monmouthshire County Council’s flooding priority for remainder of the 17th of February is the Wye River running through the Monmouth town.

The levels are currently running high and modelling suggests it will rise further in next few hours. The council is prioritising sandbagging efforts to residential properties in the area.

The public are being advised to keep a safe distance from the river over the next 24 hours, with the levels expected to reach dangerous levels.

Evacuations have already taken place from areas posed as vulnerable with
a rest centre being set up at the Shire Hall in Monmouth. This rest centre is available to anybody displaced from their home and staff are there to help.

Riverside Park, Hadnock Road, Redbrook Road, Beech Road and Wyesham Road are areas which to be particularly vigilant while the warning remains in place.

As water levels continue to rise it is likely that the Wye Bridge will be closed this evening. No precise time at the moment but likely to be 18:30 – 19:00 hours

Storm Dennis has caused widespread flooding on roads and affected water levels on the River Monnow, River Usk and River Wye in Monmouthshire. Monmouthshire County Council worked in partnership with colleagues in Natural Resources Wales and the emergency services to keep residents safe. Teams have been distributing sand bags, clearing trees, managing landslips and closing roads. Rest centres were established to support people.

Some homes have been flooded in Monmouthshire and have had to be evacuated.

River levels on the Usk were very high and residents were advised by Natural Resources Wales to take immediate action and plan for potential flooding. The situation in Usk continues to be monitored.

Monmouthshire County Council Leader, Peter Fox said: “I would like to give my sincere thanks to everyone who has been working around the clock to keep residents safe. Roads across the county are still closed due to flooding. Residents are urged to drive with caution as conditions are dangerous. We will continue to closely monitor all river levels over the coming days as the threat posed by Storm Dennis is not over yet. The unsettled weather continues through this week with further rain expected later Wednesday into Thursday but this is not expected to be a repeat of the weekend weather with much lesser amounts of rain in the forecast. Stay warm, stay safe and do not attempt to travel through closed roads. We aim to operate services as usual tomorrow – please bear with us as there may be some delays.”

Due to tidal surge predicted – we will be putting in additional road closures at Tintern for tonight and tomorrow morning as follows:

Wednesday 12th February Between 22:15 – 22:45 (approx.)

Thursday 13th February Between 10:35 – 11:05 (approx.)

The closure points will be as follows:

North End closure: Trelleck Road junction.

South End closure: Royal George junction.

Closure times are estimated based on the forecasted tide times. Natural Resources Wales will be monitoring the situation and issuing Flood Warnings as necessary. Road closures will only be temporary and only when tidal water actually overflows onto the highway. The road will reopen as soon as the water has receded from the highway.

High tides are due. We will be monitoring the situation and if necessary, will arrange for the A466 through Tintern to be closed for short periods on the following dates and times:-

  • Monday 10th February Between 20:50 – 21:20 (approx.)
  • Tuesday 11th February Between 09:10 – 09:40 (approx.)
  • Tuesday 11th February Between 21:35 – 22:05 (approx.)
  • Wednesday 12th February Between 09:50 – 10:20 (approx.)

The closure points will be as follows:

North End closure: Trelleck Road junction.

South End closure: Royal George junction.

Closure times are estimated based on the forecasted tide times. Natural Resources Wales will be monitoring the situation and issuing Flood Warnings as necessary. Road closures will only be temporary and only when tidal water actually overflows onto the highway. The road will reopen as soon as the water has receded from the highway.

Children of Armed Forces personnel in Monmouthshire are benefitting from a new package of support to help with their attainment and development thanks to funding and a dedicated support officer.

It follows Monmouthshire County Council’s successful bid in obtaining a grant from the Ministry of Defence Education Support Fund to employ a HMF Education Support Officer, who works across education and with third sector organisations to raise awareness of the unique challenges the children of military personnel may face.

The HMF Education Support Officer, whose role was introduced in April 2019, supports 98 children in Monmouthshire and also guides schools through funding applications for resources such as additional staff, learning materials and training.

Children whose parents have been or are in the Armed Forces are often more adaptable, independent and flexible having grown used to change, but they can also face challenges caused by the effects of mobility or deployment.

The introduction of the HMF Education Support Officer is just another example of Monmouthshire’s commitment to supporting our armed forces colleagues. The council has been awarded Silver in the Defense Employer Recognition scheme and has also signed the Armed Forces Covenant, which is a promise by the nation that those who serve or have served, and their families, are treated fairly.

Three schools across the county have been successful in securing funding from the ‘Supporting Service Children in Education’ grants. Gilwern Primary, which has nine service children within the school, is using the funding to help children through emotional literacy and developing resilience.

Gilwern Primary’s Deputy Headteacher, Sue Marles said: “I think knowing every child within an organisation is crucial, to be able to take those learners forward and get the best out of those learners and this was my motivation to apply for the grant.  Through this funding we will be able buy resources to promote the interventions we are putting into place to help these children and their familes.”

Councillor Laura Jones, Monmouthshire County Council’s Armed Forces Champion added: “I am delighted Monmouthshire continues to show brilliance in supporting our armed forces colleagues and their families. We know there are many more children across Monmouthshire who will benefit from these funding streams and the help of the HMF Education Support Officer. I would encourage everyone, whether you are from education, health or a third-sector organisation, to get in touch to find out more about the funding and support available.”

For more information regarding funding and support for service children please contact the HMF Education Support Officer, Emma Ashmead via emma.ashmead@newport.gov.uk

Monmouthshire County Council’s planning committee has approved planning applications for the construction of 269 homes (68 affordable housing including 7 bungalows) and a care home ­at Crick Road. Monmouthshire County Council and Melin have worked in partnership to deliver this ambitious project to this stage.

This approval is the first step towards building a site that will be a sustainable place for people to live and work in and improves the well-being of communities, both within the site and beyond to the communities of Portskewett and Caldicot.

Key elements include:

  • Beautiful homes – excellent design and quality construction will be central to this new development.
  • Dementia friendly environment – the 32 bed care home is based on the creation of a dementia friendly environment featuring individual ‘houses’, centred in a beautifully designed dementia-friendly courtyard garden. This is further integrated in the distinctiveness, familiarity and legibility of a high quality residential space that is connected so everyone in the community can benefit.
  • Green Infrastructure – green spaces are featured throughout, incorporating a community growing area, retention of protected habitats with opportunities for outdoor play. There are walks interspersed with benches, play areas, and walking routes beyond the site. 
  • Pedestrian footways – link the site so people can walk safely to the existing residential area to the south and the schools and amenities in Portskewett. A new footpath has been included alongside the B4245 to link with Caldicot and the employment areas to the west.
  • Road layout – has been further improved to ensure safe and convenient movement across the site for everyone in the community. Where possible, within each development area the roads will have a design speed of 20 mph or less, providing streets that can be safely shared by pedestrians, cyclists and cars.

Cllr Bob Greenland, Cabinet Member for Enterprise and Land Use Planning said: “I would like to thank our partners in Melin and colleagues in Monmouthshire County Council for delivering this aspirational project to this stage. A range of teams including development management, green infrastructure, ecology and highway engineers have worked directly with the developers and architects to deliver plans for a high quality development and public spaces that promote prosperity, health, happiness and well-being for everyone.”

Adrian Huckin Executive Director of Innovation and Culture at Melin added: “The approval today is the first step towards making this build a reality. The excellent design and quality construction of the site will help to build an inclusive community as well as new homes. We look forward to continuing to work with Monmouthshire Council to make this happen

Households in Monmouthshire are being encouraged to apply for funding for free energy saving improvements to their homes.

Recent changes to the eligibility for the Energy Company grant means the funding will now be available to a greater number of homes across the county.

The changes  mean people no longer need to be in receipt of benefits, but do need to be on a low income. Anyone wishing to apply must also either live in a home that is expensive to heat or be vulnerable to the effects of living in a cold home.

Those deemed vulnerable because of living in a cold home may have numerous medical conditions or a disability. Anyone under the age of five or over 60 are also deemed vulnerable to the effects of a cold home.

The income assessments are made dependant on how households are made up. A single adult must not be earning over £9,300 to be considered for the funding, whereas a family of two adults and two children must not earn over £26,800. These figures are taken after deducting housing costs such as mortgage, rent and council tax.

Along with loft insulation top-ups and cavity wall insulation, those eligible may be able to have a broken or old inefficient boiler replaced with a new more efficient one.

To apply, or check eligibility please contact Monmouthshire County Council’s charity partner, the Energy Advice Centre, in Newport on freephone 0800 6226110.

If eligible, their advisors will arrange for a free, no-obligation survey. More details of the scheme and the eligibility criteria can be found on www.sewenergy.org.uk.

The scheme is open to private homeowners and those renting privately. The grants are subject to survey, eligibility and funding availability, with the final decision resting with the energy companies supporting the scheme.

Three new apprentices will kick-start their careers this week as they join Monmouthshire County Council to work within the social care team. 

The three eager individuals have joined the team at the start of National Apprenticeship Week – a campaign to celebrate the success stories of people who started their careers in an apprenticeship role and to encourage more people to think about apprenticeships.

The recruits will become the first to join a new ‘Apprenticeship in Care’ initiative which follows Monmouthshire’s successful funding bid from the Welsh Government Foundational Economy Challenge fund.

The apprentices will be part of the Social Care and Health Directorate and will be working within Monmouthshire’s services in order to provide practicable experiences and learn about working in social care. The hands on roles will focus on working with people in the community to support them to live independently, safely and well in their own homes and to promote connection. Across the 12 months, the apprentices will also gain formal qualifications which will be fully transferable within the social care sector.

Monmouthshire has an increasing ageing population and it is estimated that by 2036, 36% of the county’s 93,000 population will be aged over 65. The scheme will help to address the likely demand for more people to work in the care sector in the future, whilst providing a broad overview of the many specialist caring roles that have a huge impact on the lives of so many people in the county.

This programme also aims to develop and build upon recent successes by identifying and creating opportunities to recruit apprentices across all sectors of the authority, providing them with opportunities for growth and progression in a fantastic authority. This is supported by the ‘Apprentice, Graduate and Intern strategy’ that was approved by Cabinet in July 2019.

The three new colleagues will join a cohort 14 apprentices across Monmouthshire, with 45 existing staff completing higher level apprenticeships in various disciplines.

Cabinet Member for Social Care, Safeguarding and Health, Councillor Penny Jones said: “I would like to take this opportunity to welcome our three new social care apprentices. The work they will do over the next 12 months will go a long way to support some of Monmouthshire’s most vulnerable people. I am so pleased that these young people are starting their apprenticeships in such an important sector and wish them every success on what could be a career pathway in Care.

More information on the apprenticeships available with Monmouthshire can be found at www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/jobs-employment/

MCC has reaffirmed its commitment to working with our armed forces community, together with our five Town Councils (Abergavenny, Monmouth, Usk, Caldicot and Chepstow) who signed the Covenant for the first time. This makes Monmouthshire the only local authority in the UK to have the principal authority and all town councils signing the covenant in unison.

The Armed Forces Covenant represents a promise by the nation that those who serve or have served, and their families, are treated fairly. The covenant aims to bring together the armed forces community and the civilian community on a local level, nurturing mutual understanding and raising awareness of issues faced by the armed forces.  It is a pledge that, together, we acknowledge and understand that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, should be treated with fairness and respect in the communities, economy and society they serve with their lives.

The signing ceremony took place in the Council Chamber at County Hall during a meeting of the full council. The pledge was signed by Cllr Sheila Woodhouse as Chairman of the Council and Lt Col JPR Gossage RE on behalf of the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia).  Signing on behalf of the Town Councils were Chepstow, Cllr Tom Kirton (Mayor), Caldicot: Cllr Dave Evans (Mayor), Monmouth: Cllr Richard Roden (Mayor), Usk: Cllr Christine Wilkinson (Mayor), Abergavenny: Cllr Tony Konieczny (Mayor).

The council currently holds a Silver award in the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme and has submitted an expression of interest to gain Gold status this year.  The scheme is awarded to employers who pledge, demonstrate or advocate support to defence and the armed forces community, and inspire others to do the same.

Cllr. Laura Jones, Monmouthshire County Council’s Armed Forces Champion said: “It is so very important to recognise the work and commitment of our armed forces colleagues. The signing of this covenant reinforces Monmouthshire’s dedication to ensuring our armed forces colleagues continue to receive support and gratitude.”

Lt Col JPR Gossage RE said: “These events are incredibly important to the Serving and Veteran’s Military Community in demonstrating the continued commitment and support for Service people and their families across the County of Monmouthshire. My Regiment is very proud of our heritage bearing the county name, and we truly appreciate the backing of the Mayors and the Councillors of Monmouthshire.”

For more information about the Armed Forces Covenant, or if you’d like to get involved, contact ArmedForces@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Fifteen brand new fast electric vehicle charging points will soon be available across Monmouthshire.

Work has begun to install 65 electric vehicle charging points at 34 sites across Gwent, including six sites in Monmouthshire. The council is one of five local authorities in Gwent to have been awarded a share of £459,000 by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) with match funding by all five authorities. The Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales both contributed funding towards a feasibility study to support development of the project.

The installation is being undertaken by a Welsh company called Silverstone Green Energy. This company will also manage and maintain the charge points until 2025.

The six car parks in Monmouthshire set to receive electric vehicle charge points are located at:

  • Brewery Yard, Abergavenny
  • Trinity Terrace, Abergavenny
  • Woodstock Way, Caldicot
  • Castle Dell, Chepstow
  • Glendower Street, Monmouth
  • Maryport Street (South), Usk

The points being installed can charge from 7kW to 22kW depending on the capacity available during the time of charging.  The aim is for all installations to be complete by 31st March 2020, with the charge points operational from April 1st 2020.

Sites proposed across Gwent were selected following a Gwent regional electric vehicle charge point feasibility study, which looked at all local authority owned car parks to determine which ones met the OLEV On-Street Residential Chargepoint Scheme requirements.  Western Power Distribution was also engaged as part of the study to determine suitability of sites and costs to provide the electricity supply.  A public consultation exercise was also carried out to determine current and future demand.

Councillor Jane Pratt, Cabinet Member for Green Infrastructure said: “I am thrilled Monmouthshire will soon be receiving these fast charge points following the successful funding bid. We want to encourage everyone to think about what they can do to help reduce the impact on climate change. Turning to electric vehicles is one way of doing that and the provision of these new charging points go a long way to supporting people who already use electric vehicles.”

The best way to search for charge points is to use Zap Map https://www.zap-map.com/live/ and zoom in to the relevant local authority area.

Monlife is celebrating being given a top award for helping people with disabilities access sport.

The service group managed by Monmouthshire County Council was awarded the insport Silver Standard at Full Council by Michelle Daltry Partnership Manager, Disability Sport Wales on Thursday 16th of January.

The insport Development programme aims to support and deliver inclusivity for disabled people through a toolkit developed by Disability Sport Wales, supporting the inclusive thinking, planning, development and delivery.  This means that MonLife Active staff can deliver across the spectrum to disabled and non-disabled people at whatever level they wish to participate or compete.

By achieving this standard opportunities are widened, participation will increase, disabled people become more active and engaged and we have a nation who are hooked on sport for life.  This will deliver a cultural change in attitude, approach and provision of physical activity and wider opportunities for disabled people.

Throughout the four standards; Ribbon, Bronze, Silver and Gold, each partner is supported by Disability Sport Wales to grow their expertise and understanding of disability sport. With the aim of Partners becoming progressively more independent and able to demonstrate improved delivery and support to disabled people.

Councillor Richard John, Cabinet Member for Education and Leisure said: “Achieving the Silver award demonstrates the commitment to inclusion from MonLife and Monmouthshire Council to increase sporting opportunities for disabled people and our ongoing commitment in  playing a significant role in building sustainable and resilient communities, reducing inequalities and supporting vulnerable people.  Cabinet fully supports the journey to the Gold Accreditation”.

Michelle Daltry, Partnership Manager at Disability Sport Wales said “Disability Sport Wales wish to congratulate MonLife on their achievement of the insport silver standard.  It is a real testament to the calibre of work they are currently doing and have committed to do in the future, and will ensure the ongoing development of inclusive sports to disabled communities in the Monmouthshire area.  Congratulations to all involved.”

As MonLife continues on its insport Development journey receiving the Silver standard is a real testament to all staff involved.  MonLife are committed that all service areas will illustrate the inclusive cultural change by going through the insport accreditation with core aims to include its partnership working with Education, Health and Social Services.

Monmouthshire County Council has just had its application to renew its Fairtrade County status approved by the national Fairtrade Foundation. 

The award is given in recognition of the strong support for Fairtrade within the county and the achievement of five qualifying goals such as a wide availability of Fairtrade products in local shops and catering outlets, high levels of support from local people, businesses, the council, faith groups and schools.

Monmouthshire has many Fairtrade schools who do a lot to teach all ages and the wider school community about Fairtrade.  The good work done by schools on Fairtrade formed part of the evidence in application to the Fairtrade Foundation.  Sustainability Policy Officer, Hazel Clatworthy visited one of them, Goytre Fawr Primary last week to celebrate with pupils and to take an assembly about Fairtrade for their Fairtrade week.

A lot of work goes into making Monmouthshire a Fairtrade county which has to be renewed every two years.  The council has to demonstrate that they are using and making Fairtrade products available, as well as helping our four very active Fairtrade Town groups to tell people about Fairtrade. 

The Fairtrade Foundation said: Your group has demonstrated dedication to take your campaign forward and ensure Fairtrade becomes part of daily life in Monmouthshire. We were particularly impressed by the reach of your events by working jointly with Monmouthshire County Council and other Fairtrade town groups. You have managed to engage successfully with a great number of people through interesting speaker events”.

Some of the highlights over the last two years include the council’s Sports Development Team who now use Fairtrade sports balls for their work, as well as incorporating the Fairtrade town logos on new car park signage across the county.

Cabinet Member for Social Justice and Community Development, Cllr Sara Jones, said, “I’m delighted that we have renewed our Fairtrade County status once again, which will benefit so many farmers and growers in developing countries.  It takes ongoing commitment, energy and perseverance to keep Fairtrade high profile and in people’s minds. We are hugely grateful to the all volunteers in the Abergavenny, Chepstow, Monmouth and Usk Fairtrade Town groups who have all of these in abundance.”

Thanks to the ongoing support of the public and campaigners an increasing number of farmers in developing countries are now selling their products on Fairtrade terms, bringing them a stable income and the chance to trade their way out of poverty.

Buses traveling from Chepstow, after exiting Mitel Roundabout the ‘74’ will turn right onto ‘Chepstow Road’ – turn left onto ‘Woodstock Way’ – turn right onto ‘Caldicot Bypass’ – turn right at the traffic light onto ‘Newport Road’ & ‘Jubilee Way’, after approaching the mini roundabout the service will turn left onto ‘Sandy Lane’ and continue its normal journey.

The service will operate the same route (vice-versa) from Newport.

Caldicot residents may have noticed that signage has been erected by Alun Griffiths Contractors around the Cross Destination works area regarding a temporary road closure.  The closure is necessary as part of the carriageway resurfacing works currently being carried out on behalf of Monmouthshire County Council. 

It will be a two-phase closure.  During phase one a section of carriageway between the Church Road junction and the mini roundabout (Sandy Lane) will be closed from the 13th January – 9th March, 2020.

During phase two a section of carriageway between the Church Road junction towards Chepstow Road will be closed from 9th March to 13th April, 2020. 

Traffic will be diverted through Woodstock Way for both phases and diversion signage will be in place.  The maps shown below demonstrate the area to be closed and the diversion route for both phases.

There will be a temporary two-way traffic light system in place between Church Road and either Sandy Lane or Chepstow road, depending on which phase is in progress.  Church Road will be accessible from both directions at all times.

Bus companies and Monmouthshire County Council bus services have been informed of the scheduled road closures and diversions, current timetables will not be altered.  The existing bus stops on Chepstow Road will be relocated near Jubilee Way car park and a temporary bus shelter will be provided on the verge side of the road with ‘Temporary Bus Stop’ signage provided at both locations.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused as a result of the temporary traffic management arrangements and appreciate your support during the next few months whilst the essential work is being carried out, we aim to keep disruption to a minimum during this period.

In 2020, Business Wales, the Welsh Government’s flagship business support service, will continue to deliver free ‘Taking the Plunge’ start-up workshops for people in Monmouthshire who are looking to start their own business.

The courses aim to support budding entrepreneurs in the county by providing an understanding of the main aspects of turning their business ideas or hobbies into viable businesses.

The workshops cover a variety of topics, including developing a business idea, sourcing finance, business planning, pricing and marketing, and will take place between 9.15am and 4pm in the Bridges Centre in Monmouth on Tuesday, 28th January and on Wednesday, 19th February in Abergavenny’s Youth Centre (Old Hereford Road).

Councillor Bob Greenland, Cabinet Member for Enterprise at Monmouthshire County Council said:

“One of the council’s priorities is to support business and job creation. We are so pleased that Business Wales are offering free workshops for Monmouthshire residents. I would urge anyone who has an idea to get in touch and attend a workshop. I hope 2020 is the year many people start their own journey of self – discovery.”

Melanie Phipps, Business Adviser at Business Wales, said: “Our fully-funded start-up workshops provide a great starting point for all people who might have a business idea but don’t know how to turn it into a business, or those who need a bit more help and encouragement to take the plunge.

“We know that, across the Business Wales service, the four-year survivability rate of start-ups is now 85%, compared to 41% for those who don’t access our support. So, if you live in Monmouthshire and are considering self-employment, please do come along.”

All Business Wales workshops are designed and delivered by experienced advisers and provide opportunities to ask questions and network with like-minded people. For more information on venues and to book places, email southwales@businesswales.org.uk or call 01656 868500.

Business Wales, which is funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, supports the sustainable growth of small and medium size enterprises across the country by offering access to information, guidance and business support. 

To find out how Business Wales can help start or develop your business, call 03000 603000, follow @_businesswales or @_busnescymru or visit www.businesswales.gov.wales/ or www.busnescymru.llyw.cymru/ for further information.

Monday 6th January 2020 marked the launch of MonLife, an exciting collaboration that has unified all services and facilities under one brand, strengthening awareness and enhancing opportunities for all.

MonLife is part of Monmouthshire County Council and delivers leisure, youth and outdoor education, green infrastructure and countryside access, play, learning, destination management, arts, museums and attractions. 

MonLife offers some of the most impressive buildings with historical interests and activities to engage all ages and with all of these services under one umbrella it positions Monmouthshire as a great place to live, work, play and visit.

By aligning to Public Service Boards and Well-being plans, MonLife will play a significant role in building sustainable and resilient communities, reducing inequalities and supporting vulnerable people.

Cllr Richard John, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and MonLife said: “At a time when many councils are cutting back on discretionary services, I am really proud that in Monmouthshire we’re protecting and enhancing our leisure services and attractions through MonLife.

“This launch embodies our commitment to protect locally accessible services for residents, including helping people lead more active and independent lives through our array of diverse services and facilities.  MonLife will develop a more commercial focus ensuring the best possible experiences and opportunities for the people of Monmouthshire and the surrounding areas.

“I hope as many residents as possible will take up the opportunity to experience our wonderful facilities and services and see for themselves how MonLife can impact on the mind, body and soul of our community.”

Cllr Paul Jordan, Cabinet Member for Tourist Information, Museums and Attractions commented: “This is a very special day for  Monmouthshire’s rich culture and heritage. This is a great for our beautiful county and stunning attractions.”

Ian Saunders, Chief Operating Officer added: “I am thrilled to be leading MonLife and look forward to its first full year in operation helping MonLife grow and thrive with an amazing group of passionate and committed colleagues.  MonLife has been designed by Monmouthshire to be a new, dynamic and fast moving organisation with a commercial focus but also ensuring that the valuable services within its portfolio combine to provide huge benefit to the communities, young people and customers they serve. The strategic focus of MonLife is on physical and mental health and wellbeing, providing opportunities in learning and experiencing and achieving a more physically active lifestyle for all.”

The launch was filled with events across all service areas including everything from mini tennis through to World War II Handling sessions, local food and drink sampling at Chepstow Tourism Information Centre and lighting up Caldicot Castle – the day was of celebration for all.  Staff were on hand to talk to customers about MonLife and its vision to enrich people’s lives and create vibrant places.

Monmouthshire County Council will be hosting a series of public meetings to share their 2020/21 budget proposals with residents.

The meetings will take place in the north and south of the county, with a special Access for All meeting also taking place in partnership with the Disability Advice Project and local fifty plus groups. 

•           Tuesday 14th January 6.30pm, Chepstow Community Hub, 9 Bank Street, Chepstow, NP16 5EN.

•           Wednesday 22nd January 6.30pm, Abergavenny Library, Baker Street, Abergavenny, NP7 5BD.

•           Access for All Forum, Budget Meeting – Friday 17th January 11.00am- 2pm St Mary’s Priory Centre, Abergavenny.

The meetings hope to provide an opportunity for residents to hear from Cllr Phil Murphy, Cabinet Member for Resources and ask any questions that they may have. Residents who are not able to attend the meetings can view a short film, look at all the proposals and share their views via an online survey by visiting the Monmouthshire County Council website: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/budget-2020-2021/

The Access for All meeting will focus on the Monmouthshire County Council budget proposals affecting vulnerable residents. At the event, people with disabilities, parents of children with disabilities and older people from across Monmouthshire will hear from council officers about the budget proposals and will have an opportunity to ask questions.

The forum is a valuable platform to enable residents to have their voice heard, receive information and contribute to consultation and engagement processes.

The Access for All forum is supported and coordinated by Tony Crowhurst of the Disability Advice Project (DAP). DAP is an organisation which advocates for the rights of individuals with disabilities. The meeting will provide a platform for residents to hear about the newly acquired Lottery funding the Disability Advice project haveobtainedwhich will help the project support disabled people and their families with advice on a whole host of issues. A representative from the National Lottery will also be at the meeting to promote the wide range of funding opportunities available for communities in Monmouthshire. 

Cllr Phil Murphy Cabinet Member for Resources said:

“I hope that residents are able to come along to the meetings, they really are a great opportunity to become informed and to share their thoughts on the proposals. We have tried to provide as many avenues for our communities to get involved, we have an online survey and we will listen to feedback via our social media channels. 

I feel the Access for All meeting will provide an opportunity for our most vulnerable residents to have their voices heard, share ideas and suggestions whilst becoming informed about things that affect them.  If residents are not able to come along more information can be found on the council website where a survey is available to post thoughts.”

Monmouthshire County Council urgently needs more foster carers to keep up with the growing demand to provide homes for local children. The council is calling on more people to become foster carers in 2020 as it launches #20 Reasons – a campaign to encourage people within the county to consider fostering.

Monmouthshire is one of nine local authorities who have joined forces to create #20Reasons. The campaign uses real foster carers and their motives for fostering to inform and inspire more families to consider looking after a child or young person.

The 20 reasons to foster range from making a difference to a child’s life by giving them a sense of love, belonging and security; to being part of building a positive future and; helping to keep a child in their local area so they can stay in school and near their friends.

Monmouthshire’s Foster Care Team say all types of foster carers are needed but particularly those who would consider fostering teenagers, therapeutic carers, respite carers, emergency carers, sibling groups and children with additional needs.

Tammy is one of the foster carers supporting the campaign. She has been a foster carer for almost seven years. After years of trying to start a family of their own, Tammy and her partner chose to take a different approach through fostering.

Tammy, said: “I realised that there are so many children that need a loving home and that I had so much love that I wanted to give to a child so it just made sense that this is how we could build our family.

I have a really close bond with all of the children that I’ve fostered. One of our foster children is now 17 and doesn’t live with us anymore but still comes over for a Sunday dinner every week. Our current long-term foster children even call us mum and dad, and there’s no better feeling than that really.”

Monmouthshire’s Cabinet Member for Social Care, Safeguarding and Health, Cllr Penny Jones said: “A new year means fantastic new opportunities and this could be the year you foster a child in Monmouthshire. We urgently need more foster carers to offer a home to children and young people across the county. Fostering with us means you can help to keep a local child in their school and also support a young person who hasn’t always have the best start to life. This campaign goes further than just 20 reasons to foster – it’s the chance to do something that can completely change someone else’s life. I would encourage anyone who’s ever thought about fostering, no matter your gender, age or background, to just pick up the phone or visit our website to find out how you can start an application with us.”

If you’ve been thinking about fostering or would like more information visit: www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/fostering

No collections will take place on Christmas Day, Boxing Day, or New Year’s Day. All collections due 25th to 27th December will take place 2 days later than usual and collections due 1st to 3rd January will take place 1 day later than usual.

Collection due Actual collection day
Tuesday 24th December (Christmas Eve) Tuesday 24th December
Wednesday 25th December (Christmas Day) Friday 27th December
Thursday 26th December (Boxing Day) Saturday 28th December
Friday 27th December Sunday 29th December
Monday 30th December Monday 30th December
Tuesday 31st December (New Year’s Eve) Tuesday 31st December
Wednesday 1st January (New Year’s Day) Thursday 2nd January
Thursday 2nd January Friday 3rd January
Friday 3rd January Saturday 4th January

Residents are asked to ensure that all waste is placed out before 7am for collection.

Residents can check their collection days by visiting the ‘Local Info’ page of the council’s website: http://maps.monmouthshire.gov.uk/

Christmas time leads to more waste generation so the council has agreed that residents can put out two extra bags of household waste for their collection after Christmas Day from 27th December to 7th January. There is no limit to the amount of recycling that can be left out for collection.

Festive wrapping paper can be recycled in red bags provided it’s not made from foil, plastic or glitter wrap. Christmas cards can be recycled in red bags too. All food waste can be recycled in the kerbside collection.

We all produce more waste at Christmas so this year Monmouthshire is encouraging residents make this year a green Christmas – https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/2019/12/were-dreaming-of-a-green-christmas/

Real Christmas trees can be taken to your nearest Household Waste Recycling Centre to be recycled.

Opening times for the council’s Household Waste Recycling Centres over the Christmas and New Year period are:

Tuesday 24th December 8am to 2pm
Wednesday 25th December Closed
Thursday 26th December Closed
27th to 31st December 8am to 4pm (last entry 3.45pm)
Wednesday 1st January Closed
Thursday 2nd January 8am to 6pm (back to normal)

Please be aware that the sites will still be closed on their usual closed days – more info about the Recycling Centres: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-waste/household-waste-recycling-centres/

Thank you to all Monmouthshire residents for recycling this year!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
Waste & Street Services, Monmouthshire County Council

Council Chair, Councillor Shelia Woodhouse, has sent her thanks and well wishes for the festive seasons. 

Councillor Woodhouse said: “May I, on behalf of Monmouthshire County Council, wish you all a very happy Christmas and a peaceful and prosperous New Year.

At this time of year, we must give thanks to those both in public and private service who find themselves working for us during the festive season.

Hospitals, nursing homes and emergency services workers all take this in their stride and we thank them for their loyalty and dedication in keeping us all safe.

Those employed in hotels and restaurants also work unsocial hours, providing both residents and visitors with great Monmouthshire hospitality.

 Over the past few weeks we have had the privilege of visiting many school nativity plays and concerts and have seen first-hand the great work that goes on in education, the Christmas holidays provide our school staff with a well-earned break allowing them to recharge their batteries for what is a very challenging occupation.

Our churches and religious groups such as the Salvation Army provide for those less fortunate than ourselves and I am sure that our community will generously support the great work that they do.

 We are blessed with many volunteers, who throughout the county, dedicate themselves to others. This work makes our county such a splendid place to live and work. To everyone who volunteers whether by being involved in committees or as an individual your work is recognised and appreciated.

 My year of office is over half way through and may I say what a privilege it has been to support so many good people and all that they do for our wonderful county.”

Monmouthshire County Council’s Children’s Services team helped children and young people from across the county remember loved ones at the council’s annual Remembering Day at Caldicot Castle on Saturday 7th December 2019

Children and young people who have lost parents or siblings were invited to join staff from Face to Face counselling team and Children’s Services for a shared lunch in the Castles banqueting hall. After lunch a series of workshops took places that provided opportunities for family members to make commemorative items to remember for their lost loved ones.

Families created beautiful tree decorations and penned messages to loved ones. Young people then worked with local education and technology company PlayFrame to use Virtual Reality to revisit memories of loved ones. Using 3D photo-scanning techniques and Virtual Reality PlayFrame is working with The National Museum of Wales and Cruse Bereavement Care to create a ‘Virtual Memory Space’. During the workshop supported by bereavement experts, families shared memories and virtual objects were created of people who have been lost. By sharing their memories the young people felt they were not alone

Counsellors and therapists were on hand during the day to provide support, comfort and listen. The day was planned in partnership with children, young people and parents who have encountered a bereavement, who were on hand to help and support new families who were attending for the first time. 

At the end of the day, a touching bubble releasing ceremony took place.  

Cabinet Member for Social Care and Health, Cllr Penny Jones said:

“Christmas can be tough for families who have experienced a bereavement. The remembering day is lovely opportunity for families to come together, to seek comfort from one another. I know those who attended appreciate this and are reassured to and know that there are professionals who can help listen and support.”

For more information about how families can seek help, contact: facetoface@monmouthshire.gov.uk or contact Cruse Bereavement Care- https://www.cruse.org.uk/get-help Find out more about Play Frame and their therapeutic play methods by visiting: https://www.playframe.co.uk/

Monmouthshire County Council’s Children’s Services team has been overwhelmed by the level of support they have received this year as part of the Christmas Wishes campaign. The annual appeal promotes the giving of Christmas presents to the county’s most vulnerable children and care leavers and this year has been the biggest yet!

Around 300 children and care leavers will benefit from the generosity of a number of groups and companies. The fantastic donations have poured in from Monmouthshire Councillors, staff and local residents, Monmouthshire Building Society customers and staff, South East Wales Energy agency, The Helping Hands committee at Budweiser Brewing Group Magor Brewery, The Verve kick boxing club, St John’s on-the-hill School and St Mary’s Priory Church Chepstow. Residents from Usk, Monmouth, Caldicot and Chepstow have all been fantastic with bringing in their donations to local Community Hubs.

Toiletries, toys and trinkets have all been donated to the cause and the Children’s Services team have been working hard to ensure all the gifts are appropriately matched to the children who receive them. The team are now in the process of distributing all the wonderful presents across the county.

This year’s campaign has seen the largest amount of donations in the campaign’s history and has meant every child will receive a number of gifts. Families, looked-after children and care leavers have been very grateful as without this kindness some would not have received any presents. This is why this campaign is particularly special and truly embodies the true spirit of Christmas.

Cabinet Member for Social Care, Safeguarding and Health, Councillor Penny Jones said: “Thank you so much to all who have donated as your kindness has brought smiles and hope to our most vulnerable.  Every child deserves to feel valued and cared for, especially at Christmas and this has made a real difference.  We are very grateful – Merry Christmas”

Monmouthshire County Council will launch its draft budget proposals on Friday 20th December. The proposals have been drafted amidst a set of challenging circumstances which sees the council continue to face ongoing and significant financial, demographic and demand-led pressures. The council is facing £9.7 million of new unavoidable costs that need to be incorporated into the 2020/21 budget.

The draft budget proposals look to support the priorities of the council. Specifically, they seek to recognise in full, all pay and pension-related spending pressures in our schooling system and the increasing demand placed on children’s social care services, adult social care and our children with additional learning needs budgets. 

The budget proposals see a continuation of the council’s preparedness to challenge all services to improve, rather than see the closure of services that matter to citizens. There is an acknowledgement that when things close they never return and the council stands firm that it is better to scale back rather than absolutely withdraw.


It is never popular to charge for services but the reality is that the council needs to do so. There are proposals to increase fees in a number of areas in line with inflation.

Welsh Government funding is not adequate to meet the significant pressures faced, with Monmouthshire being disadvantaged as the worst funded council in Wales once again. Council tax payers by default will have to shoulder a greater proportion of the overall cost of services.  These outline budget proposals assume a council tax rise of 4.95% for 2020/21 and 3.95% for following years.

For more information on the disappointing funding settlement from Welsh Government our press release and response can be found here: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/2019/12/extreme-disappointment-as-council-sees-the-worst-budget-settlement-in-wales/

In previous years, frontline services such as waste and highways have seen significant reduction.  There is only very limited scope for this to continue and this year we may need to look to the schools budget to make a small contribution as well albeit in overall terms school funding will increase year in year. We would rather not be doing this and expect it to be an area where we receive significant feedback.

A comprehensive list of the proposals can be found on the website: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/budget-2020-2021/

A range of engagement opportunities will be available to provide residents with an opportunity to hear about the draft proposals and the wider budget context for the council and enable residents to share their thoughts too.

Face-to-face meetings with groups include disability groups, older people and young people will take place. The council website, social media channels, select committees and visits to town and community councils will be a further opportunity for information to be shared and residents to offer views.

Dates for the diary:

  • Public Meeting –  meeting – 14th January 6.30pm, Chepstow Community Hub, 9 Bank Street, Chepstow, NP16 5EN
  • Public Budget meeting – 22nd January 6.30pm, Abergavenny Library, Baker Street, Abergavenny, NP7 5BD
  • Access for All Forum, Budget Meeting – Friday 17th January 11.00am- 2pm St Mary’s Priory Centre, Abergavenny.

The Access for All forum is a valuable platform to enable people with disabilities, parents of children with disabilities and older people from across Monmouthshire to have their voice heard, receive information and contribute to consultation and engagement processes.

Communities are town and community cluster meetings and area committee forums to hear information based on their locality. Dates and times to be confirmed.

Leader of Monmouthshire County Council, Cllr Peter Fox OBE said:
“I encourage residents to take the opportunity to take a look at our proposals. For many years we have been hit by the Welsh Government settlement and this year is no exception. We will continue to try our best to provide services for our communities but with this comes challenges. I urge residents to read about the changes proposed in this outline budget and come along to a forum or meeting to hear how we are working to make savings and not lose services.”


A survey will also be available to provide feedback, visit:

https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/budget-2020-2021/tell-us-what-you-think/

There is no way to hide the scale of disappointment with this settlement – this is not good news for the citizens of Monmouthshire as once again they are told that they don’t matter as much as the rest of the Welsh population. There is a massive disparity between the lowest proposed settlement of 3% for Monmouthshire, the average for Wales of 4.3% and the highest of 5.4%. This level of funding means that Monmouthshire County Council faces very tough budget decisions.

Councillor Peter Fox, Leader of Monmouthshire County Council said:

“I think this settlement is so disappointing. Every Council in Wales is up against it and yet we see a Labour Welsh Government that thinks it’s fair to see huge division in the uplifts across Wales. You would have thought the Labour Party would have learnt the lessons from last Thursday about the consequences of turning your back on parts of the country. 

Let me be absolutely clear on my position. I believe every Council in Wales should receive exactly the same percentage gain or loss on their budget for the remainder of this Assembly term. If the government is too short sighted to introduce this fairness then I see justification in limiting the difference in awards between the biggest winner and biggest loser to 1%.  I do not agree with the Finance Ministers view that a funding floor is not necessary. We are calling on Wales Government for the next three years to pass the same average rise / reduction to all Councils in Wales.”

Councillor Phil Murphy, Cabinet Member for Resources said:

“The time has come to have some regard to the enormous reserves being sat on by some Councils – in many cases the exact same Councils who see the best settlements year in year out. There is a fundamental inequity in those with most getting more year in year out. Many rural Councils are being attacked and this is just wrong. To put this into context Monmouthshire will have to raise its Council Tax by 3% just to make good the funding difference between us and the all Wales average and by 5% to match the highest funded Council. How can that be right? The good news is that the Welsh Government still has the time to correct this before the final budget is published this week. I would urge them urgently to re-think this budget and move to a position where everyone receives an uplift of 4.3%.”

Monmouthshire County Council is encouraging all residents to think about the impact the festive period will have on the environment with a light-hearted film with a big message. ‘I’m dreaming of a green Christmas’ is a reworking of Bing Crosby’s Christmas classic. Green Christmas has been produced in partnership with pupils from Ysgol Y Ffin, the council’s waste and recycling team, and Gwent Music.

The council is encouraging more residents to stop and think about what they buy, shop local and recycle more this Christmas. It is estimated that 30% more waste than usual will be created during the festive period. Around the world, two million turkeys, 100 sq km of wrapping paper and more than 100,000 tonnes of plastic packaging will be binned on Christmas Day.

Black bags in Monmouthshire still contain around 25% food waste. All food waste can be recycled in the kerbside collection creating fertiliser and electricity. Food waste collected in Monmouthshire goes to an ‘Anaerobic Digestion’ processing facility which captures the methane and turns it into energy.

The council is encouraging people to make food waste history, with the message that you could save up to £700 a year on your food bill. In the UK we throw away more than 7 million tonnes of food and drink every year.

Become a champion recycler, find out what goes in each bag – take a look at the simple leaflet and find out when your collection day is via the website: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-waste/food-waste-collection/

There are many things residents can do to make a huge difference this Christmas

·         All food can be recycled – use your food waste caddy. Residents who need new food caddies are welcome to pop in to their nearest Community Hubs. 

·         Wrap presents in paper that can be recycled. No glitter or shiny paper can be placed in red recycling bags. Check by scrunching the paper; if it stays in a ball shape it should be recyclable. 

·         Wrap presents in jute bags so they can be reused.

·         Reduce the amount of plastic bought. Wooden toys are widely available across the county from independent shops. Shop local and support local businesses.

·         Give a gift that will make everlasting memories. Book tickets to a show at Abergavenny Borough Theatre: https://boroughtheatreabergavenny.co.uk/

Cllr Peter Fox, Leader of Monmouthshire County Council said:

“Protecting the environment is something I feel very strongly about. It is also an issue that is very much at the forefront of every resident’s minds both young and old across the county. This year has marked the beginning of a pledge by Monmouthshire County Council to stand strong with citizens across the globe to try and reduce the impact we are having on the world.

It started with a pledge to declare a climate emergency in May 2019 and I was delighted to see that on October 24th my fellow councillors approved a climate strategy containing ten objectives to support our declaration of a climate emergency. With this in mind, we need to take a step back from our lives and look at how little changes can make a big difference. ‘I’m dreaming of a green Christmas’ is a great example of how we are trying to do things differently. By taking responsibility for our planet we can all make a difference.”

Cllr Jane Pratt, Cabinet Member for Waste and Recycling said:

“This is a fantastic way to help residents think about the environment during the festive period. I would like to thank all pupils and officers involved in making the film from Ysgol Y Ffin. Thank you to Dewstow Primary for the use of the recording room and to Gwent Music who kindly recorded the piano track. I would also like to extend my thanks to Sue Parkinson, Waste Education officer, who made the green hats, the waste collection crews and staff at the Shire hall in Monmouth where the video was filmed.” For more information: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-waste/

Monmouthshire Trading Standards team are asking residents to be vigilant and aware of bogus traders since receiving a number of complaints concerning unannounced doorstep callers operating across the county.

The incidents follow a similar pattern, the doorstep caller will tell the householder that they have found something wrong or they could help with some maintenance.  This might include gutters that need clearing or replacing a broken roof tile. It may often be accompanied by a dramatic claim that damage could be caused if the work is not completed immediately.

This type of caller will continue to knock doors until they find someone who is more vulnerable. Please keep an eye out for neighbours who look like they may have been targeted.

Residents are encouraged to talk to a family member or someone they trust for their opinion as it has become clear that the work is not always necessary.

Chief Officer for Social Care and Health, Julie Boothroyd said: “It is so important to be aware of what is happening in our communities. Doorstep callers can have a detrimental impact on everyone and even more so on our vulnerable residents. I urge anyone who suspects that a caller may not be all they seem to contact the police.”

It is important that bogus doorstep callers are reported to the police residents are urged to call 101.

For tips on finding reputable businesses and information on your rights call the Citizens Advice Consumer Service Helpline on 03454 040506 or visit www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Have you applied for your new style card? In the next few weeks you may get a letter reminding you to apply for a new card.
Don’t worry, it’s easy to do, simply apply online: https://portal.tfw.wales/en If you need a hand applying, please ask a friend, family member or someone you trust to apply online on your behalf or pop into your local Community Hub for more help.
Paper application forms are available: https://tfw.wales/applicationform

Or you can email your contact details topassengertransportunit@monmouthshire.gov.uk

For more information please visit: https://tfw.wales/travelcards

Children in Monmouthshire can now take part in the first Winter Mini Reading Challenge. Community Hubs in Monmouthshire were so delighted with the results of Space Chase, the Summer Reading Challenge 2019, that they have adopted the Winter Reading Challenge.  During the Summer 1,279 children signed up to Space Chase and 760 completed the challenge by reading six books during the summer holidays.

The challenge starts on Monday 2nd December 2019 and finishes on Monday 13th January 2020, so there’s plenty of time to get involved! The theme is ‘Pugs of the Frozen North’, an action-packed adorable-pug-filled adventure from the amazing Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre. It aims to encourage children to keep reading through the winter holidays.

To take part in the Winter Mini Challenge online, children simply read any three books of their choice, then rate and review them at http://www.winterreadingchallenge.org.uk. eBooks and audiobooks count too!   Books added to the website during the six-week Mini Challenge period will count towards unlocking the special rewards, including a certificate to print off and keep, and a virtual badge for the child’s website profile.

The Summer Reading Challenge was a big hit with children and parents across the county and many provided valuable feedback which has been integral to the introduction of the Winter Challenge.

One parent said: “It is a great incentive for children to read/enjoy books and visit this fantastic library.” A local young person said: “It was really fun!  I enjoyed it very much.  It was my first time and I thought it was amazing.”

Chief Executive Paul Matthews said:

“It was great to see how children embraced the summer reading challenge and I am so pleased to see that more children will have the opportunity to take part in the Winter Reading Challenge. Our hubs offer a diverse range of services and are widely used, I am confident that people will take the chance to get involved and visit their local hubs to see the wide range of books and activities on offer. Reading is so important and the challenge provides a chance for children and young people to read what they want and when they want with the added bonus of becoming mini literature critics. I look forward to seeing the range of books read and to see the reviews that follow.”

For more information about Community Hubs visit: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/community-hubs-libraries/  

Since 2004 Monmouthshire County Council has undertaken mandatory headstone testing in Llanfoist Cemetery. The testing is to ensure that the memorials are secure, safe and do not move.  Some memorials have been found to be unsafe, and have been temporally made safe. The council has where possible informed families at the time of headstone testing, if memorials have failed families have been informed and have acted on the information.  

In Llanfoist Cemetery there are currently memorials that have been identified as unsafe and are temporally made safe. The council has a responsibility to make cemetery’s safe, and works with the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management (ICCM) guidance, which states the council  must make any remaining stake and banded memorials permanently safe. This entails burying the memorial at the head of the grave by approximately 1/3rd of the height of the memorial and backfilling to the existing surface level.

This programme of works is planned to commence Jan/Feb 2020 giving families extra time to contact us should they wish to undertake the reinstatement of their memorial themselves. In line with MCC’s Memorial Policy, reinstatement must be arranged using a MCC registered memorial mason and a list of registered memorial masons can be obtained, plus any further information, from the Cemeteries Officer on 01873 735852 / cemeteries@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Peter Davies, Chief Officer for Resources said:

“We recognises that there is a potential for family members to become upset in the event of a memorial being found to be unsafe, but we hope that by identifying those that need a little bit of attention will prevent any need for any extensive work in the future. Our aim is to ensure to make the cemetery safe for those visiting to pay respects to loved ones.  We would like to thank families in advance for their cooperation and understanding.”

The official opening of Cylch Meithrin Trefynwy took place on Thursday 14th November and is such an important first step towards ensuring Welsh medium provision in the Monmouth area. The early years childcare setting welcomes parents, babies and toddlers living in Monmouth and surrounding areas to experience both the fun and proven benefits of a bilingual education.

The Cylch Meithrin, is situated at Rockfield Park Community Centre and is an Early Years Welsh Medium Childcare setting for children between the ages of two and four years of age. It currently runs on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 12:30 – 3:00pm. It will provide high quality childcare through the medium of Welsh, is registered with Care Inspectorate Wales and is able to accept Child Care Vouchers.

This ground-breaking new venture is run by a small committee and employs a number of staff all who are absolutely passionate about bringing the Welsh language into the lives of more families in the county. It complements the successful Welsh medium baby massage, rhyme time and yoga sessions that are already taking place across the county.

The new Cylch springs from Mudiad Meithrin’s response to the Welsh Government’s Welsh language strategy ‘Cymraeg 2050:Meithrin Miliwn’ that recognises the importance and influence of the Early Years in creating Welsh speakers, and supports the vision of a million Welsh speakers by 2050. The aim of the Cylch is to help achieve this aim with Monmouthshire playing its part.

The Cylch committee also runs a popular ‘Ti a Fi’ (carer and toddler group) at Rockfield Park on a Monday morning at 10:45am.

Celebrations in the day ended, amid much excitement, with the cutting of a cake by a child who attends the Cylch – a truly memorable occasion!

Will Mclean, Chief Officer for Children and Young People said:

“This is fantastic, I am so pleased that more children will have the opportunity to experience and become immersed in the Welsh language. It is so pleasing to see this Cylch come to fruition, especially with the wonderful news of the funding being made available for a new Welsh medium school in the area. I would personally like to thank the trustees, Chair and staff for making the setting a fun and inspiring place to play.”

Committee members were delighted to see so many local people attend to help celebrate the important new provision. Chairperson and trustee of the Cylch, April Wiggins, thanked those present for their support and hard work in helping to ensure the success of the Cylch – an important first step towards ensuring Welsh medium provision in the Monmouth area. The team welcomed Mudiad Meithrin’s Chief Executive, Dr Gwenllian Lansdown Davis who expressed her thanks to staff and parents for coming along to the official opening.

The children were pleased to receive a visit from Dewin, Mudiad Meithrin’s lovable children’s character.

To find out more please visit: https://www.meithrin.cymru/find-a-cylch/

As the festive period draws closer, shoppers are being encouraged to make the most of Monmouthshire’s fantastic local shops and free parking.

The council has once again announced it will provide free weekend parking in all Council-owned car parks in Abergavenny, Chepstow and Monmouth in the run up to Christmas.  This is in addition to the year-round free car parking in Caldicot, Usk and many smaller communities.

It’s hoped the free parking will encourage more people to head down to their local high street to take advantage of the fantastic array of local businesses selling everything from handmade gifts to locally sourced produce all in time for the big day.

The free parking offer also means a welcome boost for local businesses at this busy time of year.

Free Saturday parking will be provided in the three towns on 7th, 14th and 21st December.

Chief Executive, Paul Matthews said: “We’re pleased to once again offer free parking to our residents. This is the perfect opportunity to visit your local retailers and I have no doubt you’ll be surprised with all the fantastic bargains you can get right on your doorstep. This is also a great opportunity to support your friends and neighbours who run businesses across the county.”

The seasonal garden waste collection service was due to finish on Friday 29th November however we are pleased to say that the collection service will be extended for an additional two weeks. The extension is a thank you to our loyal customers and recognition of the problems that some customers have had with collections this year.

The final week of collections will be the week commencing 9th December 2019, with the last collection day on Friday 13th December.

The 2020 seasonal garden waste collection service will begin again in March. Registrations for the service will open in the New Year.

Monmouthshire County Council is looking forward to welcoming locals and visitors to the many free events that are taking place at the Market Hall, Abergavenny. A range of special festive events are taking place despite the ongoing work to transform the market space and surrounding building.

In the lead up to Christmas the Market Hall is open every day from Sunday 15th December to Christmas Eve.

The festivities begin on Thursday 21st November with the Street Food and Craft Night Market, a vast variety of food, fun and more to coincide with the popular Christmas Light Switch On, which will see the town centre illuminated with twinkling beauty. Music will be on offer in Frogmore Street from 3.00pm where the stage will be set for the big switch on at 6.00pm. A lantern procession will take place from the Upper Brewery Yard 5.30pm which will lead through the town to Frogmore Street where the switch on will take place at 6.00pm, everyone is welcome to join the lantern procession. 

It’s the first opportunity for young and old to steal a glimpse of Father Christmas who will be in the town on his sleigh and listen to live music from local groups and choirs.

A Christmas Street Food & Craft Night Market, Abergavenny Market Hall will take place on Thursday Dec 12th from 5.00pm to 9.00pm. The market is free to enter and is a fantastic opportunity to shop local. Delicious food will be on offer from many regular street food vendors, savour a tipple or two with hot and cold drinks available from local producers, home-made cakes and treats plus an array of hand-crafted gifts. The perfect opportunity to meet up with family and friends

More free markets will take place throughout December. As well as the popular weekly Tuesday market, special Christmas Artisan Markets will take place on the Sunday 8th and 15th December, 10.00am to 5.00pm. Pop along to sample local food and drink whilst purchasing beautiful crafts and listen to live music.

Chief Officer for Enterprise, Peter Davies said:

“Abergavenny Market Hall is a hive of activity throughout the year. The festive events will bring more and more locals and visitors to Abergavenny. Its business as usual at the Market Hall, the refurbishments which are taking place have not dampened the spirts of traders and the renovation will lead to a fantastic space which will be an asset to the community. I encourage anyone who has not yet visited the market to come along, there is something for everyone.’ 

The Market Hall hosts many markets throughout the year, to keep up to date with what’s happening follow @AbergavennyMarket on Face book or visit:  https://www.visitmonmouthshire.com/

A range of drop in sessions and open evenings are taking place throughout November for European Nationals affected by the European Settlement Status.

The sessions will provide an opportunity to gain an understanding of the Settlement Scheme, how to apply and how it will impact on individuals, families and businesses.   

An open evening is taking place at Chepstow School, Welsh St, Chepstow NP16 5LR on Wednesday 11th December 3.30pm – 5.00pm.

Additional drop in sessions are taking place on the following dates:

Monday 18th November at Chepstow Hub 10am – 1pm, Room 1 ground floor

Tuesday 19th November at Abergavenny Citizens Advice Bureau – 1pm – 4pm

Monday 25th November at Monmouth Hub 10am – 1pm, Room 3

Advice and support will be provided by organisations such as Citizen Advice Bureau, Mind Newport and many more.

Shaz Miah, Community Cohesion Officer at Monmouthshire County Council and Newport County Council is working with communities to help alleviate anxiety and stress by offering one-to-one support to help complete applications. 

All European Nationals who wish to remain in the United Kingdom need to apply by 30 June 2021.  By applying for Settlement Status it will enable individuals and families to continue to be entitled to access services similar to those that are currently available to them. Full details of the services available can be found using the link below.

Frances O Brien, Chief Officer for Enterprise and Communities said:

“I urge anyone who needs more advice and support to attend the drop in sessions. The Settlement Scheme affects the lives of many people who have been living in Monmouthshire for many years. Help is available, please do get in touch with Shaz Miah our Community Cohesion Officer.”

Details of more drop in sessions will be available in coming weeks.  

For more information on the application process visit: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families  or contact Shaz Miah, Community Cohesion Officer 07811981352 or email: ShajanMiah@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Monmouthshire County Council’s community meals initiative, Monmouthshire Meals, has been praised by staff and people in the community for helping to build friendships and tackle loneliness across the county. It follows a week of special celebrations by the community meals team to mark National Meals on Wheels Week. (4th-8th November)

A week-long campaign took place to promote and celebrate the brilliant service provided by the community meals staff. The celebrations saw council staff rallying together to donate personalised gifts and cards which were taken out with meals to help send a positive message to residents. Boxes of chocolates, flowers and toiletries sets were delivered to meals on wheels residents – many of which often experience isolation or feel lonely.

Children from The Dell Primary School, Chepstow also played their part in Meals On Wheels Week by designing and creating personalised placemats, each featuring a positive and warm message which were delivered to residents alongside their daily meal.

Monmouthshire Meals has been providing midday meals and welfare support to some of the most vulnerable members of our community every single day for more than 15 years – that`s over 5,500 days of continuous, consistent and vital service. For many people living in isolation the service provides someone to chat and build friendships with.

Janet Brown has been delivering community meals for over 12 years and says the service is more than just a meal. She has seen first-hand the difference a chat can have on many people who feel lonely and isolated. She said: “It’s great seeing the pleasure on faces when I go in. They know me and I know them really well. We go in and make sure all our residents are well. Sometimes we are the only people they will see on a daily basis so a friendly chat or even offering to fix their television really does go a long way.

Chief Executive, Paul Matthews said: “Our community meals go much further than just providing food to our residents. This is a befriending service supporting some of our most vulnerable and it’s great to see the excellent work of the staff helping to improve the health and wellbeing of people across the county.”

Monmouthshire County Council Planning Department are consulting on their Draft Archaeology in Planning Advisory Note. To view and comment on the proposed document head to our Planning Policy Consultation Page.

Monmouthshire is county rich in volunteers, individuals who give their heart and soul to help other and their communities. On Wednesday 30th October some of the county’s outstanding volunteers were celebrated at the annual Gwent Association of Voluntary Organisation, Volunteer Achievement Awards at Cwrt Bleddyn Hotel.

The awards generated a wealth of nominations and judges had a tough decision deciding the winners. GAVO is pleased to announce the following individuals gained recognition for their outstanding dedication, commitment and passion for helping others.

Winner of the Adult Volunteer, sponsored by Pobl Group – Ceri Carlyon.

Ceri gained the award for heroutstandingcontribution to well-being in the community. Ceri is a shining example, as an inspiring and creative Group Scout Leader to 1st Gilwern Scout Group. Ceri has not let her deteriorating disability affect her volunteering or family commitments and has launched two business in the past four years. Ceri has also become involved in other community based projects facilitated by Monmouthshire County Council, for example the Monmouthshire showcase stand at the National Eisteddfod in Abergavenny.

Highly Commended – Robert Hilary Wade, an inspirational individual who has introduced many young people to the magic of the theatre, via his work as a Musical Director in Youth Theatre, and also through sport, as a volunteer referee for the Gwent Central League from 2001 to the present day.

Environmental Volunteer, sponsored by Chepstow Round Table – Stuart Davies

Stuart is an amazing individual, his commitment to improving the environment is unique. Stuart volunteers at community recycling charity in Homemakers, Abergavenny for the past six years for six days a week. Stuart goes over and above to help individuals recycle household items and is a well-loved member of the Homemakers team.

Highly Commended – Pathcare Walking Group work with Monmouthshire County Council to carry out fortnightly checks of routes that form part of the Countryside Service’s Guided Walk Programme. They ensure that the routes remain safe and accessible, a benefit to residents and visitors alike.

Group award – Sponsored by Aneurin Bevan University Health Board – Active8

Activ8 is a peer led project with ‘Activ8 Champions’ who empower young people to develop skills, confidence and knowledge to help them progress into volunteering, education, employment or training.

Highly Commended – Food Sense, Monmouth work with local supermarkets to ensure that food doesn’t go to waste, providing free food collection points for those who need it and provide healthy meals for children and young people taking part in summer play schemes.

Personal journey- Sponsored by Bethany Home – Thea Babb

Thea is a volunteer on the Mind Matters project, the project works with young people to raise awareness of mental health issues. Thea selflessly pushes herself to help others, using her own experiences to educate young people.

Highly Commended – Katie Newbury has overcome adversity and personal challenges and is now an active volunteer with the Monmouthshire Citizens Advice in Caldicot helping others in the community. 

Trustee Volunteer, Sponsored by Caldicot Town Council – Emlyn Lunn

Emlyn overcame a stroke and accompanying medical challenges to volunteer with Monmouthshire Housing Association. He now holds the position of Vice Chair and ensures all tenants have a voice.

Young Volunteer- Sponsored by the Office of Police & Crime Commissioner in Gwent – Charley Oliver-Holland

Charley is an outstanding role model and ensure that the voice for the young people is heard. Charley is Chair of Engage 2 Change the county’s Youth Council, a member of Wales Youth Parliament and a representative for the British Youth Council. She dedicates her time to ensuring the voice of young people is heard and valued.

Highly Commended – Kelsey Goodwin, a volunteer at Monnow Vale Hospital. Kelsey provides support for individuals with dementia, their family and staff members.

Sheriff of Gwent Award – Harry Stitt

Harry joined ‘Ready Steady Go’ an activity club for children with Autism in May 2018 at the age of 14. To date he has achieved over 100 volunteer hours with the club and supports the young children to access activities, play and participate in the sessions.

Monmouthshire County Council Chairman’s AwardSerena Morgan

Serena has made a significant contribution to the County of Monmouthshire. Serena has gained self-confidence and belief through her volunteering work at Bridges Charity Shop. She has mastered the till, is a sought after face by customers and even has taken responsibility for opening the shop in recent months.

Dedicated volunteers Taran Fitzgerald, Charley Oliver-Holland and Robert Harman, George Beale and Elaine Savage were presented with GAVO Volunteer Recognition certificates for reaching 1000 hours of volunteering, by the Lord Lieutenant in Gwent, Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE.    

Frances O Brien, Chief Officer for Enterprise said:

“Volunteers offer so much to communities in Monmouthshire. We are so lucky to have the support of the Be Community team and GAVO to provide valuable training and support. I congratulate everyone who has been nominated, and I would like thank the unsung volunteers. I urge anyone who knows someone who goes over and above to help others to nominate them for an award in 2020!”

Clare Watkins, GAVO Volunteering Team Manager said “It is an honour to highlight the selfless efforts and the valuable contributions our shortlisted volunteers have made to ensure our communities are better places to live. 

The difference these individuals and groups make to the lives of others is amazing.  I’d like to say a huge thank you to all the volunteers across Monmouthshire. GAVO would also like to express gratitude to everyone who took time to put forward nominations.

The judging panel had a difficult job selecting the winners. I would also like to thank our wonderful compere for the evening, Kim Tovey, Senior Organisational Development Manager at Wales Ambulance Service Trust, who has given her time freely and also to our sponsors whose financial contribution help make the celebrations possible.

I would like to thank the Cwrt Bleddyn Hotel & Spa for donating a prize of an overnight stay in one of their superior rooms at their fabulous Hotel and Jeffries Fine Jewellers for the donation of a beautiful Clogau necklace.”

For more information about the Gwent Association of Voluntary Organisations contact: Clare Watkins call 01633 241566 or email: clare.watkins@gavo.org.uk

People are being asked to dig deep this festive season and donate a gift for Monmouthshire’s Christmas wishes appeal.

Unwrapped presents for children and young people aged from 0 to 25 years old are wanted to help bring Christmas cheer to some of Monmouthshire’s most vulnerable.

The annual appeal organised by the council’s Children’s Services team, hopes to benefit over 220 vulnerable, looked after children and care leavers this year and gifts of all sizes are welcome including toiletries and makeup for older children and young people.

Anyone wishing to donate to the appeal is asked to leave their unwrapped gifts with staff at one of Monmouthshire’s Community hubs or County Hall in Usk by Friday 29th of November. The presents will then be carefully matched to each child’s individual likes and interests.

Julie Boothroyd, Chief Officer for Social Care and Health said: “The festive season is a time for giving and sharing kindness and love. This is exactly what our Christmas Wishes appeal is about. Over the years we have seen the amazing affect a small gift can have on a child who is looked after or vulnerable. These young people haven’t always had the best start to life and we hope we can show them how much they are really cared about by giving them a fantastic Christmas. One small gift really can make a huge difference”

The annual Monmouthshire Young Ambassadors Sport Conference took place at County Hall, Usk on Wednesday 23rd October. The day aimed to provide sports leadership skills to a new generation of year 6 primary pupils, the day is just one aspect of Monmouthshire County Council’s Playmaker’ Sport Leadership programme. Sixty pupils – two year 6 pupils from every primary school gained valuable insights that will be used to empower fellow pupils in their school.

Pupils took part in variety activities including human bingo which helped the young leaders to interact with one another and later listened to inspirational workshops from Monmouthshire Fairtrade who explained the importance of equality in all aspects of life and heard messages from officers and elected members of how to be a positive role model.

The youngsters took to Coleg Gwent, Usk sports pitch which is adjacent to County Hall to brush up on their coaching skills with the help of local league two football team, Newport County. With the help of the team’s Community development coaches’ pupils took part in games learning new skills and developing techniques that will be welcomed by all back at in their playground.

Since 2017 over three thousand Year’s 5, 6 and 7 pupils have taken part the ‘Playmaker’ Sport Leadership programme, the programme which has been recognised as best practice is being replicated nationally and internationally and is a testament to officers leading the programme to educate and empower children and young people. 

The playmaker and bronze young ambassador programme is the start of the journey for many young people with four leadership academies established across all comprehensive schools in Monmouthshire.  The leadership academies continue to embed messages set in the playmaker programme and provide opportunities for young people to support physical activity within their school and local community. With 85% of the team’s current workforce having come through volunteering there is a clear pathway for young people to develop their skills and gain employment opportunities. 

Monmouthshire Sport Development Team Lead, Paul Sullivan said: “Our team has made a conscious effort to invest a lot of time in developing leadership opportunities for our young people.  Programmes such as the young ambassador conference and the increasing number of leisure staff who began their journey on the Playmaker Leadership programme and are now paid staff is a clear indication that this process is working and we are developing positive opportunities for our future generations. I look forward to seeing what impact the bronze young ambassadors, supported by our MonSport Playmakers, will have on enhancing wellbeing across our primary education in Monmouthshire.”

For more information on Sport Development programmes across Education, Leisure and Community provision please contact the team via sport@monmouthshire.gov.uk

ENDS

Monmouthshire County Council is alerting parents and guardians of children due to start primary education next September that applications open on Wednesday 6th November and close on Wednesday, 15th January 2020.

Children born between 1st September 2015 and 31st August 2016 are eligible to start reception classes in September 2020 and parents are asked to complete their applications before the 15th January 2020 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:
https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/starting-primary-school/ – alternately, parents may request an application pack by telephoning the council’s admissions team on 01633 644508 or emailing: accesstolearning@monmouthshire.gov.uk

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 cannot assume that their children will automatically gain entry.  Parents who submit application forms by the deadline on 15th January 2020 will be informed which school their child will attend no later than 16th April 2020.

Chief Officer for Children and Young People, Will Mclean said: “Applying for a school place for your child is an exciting time for parents but also a great responsibility.  It’s important that applications are submitted by the deadline on 15th January 2020 because late submissions risk failing to secure a place at the preferred school.  I’d urge parents to make their preference and submit their application as soon as possible.”

Contact the School and Student Access Unit on 01633 644508 or email accesstolearning@monmouthshire.gov.uk for further information.


Residents across Monmouthshire are urged to check if they are registered and eligible to vote in the forthcoming General Election on Thursday 12th December.  

To vote in the election, residents must be included on the electoral roll. Applications to join the electoral roll must be received no later than Monday 26th November 2019. Residents will receive a poll card informing them how to vote in the coming weeks.

Residents who are not registered are encouraged to go online to apply, it’s a quick and simple process. Visit: www.gov.uk./registertovote

Alternatively, individuals can apply for the appropriate forms or check their name is on the register by contacting Monmouthshire County Council’s Election Office on 01633 644212 or email elections@monmouthshire.gov.uk.

Residents can still vote even if they are away from their home by applying for a postal vote by 5pm on Tuesday 26th  November 2019. Postal votes will be sent to residents between the 29th November and 5th December 2019 depending on when the application was received

A proxy application form is also available, this enables someone else to vote on a individuals behalf (not postal or emergency proxies) by 5pm on 4th December 2019.

There are a number of reasons why it is important to be included on the electoral register.  Elections can be called at short notice and people unregistered will be unable to vote. Voting ensures people have a say on the issues of the day and being on the electoral register can maintain your credit rating.

For further details visit: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/general-election-12th-december-2019

Monmouthshire County Council has published a report showing the progress made against its Corporate Plan during 2018/19.

The Corporate Plan sets out commitments that the council plans to deliver up until 2022. The report provides an update on progress and performance against the goals set to improve well-being in Monmouthshire and deliver its core purpose of building sustainable and resilient communities.  The achievements include:

  • Opening of the new school in Monmouth and the full refurbishment of Monmouth Leisure Centre.
  • Securing £1.25 million from the UK Government to encourage technology firms to develop solutions to loneliness and limited rural transport in our communities.
  • The launch of the Council’s chatbot, Monty, which is available on the website and Facebook messenger, and expands the ways in which residents can get in touch. 

Following publication of the annual report, Councillor Paul Jordan, Cabinet Member for Governance, said, “The report provides residents with information on how the council has performed in 2018/19.  Monmouthshire receives the lowest level of funding of any local authority in Wales; despite this, we have made much progress against many of the goals we set ourselves. Some of our goals have a longer-term focus so work is ongoing to achieve these and to ensure we deliver the quality of services that residents and businesses have come to expect.

We will continue to review our progress to ensure we remain on track to achieve our goals by 2022. We will work with our partners and our communities to focus on the things that are important to them.’

The full plan, called ‘Corporate Plan – Annual Report 2018/19’, is available to view on www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/improvement

Monmouthshire County Council would like to listen to Gypsy, Traveller and Showpeople communities to gain an understanding of the number of pitches and yards that are available at the moment and find out how many will be required in the future.

Gypsy, Traveller and Showpeople communities are urged to speak to Steve Griffiths, Strategy and Policy Officer  to share their views. The information will be used to inform council decisions in the future. 

To take part call 01633 644455 or email stephengriffiths@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Cabinet Member for Housing Cllr Bob Greenland said:

“The 2014 Housing (Wales) Act 2014 requires local authorities to assess the accommodation needs of the Gypsy, Traveller and Showpeople community and to make adequate provision for sites and yards. I hope that many people get in touch with the team to have their voices heard. Creating inclusive and vibrant communities is important now and for our future generations.”

Gilwern library will be closed the week commencing the 18th of November 2019 to relocate to a new space within the Gilwern Community and Education centre.

The library will be reopening on Monday 25th November 2019 at 9am. We apologise for any inconvenience this causes. 

This new space will allow current services to be expanded and a micro-hub to be created where payments for council services can be taken. There will also be support for Monmouthshire residents and the opening hours will be extended to include Mondays 9am-1pm and 1:30-5pm.

Anyone with loaned library books due to be returned the week of the closure will not incur any fines and the deadline for returning the books has been extended.

Cabinet member for museums Councillor Paul Jordan said: “We are excited to announce our move and we are excited to offer a range of new services at our new facility. We hope you are as excited as we are for this new venture here at Gilwern Library and look forward to you visiting us when we reopen!”

A number of parent consultation meetings have been arranged in South East Wales to seek views on the provision of sensory and communication services in the region, as part of an independent review.

Known as SENCOM, the service is currently delivered regionally across Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Newport, Monmouthshire and Torfaen. It supports additional learning needs in specialised areas including speech, language and communication, and visual, hearing and multi-sensory impairments. About 1500 children and young people currently receive support from SENCOM, across the five authorities.

In May 2019. the partner local authorities involved in SENCOM requested the WLGA to commission an independent expert to review and report on the service to explore a more sustainable way to deliver the regional model. The independent consultant, Mr Mark Geraghty, has since arranged a number of meetings to consult with parents and stakeholders as part of the review.

  • 15th November 11.00am , County Hall, Usk, NP15 1GA.
  • 19th November 6.00pm, County Hall, Usk, NP15 1GA Contact
    For more information contact Julie Owen – Monmouthshire CC 01633 644512

Mark Geraghty, independent consultant said:

“An important part of the evidence gathering process is listening to the views of children, young people and the families who receive a service from one or more of the SENCOM’s teams.

“In all the meetings I’ve attended so far across all levels, the passion and desire to ensure children and young people with a speech, language and communication, hearing and visual impairments receive high quality support and appropriate resources, has been manifestly apparent.

“As such, I look forward to welcome parents to any of the meetings arranged to discuss with us their experiences of SENCOM. These views will be vital to the review in order to ensure evidence-based decision making.”

Parents and stakeholders are also welcome to provide their feedback via a questionnaire, which can be found on this link: www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/SenCom

For more information, please contact David Hopkins, WLGA Interim Head of Education on David.hopkins@wlga.gov.uk 

A recovery operation led by Monmouthshire County Council has begun today (Tuesday 29th October) to help and support residents affected by flooding in Skenrith and Monmouth.

Residents evacuated yesterday from Riverside Residential Park in Monmouth have been advised that they can return home. The river level on the River Wye is currently at just over 5.1m and is continuing to drop.

The council has now begun helping residents who require assistance to return home. Residents who were provided with temporary accommodation will be contacted and offered transport to return to the residential park. All other residents who went to stay with family or friends will also be contacted to inform them that they can return home.

Colleagues will also be on site at the Riverside Residential Park to offer advice and in particular around hygiene to ensure the risk of contamination is reduced.

Monmouthshire County Council colleagues from a number of service areas will continue to assess any damage throughout the day. The build-up of debris by the Wye Bridge in Monmouth is being monitored but water continues to flow and is not increasing the flood risk. Natural Resources Wales will work with Monmouthshire County Council who will remove the debris when the river level has fallen further and it is safe to do so.

Although further rain is expected later this week, it is not forecast to be as heavy and it is not anticipated to cause any flooding issues. Despite this, the situation will be closely monitored.

Council leader, Councillor Peter Fox said: “I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank all staff and partner agencies for all their hard work over the last four days. Ensuring the safety of our residents in times like this is always our biggest priority and I am overwhelmed by the efforts of all staff who have gone beyond their call of duty to ensure our residents are not only kept safe but are offered as much support and advice as possible.

I would also like to send my thoughts to those affected by the flooding and thank you for working with us to carry out the evacuation and recovery operation. We understand this is just the start of cleaning up and recouping all that’s been lost but we can assure you we will be on hand to support you every step of the way.”

People living in a Monmouth residential park are being asked to evacuate the site due to rising river levels and flood water entering the site.

Gwent Police and the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service are currently advising residents of Riverside Residential Park to leave their homes due to the flood risk, rising river levels and the need to evacuate before events turn into an emergency rescue.

Monmouthshire Council is providing transport from the park to Shire Hall in Monmouth town centre, which has been set up as a temporary rest centre.

Natural Resources Wales has issued a flood warning for the river Wye in Monmouth and the high river level has triggered a multi-agency response to evacuate people from the park during these conditions.

Tim England, Operations Manager for Natural Resources Wales, said:

“We’re working with Gwent police and Monmouthshire Council to quickly evacuate people safely from the residential park.

“Recent heavy rain across South Wales is causing the river level on the Wye in Monmouth to rise and will continue to rise for the next few hours.

“The rain may have subsided, but some river levels are still rising as peaks move downstream.  We’re encouraging people to stay vigilant and check our website for flood warnings in their areas and listen to any advice given on what action to take.”

To check flood warnings in force and for information on what to do before, during and after a flood, visit www.naturalresources.wales/flooding  

Monmouthshire has been impacted by flooding due to severe rainfall on Saturday 26th October. Three rivers – the Wye, Monnow and Usk filled up quickly causing high river levels which were combined with surface water flooding. Monmouthshire County Council staff worked closely with Gwent Police, South Wales Fire and Rescue Service and Natural Resources Wales to help people.

Some residents were evacuated from Skenfrith as they had experienced loss of power and were at risk of flooding. Local pub, the Bell Inn in Skenfrith welcomed people so they could wait safely together to be transported to a rest centre that Monmouthshire County Council set up.

Monmouthshire’s emergency response teams were out providing sand bags, unblocking drains and culverts and closing any roads which were deemed too dangerous for people to drive through. Calls were received and responded to from people in various locations including Raglan, Abergavenny and Monmouth.

Residents were advised to avoid driving through closed roads and to avoid walking in flooded areas to look at the impacts.

Council Leader Peter Fox said: “I would like to send my thoughts to residents and businesses that have been impacted by the flooding that the County has experienced. Nobody ever wants to be forced from their home but in these circumstances I’m glad we are able to help.

I send my thanks to everyone who has worked around the clock to help people affected.        

We are currently looking at an improving picture, river levels are dropping and the immediate danger has passed.  Natural Resources Wales will continue to monitor the situation as high tides are forecast between today and Tuesday.

Stay safe and please don’t attempt to drive through closed roads.”

High tides are due.  We will be monitoring the situation and if necessary, will arrange for the A466 through Tintern to be closed for short periods on the following dates and times:-

Monday 28th October Between 19.45 – 20.15 (approx.)

Tuesday 29th October   Between 20.30 – 21.00 (approx.)

The closure points will be as follows:

North End closure: Trelleck Road junction.

South End closure: Royal George junction.

Closure times are estimated based on the forecasted tide times.  Natural Resources Wales will be monitoring the situation and issuing Flood Warnings as necessary.  Road closures will only be temporary and only when tidal water actually overflows onto the highway.  The road will reopen as soon as the water has receded from the highway.  

Young people have been gaining an insight into democracy at an event to celebrate National Democracy Week in The Shire Hall, Monmouth on Wednesday 16th October. The event is just one of many activities taking place across the UK to remind every member of society that they have an equal chance to participate in our democracy and to have their say.

Hannah Blythyn AM, Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government joined the event along with Cllr Sara Jones, Cabinet Member for Social Justice and Community Development. Young people listened intently to both Hannah and Sara as they spoke of how important it is to have a voice and how proud they are to represent their communities.

Interactive workshops followed the empowering presentations, young people were given the opportunity to discuss some of the existing methods to enable their voices to be heard. School councils and the county youth forum Engage 2 Change were popular choices. It was also identified that there is a need to engage young people who are sometimes not keen to speak out but have valuable views and opinions.

The day provided important advice, encouraging them to believe in themselves, take chances and to not be afraid to put their heads above the parapet for something they believe in. The session was followed by a discussion on democracy and looked at some of the issues that have arisen from the recent Make your Mark campaign.

Make your Mark is led by the British Youth Council and supported by local authorities across the UK. Over 2,700 young people from Monmouthshire voted on issues they feel are important to them on nationally, Wales-wide and locally.

Nationally and locally, the burning issue was the environment, on a Wales-wide level young people voted felt that knife crime was very important.

The results of the survey will be debated at an event in December, where young people will decide what actions need to take place to try and tackle the issues that are important to them.

The group were guided on tour a of the Shire Hall, the building itself brimming with history of democratic process and power by Graham Thomas, a local historian who volunteers at the building. The young people valued the experience and were keen to ask questions whilst in the cell and the courtroom.

Cllr Sara Jones, Cabinet Member for Social Justice and Community Development said:

“Democracy events are so important for me and the council to find out what the burning issues are for young people. The council is keen to make Monmouthshire a better place to live and work and the voice of young people is vital in acting on their information make this happen. They are our future, if we don’t listen now we will never know what is important. I feel very strongly about enabling everyone to have their say. The council has many opportunities to listen and we need to help everyone have their voices heard.”

Insert Hannah Blythyn AM quote:

“National Democracy Week is an important opportunity to use the experience, insight and passion in our communities to increase democratic participation. I was really pleased to attend this event to share my own experiences and hear about the issues that matter to young people in Monmouthshire. My main message to these young people was that everybody can make a difference through individual actions and there are so many different ways to be involved in democracy and make your mark. I also talked about the upcoming Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill, which will give 16 and 17 year olds in Wales the opportunity to vote in local elections, a change that will affect these young people in the near future.”

For more information about Engage 2 Change, the county youth forum contact: Jade Atkins Charlie-JadeAtkins@monmouthshire.gov.uk or call 07768421008.

An evening is taking place on Wednesday 13th November at 6.00pm at King Henry School for European Nationals affected by the European Settlement Status.

The open evening will provide an opportunity to gain an understanding of the Settlement Scheme, how to apply and how it will impact on individuals, families and businesses.    

Advice and support will be provided by organisations such as Citizen Advice Bureau, Mind Newport and many more. Shaz Miah, Community Cohesion Officer at Monmouthshire County Council and Newport County Council is working with communities to help alleviate anxiety and stress by offering one-to-one support to help complete applications. 

All European Nationals who wish to remain in the United Kingdom need to apply by Tuesday 31st December 2019. By applying for Settlement Status it will enable individuals and families to continue to be able to work, study, claim state pension and some benefits and continue to use the NHS.

Cllr Sara Jones, Cabinet Member for Social Justice said:

“I urge anyone who needs more advice and support to attend the drop in session. The Settlement Scheme affects the lives of many people who have been living in Monmouthshire for many years. Help is available, please do get in touch with Shaz Miah our Community Cohesion Officer.”

Details of more drop in sessions will be available in coming weeks.  

For more information on the application process visit: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families  or contact Shaz Miah, Community Cohesion Officer 07811981352 or email: ShajanMiah@monmouthshire.gov.ukE

If you’re looking for a spot of time travel and historical adventure, Monmouthshire’s museums have it covered this October half term as part of the ‘Welsh Museums Festival’ (26 October to 3 November). Free creepy crafts will be available to make and take throughout half term at all three museums in Abergavenny, Chepstow and Monmouth

On Tuesday 29th October, the Battle of Trafalgar is coming to Monmouth Museum! This historic event will be demonstrated at the Nelson Museum from 11.00am to 4.00pm, using fleets of battle-ready model ships and a slide-show of background information.  Lord Nelson will be brought to life by former Royal Marine and actor Sebastian Bowen – who will be there to describe the action and answer questions on any related subject. 

On Thursday 31st October Chepstow Museum’s hosts its popular drop in craft afternoon at the Drill Hall.

The Welsh Museums Festival is an annual event presented by the Federation of Welsh Museums, which is the strategic body for museum and art gallery professionals in Wales. It currently represents over 100 unique accredited Welsh museums, from the very small to our great national museums. Together, these invaluable collections tell the story of Wales and are a treasured resource for learning, exploration and knowledge about our local and national identity.

Cabinet Member for Museums, Councillor Paul Jordan said: “What better way to spend this half term than delving into Monmouthshire’s history. Our museums are full of interesting things to see and many activities to get involved in so I would encourage people from all ages to head down to one of the sites and get involved.”

Full details of activities during Welsh Museums Festival are available on the festival website: www.museums.wales

Staff from Monmouthshire County Council dressed in red and showed support with Racism the Red Card signs.

Monmouthshire County Council has joined forces with organisations across Wales and the UK to support National Hate Crime Awareness Week 14th – 19th October. Offices were turned into a sea of red as staff donned red clothing on to Show Racism the Red Card.   

National Hate Crime Awareness Week is an annual event which aims to raise awareness of hate crime and the impact it has on victims. Wear Red Day is a national day of action which encourages schools, businesses & individuals to wear red and donate £1 to help facilitate the delivery of anti-racism education for young people & adults throughout England, Scotland & Wales.

Every penny raised during Wear Red Day enables the campaign to work with more young people and adults across the UK to challenge racism in society.

Hate crimes are motivated by hostility or prejudice towards a person’s disability, gender identity, race, religion or sexual orientation and can have a devastating effect on victims. There are many initiatives in Gwent to combat Hate Crime. Educating communities is vital, there are many ways for residents to report hate crime if they are a witness or a victim.

To report a hate crime, contact the police on 101 or 999, report online via www.report-it.org.uk or in confidence to Victim Support https://www.reporthate.victimsupport.org.uk

This can help to ensure people report instances of hate crime, victims get the support they need and those committing it are met with justice.

Cllr Sara Jones Cabinet Member for Social Justice said:

“The Show Racism the Red Card initiative is so important, educating all ages of the impact of racism to individuals, families and groups. I am proud to be part of an organisation which raises awareness of the issue.”

For more information please visit:  https://www.theredcard.org/

Monmouthshire County Council’s Emergency Planning Service has once again been awarded a prestigious Gold PawPrint award by the RSPCA in their PawPrints Awards. 

Monmouthshire is the only Welsh authority to win a Gold accolade in the Contingency Planning category and one of only five in the UK!

The PawPrints award scheme was launched in 2008 and aims to reward and promote good practice in animal welfare by local authorities and housing providers in England and Wales. 

Monmouthshire County Council first entered in 2010 and has since bagged one bronze, one silver and eight gold PawPrints.

The PawPrints Award recognises four areas of work that impact on animal welfare – contingency planning; stray dog services; housing and animal welfare principles.

The award acknowledges that the authority has considered the welfare of companion animals within contingency plans – both in the planning process and in training and exercising. It also recognises the advice the authority provides for pet owners on emergency preparedness.

The target for next year is to maintain the gold standard and the Emergency Planning Team thought everyone should know they consider their award the cat’s whiskers!  

Commending their excellent work, Cabinet Member for Resources Councillor Phil Murphy said: “Well done to our Emergency Planning Team for winning this accolade. It is a fantastic achievement and it’s wonderful to see Monmouthshire leading the way in implementing animal welfare in their planning procedures!”

Staff at Five Lanes Household Waste and Recycling Centre have been praised after helping a woman from Caldicot find her engagement ring after it was accidentally thrown out.

Jo Carter was left heartbroken when she realised she had accidentally binned the ring and had taken it to the tip along with 15 other black bags.

Hoping for a spot of luck, husband Craig ventured down to Five Lanes on Sunday 13th of October where he was quickly assisted by staff members Rhys and Darren as they begun trawling through hundreds of black bags in a bid to find the ring.

After 45 minutes of rummaging, the ring was eventually found when Craig recognised some of the waste in one of the bags.

Thanking the staff, Jo said: “It has huge sentimental value and is also very expensive and not insured. My husband Craig went to the tip and two amazing human beings trawled through hundreds of bags to find it. Their kindness and good hearts have had me in tears. I thank them from the bottom of my heart. What a community we live in. Thank you to Rhys and Darren.”

Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Neighbourhood Services Councillor Jane Pratt said: “I am exceptionally proud of our staff at our Five Lanes Household Waste and Recycling Centre for helping bring a happy ending to this story. This is an excellent example of our staff going above and beyond to help our community. Well done!”

During the spring and summer Monmouthshire Council’s Community & Partnership Development Team were out and about all over Monmouthshire asking a simple question:

“If a few other people were willing to help, what would you love to do, to make your community a better place?”

And our communities did not disappoint! The big ideas included everything from creating neighbourhood growing spaces to ballroom dancing, from sharing your knowledge about local history to setting up video game clubs for young people.

The team now would like to support communities to help turn as many of these great ideas as possible into reality. Over the coming weeks and months the team will be reaching out to communities via conversations with residents and through social media to help connect people who want to make great things happen where they live, and to provide a little bit of help and guidance along the way where it’s welcome. Here are some of the projects that the team are looking for local enthusiasts to help with:

• Planting and environmental projects in Caldicot and Severnside
• More opportunities for young people to do in Chepstow and the surrounding villages
• Ballroom dancing in Usk
• Community arts and crafts in Abergavenny and north Monmouthshire
• Skill sharing in Monmouth (everyone’s good at something – don’t be shy!)

If these sound like something you’d be interested in, the team would love to hear from you! Contact partnerships@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Cllr Sara Jones cabinet member for Community Development said:

“We’ve listened to our communities. We are inspired by the innovative and creative ideas that have been generated. We recognise that good relationships between friends and neighbours are the building blocks of a strong society and there are limitless ways to bring people in a community together. The Community & Partnership Development team will help to provide the advice and support needed. I look forward to seeing the ideas brought to life across the county”

For more information about existing projects and some handy tips about how communities could get involved take a look at the ‘What could you do? booklet here: www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/partnerships or call 01633 644696.

Half term is fast approaching, there is so much on offer to keep little monsters occupied. Many Monmouthshire attractions have spooky activities, storytelling sessions and performances planned.  

A ghoulish “Haunted Halloween Quest” is set to take place at Caldicot Castle from Saturday 26th to Thursday 31st October from 11.00am with last the admittance at 3.45pm.

Little witches and wizards can explore and creep around the historic castle grounds. Admission costs £3.00 and includes a gift for every child taking part.

All aboard the Spooktacular Express at Tintern Old Station. The magical Louby Lou and her team will be visiting the Old Station on Saturday 2d November 11.00am – 1.00pm mesmerising little ones with a series of magical outdoor storytelling trails.   Spaces are limited, tickets cost £6.50 per child. To book tickets visit www.visitmonmouthshire.com/things-to-do/old-station-tintern.aspx

The much loved spooky TV show and film ‘The Addams Family’ will be brought to life on the Abergavenny Borough Theatre stage by Abergavenny Amateur Operatic & Dramatic Society juniors. The show begins on Tuesday 29th October and runs until Saturday 2nd November. On Wednesday 31st October, Halloween, audiences are welcomed to go all out and spooky fancy dress is welcome with prizes given for the best fancy dress! Family tickets are available on this date only. Book tickets today by visiting Abergavenny Market Hall Box Office or go online: https://boroughtheatreabergavenny.co.uk/the-addsams-family

If chilling crafts are a hit with little ones, take a trip to Abergavenny, Chepstow or Monmouth Museums for a ‘Hallowe’en Make and Take.’ Creepy crafts and amazing activities are on offer for children of all aged, sessions take place from 11am – 4pm Saturday 26th October to Sunday 3rd November every day except Wednesdays.

Free half term fun is taking place at Caldicot, Chepstow, Monmouth and Usk Community Hubs. 

In Chepstow hub, children will be entertained by the Wye & Usk Foundation, who will be coming along to celebrate the International Year of the Salmon on Tuesday 29th October from 10.30am. Everyone is welcome to pop in for fun fishy stories, art and craft sessions and learn the moves to the Super Salmon song.

On Thursday 31st October little ones are welcome to come along to Chepstow Hub to make a bird feeder October from 11.00am – 12.00pm and Baby Rhyme time is taking place on Thursday 31st October 2.15pm – 2.45pm followed by under 5’s story time on Friday 1st November, 10.15am -10.45am.

Caldicot Hub has something for everyone, little monsters are welcome to come along on Wednesday 31st October 10.00am – 11.00am for ghoulishly brilliant Halloween craft activities. Little ones are not left out as Baby Rhymetime takes place on Tuesday 29th October 2.00pm -2.30pm and under 5’s story time on Thursday 31st October 2pm – 2.30pm. 

Little witches and wizards can fly in to Monmouth Hub for a morning ofWinny the Witch activities on Wednesday 30th October 11.00am.

Usk Hub, has more fiendishly fabulous things to do, pop in to make spooky halloween pumpkins on Wednesday 23rd October from 10am Wednesday, children aged 2+ are welcome. Followed by Halloween story time on Thursday 24th October, 10.30am for children aged 2 – 5 years.           

The fantastic Louby Lou hosts Spinella’s Spooky Saturday, on Saturday 26th October 10.00am – 10.45am The October half term has arrived and Louby Lou’s pet spider is crawling over to Usk Library for a spooktacular storytelling session! A frightfully fun Saturday morning session for little ghouls filled with props, role play, music, physical movement and the usual Louby Lou silliness!

This session is for children aged 3 years and above. All children must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the session.

To book all Louby Lou sessions and find out about future events visit: https://www.loubyloustorytelling.co.uk

Monmouthshire Youth Service are venturing to Thorpe Park for Fright Night on Thursday 31st October, the trip for young people aged 11 – 18 years of age will be supported by staff from the service. Transport is provided and costs £25.00. To book a place parents are urged to visit Abergavenny, Chepstow and Monmouth Leisure centre to complete a consent form, please note spaces are filing up fast and Caldicot has already sold out.

Cllr Richard John, cabinet member for Mon Life said:

“There is so much to do this half term, as well as activities inside and out of our hubs and attractions go out in the fresh air, kick the crispy autumn leaves, and wonder at the incredible colours Mother Nature has cast upon the trees. There are so many places to visit to make everlasting memories.”

For more information visit: www.visitmonmouthshire.com/things-to-do

Monmouthshire’s Cabinet is to launch a public consultation later this year on the potential establishment of a new Welsh-medium school as part of an expansion in Welsh-medium education in the county.

Monmouthshire currently has two Welsh-medium schools – Ysgol Y Ffin in Caldicot and Ysgol Y Fenni in Abergavenny.

A potential location for a new school is the site of the old junior school in Raglan, which has been empty for four years. 

Cllr Richard John, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and MonLife, said, “This administration is leading Monmouthshire’s biggest ever expansion in Welsh-medium education to ensure that parents have a choice about the education they want for their children.

While we have two successful Welsh-medium schools in Caldicot and Abergavenny, travel times are deterring parents in the Monmouth area from being able to exercise that choice.

Together with our plans to double capacity at Ysgol Y Fenni in Abergavenny to two-class entry and expand nursery provision at Ysgol Y Ffin in Caldicot, this is an exciting time for Welsh-medium education in Monmouthshire.

These plans are at an early stage, but I look forward to considerable public engagement on these proposals to ensure our education system meets the needs of Monmouthshire families.”

From old trinkets to general bric a brac – there’s a whole menagerie of treasures to be discovered at Monmouthshire’s first household waste reuse shop.

‘The Shop’, which is based at the Llanfoist Household Waste and Recycling centre, was officially opened on Friday 4th October by Council Chair, Councillor Shelia Woodhouse, and Councillor Jane Pratt.

The Shop’s purpose is to contribute to Monmouthshire County Council’s commitment to tackling climate change.  In May, Monmouthshire County Councillors unanimously passed a motion declaring a climate emergency. This set out a clear policy commitment for the council to strive to reduce its own carbon emissions to zero by 2030; to encourage others to reduce their carbon emissions and work with partners in limiting global warming to less than 1.5 °C.

Since opening its doors in June, the reuse shop has already diverted seven tonnes of material from the waste stream and back into use. The Shop’s second purpose will see all profits made from sales go to supporting climate change initiatives such as tree planting, community orchards and community gardens projects. Since June £10,000 has been raised.

The daily running of the shop is supported by volunteers and the council is calling on more people to come and volunteer at the shop to expand the service. This can be helping with sales and general assistance around the unit.

A whole array of items have already been sold. Tools, pots, tables, chairs, bikes and musical instruments have all found new homes thanks to the hard work of the staff and volunteers on site.

The council is now encouraging residents to not only come and visit the shop to see what bargains they can find but also to bring any unwanted household items such as furniture, kitchenware or tools to the shop so it can find a new home. The Shop also provides great ideas for anyone who may enjoy upcycling or art projects.

Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Neighbourhood Services, Councillor Jane Pratt said: “I’m delighted to officially open Monmouthshire’s very first reuse shop. To see items that would usually end up on landfill find a new home is wonderful and it’s also just another step in the council’s commitment to tackling climate change. It’s also fantastic to see that the shop offers volunteering opportunities and I would encourage anyone wanting to help out to get in touch.” 

The Shop is open on Thursday and Friday between 10am and 2pm for more information: Press Release – Trinkets and hidden gems to be discovered at Monmouthshire’s new recycle shop

From old trinkets to general bric a brac – there’s a whole menagerie of treasures to be discovered at Monmouthshire’s first household waste reuse shop.

‘The Shop’, which is based at the Llanfoist Household Waste and Recycling centre, was officially opened on Friday 4th October by Council Chair, Councillor Shelia Woodhouse, and Councillor Jane Pratt.

The Shop’s purpose is to contribute to Monmouthshire County Council’s commitment to tackling climate change.  In May, Monmouthshire County Councillors unanimously passed a motion declaring a climate emergency. This set out a clear policy commitment for the council to strive to reduce its own carbon emissions to zero by 2030; to encourage others to reduce their carbon emissions and work with partners in limiting global warming to less than 1.5 °C.

Since opening its doors in June, the reuse shop has already diverted seven tonnes of material from the waste stream and back into use. The Shop’s second purpose will see all profits made from sales go to supporting climate change initiatives such as tree planting, community orchards and community gardens projects. Since June £10,000 has been raised.

The daily running of the shop is supported by volunteers and the council is calling on more people to come and volunteer at the shop to expand the service. This can be helping with sales and general assistance around the unit.

A whole array of items have already been sold. Tools, pots, tables, chairs, bikes and musical instruments have all found new homes thanks to the hard work of the staff and volunteers on site.

The council is now encouraging residents to not only come and visit the shop to see what bargains they can find but also to bring any unwanted household items such as furniture, kitchenware or tools to the shop so it can find a new home. The Shop also provides great ideas for anyone who may enjoy upcycling or art projects.

Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Neighbourhood Services, Councillor Jane Pratt said: “I’m delighted to officially open Monmouthshire’s very first reuse shop. To see items that would usually end up on landfill find a new home is wonderful and it’s also just another step in the council’s commitment to tackling climate change. It’s also fantastic to see that the shop offers volunteering opportunities and I would encourage anyone wanting to help out to get in touch.” 

The Shop is open on Thursday and Friday between 10am and 2pm for more information visit: www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-waste/reuse-shop/

Residents across Monmouthshire are being asked to plan ahead as essential maintenance works are scheduled on the Gibraltar Tunnels in Monmouth.

The work will begin Saturday 12th October 2019 from 20:00hrs on until 06:00hrs on Wednesday 16th October 2019 and is being carried out by the South Wales Trunk Road Agent – the body responsible for managing, maintaining and improving the strategic road network in South Wales on behalf of the Welsh Government.

A contraflow arrangement will be in place during this period for maintenance works to take place in both the northbound and southbound tunnel.

During the entire closure period all wide abnormal load (Width greater than 3 meters and length no more than 16.5 meters) will be requested to use the M5 & M4 to enter and exit South Wales.

Electronic and Hard advance signage will be utilised on the M4, A465,A40 and the A449 where possible to advise motorists to plan ahead and expect delays in Monmouth during these dates.

16 September 2019 – 1 November 2019

Wales & West Utilities and Morrison Utility Services are ahead of schedule and will begin Phase 2 of their works next week (date to be confirmed).

This will see St Ann Street being re-opened to traffic and the one-way system on Bridge Street, Lower Church Street and Church Road reinstated allowing motorists to circulate around Chepstow once again.  

However, Wye Bridge will be closed in both directions in order to replace the gas main on / over the bridge.

Monmouthshire County Council and the contractor are aware of the concerns expressed by local residents and are doing everything within our powers to minimise the level of disruption during this essential gas work.

We are also working with colleagues in Gloucestershire and the South Wales Trunk Road Agency (SWTRA) to try and find a workable solution that assists everyone.

Should you require further information or wish to discuss the logistics of the closure and how this might impact you please can this be addressed to Wales and West’s customer services team at enquiries@wwutilities.co.uk or alternatively phone freephone 0800 912 2999 or tweet @WWUtilities

Monmouthshire County Council’s environmental health and waste & street cleaning teams have joined Monmouth Town and Community Council, the police and other public bodies to raise awareness of Give Dog Fouling the Red Card day.

Give Dog Fouling the Red Card held on Thursday 19th September, is aninitiative to remind dog owners of the importance of picking up after their dogs and how they can help to make our streets, play and leisure areas a safer place. The message is simple, dog owners are asked to please ‘bag it and bin it’.

Stickers were put on dog bins reminding owners that if a dog bin is full they can also use litter bins for bagged dog mess or take it home and place it in their own household waste for disposal.

Officers visited a number of areas in Monmouth where dog fouling has become an issue. Rockfield Community Centre and the nearby football pitch has seen an increase in dog fouling and local residents in the Clawdd Du and Carbonne Close areas were very appreciative of the efforts made. Chippenham Mead, Wyesham Avenue and Woodland View, were also visited with dog mess also evident on the pavement outside Kymin View School. Dog fouling is an issue particularly with residents who use wheelchairs and pushchairs. 

Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for environmental health, Councillor Sara Jones said: “The vast majority of dog walkers are responsible and pick up the mess. There are, however, incidents in the community where dog fouling can have a great impact on the health of children and those using sports pitches. It is dangerous and can cause illness and in some instances blindness. Give Dog Fouling the Red Card is a great initiative which will hopefully makes dog owners think. There has been a gradual reduction in the amount of fouling in recent years and I thank those owners who bag it and bin it.”

Monmouthshire County Council enforcement officers and the police have the powers to issue fixed penalty notices to owners who fail to pick up their dog’s mess. Those caught can expect an instant fine of £75 and in some instances face prosecution.  If the person refuses to pay and the case is taken to court the offender may be fined up to £1,000. 

Residents are urged to report dog owners who fail to pick up via: http://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/home/streets-parking-and-transport/recycling-and-waste/dogfouling/

Monmouthshire County Council, is delighted to announce that it and the other four Gwent local authorities, have been awarded £459,000 from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) to install electric vehicle charge points in car parks in residential areas.

The funding which will be split across the five local authorities (Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen) will be used to install electric vehicle charging infrastructure across 33 local authority car parks in Gwent – installing up to 73 fast charge points.

Following a feasibility study supported by Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales, the five Gwent local authorities (Caerphilly County Borough Council, Torfaen County Borough Council, Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council, Newport City Council and Monmouthshire County Council) were able to make a successful application for funding. Assistance was also received from the Energy Saving Trust during the development of their bid.

A survey has been conducted to support the funding bid in each of the authorities. The council would like to thank those residents who took time to participate in the survey. Their input will contribute to the future of provision for the county.

Councillor Jane Pratt, Cabinet Member for Green Infrastructure said:

“We are delighted that the funding bid has been successful. As an authority we are taking all the steps we can to be carbon free by 2030, following our declaration of a Climate Emergency in 2019.

The funding will empower the authority to install electric charging points thereby encouraging residents to be able to take advantage of electric vehicles. We look forward to installing the points across the county.”

For more information and to provide feedback call Rural Programmes Coordinator Mark Lloyd on 01633 644865 or email MarkLloyd@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Monmouthshire County Council is pleased to announce that works to improve the historic Cross area of Caldicot are set to begin from Monday 30th September.

The ‘Caldicot Cross Destination Space’ project will create a ‘civilised street’ and high quality public space that dramatically improves the historic gateway to the town. A multi-use space that supports local wellbeing and active travel, promotes events, stimulates business, and links the town centre with the nearby Castle and Country Park.

The £1.57m project is the first of many planned under the wider regeneration scheme and is being funded by Monmouthshire County Council and the Welsh Government through its ‘Targeted Regeneration Investment’ programme and ‘Local Transport Fund’.

Caldicot town was chosen as Monmouthshire’s priority regeneration scheme and forms part of the Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) regeneration plan.

Other projects include the remodelling of the town’s community hub to create dedicated space for co-working and enterprise – providing flexible and affordable accommodation for freelancers and small businesses.

Proposals also include a grant opportunity for eligible property owners and leaseholders to uplift the presentation of commercial properties in the town centre and create additional living accommodation. More information can be found on https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/caldicot-regen/ucpef/ 

Cllr Jane Pratt, Cabinet Member for Operations said: “I am delighted that regeneration plans for Caldicot town centre are about to begin. The work will enable the town to become a vastly improved and more connected space, promoting businesses and encouraging visitors and  residents to use the town. Disturbance will be kept to a minimum and I urge residents to continue to visit the town whilst work is going on.”

For more information visit: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/caldicot-regen/  or email Colin Phillips colinphillips@monmouthshire.gov.uk

Caldicot Castle will host its annual fireworks spectacular on Sunday 3rd November, with gates opening at 4.30pm and a display lasting over 20 minutes starting at approximately 7pm.  The annual event is ranked one of the top ten Welsh displays by media website WalesOnline. 

Organised by Monmouthshire County Council, in association with the Monmouthshire Building Society, supported by Caldicot Town Council and community volunteer organisations, and in partnership with Capital FM, it attracts large crowds and has become increasingly popular.  It’s no ordinary show, as the castle walls are a stunning backdrop to an astonishing spectacle of fireworks, music and incredible lights painting the night sky.

Tickets go on general sale from 14th October, costing £7.50 for adults and £4.50 for children, as well as further information, are available by visiting www.visitmonmouthshire.com/fireworks. Children under three get free entry but will still require a ticket to attend. 

A range of great deals are available for local residents, proof of address will be required.  An early bird discount of 20% will be on offer from 1st – 6th October at Caldicot Castle’s shop between 11 am – 4 pm and after 4 pm from Caldicot Leisure Centre. 

A 10% discount will be available from11 am – 4 pm on 8th – 13th October Caldicot Castle’s shop and after 4 pm from Caldicot Leisure Centre. 

Organisers stress that this is a ticket-only event, no tickets will be on sale at the gate and residents should avoid disappointment by purchasing early as tickets sold out last year.  Children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult.

Free parking is available at the local Asda supermarket, Castle Gate and the Jubilee Way car park in the centre of Caldicot.  In addition to fireworks, there will be live music and entertainment from Capital FM, children’s funfair rides, a licensed bar, food and drink stands.

County Councillor Richard John, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member with responsibility for leisure and tourism said: “This will be the seventh year we’ve held a spectacular firework display at Caldicot Castle. The location provides the perfect backdrop for a magical evening of fun and fireworks. Families can look forward to a fabulous display and great entertainment.” For more information about future events at the Castle and other attractions across the county visit: https://www.visitmonmouthshire.com/