Tag: Cardiff News

Royal Mint changed Tac and making Covid-19 Visors for NHS – Positive Coronavirus News #PositiveCoronavirusNews


Credit: Royal MintThe Royal Mint has begun mass manufacturing medical visors to protect frontline NHS staff from coronavirus.

Based in Llantrisant, engineers at The Royal Mint developed a medically approved visor design which they can produce thousands of each day. 

The first batch of visors are already in use at The Royal Glamorgan Hospital in south Wales. 

Health care workers have expressed concern over the amount of PPEavailable to them, despite Welsh Government reassurance that there is enough to go around. 

The Royal Mint, usually known for making money and coins, are turning their focus to helping protect people against COVID-19 by making valuable personal protective equipment (PPE).

Engineers at the site found a basic design for medical visors online. They then adapted and developed their own prototype, which was approved for medical use within 48 hours.

The design will also soon be released online, enabling other companies to manufacture even more.

The Royal Mint say they can produce thousands of masks every day, subject to getting enough of the raw components.

The masks are made with a type of 1mm clear plastic which is currently in low supply. They are appealing to manufacturers across the UK to help them source the material that forms the potentially life-saving protective equipment.

The first batch of visors manufactured by The Royal Mint are already in use at The Royal Glamorgan Hospital. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board will receive the visors initially, with some already in use at The Royal Glamorgan Hospital.

The CEO of Cwm Tag Morgannwg University Health Board thanked The Royal Mint for their support.

We are incredibly grateful to the Royal Mint for this work. This equipment will be vitally important for our frontline staff to protect themselves and others as they work to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The generosity of organisations such as The Royal Mint as well as our communities has been humbling and I would like to thank everyone for their continued support for our staff and the NHS.

– DR SHARON HOPKINS, CEO CWM TAF MORGANNWG UNIVERSITY HEALTH BOARD

Leighton John, Director of Operations for The Royal Mint said: “My sister works for the NHS and it really focuses your mind on the challenges they are facing, and the opportunity we have to support them.

“On Wednesday at 9am we knew nothing about medical visors, but we set our engineers the task of developing essential medical equipment which could be easily made on site – within seven hours they’d created a medical visor, and within 48 hours it was approved for mass manufacture. We’ll shortly post the specifications on our website to enable other firms to make them too.

“We are now developing the production line, and urgently calling for help to source 1.0mm PET clear plastic which is in low supply across the UK. We believe firms will have this in stock, and we’d urge them to get in touch with us so we can continue to support our NHS.”

Visors, masks, aprons and gloves are all valuable items of PPE used to prevent frontline workers from contracting coronavirus. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Some health care workers are worried about access to protective equipment like masks. One GP based in Bangor told ITV Cymru Wales that she and her colleagues feel “forced to make decisions” based on the “availability of PPE” and not based on “clinical judgement”.

On Wednesday 25, the Welsh Government announced that they would be making more PPE available to health and social care staff.


Positivity:

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All new rules and opening hours for Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Lidl, Aldi and Asda

Supermarkets across the UK have introduced a number of new rules and opening hours in response to the UK blockade. Supermarkets are only a handful of…

All new rules and opening hours for Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Lidl, Aldi and Asda

Breaking Business News / Coronavirus News

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Coronavirus: Supermarkets limit shoppers as rules tighten

Shops have brought in a host of measures following the introduction of strict new government curbs.

Coronavirus: Supermarkets limit shoppers as rules tighten

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Tesco stops sale of skimmed milk and multibuy offers to meet demand for other products

Queues outside a Tesco store in Shropshire (Picture: PA Wire )Tesco will no longer sell skimmed milk and scrap multi-pack offers to allow suppliers …

Tesco stops sale of skimmed milk and multibuy offers to meet demand for other products

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Latest BBC News update…

Latest BBC News Update including Coronavirus News

 
 

First it was advice, now it’s an order. Boris Johnson has issued a stark message to the country: “At this moment of national emergency… stay at home.” Speaking after the UK death toll reached 335, the prime minister introduced unprecedented restrictions on everyday life, meaning people must only leave their house for one of four reasons – to exercise once a day, to travel to and from work where “absolutely necessary”, to shop for essential items, and to fulfil any medical or care needs. 

 

Shops selling non-essential goods have been told to shut, along with libraries and children’s playgrounds, and gatherings in public of more than two people who do not live together will be prohibited. The restrictions will be in place for at least three weeks and police will have the power to enforce them, including through fines.  Read the prime minister’s statement in full and get a more detailed breakdown of the new rules.

 

The BBC’s political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, says it’s still not quite the kind of total crackdown seen in other countries, at least not yet – no curfews, for example – and there will be a time on the other side of this crisis to analyse whether the government made the right decisions at the right time.

 

A reminder here of the symptoms of coronavirus and how you can minimise your risk. And here we answer 10 of your most-asked questions .

 
 
 

 
 

The World Health Organization says the pandemic is “accelerating”, with more than 360,000 cases globally and more than 16,000 deaths. But WHO director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said it was still possible to “change the trajectory” with rigorous testing and contact-tracing strategies. 

 

Many other nations have now imposed lockdowns along the lines of that in the UK. France is strictly limiting physical exercise and closing outdoor markets, and South Africa’s government is preparing for the worst. India is stopping all domestic flights, but there are particular fears surrounding one textile city.

 

In Italy, the worst-hit country, the latest daily increase in deaths was the smallest since last Thursday, raising hope that stringent restrictions on public life are starting to have an effect. The BBC’s Sima Kotecha describes the haunting experience of Rome under lockdown. 

 

In the US, where 481 people have died, state governors and city mayors are pleading for more help from the federal government. However, the BBC’s Anthony Zurcher explains why the president may be having second thoughts about following suit with a large-scale lockdown. 

 

Our live page has all the latest developments, while health correspondent James Gallagher looks at when and how life might return to normal.

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It is clearly not a good time for the world and it is not a good time for relations between the US and China. President Donald Trump has repeatedly chosen to call the coronavirus the “Chinese virus”. The president and his secretary of state have both denounced China for its failings in the initial handling of the outbreak. Meanwhile, social media in China has spread stories that the pandemic has been caused by a US military germ warfare programme; rumours that gained considerable traction. But this is not just a war of words, something more fundamental is going on . 

 
 
 

Jonathan Marcus

BBC defence and diplomatic correspondent

 
 
 
 

 
 

The drastic measures announced by Boris Johnson are reflected in dramatic headlines. “End of freedom”, the Daily Telegraph declares. “Britain shuts up shop”, the Daily Mail says, while the Sun has a picture of a giant padlock with the headline “House arrest”. As the Financial Times puts it, the prime minister has been “forced to close Britain”. While there’s widespread support for the measures, there’s also a feeling that, as the i puts it, the prime minister has dragged his heels. The Guardian says he significantly “escalated his language” after days of being accused of “sending mixed messages about what the public should do”. Leo McKinstry, writing in the Daily Express, says the imposition of these “savage rules” will have been particularly difficult for the PM, who is “an optimistic liberal at heart, with a deep suspicion of the big state”, but he had no alternative.

 
 
   
   
 

 
 

 

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Free Trains in Wales for NHS Staff On TfW and other Transport News…

NHS staff in Wales are being offered free travel on Transport for Wales rail services with immediate effect, the company has announced.

NHS workers will just need to show their work ID to access services to get themselves back and forth to work until 30 April.

Public transport is to operate on a reduced scale throughout Wales because of the coronavirus pandemic.

However the reduced service has led to crowding on some trains.

New timetables are now in place for trains and buses until further notice.

Announcing the move for NHS workers, Transport for Wales (TfW) said: “At Transport for Wales our primary focus is keeping our colleagues and customers safe, and to keep key workers moving.

“From Monday 23 March, Transport for Wales will provide all NHS workers free travel to and from work until 30th April on production of their NHS ID.”

A statement on its website added: “We are doing all we can to keep vital services running, so that emergency service staff who are using our trains and key workers are to travel in safety with confidence.” 

Some passengers were reporting difficulties in maintaining social distancing on trains on Monday morning.

Hospital worker Emma Lamorte highlighted the situation on Twitter and called for more trains.

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Tube travellers in London have also experienced crowded carriages, with unions saying it left transport staff feeling “furious” as they were unable to maintain social distancing.

However, other travellers in Wales reported quieter than usual carriages.

Aurora Heathfield

Image captionAurora Heathfield, outside Cardiff Central, was on a train carriage with only three other people

Commuter Aurora Heathfield from Bridgend, said there was an “eerie feel” on the train to Cardiff on Monday morning with carriages much quieter than usual.

“It would usually be pretty busy and you’d be looking for a seat. There was three people in my carriage,” she said.

Jake Newberry from Cross Keys, Caerphilly county, said there was “hardly anyone” on his train on the Ebbw Vale line and he had expected to see more people due to the reduced timetable.

Alex Varney said the train from Barry to Cardiff was also quiet with the conductor providing advice over a speaker rather than walking through the train to check tickets.

“It was nice and quiet and nice to have some space,” he said.

“Everyone was calm and pleasant and just going through their day.”

A TfW spokesman said on Monday afternoon: “Whilst some services were busy this morning, on average most were 50-60% full. However, we will continue to prioritise peak periods services in order to ensure we do not create overly busy services.

“”We will be monitoring the situation on a daily basis and increase capacity where necessary but we do strongly urge customers to carefully consider whether they do have to travel so that priority can be given to key workers.”

Why are services being reduced?

The changes reflect the fall in demand, reduced availability of staff and the latest public health guidance, transport companies said.

Transport Minister Ken Skates said it remained “crucial” to keep some services going for key workers and supply chains.

“This action aims to balance the current significantly reduced levels of passenger demand as people follow the guidelines to socially isolate with the need to reduce the number of people required to run the network,” he said.

“This contingency measure will help to ensure there are enough staff to keep services running over the coming weeks and months.”

Ken Skates

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES

Image captionKen Skates hopes the new plans will keep transport on track for the coming months

The move comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said people should avoid “non-essential” travel.

Operators said the closure of schools, as well as people increasingly working from home, was expected to see a further significant decline in demand.

How have bus services changed?

First Cymru, which operates services across south and west Wales, warned customers face disruption to services because “increasing numbers of staff” were self-isolating.

It said there would be a reduced timetable for services in Ammanford, Bridgend, Carmarthen, Haverfordwest, Llanelli, Maesteg, Port Talbot and Swansea.

The company also urged passengers not use cash payments to buy tickets wherever possible, to “stop the spread” of coronavirus.

Arriva bus at Wrexham Bus Station

Image copyrightALAN SANSBURY

Image captionMany bus operators are running a Saturday timetable

Stagecoach, which operates throughout south-east Wales, said a reduced timetable would operate until further notice but had been created to ensure “critical routes are maintained wherever possible”.

Nigel Winter, managing director, said the company was working to maintain essential services, safeguard jobs and ensure the long-term sustainability of the industry in a “challenging” situation.

“We also know that our bus services play a vital role in keeping the country running and ensuring key sector personnel get to work,” he added.

“Our objective has been to focus resources on where we know they are needed most at this time.”

In north Wales, Arriva Bus is running an emergency service but will still operate key routes “to ensure customers can continue to access critical services”.

Cardiff bus

Image copyrightJAGGERY/GEOGRAPH

Image captionOnly eight Cardiff Bus routes will continue as normal

Cardiff Bus is now following a Saturday timetable for most of its services across the capital with the exception of some services which are running normally. School buses will continue for eligible children.

All Newport Bus services are also now following a Saturday timetable in “these unprecedented times”, the company said.

It added: “We will maintain bus services for our customers for as long as we are able to.”

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How are trains affected?

Train operators across Britain will gradually reduce services following talks with the UK and Welsh governments.

However operators will still run core services to ensure key workers can get to their jobs and the flow of goods continues.

Class 170 train

Image copyrightRICHARD JONES/MLA PHOTOGRAPHY/TFW

Image captionBusy commuter lines will be prioritised

TfW said Sunday service times will be applied throughout the week though some additional services will operate to support busier commuter routes. 

“This timetable has been designed to be as resilient as possible, whilst ensuring we balance a reduction in demand, availability of our people and the need to support key workers such as health, food retailers and delivery teams,” it said.

The operator said advanced tickets were now eligible for refunds.

For more on this BBC article or other News please follow the link.

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Latest update on Coronavirus from The PM as UK goes in to lockdown!

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that the UK is going into lockdown in a televised address to the nation last evening.

The PM made the announcement from 10 Downing Street amid widespread calls for tougher measures to slow the spread of Covid-19 / Coronavirus.

He ordered the immediate closure of all shops selling non-essentials items on Monday evening.

He told people to only leave the house to shop for basic necessities “as infrequently as possible” and to perform one form of exercise a day.

“If you don’t follow the rules the police will have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings.”

To ensure people follow the rules, Mr Johnson ordered the immediate closure of non-essential stores including those selling electronics and clothing.

All public gatherings of more than two people – other than those you live with – will be banned, the PM said.

Other premises being shuttered are libraries, playgrounds, outdoor gyms and places of worship.

The UK coronavirus lockdown rules you must now comply with, or face police action, are as follows:

Coronavirus: Boris Johnson orders lockdown of the UK and orders people to stay at home

And, while parks will remain open for exercise, all social events including weddings and baptisms will be stopped.

Funerals, however, can continue.

Mr Johnson said the measures will be “under constant review” and will be considered for relaxation in three weeks’ time if the evidence allows.

Earlier in the day all Britons travelling abroad were told to return to the UK “while you still can”.

The Welsh Government has also announced the closure of all caravan parks, campsites and tourist hotspots after people flocked to Welsh landmarks on the weekend.

The First Minister will also take additional powers over licensing because some pubs didn’t close over the weekend.

The measures come after it was announced four more people have died after contracting the coronavirus in Wales.

There are now 418 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Wales and there have so far been 16 deaths.

But Dr Giri Shankar, Incident Director for the Covid-19 outbreak response at Public Health Wales, said the “the true number of cases is likely to be higher” as the virus continues to circulate in every part of Wales.

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Primark to close all 189 UK Stores including all stores in Wales – WelshBiz

Retail Giant Primark is to close all 189 of their UK stores in response to coronavirus.

The major high street retailer will close all its shops due to the Covid-19 outbreak in a move affecting some 37,000 people.

The Primark store on Cardiff’s Queens Street, as well as all 189 UK stores will close with immediate effect due to the coronavirus.

The announcement by Primark, which has branches across Wales, will affect 37,000 people.

A Primark spokesman said;

“Our main priority is the health and wellbeing of our employees,”

“Primark has committed to supporting all employees who are directly affected by store closures, with full pay for their contracted hours for 14 days, after which the situation will be reviewed.

“Primark will continue to closely monitor the situation, following WHO advice as well as local and national government guidance.”  

For more Welsh Business News , UK Business News, Global Business News it Coronavirus News, please follow the link.

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Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) to support Businesses in South Wales…

THE Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) has today outlined its work supporting businesses in South Wales affected by the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

The region is working with the Welsh and UK Governments to keep them updated on the current experiences of South Wales business, while working to ensure the region’s business are kept informed of the support available to them and how it can be accessed.

The Covid-19 (coronavirus) disease has caused huge disruption to many businesses for the foreseeable future and with this comes the uncertainty of how they will cope.

During this time, the CCR wants to ensure that all messages for business support from the Welsh Government and UK Government are being properly communicated and will be cascading all relevant information through its channels for the benefit of the region’s businesses. It will also be working very closely with the CCR Economic Growth Partnership to consider targeted interventions from our investment fund to support companies in our region and fill in any gaps or intervene where more tailored packages of support are necessary. This will complement not duplicate Welsh Government and UK Government interventions.

Kellie Beirne, Director of the CCR City Deal, said: “For many people and businesses across Wales, this is a very uncertain time and the coming weeks and months will present a huge challenge to us as individuals, communities and businesses.

“Many businesses and sole traders will find it extremely difficult to navigate through the weeks and months ahead without coming under severe financial pressure.

“Many sectors will also be taking a hit as customers are advised to stay away with social distancing and self-isolation. This is why it is imperative we do all that we can do to help and support each other, which is why we must communicate the business support that is coming through Welsh Government and UK Government to ensure businesses in Wales know what is available to them and how to better plan for the next few months.

“We are constantly listening and ensuring our communities are kept up to date with the latest information as it happens, and in turn, we are speaking to key organisations such as the Welsh and UK Governments to ensure that understand the issues businesses in South Wales are facing. We will also be proactively supporting our Local authorities who’s rightful priority right now must be saving lives and protection of the vulnerable.

“The CCR fully supports the help the two Governments have pledged to date. Today we are expecting a further announcement from the Chancellor with regard to a salary support scheme. It is our intention to keep cascading what these announcements mean for business, and how those companies can access that support.”

Cardiff Capital Region is working on making sure it’s as clear as possible to businesses how they can access these support schemes that are being put in place, and will be communicating this information to businesses through their channels.

In addition, the CCR and FOR Cardiff has issued a survey to help understand and identify key frustrations businesses are facing and the requirements businesses need to overcome this period of uncertainty. Businesses can complete the survey HERE.

Kellie added: “The coronavirus pandemic is a test of the resilience of our communities. There are great traditions of mutual support and cooperation in our region that we can draw on. In Cardiff Capital Region, working together for the good of all is at the heart of what we’re about. Our ethos is that the region is not a success if the most in need are left behind.

“However, now more than ever is the time for entrepreneurship to come to the fore. We will need to pivot business models, diversify and innovate in order to survive in such turbulent times.

“While this time is uncertain for many, what is certain is that we must try to sustain our businesses and communities through the crisis and help them get back on their feet when the recovery comes. The work that we do as Cardiff Capital Region is all about providing the environment in which businesses can flourish, in every corner of our region.”

For more on this article or other Wales 247 news please follow the link.

For more Cardiff Business News, South Wales Business News, Welsh Business News or Welsh News please follow the relevant links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) to support Businesses in South Wales…

THE Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) has today outlined its work supporting businesses in South Wales affected by the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

The region is working with the Welsh and UK Governments to keep them updated on the current experiences of South Wales business, while working to ensure the region’s business are kept informed of the support available to them and how it can be accessed.

The Covid-19 (coronavirus) disease has caused huge disruption to many businesses for the foreseeable future and with this comes the uncertainty of how they will cope.

During this time, the CCR wants to ensure that all messages for business support from the Welsh Government and UK Government are being properly communicated and will be cascading all relevant information through its channels for the benefit of the region’s businesses. It will also be working very closely with the CCR Economic Growth Partnership to consider targeted interventions from our investment fund to support companies in our region and fill in any gaps or intervene where more tailored packages of support are necessary. This will complement not duplicate Welsh Government and UK Government interventions.

Kellie Beirne, Director of the CCR City Deal, said: “For many people and businesses across Wales, this is a very uncertain time and the coming weeks and months will present a huge challenge to us as individuals, communities and businesses.

“Many businesses and sole traders will find it extremely difficult to navigate through the weeks and months ahead without coming under severe financial pressure.

“Many sectors will also be taking a hit as customers are advised to stay away with social distancing and self-isolation. This is why it is imperative we do all that we can do to help and support each other, which is why we must communicate the business support that is coming through Welsh Government and UK Government to ensure businesses in Wales know what is available to them and how to better plan for the next few months.

“We are constantly listening and ensuring our communities are kept up to date with the latest information as it happens, and in turn, we are speaking to key organisations such as the Welsh and UK Governments to ensure that understand the issues businesses in South Wales are facing. We will also be proactively supporting our Local authorities who’s rightful priority right now must be saving lives and protection of the vulnerable.

“The CCR fully supports the help the two Governments have pledged to date. Today we are expecting a further announcement from the Chancellor with regard to a salary support scheme. It is our intention to keep cascading what these announcements mean for business, and how those companies can access that support.”

Cardiff Capital Region is working on making sure it’s as clear as possible to businesses how they can access these support schemes that are being put in place, and will be communicating this information to businesses through their channels.

In addition, the CCR and FOR Cardiff has issued a survey to help understand and identify key frustrations businesses are facing and the requirements businesses need to overcome this period of uncertainty. Businesses can complete the survey HERE.

Kellie added: “The coronavirus pandemic is a test of the resilience of our communities. There are great traditions of mutual support and cooperation in our region that we can draw on. In Cardiff Capital Region, working together for the good of all is at the heart of what we’re about. Our ethos is that the region is not a success if the most in need are left behind.

“However, now more than ever is the time for entrepreneurship to come to the fore. We will need to pivot business models, diversify and innovate in order to survive in such turbulent times.

“While this time is uncertain for many, what is certain is that we must try to sustain our businesses and communities through the crisis and help them get back on their feet when the recovery comes. The work that we do as Cardiff Capital Region is all about providing the environment in which businesses can flourish, in every corner of our region.”

For more on this article or other Wales 247 news please follow the link.

For more Cardiff Business News, South Wales Business News, Welsh Business News or Welsh News please follow the relevant links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Former and future health and social care professionals needed – Welsh Government News…

Coronavirus News

PRESS RELEASE

Wales’ former health and social care professionals are today being asked to return to work, as an emergency recruitment drive is launched to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

First published:21 March 2020Last updated:21 March 2020

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Wales’ Chief Medical Officer, Chief Nursing Officer and Director of Social Services and Integration have made simultaneous appeals to their colleagues to sign-up to support those affected.

Final-year students will also be offered work in the NHS to help boost the workforce over the coming months.

Chief Nursing Officer Jean White said:

These are extraordinary times, which call for extraordinary measures to be taken to respond to the health needs of the people of Wales.

I am appealing to all health professionals who are able to help at this time to make themselves available – our National Health Service needs you. Wales needs you.

Chief Medical Officer Dr Frank Atherton said:

I would like to reassure NHS Wales staff and the people of Wales that we are doing all we can to support health and social care organisations during this extremely challenging period.

Our health service and our excellent health workers need all the support and help they can get. Our nation’s health depends on it.

The Welsh Government’s Director of Social Services and Integration, Albert Heaney said:

I want to reassure our dedicated social care sector that we are working with partners to ensure we protect our frontline social care staff, who play such a crucial role in caring for and supporting the vulnerable in society. 

Social Care Wales has written to the workforce and to employers to outline the measures it is taking, including how it will register those offering their invaluable experience to return and assist this collective effort.

We want to welcome you back in to the fold.” 

The plans are part of the extensive work to prepare the NHS and social care sector to provide expert care for the predicted number of people who are likely to need care as a result of contracting coronavirus.

People who have left or retired in the last three years will be asked to re-register with their relevant professional bodies. They will be asked what role they could play and how much time they can dedicate.

All returning staff will be able to ‘opt-in’ to a register to fill a range of clinical and non-clinical roles across the NHS and social care sector, based on their skills and time away from practice.

Already more than 5,000 letters have been sent to retirees across a range of roles.

The Welsh Government is also currently exploring ways to harness the skills of students who are keen to contribute. Final-year medical students, student nurses and student social workers are being offered the opportunity to take on temporary, fully-paid roles to further boost the frontline.

Those who join will be given a full induction and training.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

My First Online Business Networking Event with Introbiz…

Online Zoom Networking

Yesterday I took part in my first Online / Virtual Webinar based Networking Event, where Introbiz Business Network, innovated and adapted to switch their cancelled real world business networking event online, after their networking event in Cardiff, was one of the many event victims pulled, due to Coronavirus.

30 members of the Introbiz Business Network attended this first online / virtual networking event and the majority seemed happy and positive with the event and the way it was conducted.

The usual power networking format of everyone getting a few minutes to talk about their business was still followed online and the web system of choice for the virtual / online business networking event was the Zoom platform.

Other than a few technical issues here and there the event went well and was really useful for those in attendance to continue to network and build relationships even under the current self isolation restrictions.

Lessons will be learnt and the online / virtual events will get slicker, but all in all the event went really well.

As well as local South Wales members, the online networking event was also joined by wider network contacts and Entrepreneurs from further afield such as England, Ireland & Sweden and I’m sure the spread of networkers will continue to grow as this online networking event format gets repeated several times whilst Coronavirus Measures continue to strike the usual networking event format.

In addition to joining the Introbiz network for attending real world events, new virtual networking members from around the world can now join the Introbiz network and attend the online / virtual networking events for just £99 a year.

See https://www.introbiz.co.uk for more pictures from the event and details how to get involved.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

UK Government Advice for Employees

Updated 20 March 2020

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

UK Government Advice for Employees

Updated 20 March 2020

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

2020 Housing Affordability Report with Stats for England & Wales for 2019, from the Office for National Statistics

Housing affordability in England and Wales: 2019

Commenting on the findings, ONS Head of Housing Analysis Nigel Henretty said:

“This is the first significant improvement in housing affordability in England for ten years.

“While housing remained significantly more affordable in Wales than in England, the gap between the most affordable and least affordable local areas decreased for the first time in four years. This was driven mainly by decreasing house prices in the least affordable areas.”

Go to the ONS release or view the full release by reading on:

Data on house prices and annual earnings to calculate affordability ratios for national and subnational geographies in England and Wales, on an annual basis.

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Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Wales Millennium Centre Closed until further notice – Welsh Business News…

Dear Supporter,

It is with great regret that we have closed Wales Millennium Centre until further notice, following the UK Government advice given on Monday 16 March. 

We hope you will agree that it is the right decision to put the safety of our staff, artists, volunteers and audiences first. This is a sad and uncertain time for all of us. 

The implications of this situation will be hard to manage and long-lasting. Our role is to be a home for the performing arts for our nation and we will be doing everything we can to support our staff and volunteers, artists and freelancers through this difficult situation. We are currently working on a way to support the talented and hardworking individuals who provide us with the joy that the performing arts bring. We want to be ready to bring back the uplifting performances and life-enhancing learning opportunities so many people value, as soon as is possible.

However, we are a charity. While we are grateful for the government funding we receive, more than 85% of our revenues come from ticket sales. So times ahead will be tough. We use all our profits to provide jobs for artists, opportunities for young people to learn about and work in the performing arts, and for communities to access, participate in, and celebrate the arts. If you wish to support the work we do, your help would be enormously appreciated.  You can donate here.

We are currently contacting all ticket holders with details of shows that have been postponed or cancelled to make refunds as required. Please bear with us whilst we work through this process.

The best sources of up-to-date information will now be our website and social media channels, which will be updated as and when further information emerges. 

Twitter  |  Instagram  |  Facebook

We wish the best to everyone in our community. Please stay safe and we will look forward to welcoming you back to Wales Millennium Centre in the near future.

Yours sincerely, 

Mat Milsom 

Managing Director,
Wales Millennium Centre

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Some Pictures of Wales – Greening Up for St Patrick’s Day…

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Have a Business or Attraction in Penarth?

Advertise it online via the Things to do in Penarth, Attraction & Business Directory and get ranked high in the search engines for just £30 per month.

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What’s on in Penarth

Penarth Shopping

Eating Out In Penarth

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

UK Government – Employee & Employer Advice…

Coronavirus information for employers and businesses

If you are an employer or a business owner we encourage you to read and follow the guidance for employers and businesses.

This guidance will assist employers and businesses in providing advice to staff on:

  • the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • how to help prevent spread of all respiratory infections including COVID-19
  • what to do if someone with suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 has been in a workplace setting
  • what advice to give to individuals who have travelled to specific areas, as outlined by the Chief Medical Officer
  • advice for the certification of absence from work resulting from COVID-19

If you would like to receive updates on the government’s response to COVID-19 you can sign up for email alerts.

Business support announced in the Budget

In today’s Budget (11 March 2020) the Chancellor announced a package of measures to provide support for public services, individuals and businesses to ensure the impact of COVID-19 is minimised.

A new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will enable businesses with a turnover of no more than £41 million to apply for a loan of up to £1.2 million, with the government covering up to 80% of any losses with no fees. This will unlock up to £1 billion pounds to protect and support small businesses.

For businesses with fewer than 250 employees, the cost of providing 14 days of statutory sick pay per employee will be refunded by the government in full. This will provide 2 million businesses with up to £2 billion to cover the costs of large-scale sick leave.

A dedicated helpline has been set up to help businesses and self-employed individuals in financial distress and with outstanding tax liabilities receive support with their tax affairs. Through this, businesses may be able to agree a bespoke Time to Pay arrangement. If you are concerned about being able to pay your tax due to COVID-19, call HMRC’s dedicated helpline on 0800 0159 559.

There will be a £3,000 cash grant to 700,000 of our smallest businesses, delivered by Local Authorities, and worth a total of £2.2 billion. Small businesses that pay little or no business rates and are eligible for Small Business Rate Relief (SBBR) or Rural Rate Relief will be contacted by their local authority – they do not need to apply. The funding will be provided to local authorities in early April. We will update GOV.UK with the details.

Finally, the government is temporarily increasing the business rates retail discount in England to 100% for 2020-21 for properties below £51,000 rateable value. Nearly half of all business properties will not pay a penny of business rates.

In addition, the decisions announced by the Bank of England on 11 March 2020 mean that banks are in a better position to provide additional credit to smaller businesses.

Business Secretary Alok Sharma said:

The coronavirus clearly poses multiple challenges for businesses, and I know from regular calls with business representatives that many are concerned about the longer-term effects on investment, cash flow and the future of their businesses.

Supporting companies through this period is a top priority and a whole of government effort. The measures set out in the Budget show that this government will support business through this turbulent time and keep the economy moving. We will continue to review these measures as the impact of the virus progresses.

Call for businesses to help make NHS ventilators

The government is looking for businesses who can support in the supply of ventilators and ventilator components across the UK as part of our response to COVID-19.

If you think your business can help, please register your details before midday on 18 March 2020.

Additional resources

  • the government’s coronavirus action plan provides detailed information about the government’s response
  • the government has put a range of support in place for those who do not receive Statutory Sick Pay, including Universal Credit and contributory Employment and Support Allowance
  • ACAS has published information for employees and employers, including simple steps to help protect the health and safety of staff
  • a number of private lenders are also making funds available to small businesses impacted by COVID-19, including £2 billion from Lloyds Banking Group and £5 billion from NatWest

If you have a query that isn’t covered by this guidance you can contact the Business Support Helpline.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Welsh News – Welfare Standards for Dogs, at Breeding Premises to be raised, says Welsh Minister…

Lesley Griffiths commits to driving up welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises

A commitment to improve welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises in Wales has been made by the Minister for the Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths. Read more

dog

Dog

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A report, produced by the Wales Animal Health and Welfare Framework Group, reviewing the Animal Welfare (Breeding of Dogs) (Wales Regulations 2014) has been published today.
The recommendations include a need for:

  • Greater consistency in the inspection and enforcement of breeding regulations
  • A review of the licensing process, including application of a staff to adult dog ratio appropriate to the breeding premises
  • The need for better welfare standards for all breeding dogs rather than only those at licensed premises

To deliver improvements and consistency in the inspection and enforcement of the breeding regulations, which is undertaken by Local Authorities, a scoping project has been set up to determine what additional resource is needed.

Once completed, funding for a three year pilot scheme will be provided. This will enable expertise to be built through specialist training and upskilling of dedicated Local Authority staff.

The review also supports the ban of third party sales of dogs and the Minister has committed to legislating on this issue before the end of this Senedd.

Minister Lesley Griffiths said:

We all want to see the highest welfare standards for animals in Wales. Part of this is to drive up the welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises.

I would like to thank the Animal Health and Welfare Group for reacting so quickly and producing their comprehensive report. Some of the recommendations can be delivered through existing legislation and I’m keen to see these progress as a matter of urgency before proposing amendments to the current Breeding Regulations.

The combination of new regulations on pet sales and dedicated funding for enforcement and delivery of the Breeding Regulations, will result in lasting improvements to the welfare standards of puppies bred in Wales.

For more Wales, Welsh News, Welsh Business News or Welsh Government News, please follow the links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Welsh News – Welfare Standards for Dogs, at Breeding Premises to be raised, says Welsh Minister…

Lesley Griffiths commits to driving up welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises

A commitment to improve welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises in Wales has been made by the Minister for the Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths. Read more

dog

Dog

Share this page

A report, produced by the Wales Animal Health and Welfare Framework Group, reviewing the Animal Welfare (Breeding of Dogs) (Wales Regulations 2014) has been published today.
The recommendations include a need for:

  • Greater consistency in the inspection and enforcement of breeding regulations
  • A review of the licensing process, including application of a staff to adult dog ratio appropriate to the breeding premises
  • The need for better welfare standards for all breeding dogs rather than only those at licensed premises

To deliver improvements and consistency in the inspection and enforcement of the breeding regulations, which is undertaken by Local Authorities, a scoping project has been set up to determine what additional resource is needed.

Once completed, funding for a three year pilot scheme will be provided. This will enable expertise to be built through specialist training and upskilling of dedicated Local Authority staff.

The review also supports the ban of third party sales of dogs and the Minister has committed to legislating on this issue before the end of this Senedd.

Minister Lesley Griffiths said:

We all want to see the highest welfare standards for animals in Wales. Part of this is to drive up the welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises.

I would like to thank the Animal Health and Welfare Group for reacting so quickly and producing their comprehensive report. Some of the recommendations can be delivered through existing legislation and I’m keen to see these progress as a matter of urgency before proposing amendments to the current Breeding Regulations.

The combination of new regulations on pet sales and dedicated funding for enforcement and delivery of the Breeding Regulations, will result in lasting improvements to the welfare standards of puppies bred in Wales.

For more Wales, Welsh News, Welsh Business News or Welsh Government News, please follow the links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Welsh News – Deputy Minister discovers National Park’s culture and coastline

Wales News - WelshBiz News

Wales News - WelshBiz News

Deputy Minister discovers National Park’s culture and coastline

hb

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn has visited the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park to see the vital work being undertaken to allow visitors and residents to enjoy this protected landscape, its wildlife and heritage.

During her visit to St David’s, the Deputy Minister was introduced to Park Authority staff and volunteers and held talks with Members and Officers of the National Park Authority, where they discussed a range of important issues including climate change, biodiversity, tourism and affordable housing.

The Deputy Minister also toured Oriel y Parc, an innovative gallery and visitor centre, operated in partnership with Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales, which interprets and brings to life the National Park’s landscape for its many visitors. She also visited St Justinian – and enjoyed a walk along a stretch of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, which boasts a small harbour and the St David’s Lifeboat Station.

The Welsh Government has continued its commitment to ensuring Wales’ National Parks and their communities prosper and flourish, with close to £15m in funding recently approved in the 2020-21 Welsh Government budget. This will include close to £5m of new capital funding to help National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) respond to the challenges of climate change, biodiversity loss and the impact of tourism.

During the visit the Deputy Minister highlighted the need for NPAs to continue supporting the Welsh Government’s efforts to achieve a carbon neutral public sector by 2030, while stimulating the significant economic, social and environmental benefit this can bring.

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn said:

Our fantastic National Parks offer us access to some of Wales’ most spectacular scenery. It was great to learn more about the work the team here in Pembrokeshire are doing, managing these landscapes for local communities and visitors alike.

Our National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty are very special to the people of Wales and attract millions visitors each year.

The stunning landscapes play a vital role in delivering rich ecosystems and vibrant and resilient communities, providing a wide range of recreational opportunities. They are also well placed to respond to some of our greatest challenges around the urgent need to reduce emissions and support nature recovery.

I am pleased to be providing additional funding for our National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty next financial year to enable them to have an even greater impact in these areas.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority Chairman, Cllr Paul Harries added: 

We were pleased to welcome the Deputy Minister to the Pembrokeshire Coast and provide an insight into all the work that goes into managing the National Park for local people and visitors alike, thanks to the continued support provided by the Welsh Government.

For more Wales, Welsh News, Welsh Business News or Welsh Government News, please follow the links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Welsh News – Deputy Minister discovers National Park’s culture and coastline

Wales News - WelshBiz News

Wales News - WelshBiz News

Deputy Minister discovers National Park’s culture and coastline

hb

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn has visited the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park to see the vital work being undertaken to allow visitors and residents to enjoy this protected landscape, its wildlife and heritage.

During her visit to St David’s, the Deputy Minister was introduced to Park Authority staff and volunteers and held talks with Members and Officers of the National Park Authority, where they discussed a range of important issues including climate change, biodiversity, tourism and affordable housing.

The Deputy Minister also toured Oriel y Parc, an innovative gallery and visitor centre, operated in partnership with Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales, which interprets and brings to life the National Park’s landscape for its many visitors. She also visited St Justinian – and enjoyed a walk along a stretch of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, which boasts a small harbour and the St David’s Lifeboat Station.

The Welsh Government has continued its commitment to ensuring Wales’ National Parks and their communities prosper and flourish, with close to £15m in funding recently approved in the 2020-21 Welsh Government budget. This will include close to £5m of new capital funding to help National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) respond to the challenges of climate change, biodiversity loss and the impact of tourism.

During the visit the Deputy Minister highlighted the need for NPAs to continue supporting the Welsh Government’s efforts to achieve a carbon neutral public sector by 2030, while stimulating the significant economic, social and environmental benefit this can bring.

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn said:

Our fantastic National Parks offer us access to some of Wales’ most spectacular scenery. It was great to learn more about the work the team here in Pembrokeshire are doing, managing these landscapes for local communities and visitors alike.

Our National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty are very special to the people of Wales and attract millions visitors each year.

The stunning landscapes play a vital role in delivering rich ecosystems and vibrant and resilient communities, providing a wide range of recreational opportunities. They are also well placed to respond to some of our greatest challenges around the urgent need to reduce emissions and support nature recovery.

I am pleased to be providing additional funding for our National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty next financial year to enable them to have an even greater impact in these areas.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority Chairman, Cllr Paul Harries added: 

We were pleased to welcome the Deputy Minister to the Pembrokeshire Coast and provide an insight into all the work that goes into managing the National Park for local people and visitors alike, thanks to the continued support provided by the Welsh Government.

For more Wales, Welsh News, Welsh Business News or Welsh Government News, please follow the links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Welsh Government Partner With Keep Wales Tidy To Provide Nature Starter Packs for Nature Community in Wales

nature packs

The Welsh Government has launched a major new scheme which aims to empower communities to bring nature ‘to your doorstep’ and help halt and reverse the decline in nature.

In partnership with Keep Wales Tidy, over 800 pre-paid ‘Starter packages’ are being made available to communities across Wales. The packages include items like native plants and seeds, peat-free compost, tools and even bug and bee hotels.DAFFODILS

DAFFODILS

blackberries

Starter packages will include all materials needed to create a community nature area, guidance on how to install it and Keep Wales Tidy officer time to provide advice and support.

Read more or click here to access the Keep Wales Tidy website for more information.

For more Wales, Welsh News, Welsh Business News or Welsh Government News, please follow the links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Natural Resources Bulletin From Welsh Government…

 
 

 

1. Launch of exciting new initiative to boost nature ‘on your doorstep’

2. Young people with a passion for protecting the planet come together for climate conference

3. Deputy Minister discovers National Park’s culture and coastline

4. Lesley Griffiths commits to driving up welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises

5. The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020

6. Update on the Fish Export Service

7. Update on regulations on oil storage tanks in Wales  

8. Applications now open for UK Seafood Innovation Fund

9. February highlights – Our top news stories

10. Scheme windows

11. Consultations

Launch of exciting new initiative to boost nature ‘on your doorstep’

nature packs

nature packs

The Welsh Government has launched a major new scheme which aims to empower communities to bring nature ‘to your doorstep’ and help halt and reverse the decline in nature.

In partnership with Keep Wales Tidy, over 800 pre-paid ‘Starter packages’ are being made available to communities across Wales.  The packages include items like native plants and seeds, peat-free compost, tools and even bug and bee hotels.

DAFFODILS

blackberries

Starter packages will include all materials needed to create a community nature area, guidance on how to install it and Keep Wales Tidy officer time to provide advice and support.

Read more or click here to access the Keep Wales Tidy website for more information

Young people with a passion for protecting the planet come together for climate conference

LGCC

LGCC

Young people came together to make a pledge to join the Welsh Government in its response to the climate emergency.

The conference built on the success of last year’s first Climate Change Wales Conference, bringing together young people with a passion for protecting our planet. Read more

Deputy Minister discovers National Park’s culture and coastline

hb

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn has visited the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park to see the vital work being undertaken to allow visitors and residents to enjoy this protected landscape, its wildlife and heritage. Read more

Lesley Griffiths commits to driving up welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises

A commitment to improve welfare standards for dogs at breeding premises in Wales has been made by the Minister for the Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths. Read more

dog

The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020

EU Day

We are now in a transition period; during this time, the way you do business with the EU will not change.

However, you will need to prepare and make changes to continue to do business at the end of the transition period.

You will find all the information you need on the Preparing Wales website.

Update on the Fish Export Service

The Fish Export Service was taken offline on 21 January 2020 as it is not required during the implementation period, which started when the UK left the European Union (EU) on 31 January, and ends on 31 December 2020.

catch

The service was originally developed to produce Catch Certificates, Processing Statements and Storage Documents to enable export of fishery products to the EU in the event of a no deal exit.

However, while the future partnership with the EU is negotiated, trading arrangements with the EU during the implementation period will continue as they were prior to exit. Read more

Update to regulations on oil storage tanks in Wales

news

The final stage of our Oil Storage Regulations come into force on

15 March 2020. The regulations to protect the environment and properties as a result of spills from oil storage containers came into force in Wales from 15 March 2016 and will be extended to all tanks from 15 March 2020.

Read more

UK Seafood Innovation Fund

Applications Now Open! 

The UK Seafood Innovation Fund is now accepting applications for its second open call, with funding pots of up to £50k for scoping studies and up to £250k for full R&D projects available.

SEAFOOD

With 27 projects funded in 2019, including initiatives using robotics, AI, fishing gear innovations, biomedical advances and more, the fund is now seeking a new tranche of applicants with plans to transform the future landscape for seafood supply. The fund encourages bids from experts in the fishing, aquaculture, and seafood processing sectors.

Visit http://www.seafoodinnovation.fund to find out more about the fund and how to apply.

sif

February highlights – Our top news stories

zerowaste

Have your say on plans to create a zero waste Wales

The Welsh Government wants your views on its plans to make Wales the world’s top recycling nation and help us become a truly circular economy, at a series of Beyond Recycling Consultation Events across Wales. Read more

COWS

Minister welcomes additional funding to promote Welsh red meat

Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs Minister Lesley Griffiths, has welcomed confirmation the Britain-wide Red Meat Levy Ring-fenced Fund will increase from £2million to £3.5million next year, after agreement was reached between the Red Meat Levy boards in Wales, Scotland and England. 

Read more

Mark Drakeford

First Minister establishes emergency funding relief scheme

A multi-million pound emergency fund to deal with the immediate impact of Storm Dennis and Storm Ciara has been announced by First Minister Mark Drakeford. 

Read more

Scheme windows

Micro Small Business Fund (MSBF)

The Micro Small Business Fund (MSBF) is an investment fund for projects in the tourism sector in Wales. It can be used either to upgrade existing or create new high quality products.

Farm Business Grant

The 7th expression of interest window for the Farm Business Grant (FBG) opened on 2 March 2020.

Enabling Natural Resources and Well-being (ENRaW) Scheme

Expression of Interest Window now open until 13 March 2020

Consultations

Circular economy strategy

Air quality and soundscape: review of TAN 11 

Code of Practice for the Welfare of Pigs

For more on Wales, Welsh News or Welsh Business News, please follow the Links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me