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Housing plans for former university campus approved

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SWANSEA COUNCIL PLANNING COMMITTEE approved the application for a new housing development at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s former Townhill Campus in Swansea.
Pobl Group had applied for planning permission to build over 150 new homes at the former Townhill Campus. The group was selected as preferred developers by UWTSD after a competitive tender process, and will take over the 12-acre site with the intention of developing an area in the region of 7.5 acres.
Swansea Council Planning Committee recently heard from residents, who broadly favoured the development. Uplands councillors Nick Davies, Irene Mann and Peter May also told the committee that they supported the plans.

20% of the flats and houses will be for social rent or low-cost ownership, and Pobl Group must contribute £140,000 towards improved cycling and pedestrian facilities.
Elfed Roberts, Head of Development (West) at Pobl Group, said: “Our vision for this new development is to transform the former campus site and deliver a high quality mixed tenure development of 153 new homes that have been designed to make the most of the views and other qualities of the site.
“We will preserve the impressive Edwardian college building, overseeing a sensitive conversion and extension of this landmark building into one and two-bedroom apartments that will have spectacular views over Swansea Bay. The remainder of the development will see the inclusion of a new landscaped urban square, generous amenity space and a good mix of one, two, three and four-bedroom homes as well as a small convenience store.

“We also want to conserve and maintain a large proportion of mature parkland and open space to benefit both the new residents and existing adjacent community.”
UWTSD’s staff and students were relocated from the Townhill campus to their new SA1 Swansea Waterfront location at the start of the last academic year.

Elfed continued: “Pobl will be developing homes at Townhill Campus across the affordable housing spectrum; to rent at affordable levels, to buy through shared ownership and Help to Buy, and we will also offer some for sale on the open market. This means we can be flexible, offering homes that meet the needs and demands of the local market.

“When Pobl was formed, we committed to building 3,000 new homes across Wales within the first five years. Two years in and we’re well on our way, and this exciting development will help us to achieve our ambition of increasing the supply of homes that people can comfortably afford in the Swansea area.”

Professor Medwin Hughes, DL, Vice-Chancellor of UWTSD, said: “In selecting Pobl Group’s tender, the university was mindful of the need to ensure the continued sustainability of the community in Townhill, as well as to ensure that there will be a lasting legacy on the site.

A key factor in our decision was the fact that Pobl intend preserving the original Edwardian building, as well as the group’s reputation for delivering such schemes in a sympathetic manner to their environment. The university’s partnership with Pobl in Swansea is delivering a range of benefits to the city and its people and, in particular, both parties are keen to demonstrate their

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Seven injured as bus hits bridge

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A BUS heading to Swansea University has struck a bridge and, as a result, seven people are being treated for injuries one of which is in a serious condition.
Emergency Services arrived at the scene on Neath Road shortly after 9:40am this morning (December 12).
A 63 year old man has been arrested and a full investigation has been launched by the bus company First Cymru.
Four of the injured were taken to Swansea’s Morriston Hospital, two were taken to Neath Port Talbot minor injuries unit and another was taken to University Hospital of Wales in a serious condition.
The bus was travelling between Swansea’s Singleton campus and the Swansea Bay campus when, according to reports, a fallen tree caused the bus driver to seek an alternative route to its destination.
The road remains closed and railway lines to Swansea are also blocked while authorities attempt to assess the damage done to the bridge with members of the public being asked to avoid the area.

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Welsh Rugby star Ryan Jones backs NSPCC Cymru

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A NEW NSPCC Cymru/Wales service that aims to help children and young people keep safe in their digital worlds and prevent online sexual abuse, has been praised by former Welsh Rugby captain, Ryan Jones, during a visit to the children’s charity’s base in Swansea.

During a tour of the service centre on Friday 29 November, the Wales Rugby legend met with NSPCC Cymru/Wales service practitioners who deliver direct work with local children and their families.

They shared with him their work, through their Protect and Respect service, to support children and young people who may be experiencing exploitation, as well as how they are helping parents who are at risk of mild to moderate anxiety and depression during pregnancy with their preventative mental-health service, Pregnancy in Mind.

A more recent service to be offered to children and young people in South Wales is In Ctrl, a group work programme for children and young people that aims to help them stay safe online.

Ryan said: “It’s been really interesting to find out more about the direct services the NSPCC delivers in South Wales, and how their prevention work with local schools through the In Ctrl service is helping to keep children and young people safe both on and offline.

“It’s reassuring to know that children are being empowered to ask themselves those really important questions when they go online, and increase their confidence in knowing what to do or who to speak to if they come across something that makes them feel uncomfortable.”

NSPCC Cymru/Wales Service Centre Manager in Swansea, Tracey Holdsworth added: “We were thrilled to be able to welcome Ryan to our service centre, thank him for all of his support, and share the work we are doing to help local children and their families.

“Ryan took a particular interest in our InCtrl programme that helps to prevent abuse online. In taking a trauma informed approach, it is designed to offer a safe space to children, young people and their parents to promote learning, build understanding of risk and increase resilience, in their online and offline worlds.

“Our practitioners visit local primary and secondary schools working with pupils who are aged between 9 and 13, exploring issues such as healthy relationships and friendships online, and enabling them to develop skills that will help protect them from grooming and exploitation.”

The work compliments the work of the charity’s Schools Service team in Wales, that visits local primary schools delivering free Speak out Stay safe assemblies and workshops that help children know about the different types of abuse, how to recognise the signs, and explore trusted adults they can speak to if they ever have a worry or concern.

In the 2018/19 academic year trained staff and volunteers delivered the free safeguarding sessions at 12 primary schools in Swansea reaching more than 3,000 children.

Ryan added: “I have attended a Speak out Stay safe assembly, and they are a great way to ensure children with a worry understand they can speak to Childline or a trusted adult about it and know they will be listened to.

“The InCtrl service offered by the NSPCC gives children the confidence to speak out if they come across something that concerns them online – and that’s so important.

“It’s great that parents are getting involved too. Giving them a safe space to talk, and helping them understand the issues facing their children online can help them feel assured talking to their child about their online use and how to keep them safe online.”

Online sexual abuse can happen anywhere that allows digital communication, such as social networks, text messages and messaging apps, email, online chats, voice chat in games and comments on live streaming apps.

Tracey added: “Too many children contact Childline not knowing where to turn having been exploited online. We want children and young people to have a happier and safer life, knowing that whenever they talk to a trusted adult, in school or at home, their concerns will be addressed.

“InCtrl is for children who might be going through lots of exciting changes – moving up to secondary school, getting a first mobile device, and using social media profiles for the first time.

“As exciting as all this can be, it can also be hard to know what to do sometimes and for some children, things can easily feel quickly out of their control, especially if they have had a worrying online experience.”

In Ctrl is carried out mainly in groups and covers themes such as healthy relationships, boundaries, pressure and expectation online, self-care, body image, pornography, and sexting. There is also an option for one-to-one work too, if needed, and anyone wanting to find out more about the service can contact the NSPCC in Swansea on 01792 456545 or SwanseaServiceCentre@nspcc.org.uk. The service is also offered out of the charity’s Cardiff base – CardiffServiceCentre@nspcc.org.uk or 02920 108080.

Children can contact Childline for free 24/7, 365 days a year on 0800 1111 or childline.org.uk.

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Teaching assistant dies after being ‘hit with chair’

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A Teaching Assistant from Ysgol Bryn Castell in Bryncethin, Bridgend has died just days after being hit by a chair thrown by a pupil.
Ysgol Bryn Castell is a special school for 147 pupils aged seven to 19 is closed whilst police investigate.
South Wales Police said: “Police in Bridgend are investigating the unexplained death of a 31-year-old man who was found dead at a property in the Brackla area on Sunday morning.
“A post-mortem examination is due to take place later today to try and establish the cause of death.”

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