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Minor changes to Denbighshire Cabinet portfolios

The Leader of Denbighshire, Councillor Hugh Evans OBE has announced some minor changes to his Cabinet Portfolios.

Whilst all previous members have been given portfolios, there are small changes being made to their responsibilities.

The Cabinet portfolios are:

Leader and Cabinet Lead Member for the Economy and Corporate Governance - Councillor Hugh Evans OBEEconomic & Business Development/Support; Regional Economic Strategy(inc. Growth Deal); Employability & Skills; Rhyl Regeneration; Tourism Strategy; Digital Strategy; Strategic Partnerships; Major projects and Events; Corporate Governance and Management of Cabinet.

Deputy Leader and Cabinet Lead Member for Finance, Performance and Strategic Assets: Councillor Julian Thompson-HillRevenue and Capital Budgets; Financial Legislation and Treasury Management; Housing Revenue Account; Revenue and Benefits; Corporate Risk; Corporate Plan and overall performance of the Council and Strategic Planning; Health and Safety; Procurement; Internal Audit; Management of the Council’s physical assets; Contracts and Facilities (inc. Catering Services); Arm’s Length Companies; Commercial Strategy.

Cabinet Lead Member for Well-being and Independence - Councillor Bobby FeeleyAdult Social Care; Extra Care Housing; Supported Independent Living; Homelessness; Anti-Poverty Lead on Partnership with Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and Public Health Wales; Integration of Social Service and Health; Leisure Strategy and Culture and Heritage.

Cabinet Lead Member for Education, Children’s Services and Public Engagement - Councillor Huw Hilditch-RobertsEducation (School Improvement); Children’s Services; GwE; 21st Century Schools; School Transport Policy; Youth Services; Early Years; Welsh Language Strategy; Communication and Marketing Strategy; Public Engagement (including Customer Relationship Management); Reputational Management; Corporate Parenting and Safeguarding.

Cabinet Lead Member for Waste, Transport and the Environment: Councillor Brian Jones: Environmental Impact (including Low Carbon Initiatives, Energy Efficiency/Conservation); Highways; Traffic, Parking and Road Safety; Sustainable Transport Solutions; Public Realm and Clean & Tidy Streets; Fleet Management; Waste and Recycling and Flood Risk Management.

Cabinet Lead Member for Corporate Services and Strategic Direction: Councillor Richard Mainon: HR Policies & Strategy; Union Relationships; Policy Development; Legal and Democratic Services; Equalities and Diversity; Emergency Planning; ICT and Website Development; Member Training and Development; Third Sector Relationships; Armed Forces Champion

Cabinet Lead Member for Housing and Communities: Councillor Tony Thomas: Housing Strategy (including Affordable Housing, Gypsy and Traveller provision, Private Sector Housing, Empty Homes, Housing Grants/Loans); Denbighshire Housing including Partnership with Tenants; Library Strategy; Countryside (including Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty); Nature Conservation and Biodiversity; Rural Development; City, Town and Community Councils Relationships; Community Funding.

Cabinet Lead Member for Planning, Public Protection and Safer Communities: Councillor Mark Young: Land use Planning (including Local Development Plan); Building Control; Built Conservation; Public Protection & Enforcement (including Environmental Health, Trading Standards, Licensing, Environmental Crime, Housing Enforcement); Safer Communities; Domestic Abuse.

The Leader, Councillor Hugh Evans OBE, said: “I’m pleased to share the new portfolios, following a review of their remit.

“There are also  a number of emerging issues for councils across Wales over the coming years that have influenced the changes, including how we manage energy, reducing carbon emissions, housing and the digital agenda.

“Key to all of this is to provide Denbighshire residents with the best possible services”.

Countdown to the Urdd begins

The countdown has begun as Denbighshire prepares to welcome the youth of Wales to the county.

The county is hosting the Urdd Eisteddfod, to be held on Kilford Farm on the outskirts of Denbigh from 25-30 May, 2020.

Urdd Gobaith Cymru are arranging the event and are being supported by local communities who have already arranged and held countless fund-raising activities. The Council is also fully supporting the Eisteddfod with arrangements.

The festival provides opportunities for young people to compete in a wide range of competitions, ranging from singing, reciting, cerdd dant, drama, dance, art, craft, science and cookery – this list is not exhaustive.

There will be opportunities for the youth in Denbighshire to compete in local and county events. The winner in each competition at county level then represents Denbighshire at the national eisteddfod.

Whilst preparations are well under-way for the main Eisteddfod, the next major step will be the Proclamation Ceremony being hosted in Prestatyn on Saturday, October 5th. Keep the dates clear in your diaries.

Further information will be shared over the coming months.

For further details about the Urdd, please visit their website, namely www.urdd.cymru

Council launches great opportunities for work placements

A brand new work placement scheme is being introduced, to help unemployed people get back to the world of work.

The Work Start scheme will be offering 15 paid work placements, at 16-30 hours a week work for a period of three months.  There will also be 15 unpaid placements available, lasting six to eight weeks.  These jobs will be wide-ranging with the potential to lead to a permanent position for the right candidate and will be available in the Council’s main services.

The scheme is part of the Working Denbighshire project, which helps people get into work by providing support and guidance with a range of issues, including: motivation and confidence; one to one advice and guidance; training opportunities; volunteering; CV writing; work experience; interview techniques; applying for jobs; personal finances; caring responsibilities and  anything else that is preventing you getting into education, employment or training 

This scheme is available to existing and new participants of the Working Denbighshire scheme which means you will receive the support necessary to guide you through your placement.

People are encouraged to keep an eye on Denbighshire’s website and social media accounts for details of when the placements become available.

Leader, Councillor Hugh Evans OBE, said: “This is a great opportunity for individuals out of work to gain some valuable experience and support that will get them onto a career ladder and improve their prospects of gaining further employment in the future.

“Whilst there is no guarantee of a job with the Council, it could be the best stepping stone ever into a brand new career or a change in direction. All placements will be closely monitored, to make sure all individuals taking part maximise the opportunity to gain as much as possible from the experience”.

To find out more about the programme, please contact the team, on 01824  706489.  Further details about the Working Denbighshire scheme can be found at: www.denbighshire.gov.uk/workingdenbighshire.

What's On

1 - 7 July: Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod

The 2019 Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod kicks off today, 1 July.

Competitors from all over the world have gathered in the town of Llangollen for a week of competitions, fun activities and world class performing. This year’s headline act will be Jools Holland alongside his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra and joining him during the week will be performers such as Rolando Villazon, Gipsy Kings and the popular, International Celebration with Mabon.

Following the week of performances, Llanfest will take place on the last weekend to end the Eisteddfod on a high. With a phenomenal line-up which includes The Fratellis, The Coral, The Pigeon Detectives and Dodgy.

You can purchase tickets for the various concerts via their website.

20 July: Coed Moel Famau Family Fun Day

Saturday 20 July 2019

10:30-16:00

Coed Moel Famau car park SJ 174 613

A day of fun activities!

There will be stream dipping, children’s craft, den building, guided walks, demos, information and local food produce. £2 car parking fee.

 

15 August: Denbigh and Flint Show

It's Showtime!

It’s that time of year when we are busy preparing for the Denbigh and Flint Show, one of the largest events in the North Wales agricultural calendar.

This year’s event takes place on Thursday, 15 August at The Green on the outskirts of Denbigh. So please keep the dates clear in your diary.

The council shares a marquee with colleagues from Flintshire and this year’s theme is Discovery – there will be plenty of exhibitions and fun activities for the whole family.

Details of our events will be published on the Council’s website and on social media ahead of the Show.

Fingers crossed for good weather for show day !

For further information about the show itself, go to: www.denbighandflintshow.com.

18 August: Arena free concert at Rhyl Events Arena:

Following the success of Seaside Soul in 2016 the soul theme returns to Rhyl Events Arena on Sunday 18th August for the annual free arena concert. 

This year’s event will feature live entertainment from Jimmy James & The Vagabonds, The Edwin Starr Band ‘The Team’ featuring Angelo Starr, Precious Wilson, Midnight Soul Supremes and guest DJ’s

Jimmy James started his musical career, composing and singing, at the early age of 16.  In 1964 he was asked to join as the lead singer with one of Jamaica’s leading bands ‘The Vagabonds’ and together they left Jamaica for what was to be a six-month tour of the UK. In 1966, The Vagabonds recorded their now legendary album, ‘The New Religion’ which really established the outfit as the most sought after working band in the UK.  Jimmy’s recording of Neil Diamond’s ‘Red Red wine’ in 1969, taken from the Vagabonds’ second album ‘Open up your soul’, gave them their first commercial hit record.

In 1970 he signed up to Biddu of the Subbidu Music Corporation and together they produced hits such as ‘Now is the Time’ and the timeless ‘I’ll Go Where the Music Takes Me’.

Angelo Starr is an American singer, musician and record producer.  He is also the younger brother of the late soul singer Edwin Starr.  The Team was Edwin Starr’s touring band and upon the death of his brother in 2003, he felt that he had reached an impasse and didn’t know if he still wanted to be involved with music Angelo eventually stepped in to front his brother’s touring band, The Team.

Precious Wilson started out as a backing singer for the all-male group Eruption and in 1977 while on the road touring Germany Eruption became the backing band of Boney M.  It was their disco cover version of Ann Peebles’ “I Can’t Stand the Rain” that gave them a UK hit quickly followed by another hit with “One Way Ticket”.

This free event organised by the Council and supported by Rhyl Town Council celebrates the music of some iconic bands.

Leader of the Council, Councillor Hugh Evans OBE, who is Lead Member for the Economy, said: “We are delighted to be announcing this year’s Seaside Soul line- up.  This is one of the summer’s headline events in Rhyl and music fans are in for a real treat. 

“The summer programme of events attracts thousands of visitors to the town, making a significant contribution to the local economy and we are sure that Summer Soul will be a sensational show”.

Rhyl Mayor, Councillor Ellie Chard said: “Arena Fest will bring a bumper day of soul music to Rhyl. With another great line-up of bands and DJs, the event promises to have something for everyone and Rhyl’s seafront is definitely the place to be this summer with events galore. Rhyl Town Council is delighted to be supporting another soulful Sunday and we look forward to welcoming residents and visitors to the events’ arena.”

For further information, please contact Rhyl Tourist Information Centre, on 01745 355068.

24 - 25 August: Rhyl Airshow

Saturday 24th & Sunday 25th August 2019

Rhyl Promenade

An action-packed, fun-filled two-day event with spectacular displays in the air and on the ground. The show, which attracts thousands of spectators each year, celebrates its 11th successful year in 2019.

It opens at 11am with the air display starting at 2pm.

Admission: Free

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Keep an eye on our website for further information and the schedule once announced.

5 October: Eisteddfod yr Urdd Proclamation Ceremony

What's On?

Take a look at the latest ‘What’s On’ booklet for the latest events happening across Denbighshire until September 2019.

Free printed copies of the June – September 2019 edition are available in local libraries, tourist information centres and local businesses.

Cafe R

Cafe R @ Ruthin Craft Centre

Café R at Ruthin Craft Centre is an ideal spot to enjoy freshly prepared Welsh produce including breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and light snacks.

Open daily.  We have tables outside.

Free on-site parking, coaches welcome.

To book a table call 01824 708099 or just call in. 

A menu can be found on the Ruthin Craft Centre website plus there is a daily specials board.

Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Flailbot (remote control flail mower)

This winter we have been trialling a Flailbot (remote controlled flail mower) in the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB. Funding was secured through the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB Sustainable Development Fund and Cadwyn Clwyd to see how the use of the Flailbot could potentially benefit the AONB.

One of the main concerns of all involved in upland habitat management in areas of the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley is the reduction in grazing livestock turned onto the hills. A reduction in grazing livestock within these upland areas causes the upland vegetation to grow excessively. This then reduces the favourability of the habitat for the fauna such as Black Grouse. We therefore need to find a way to encourage the regular grazing of these areas or manage them effectively with alternative methods.

This project has given us an opportunity to see the potential benefit the machine can provide in habitat management of the uplands. We have been using the Flailbot to cut gorse and heather in upland areas that were previously inaccessible with conventional machinery or for burning due to the severity of the slopes. The Flailbot machine, however, is able to cope with up to 55 degree angle slopes making it much better suited to the upland terrain and much more stable. It is also driverless which means it is a lot safer should an accident occur which is another feature that makes it ideal for this terrain.

The hire of the Flailbot machines has enabled us to cut areas of heather and gorse, opening up additional areas of grazing for livestock by allowing free movement of animals. Additional tracks have been cut into scrub areas to allow for easier flock management and gathering. On the heather moorlands, fire breaks have been cut which will aide traditional upland heather management by burning. However, this will also be beneficial as it will minimise the damaging effect of accidental hill fires which are an increasingly frequent occurrence.

Himalayan Balsam

Himalayan Balsam may seem to be an attractive purple flowered plant which is in full display over the summer months, mainly along river banks and waste land. However, unfortunately it is a non-native, invasive plant and can quickly smother other vegetation. After smothering other vegetation around it, Himalayan Balsam plants die back in the winter leaving bare soil. Often, rivers flood and can then wash the soil away which causes erosion to the riverbanks. This erosion can lead to a build-up of sediment within the rivers which can have a detrimental impact on the wildlife living in the rivers. Each plant can produce up to 800 seeds – these explode from the pod when ripe and can spread up to 4 metres from the plant, often into nearby watercourses which further helps the spread of the seeds. Therefore, Himalayan Balsam is highly invasive and can have a detrimental impact on the native flora along the riverbanks and also the wildlife living in the rivers.

Over the last 10 years, the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB have been working in partnership with Flintshire County Council, North Wales Wildlife Trust, Natural Resources Wales and Wildground to eradicate Himalayan Balsam along the River Alyn from the source in Llandegla to Mold.

We primarily control Himalayan Balsam by hand pulling with groups of volunteers but we do use contractors as well to treat denser areas. When pulled, the Himalayan Balsam needs ‘scrunching’ up so that it is completely destroyed and we then put it into small piles along the riverbank which decompose quickly. It needs to be pulled before it goes into seed so most of the work needs to be done before August. However, plants can still be found coming into flower as late as November so it is important to keep re-walking sections to check for new growth.

Over the years we have seen a huge reduction in plants and it is hoped that the first 10 miles of the River Alyn will be Himalayan Balsam free. At one point, this stretch of the river was abundant with Himalayan Balsam. However, we have now managed to minimise it to just a few hotspot areas which we are focussing on this year. After this, we will then be focussing our efforts on reducing the amount of Himalayan Balsam further downriver.

If you would like to take part in any of the Volunteer days this summer focussing on Himalayan Balsam, please get in touch with John Morris at Loggerheads Country Park (01824 712757).

Winners of the Clwydian Range & Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Awards 2019 Announced

Volunteers from a community garden and an avid birdwatcher have been presented with awards. Every year the Clwydian Range & Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) presents two awards to honour those contributing to the landscape and communities in the area.

This year Corwen Community Garden was given the AONB Award and John Lawton Roberts was presented with the AONB Volunteer Award. Mr Roberts from Llangollen has devoted much of his life to recording, watching and reporting on birds in North East Wales and has helped paint a detailed picture of the changes to bird populations in the area spanning a period of more than 40 years.

He has had various scientific papers published and charted the changes to the avian interest at Ruabon Moor and Creigiau Eglwyseg, with his work contributing to the success of a number of projects including the Welsh Black Grouse Recovery Programme.

Corwen Community Garden is located within the community orchard near the centre of town, and is a resource for all members of the community.  The group meets every Wednesday, providing a social opportunity and making a contribution to the health and wellbeing of participants. The site was developed in spring 2016 with Welsh Government funding secured by Age Concern and once the funding came to an end, a small group of volunteers carried on the work. In the past two years they have transformed the field into a beautiful and productive garden.

Chair of the AONB Joint Committee, Councillor Tony Thomas said “I would like to congratulate John and the volunteers from Corwen Community Garden on their awards.

“The Clwydian Range & Dee Valley AONB benefits from all those who give their time and effort to help improve the landscape and communities. Both John and the members of Corwen Community Garden have gone above and beyond in their efforts.”

 Corwen Community Garden members & John Lawton Roberts receiving the AONB Award for 2019 from the Chair of the Joint Committee Cllr Tony Thomas

Countryside Services

A helping hand to create new homes for Dormice

Volunteers from the Nature for Health project helped to build 20 dormouse nest boxes at Coed Y Morfa in Prestatyn in March.

Around 15 volunteers attended the event to help Countryside Service rangers put together the boxes.

Dormice are an endangered species throughout the UK. The loss of hedgerows and change in management of the woodlands they are found in, has led to a dramatic decline in their numbers, 72% between 1993 and 2014. By creating these nest boxes we hope to support an increase in numbers over the next few years. The boxes were made using locally sourced, non tanalised timber and will be installed and monitored on a site which is important for dormice in Denbighshire.

Nature for Health is part of the Council’s work to protect and enhance the environment and aims to improve people’s lives through health and wellbeing activities, helping individuals and communities in Denbighshire connect with the countryside and adopt healthy habits.

Denbighshire Countryside Service is working in partnership with Denbighshire Housing to deliver the project with support from Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and Bangor University.

Many thanks to everyone who turned up to help put together the boxes!

If you would like to get involved with Nature for Health in Rhyl or Prestatyn contact 01824 706998.

Making Homes for Dragons on the Denbighshire Dunes

A short stretch of Denbighshire’s coastline calls itself home to a small population of little Welsh dragons. Since their extinction in the 1960’s and their more recent reintroduction to our dune systems, work has been underway to bring Denbighshire’s sand lizard population back to its full glory.

Recently Denbighshire Countryside Services accompanied by Mick Brummage (county reptile recorder) and some dedicated volunteers headed out to the dunes, to undertake some vital habitat management works.

Work was slightly delayed on the morning due to cooler temperatures than expected. Sand lizards, like all reptiles, are ectothermic and rely on their surrounding environment to regulate their body temperature. When the weather is cool they stay hidden within their burrows, making digging in the sand rather risky. Instead, work was postponed until the weather turned warmer and the lizards were out basking.

The work involved the use of a digger to remove and scape back some of the vegetation which had grown quite dense on the dunes. This was done so that we could expose areas of bare sand and reduce the sizes of the shaded areas. This technique is known as sand patching and provides the sand lizards with additional areas for basking, burrowing and for laying their eggs.

In the more sensitive areas of the dunes and where the digger couldn’t gain access, volunteers used spades to carefully remove the vegetation all whilst keeping a watchful eye out for any basking little lizards.

We are all looking forward to monitoring the dunes with their new sand patches over the coming years can’t wait to see our first little Welsh dragon basking on one of their new sand patches!

Many thanks must go to Mick Brummage for all his guidance and help on the day, Arwyn Parry Construction Services Ltd for their delicate and nature conscientious approach to mechanical sand patching, and of course, our dedicated hardworking group of volunteers who are always there with a smile on their face and ready for work.

The 'Nature for Health' Project

Denbighshire Countryside Service and Housing have joined forces for a new ‘Nature for Health’ project, an 18-month pilot scheme with the aim of improving communities mental and physical health through improved access to nature in four core areas; Llangollen, Corwen, Rhyl and Prestatyn. The Nature for Health team have been working to provide a program of activities such as healthy walks, day trips, practical conservation sessions, arts and crafts, wildlife surveys and many more.

In Llangollen we’ve been working closely with the Woodland trust on one of their sites, Pen y Coed, to engage the local community with this wonderful resource. We have had multiple events in the woods such as bird walks, butterfly surveys, mindfulness sessions and the most popular yet- our Breakfast and Bushcraft in the Woods event. Due to the success of these events so far, this month we went in with our volunteers to create a Woodland Classroom area where we can host future events over the summer. We created a log circle, made a Woodland classroom sign and installed an insect hotel!

While over in Corwen, the Nature for Health project has been supporting the recently set up Edeyrnion allotments group. We have been doing practical tasks with volunteers to help prepare the allotments, such as bark chipping the paths and lots of weeding now it’s gotten warmer! As well as lots of dry stone walling workshops along the old stone wall that runs the length of the allotments. Our volunteers have really enjoyed learning this traditional skill and the wall will be a wonderful feature of the allotments once complete!

In Rhyl the volunteers have been doing practical work improving Glan Morfa, a former tip site that has been transformed into a haven for wildlife. They’ve been very busy; improving plant species diversity by laying wildflower turf, maintaining viewpoints along the estuary and planting 2500 trees here this winter as part of ‘Plant!’, a national initiative to plant a tree for every child born in Wales.

Wildflower earth spreading, Glan Morfa

At another former landfill site in Prestatyn, Coed Y Morfa, we have been working closely with the Artisans Collective to transform the Morfa gateway entrance into a welcoming green space, which can be enjoyed by wildlife and people alike! Throughout the winter, we have been working with Keep Wales Tidy to plant a hedgerow along one side of the site, as part of the Long Forest Project. Our new hedgerow is around 300 metres in length, with plans underway to further extend the hedgerow next winter.

Hedge planting, Coed Y Morfa. Image: Gwyl Roche, Keep Wales Tidy

Wildflowers at the Morfa Gateway area

Public engagement with the Nature for Health project has continued to increase since its launch in late 2018. The activities bring communities together, and encourage local residents to take pride in their local green spaces. It provides an alternative form of exercise, in an outdoor setting, as a way of improving mental and physical wellbeing. Our participants enjoy meeting new people, and have reported that the activities act as an ice-breaker for those who find social situations difficult. Volunteers have learnt new skills through the activities, from hedgelaying and woodland management, through to craft sessions such as felt-making and willow weaving. One of our regular volunteers has recently found employment, and has said the project has helped him develop useful skills for his new job. Meanwhile, some volunteers who started attending the Healthy Walks are now leading walks themselves, after receiving training, which has provided opportunities to develop their leadership skills.

Felt Making at the Artisans Collective, Prestatyn

We plan to continue with the Nature for Health project over the coming months in Rhyl, Prestatyn, Llangollen and Corwen, with the aim of engaging more people in local communities. We have many more events coming up: check out the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB or the Denbighshire Countryside Services Facebook Page to see our events.

Please contact ellie.wainwright@denbighshire.gov.uk or call 07918224784 for more information on how to get involved with the Nature for Health project in Llangollen and Corwen, or claudia.smith@denbighshire.gov.uk / 01824 708313 for Rhyl and Prestatyn.

Find out more about the project for via a video that's been prepared.

Our Picturesque Landscape

Art inspired by landscape

The team at the National Lottery Heritage funded Our Picturesque Landscape Project are very busy working with local community groups and schools engaging people in art inspired by the landscape.

Currently the Clwyd MIND groups in Llangollen and Corwen are creating two collaborative mosaics of the local picturesque landscape features which are important to them.

Young people at the Youth Clubs in Llangollen and Corwen are meeting different artists and trying out a range of different artistic techniques to celebrate the picturesque landscape which they call home.

Year nine art students from Ysgol Dinas Bran visited the canal at Llangollen Wharf and spent time studying the details of the landscape and creating reimagined and personal interpretations.

Over the forthcoming months there will be many more activities taking place with local primary schools and community groups themed around art inspired by the picturesque landscape with a focus on the Pontcysyllte and Canal World Heritage Site. Open to everyone is the BIG DRAW Event at Plas Newydd on Sunday 21st July from 13:00-16:00 at £2.50 per person. If you’d like to find out more about the project contact us by email at our.picturesque.landscape@denbighshire.gov.uk.

Education Matters

Christ the Word Catholic School on track

A brand new school Christ the Word Catholic School is set to open its doors in September in a brand new building in Rhyl.

The new school will replace Ysgol Mair Primary and Blessed Edward Jones Catholic High School which will both close their doors to pupils at the end of the summer term.

The staff and pupils at both schools are holding a number of events to celebrate the contribution each school has made to the community over the last few decades as they look forward to a new chapter in the town.

In September pupils from both schools will be joining together as Christ the Word Catholic School as a new chapter starts for education in the town. As part of the build up visits have been arranged for pupils to see their new learning environment in advance of the new opening.

Gill Greenland, the Chair of the Temporary Governing Body said:  “I would like to thank all the staff at both schools past and present for all their hard work and contributions to both school communities and we embrace and look forward to the exciting times ahead in our new school. We are all excited to welcome the pupils in September into their new home.”

Amanda Preston, head teacher of Christ the Word Catholic School said:  “All the children and staff are really excited about moving into our fantastic new learning community. The opportunities that the new building offers in terms of developing the skills of our young leaners across the age range is fantastic. “

The school which will be part of the Diocese of Wrexham provision will cater for 420 full time pupils aged 3-11 and 500 pupils aged 11-16 and is funded in partnership by the Council and the Welsh Government through its 21st Century Schools Programme.

Please click the link which shows a 3D model produced by Kier of a General Upper School Classroom:   https://my.matterport.com/show/?m=NZtobzRJhbt

Features

Food allergy and intolerance – A quick guide to ordering food or a takeaway safely

If you have a food allergy or intolerance, it’s important that you have all the information you need to make a safe food choice. We’ve listed some things you should think about before ordering a meal.

Eating out at a restaurant, café or food outlet

When you plan to eat out

  • Check the menu online and call ahead to ask what the business’s policy is on food allergy and intolerance. Does it offer food that is suitable for you? And if not, are the staff able to make a special meal for you? (Food businesses must offer you allergen information, but are not required to offer you a different meal to suit your need.)
  • Be very clear about your allergy/intolerance and give examples of the foods that make you ill.
  • If you don’t feel the person you’re speaking to understands your needs, ask for the manager or someone who can help better.
  • Ask how the food is handled and cooked, and whether there is a chance of cross- contamination from cooking equipment or ingredients.
  • Check allergen information is accurate. Has there been a last-minute recipe change or ingredient substitution?
  • Be extra careful if the restaurant serves complex dishes, as allergens could be less obvious or hidden.
  • If you have any doubt about the staff understanding the importance of your dietary needs, do not book the restaurant.

On arrival

  • Speak to your server or the manager. Be clear about your food allergy/intolerance and confirm your previous conversation with the staff
  • Check the meal choices are suitable for you or that they can make changes to suit your dietary needs.
  • Remind them to be careful of cross-contamination or added allergens from glazes, sauces, cooking oils, and to handle your meal with care.
  • If you have any doubt about the staff understanding the importance of your dietary needs, do not eat there.

Ordering a takeaway over the phone or online

  • Takeaway meals are considered to be 'distance selling', so information must be made available at the point of purchase and point of delivery.
  • Follow the steps listed in the 'Eating out at a restaurant, café or food outlet' section, but also:
  • check that the allergen information is available on the menu, online or over the telephone 
  • when ordering for several people, make sure the restaurant labels your meal, so you know which order is safe for you

Please contact the Food Safety and Standards team on food.safety@denbighshire.gov.uk if you have any concerns regarding the control of allergens at a food business, or experience an allergic reaction following consumption of food at a food outlet or take away. 

You can also visit the Food Standards Agency website.

Food Poisoning - What Consumers Need to Know

  • During 2018 - 2019, Denbighshire's Food Safety Team investigated 261 confirmed cases of food poisoning
  • 60% of the cases were confirmed to be caused by the organism Campylobacter.

Campylobacter is the most common cause of food poisoning in the UK. Consumers need to be vigilant and not put themselves at risk from Campylobacter in the home. The latest figures from the FSA show that 65% of chickens sold in the UK are contaminated with this nasty bug. The good news, is that Campylobacter is preventable, and simple good hygiene at home may prevent you and your family from becoming ill.

How campylobacter is spread and how to minimise your chances of eating food contaminated with campylobacter

Research shows that four in five cases of campylobacter food poisoning in the UK come from contaminated poultry, especially chicken.

One of the main ways to get and spread campylobacter poisoning is through the cross-contamination from raw chicken. For example, washing raw chicken can spread campylobacter by splashing it onto hands, work surfaces, clothing and cooking equipment.

Campylobacter is also found in red meat, unpasteurised milk and untreated water. Although it does not normally grow in food, it spreads easily. Campylobacter has a low infective dose, which means that coming into contact with a few bacteria can cause illness. This is especially important if you are vulnerable i.e. young, older or have an underlying illness.

Top Tips to Help Prevent Campylobacter in the Home

Cross contamination can spread campylobacter.

After preparing raw chicken disinfect surfaces and utensils (dishwasher or antibacterial disinfectant spray)

Make sure you NEVER wash raw chicken

Place raw chicken at the bottom of the fridge

Your dirty cloths can transfer bacteria. Use disposables or wash at + 60C

Lather up and wash hands after handling raw chicken

Only serve chicken if it has reached at least 75°C

Pass Plus Cymru

Do you know of someone between the age of 17-25 who has recently passed their driving test’…… Click here to book your place on a @PassPlusCymruNW approved training scheme for novice car drivers who have passed the basic ‘L’ test. £20 ... no test!

The next training scheme for Denbighshire takes place on Thursday 8 August at Rhyl Fire Station, Coast Road, Rhyl LL18 3PL (5.30pm - 8.00pm).

Driving assessments for older drivers

Do you live in Denbighshire and are aged 65 and over?

You are entitled to have a free initial driving assessment conducted by the Wales Mobility and Driving Assessment Service.

If you are interested to find out more, please ring the Council's Road Safety Department on 01824 706946.

Have you heard about our social media channels?

We have several corporate social media accounts namely Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Facebook

We post all our emergency notices on this social media channel, along with details of most of our meetings plus lots of other important information. We have a Welsh and English Facebook page.

Twitter

Because of the restrictions in the number of characters, we try and post most of our notices on here, but usually with a link to the longer message wherever possible.

Instagram

This channel is for images only. We are trying to put more images on here, so if you do have any that you’d like us to share, please let us know.

LinkedIn

Again, we are trying to make more use of LinkedIn for our corporate news stories, and also for any job opportunities that we have.  You will need to have a LinkedIn account to search for the Council on there.

YouTube

We save most of our social media films on this account.  Subscribe to our channel to ensure you see all our videos.

Universal Credit

The Council has been working with Citizens Advice Denbighshire on promoting the uptake of Universal Credit. Here’s a short video to explain more.

Campaign to stop the public from feeding seagulls

The Council is running an awareness campaign, encouraging people not to feed seagulls.

Here’s a short video to explain why we're doing this.

Housing Matters

Great achievements celebrated at Council’s housing awards

Denbighshire Housing Tenants have been awarded for their achievements at the first ever Denbighshire Housing Tenants Awards ceremony hosted in Rhyl recently.

The awards, arranged by Denbighshire Housing, was held at the 1891 restaurant in Rhyl and celebrated the achievements and participation of tenants from across the county, for the work they do within their communities and projects that are happening across the County.

The entries were shortlisted in the eight categories. The winners were:

Communal Garden of the Year award: Trem Y Foel Residents Association, Ruthin

Trem y Foel tenants have been working together planting various, bright and seasonal plants, ornaments, hanging baskets to create a place that can be enjoyed by everyone. The tenants have had recognition for their garden through the Wales in Bloom and Ruthin Garden Show for Community Garden of the Year.

Tenant Garden of the Year award: Angela Carrington-Roberts

Angela is known locally for her ‘green fingers’! Her garden has been part of the National Garden Scheme, which gives visitors a unique experience to her gardens, as well as raising money for various health charities. Her planting incorporates both hardy and seasonal plants, giving all round appeal to anyone that walks past. She is also very environmentally aware so recycles rain water and has her own compost.

Community Project of the Year award:  Friends of Pengwern, Llangollen.

Working with the Nature for Health project, the Friends of Pengwern have really helped improve the local, natural environment and wider community. Their work has made a real difference in their community, bringing people together to look after their local and natural environment, while encouraging others to take a pride in their community. Project activities include dry stone walling, community woodland, willow weaving and so on. The group are now leading on this and working with the Woodland Trust.

Housing Resident/Community Group of the Year award:  The Marsh Community Association, Rhyl

This group are made up of residents from the local area who voluntarily run The Phoenix Centre on Rhydwen Drive in Rhyl. The have created a safe and welcoming place for residents of all ages as well as delivering an activities programme that is making a difference to people’s lives. Working with third sector groups, activities include homework club, movie nights, gardening club, job club and so on. Feedback from residents include; “volunteers always have a welcoming smile”, “people here are always happy to help”, and “it’s a bright a cheery atmosphere as soon as you walk in”.

Denbighshire Housing Customer Service of the Year award: Shirley Rippingale

Shirley has recently retired after working for Denbighshire County Council, and living in sheltered housing for 18 years. She has been described always going above and beyond, in everything that she did as a warden. Her commitment to delivering excellent customer service to tenants helped increase community engagement and tenants feeling safe. Organising community activities, in her own time, making sure everyone were included and has access to supportive services and organisations.

Tenant of the Year award: Stuart Nield-Siddall

Over the past few years, Stuart has experienced some challenges in his personal life which he has overcome and look at straight on. His commitment and enthusiasm to voluntary work in his local community, has helped support him living an independent life and making a difference. Local residents and communities really praise his voluntary work in Coronation Gardens in Rhyl and the Golf Club and they think very highly of him. As well as volunteering, Stuart really enjoys attending self-development cooking classes, giving him the skills and confidence to live a full and independent life.

Young Tenant of the Year award: Bethan Owen

Bethan’s passion for wanting to give people an opportunity, make a difference and learn new skills are just some of the reasons that she decided to run her own karate club in Rhyl. She wanted to provide a chance for people, who couldn’t perhaps afford mainstream prices or 12 month contracts, who wanted to develop themselves, have a change of scenery and to learn karate. The karate club offers a weekly meeting place for families to come and chat, become fitter as well as bringing the community together. Volunteering in the community is also really important to her, which is why she is also a police cadet. She has won a number of awards nationally, including the Pride of Sport Award, the Prime Minister’s Point of Light Award, two International Martial Arts Hall of Fame, Under 16 Female UK Martial Arts winner, UK Hall of Fame, finalist in the St David’s Award and this May, she will become the UK Martial Arts Magazine winner!

Denbighshire Housing Award: Gina Jones

As Chairperson of the Marsh Residents Association and a valued member of her community, Gina took it upon herself to make a difference in her community, challenging stigma. She took over as Chair in 2017, when the Phoenix Centre was at a low point and has worked wonders ever since. The centre is now thriving and new faces are coming through the door. Working in partnership with third sector organisations, has been key in delivering a wide programme of activities and courses benefitting everyone. Thanks to Gina and her passion for making a difference, the centre is personal, engaging and has changed people’s lives.

Jamie Groves, Denbighshire’s Head of Facilities, Assets and Housing, said: “We were honoured to host the first ever award ceremony, to recognise and celebrate the achievements of our tenants. The panel was delighted at the quality of the applications which showed the vast amount of good work going on in communities county-wide.

“There are some great examples here of tenants making great efforts to look after their properties, as well as some exemplar community projects that help improve the life of residents living in their community. Their hard work, commitment, drive  and amazing efforts help the housing team to provide a great service to tenants.

Geoff Davies Lead Officer for Community Housing told the packed audience about the vision for Denbighshire Housing is to invest in council homes and neighbourhoods to the highest standards, working with tenants to agree priorities but recognising that people then make communities great places in which to live.

The evening’s main sponsors were Roger W Jones, Rhyl & Jewson. The other sponsors were Alliance Leisure; Hags; Liberty Gas;  AICO;  SC2;  G Parry Home Improvements;  Capita One; Greenspace team, Denbighshire Housing; Torus; Sherratt a Howdens.

During the ceremony, there was a performance from Côr Sain y Sir. The choir is made up of Denbighshire County Council staff.

Libraries and One Stop Shops

Join Space Chase at your library this summer

Denbighshire libraries are calling for children to sign up to read six books this summer as part of the Space Chase, Summer Reading Challenge 2019.

The Summer Reading Challenge asks children to borrow and read any six library books over the summer. The theme for the 2019 Summer Reading Challenge is Space Chase, inspired by the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing.

Children will team up with futuristic family The Rockets for an exciting space mission as they track down books nabbed by a mischievous band of aliens. As children read library books for the Summer Reading Challenge, they will receive special stickers, some with mysterious smells. By adding these stickers to their collectable mission folders, young readers will help the Rockets solve clues, dodge asteroids and discover the missing books, having lots of fun and adventures along the way.

To take part in Space Chase, all children need to do is sign up for free at their nearest library, where they will be given a collector folder to keep a record of their Summer Reading Challenge journey. The Challenge is fun and helps children develop a love of books and the habit of reading for pleasure.

Tourism

North East Wales Celebrates Year of Discovery

A new film, photographs and a suite of brand-new digital maps showcasing the North East Wales region have been released as part of Visit Wales’ Year of Discovery campaign. Denbighshire, Wrexham and Flintshire have joined forces to produce the marketing resources to inspire local people and visitors to experience the region.

The film, which premiered at the recent North Wales Tourism Annual Trade Meeting, explores the region’s tourism offer including key attractions like Greenfield Valley, Chirk Castle and SC2 in Rhyl as well as the rural and coastal landscapes of Moel Famau and Talacre Beach. For outdoor adventure enthusiasts, it showcases mountain biking in Nercwys Forest and OnePlanet Adventure, Llandegla and kayaking on the River Dee in Llangollen. The film kicks off with the impressive Pontcysyllte Aqueduct & Canal, which is celebrating its 10 year anniversary since the inscription of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

This film is the start of a series of new mini films which will be released throughout the year, featuring different themes including coast, castles, landscape, culture, adventure and the World Heritage Site. A gallery of professional images have also been released to help draw new and repeat visits to the region all year round.

Tourism plays a vital part in the regions’ economy, with a total economic impact in 2017 of £867m and over 11 million visits made.

Ian Lebbon, Chair of Denbighshire Destination Management Partnership says: “With the main tourism season upon us; it’s great to see Denbighshire, Flintshire & Wrexham working together to launch a variety of professional marketing materials to showcase the region during the Year of Discovery. We would encourage businesses to use the resources available to them to create greater awareness of the region and boost the local economy throughout the year.”

Seven new digital maps exploring a variety of locations across both North East Wales have also been produced. The maps interlink with the 75-mile North Wales Way – one of three national tourism routes launched by Visit Wales under The Wales Way brand. The new maps have been a community-effort, as businesses were invited to workshops across North Wales to discuss their ideas for new tourist routes to help promote the region and provide loops and detours off The North Wales Way.

To view the film please visit North East Wales on Facebook or YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eovLG6cIIAY

To view the maps and photographs and for further information on the region, please visit www.northeastwales.wales

Tourism News

Keep posted on tourism news!

Would you like to hear about the latest tourism news in Denbighshire & North East Wales?

If so, it’s easy and simple to sign up –

Keep posted on tourism news!

Would you like to hear about the latest tourism news in Denbighshire & North East Wales?

If so, it’s easy and simple to sign up … www.denbighshire.gov.uk/business-sign-up-for-tourism

Looking for new places to visit this summer?

For ideas of things to do and places to visit this summer, take a look at www.northeastwales.wales

Distribution

Denbighshire’s Tourism Team provides a free tourism leaflet distribution service for businesses to order leaflets and brochures. This information is produced to encourage visitors to the area, and to enhance their experience once they are here.

Products include:

  • Town Trail leaflets
  • The 5 Journeys brochure
  • SC2 Rhyl  leaflets
  • Ruthin Craft Centre brochure
  • Heritage leaflet

Who can order?

You can order from the leaflet distribution service if your business is in and around North East Wales and you come into contact with visitors.

How to order?

You can order from the Tourism Leaflet Distribution Service online and the leaflets will be delivered to you, free of charge. 

Order deadline

Please place your order by 16/7/2019 for your leaflets to be delivered the week commencing 22/7/2019

Order from our Tourism Leaflet Distribution Service online

Ruthin Craft Centre

Magic Flower Carpet

Magic Flower Carpet

Schools Project:  June – September 2019 @ Courtyard Space Studio 5

Throughout the spring term we invited local primary schools in Denbighshire to come and explore our contemporary rug exhibition Under your Feet at Ruthin Craft Centre, followed by practical workshops with local artists Jude Wood, Ben Davis, Ticky Lowe and Emma Jayne Holmes.

Inspired by the gallery exhibitions, each school has created a ‘plot’ with plants, flowers, weeds, insects and whatever else you might find in a magic garden. Using colourful textiles and recycled materials all the pupils involved in the project have made their own pieces to be added to each plot to create a collaborative whimsical carpet that you see before you.

The 10 schools involved were:

Working with artists Jude Wood & Ben Davies

  • Ysgol Pant Pastynog
  • Ysgol Carreg Emlyn
  • Ysgol Betws Gwerfil Goch
  • Ysgol Stryd y Rhos
  • Ysgol Pentrecelyn

Working with artists Ticky Lowe & Emma Jayne Holmes

  • Ysgol y Borthyn
  • Ysgol Bryn Clwyd
  • Ysgol Bro Elwern
  • Ysgol Llanfair Dyffryn Clwyd
  • Ysgol Bro Famau

The project engaged with 206 pupils in total.  Ruthin Craft Centre would like to thank all the school pupils, teachers, assistants and the artists for sharing their artistic adventure with us and for creating this fabulous Magical Flower Carpet within the secret garden. 

We hope you all enjoy!

Heritage

This Summer at Ruthin Gaol

Despite the rain, summer has definitely arrived at Ruthin Gaol!

At “Transported!” on 30th of May visitors enjoyed tales of prisoners sent from Ruthin Gaol to the hot and hostile shores of Australia. Prisoners (many of whom had never before left their villages) endured months in cramped, dirty vessels with hundreds of others. Those lucky enough to survive the journey faced a harsh new life thousands of miles from their families. The gaol team were in full character and played to a very receptive crowd!

On July 25th it’s our “You are the Prisoner” event! Come and experience life as a Victorian prisoner at Ruthin Gaol. After arriving as a new prisoner, be ‘admitted’ and have your mug shot taken, try out hard labour and punishments such as Oakum picking (money for old rope) and working in the laundry. Meet the wardens, spend time in the cells and taste the prison food. Don’t worry, bath time isn’t scheduled for that day!

No prior booking is required (the Warden says ‘there’s no excuse for not turning yourselves in’).

School Summer Holidays

Whatever the weather the Gaol is a great place for families to visit in the school holidays – every day there are craft and art activities, trails, quizzes and challenges for all ages.

Halloween Week!

And finally, don’t forget to visit Ruthin Gaol during Halloween Half Term for Spooky’ fun! (From Saturday 26th October 2019 until Friday 1st November 2019)

For more information please visit our website at http://www.ruthingaol.com/ or find us on Facebook and Twitter.

Leisure Services

Get fit this summer with Leisure Services

For more information click here.

SC2 launches Autism friendly sessions

SC2, the new water park and adventure centre in Rhyl, has launched weekly Autism friendly sessions to give children and adults with autism an opportunity to enjoy the water park in a more relaxed environment.

Each session will run with no music and will have free entry for carers, limited announcements and state of the art specialist accessible changing rooms, including facilities with a track hoist. There will be only selected slides running and exclusive access to the water with limited numbers in the pool and the Piranha Play.

With a ratio of one carer for each participant and no age limit, these sessions not only offer an accessible activity for those with additional needs, but also value for money as carers can take part for free.

Jamie Groves, Head of Facilities Assets and Housing, said: “Following feedback from customers over the first month of SC2 opening, we feel these sessions are incredibly important to ensure that all members of our community are catered for and are able to enjoy the waterpark in a suitable environment. We appreciate that customers with autism may feel overwhelmed by the fully operating site so during these sessions we are limiting numbers in the pool, only running specific slides and creating a quieter session with no music or announcements. We are committed to providing an offer for the community that everyone can enjoy and benefit from.”

These sessions will run between 4pm and 5.30pm in the waterpark every Friday during term time and can be booked online as part of the Friday waterpark entry.

For a limited period customers with Denbighshire Leisure cards will receive 50% off their booking when they quote junjulweekday50 online and show their leisure card at reception.

The waterpark at SC2 is also available for exclusive group bookings, birthday parties and private hire, anyone who is interested in booking can give their friendly team a call on: 01745 777562.

SC2 Splash Pad is now open

The Splash Pad at SC2, Rhyl’s exciting new waterpark and adventure centre is now open.

The outdoor Splash Pad gives customers the complete holiday experience on their doorstep as a free added extra to their waterpark ticket.

Tipping buckets, water canons, sprinklers and the paradise slide are just of the few features of the new outdoor water area. While children enjoy the state of the art water features, adults can relax in the sun on the outdoor terrace and seating areas, or grab a drink and burger at the Terrace Bar and Snack Shack.

Jamie Groves, Head of Facilities, assets and housing, said: “The Splash Pad offers customers to the waterpark an outside, enclosed area for families to play in the water and relax by the pool.

“The Splash Pad is full of bright, colourful and easily accessible features and will keep the little ones entertained, whilst at the same time, building their water confidence. We are really proud of what we have achieved at SC2 and look forward to bringing this outdoor experience to the people of Rhyl.”

A new range of delicious burgers are being launched in the Rainforest Diner and Terrace Bar within SC2, which is free to use and open to the public at weekends and during holidays.

The Splash Pad, Snack Shack and The Terrace will be weather dependant and open seasonally, access will be included as part of any Waterpark ticket. Book tickets online at http://www.sc2rhyl.co.uk.

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