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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Appeal launched to pay vet's bills for injured cat

The Daily Post is reporting today how neighbours in the Church Street area have launched an appeal to pay the vet's bills for a popular cat savaged in a dog attack.

See the full story at:

Railway's 60s weekend was swinging success

George Jones has supplied these pictures of the successful 60s weekend which took place at Llangollen Railway last Saturday and Sunday.

* Happy trippers aboard on open-topped bus en route from Llan to Glyndyfrdwy.

* Four trains in action - two steam, one diesel and the railcar -
offering the 60s scene when change was underway on British Railways.

 * Cars from the era - and earlier times - on show at Glyndyfrdwy.

* One family's pride and joy Mini parked at Llangollen station.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Campaigner calls for supermarket tax

A LLANGOLLEN campaigner is asking Assembly Members to back his call for new powers to tax local supermarkets.

The so-called “Tesco Tax” is already being demanded by 19 local authorities in England as a way of ensuring that supermarket spending re-circulates in local economies.
They estimate that such a levy, which already operates in Northern Ireland and Scotland, could raise up to £400 million a year.  

However, the UK government says additional taxes on supermarkets would push up food prices.
Now Martin Crumpton, who led opposition to a new Sainsbury’s store being built in Llangollen, has written to North Wales AMs calling for a supermarket tax in Wales.

In a letter to the politicians he says: “Wales is haemorrhaging money to England. Much of it is unavoidable - taxes, insurance premiums, mortgages, gas and electricity, petrol. Virtually all of it goes to England and English companies, and there isn’t damned thing we can do about it.
“It would be brilliant if it all went to Welsh companies, who could spend their profits in Wales with other Welsh companies.

“We’ve got a classic balance of trade problem. There’s a classic solution – impose tariffs, like so many councils in England want to do. Westminster opposes it but does the Welsh Government have to follow suite? I’d say yes.
“Let’s put a levy on supermarkets and other super-large retailers. Let’s staunch the blood loss so we can keep the patient alive long enough to heal the wound. Tariffs don’t work in the long term so it’s up to you to legislate for a better successor to replace it, but right now all your economic policies are a fa├žade.”

Mr Crumpton calls on the Welsh Government to impose a series of measures, including:

·  Changing planning law so that businesses headquartered outside Wales are presumed harmful

·   Refusing further expansion of existing non-indigenous multiples

·   Enabling and encouraging Welsh councils to levy large, non-indigenous stores, with the strict caveat that the proceeds in their entirety benefit the local businesses from which the levies are exacted and must not be pooled or diverted.


Police say "stay safe this summer"

At the start of the school summer holidays ‘enjoy yourself but stay safe’ is the message from police in Denbighshire.
As part of the Summer Safety operation running throughout North Wales officers will continue with their pro-active patrols across the area and provide reassurance.
“With the continuing warm weather we want people to enjoy themselves, have a good time but to stay safe and be sensible,” said Supt Steve Williams.
"Patrol plans are in place across the two counties and officers will also be working with licensees and calling into premises to ensure that they are meeting the responsibilities of their licences.”
As part of the continuing effort to make the area an even safer place, a reminder is also being sent to anyone planning on going out for the day or evenings to ensure they secure their home – closing their doors and windows.
Police say you can prevent yourself from becoming a victim of burglary by taking these simple measures as over a third of burglaries are through insecure properties.
Supt Williams added: “North Wales is a safe place but we need to make sure that residents and visitors to the area help us to continue to make it a great place to live and visit.”
People heading out in their cars should ensure that they don’t leave any valuable items on show in their vehicles and also not to leave belongings such as handbags unattended in public places. 
Residents and visitors to the area can gain more information about securing their homes and property by visiting the ‘Advice and Support’ section of the NWP website or by accessing this link.  

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Trio of top chefs coming to town

 * Graham Tinsley and Dion Jones.
A trio of Wales's best chefs will have a starring role at a top food festival - as they prepare to take on the world.
They will be hitting the culinary high notes at Hamper Llangollen that's being held in the town on Saturday and Sunday, October 18 and 19.
At Hamper Llangollen, Graham Tinsley, executive chef at Carden Park in Cheshire and Conwy’s Castle Hotel, will be cooking up a Welsh feast with Mike Evans, hospitality lecturer at Coleg Llandrillo, Rhos on Sea, and Dion Jones, one of Europe's finest young chefs.
The event, hailed as one of the Top 10 food festivals in the UK, is supported by the rural development agency, Cadwyn Clwyd.
Cadwyn Clwyd’s contribution comes via the Rural Development Plan for Wales 2007-2013, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and the Welsh Government.
* Mike Evans.
The trio of chefs will be demonstrating the recipes that will be cooked by the team at the World Cup in Luxemburg when they will go head to head with the best culinary talents from around the globe.
Graham is just putting the finishing touches to the menus for the hot and cold dishes the culinary team - currently ranked seventh in the world - will be preparing at the World Cup.
But he is determined Welsh produce will feature strongly at Hamper Llangollen.
He said: “We always aim to showcase Welsh produce as part of what we are preparing. If we can’t buy it there, we take it with us.
“For Llangollen, we will also be going the stands of those exhibiting at the festival for inspiration. So when you see us cook the dishes, we will explain where you can buy the produce, whether it’s yoghurt, liquors or fresh vegetables. So you can buy the ingredients on the day and head home to make the dish for yourself,” said Graham, who was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s 80th birthday celebrations for his services to the food industry.
He has cooked for the Queen and members of the Royal family on numerous occasions, as well as the Emperor of Japan and European Heads of State at Cardiff Castle. Prince Charles, as patron of the Welsh National Culinary Team, has requested that they cook for him and his guests at every formal occasion in Wales and Graham was invited to attend his wedding celebration at Windsor Castle.
“We are hopeful of doing very well at the World Cup. When it was the Culinary Olympiad in 2012, we took silver and bronze, while at the last World Cup we picked up gold for the hot table and silver for the cold buffet.
“I’m just finalising what we will be cooking for the hot dishes this time, while I’ve got a little longer to think about the cold buffet. But it will definitely be a reflection of the great good and drink from Wales that’s available.”
One of Mike Evans's latest graduates is off to join kitchen wizard Heston Blumental. His previous students include Bryn Williams from Denbigh, who runs London restaurant and celebrity favourite Odette’s and who is about to open his first Welsh venture, at Porth Eirias, Colwyn Bay.
Another ex-student is former Bodysgallen Hall chef David Kelman, who was among the four top chefs who beat 20 others to win a place cooking up a treat for D-Day veterans at the Royal Albert Hall in BBC1’s Great British Menu.
Mike is just back from cooking for his rugby heroes, Sam Warburton and Rupert Moon. He’s previously served up meals for the Queen, Prince Philip and Prince Charles, plus David Cameron and the First Minister of Wales, along with the elite of Moscow’s multi-millionaire business community.
Mike Evans, who now lives in Old Colwyn, is in charge of coaching the Welsh Culinary Team’s junior squad.
He added: “Catering is now seen as a very positive option to take – in September there will be around 80 students starting at Coleg Llandrillo, while a few years ago there would only have half that number.
“It is a tough life but it does have great rewards, and standards are certainly on the up. The TV shows certainly help, not only to demonstrate to young people how high they can aim, but to also show the quality of food that’s being produced in restaurants these days.
“The Culinary Team has taken me some great places, such as cooking for the Welsh Rugby Union - though most of the big names were in South Africa playing: we were catering for the injured ones left behind. But I’m a big rugby fan, and it was a real honour to be cooking for them.
“My time with the team has taken me to Cardiff to cook for Royalty for the opening of the Senedd building, when I got to meet the Queen, Prince Charles and Camilla. And I’ve been to Moscow where we were showcasing British products, such as Range Rover and Jaguar, with a very upmarket buffet for Russian business people.
“Students who are considering a career in catering can see that we are cooking at a very high standard,” added Mike, who is hopeful that another of his students will soon be seeing stars. Just weeks after graduating from Coleg Llandrillo Nick Rudge has just joined Heston Blumenthal’s team at the Michelin- starred Fat Duck in Bray.
Rising star Dion, 26, from Valley, Anglesey, and now living in Wrexham, became the first Briton to win the world’s oldest culinary competition, the International Escoffier Challenge in the South of France.
A finalist in the 2014 National Chef of the Year contest, he’s also gearing up for his second bid to win the prestigious Roux Scholarship, after being pipped at the post last time, when he was runner-up.
Cadwyn Clwyd's Agri Food Officer, Robert Price, believes this year's festival is going to be one of the best ever.
He said: “Thanks to a whole host of indigenous companies like Orchard Pigs, North East Wales is rapidly establishing a reputation as a centre of excellence for high quality cuisine.
“The food festival is a perfect shop window for the companies who form the backbone of our rural economy.
"The location of the Pavilion is absolutely spectacular - I can't imagine that any other food festival in the UK has a more beautiful setting."
For more information about Hamper Llangollen 2014 visit

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Fringe goes for big finale at Valle Crucis

The Fringe Finale Concert at Valle Crucis Abbey takes place at 7.30pm tomorrow (Sunday) evening with a performance by Muom, an overtone singing choir from Barcelona.

Their singing in the remains of the floodlit abbey will be one of the most atmospheric moments of the week.

They use a special technique in their singing where each member sings two notes at the same time, and the music that they produce is perfect for a summer evening in such an important location.

The supporting programme will also include a reading of Dylan Thomas by Peter Read.

Don't forget to bring a chair. A hogroast and bar also available. Tickets are £7.50.

Toy & Train Sale planned for Pavilion

* Potential buyers browse at a previous Toy & Train Sale at the pavilion.

Llangollen Pavilion is to host the latest annual Toy & Train Sale on Saturday, August 16, between 10.30am and 3pm.

This is the only event of its type at the venue  in 2014, although organiser Chris Dyer say arrangements are already in hand next year's show.

In the meantime, a sister event,  the Oswestry Toy & Train Sale, will take place at the Showground, Oswestry,  on Saturday, October 18, with a further three shows planned there in 2015.

Mr Dyer said: "Llangollen  attracts a great range of traders from  all over Wales and England and a wonderful array of stock is always available, including all the big names such as Dinky, Corgi, Matchbox, EFE, Tri-ang, Hornby, Lima, Wrenn and Bachmann.

"In the current economic climate, prices have never been keener and it is an ideal time to build up collections at budget prices.

"Traders are also very keen to buy and to exchange, so do bring along your surplus items."

* For more information, contact Mr Dyer on 01643 702757, or 07966 694579, or see his website: