The Exist / Community Urban Sports Project (CUSP) Skatepark, based at the foot of Mount Pleasant and opened in 2011, is a not for profit venture that’s used by more than 250 local riders and skateboarders every week to fine tune their half-pipes, 180s and heel-flips.
The popular skate park, which also doubles up as a venue for local community events, is one of around 40 businesses piloting the latest ultrafast technology, G.fast, which is capable of delivering download speeds of up to 330Mbps – more than 10 times the UK national average.
Openreach plans a national rollout of ultrafast broadband to 12 million homes and businesses by the end of 2020 and 10 million will be upgraded using this cutting edge technology.
The skatepark signed up to be part of the Swansea trial via Openreach and were connected in June.
With ultrafast broadband speeds being made available in the skate park both riders and skateboarders are able to upload videos of their moves and tricks, filmed on their smartphones or GoPros, on to popular social media sites such as Instagram, Facebook and You Tube in an instant.
But the benefits of having a fast and reliable broadband connection isn’t limited to those that use the ramps and boards as parents can work on their laptops in the Exist/CUSP Skatepark café while their children ride the ramps.
Exist/CUSP Skatepark director, Kate Leonard explains: ”We find that skateboarding and social media go hand-in-hand.”
“A number of our riders and skateboarders like to film themselves on the ramps and then upload their content on to You Tube, Instagram and other social media sites.
“Rather than having to wait an age people using our facilities can now do this in an instant with an ultrafast broadband connection throughout the skatepark.
“But the benefits are also felt by the parents – which is really important for us. We’re seeing more and more of them catching up with their work on the laptops in the café while their children are enjoying themselves.
“Our remit here is to encourage a healthy lifestyle – quite simply to get our youngsters off the sofa and to do something active.
“Having a good broadband connection isn’t the reason that our riders and skateboarders would use the skatepark but without a doubt it’s an additional bonus for them – and their parents – when they are here.”
Exist/CUSP Skatepark also stage a number of art shows, such as photography exhibitions, and cinema nights throughout the year that will benefit greatly from having fast broadband connection.
Around 13,000 households and businesses in and around Swansea including, Gowerton, Landore, Townhill and Oystermouth, are set to benefit from the high-speed service as we begin switching on the pilot areas for our new ultrafast broadband network.
Kim Mears, Openreach managing director for infrastructure delivery said: “It’s great to see the different ways that our ultrafast broadband network is being used across the country.”
“From helping families to download HD films in seconds, saving businesses time and money to helping not-for profit organisations such as Exist/CUSP Skatepark in Swansea to encourage youngsters to have more active lifestyles – there’s a multitude of reasons why people are signing up for fast and reliable broadband connectivity.
“Wales and the UK is ahead of its major European neighbours when it comes to superfast broadband but technology never stands still – that’s why we’re building on our existing fibre network and leading the way in deploying ultrafast speeds.
“We need to stay ahead in order to meet the evolving needs of our customers. Gfast will allow us to do that by reaching the largest number of people in the quickest possible time and transforming the UK broadband landscape from superfast to ultrafast.”
People living in the pilot areas in Swansea who want to try the new service should contact their internet service provider to see if they’re offering a service, and to find out more about availability and pricing.
G.fast technology changes the way today’s broadband is transmitted, delivering ultrafast speeds that have previously required fibre to be run all the way to the premises (FTTP). This is significant as G.fast will make ultrafast fibre available to a much larger number of homes and businesses and more quickly than if it had focused on FTTP alone.
People wanting to take advantage of the new ultrafast technology can find out more about which providers offer this service by visiting www.openreach.co.uk/buyultrafast
The Range’s Swansea Store Shortlisted for ‘Best Christmas Display’
Christmas has arrived early for The Range stores in Wales, boasting gigantic displays of all-things festive! The Range is well known for going all out during the Christmas season to create a fun and magical experience full of trees, lights, decorations and much more for their customers to enjoy and this year is no exception. The Range in Swansea surpassed expectations with a display so great, it’s left them shortlisted for ‘Best Christmas Display’ out of all The Range’s 182 stores.
Local coronavirus restrictions imposed to control outbreaks in South Wales
Coronavirus laws are being tightened in four more Welsh authorities – Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport – following a sharp rise in cases, Health Minister Vaughan Gething today announced.
The new measures will come into force at 6pm on Tuesday 22 September 2020, to protect people’s health and control the spread of the virus in the four local authority areas.
The new restrictions will apply to everyone living in Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport:
People will not be allowed to enter or leave these areas without a reasonable excuse, such as travel for work or education;
People will only be able to meet people they don’t live with outdoors for the time being. They will not be able to form, or be in, extended households;
All licensed premises will have to close at 11pm;
Everyone over 11 will be required to wear face coverings in indoor public areas – as is the case across Wales.
From 6pm on Tuesday 22 September, the requirement for all licensed premises to close at 11pm will also be extended to Caerphilly borough.
Health Minister, Vaughan Gething, said:
“Following the decision to place additional coronavirus restrictions in place in Caerphilly and Rhondda Cynon Taf, we have seen a worrying and rapid rise in cases in four other south Wales council areas – Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport.
“In many cases, this is linked to people socialising indoors without social distancing. We are seeing evidence of coronavirus spreading. We need to take action to control and, ultimately, reduce its spread and protect people’s health.
“It’s always a difficult decision to introduce restrictions but coronavirus has not gone away – it is still circulating in communities across Wales and, as we are seeing in parts of South Wales, small clusters can quickly cause real issues in local communities.
“We need everyone’s help to bring coronavirus under control. We need everyone to pull together and to follow the measures which are there to protect you and your loved ones.”
The restrictions are being introduced following a rapid increase in the number of confirmed cases in coronavirus, which have been linked to people meeting indoors, not following social distancing guidelines and returning from summer holidays overseas.
The Welsh Government will call an urgent meeting of all local authority, health board and police forces from Bridgend to the English border tomorrow to discuss the wider situation in South Wales and whether further measures are needed across the region to protect people’s health.
The new local restrictions measures will be kept under regular review. They will be enforced by local authorities and by the police.
Keep Wales safe by:
Always keeping your distance
Washing your hands regularly
Working from home wherever you can
Following any local restrictions
Following the rules about meeting people
Staying at home if you or anyone in your extended household has symptoms.
Welsh legislation will restrict those travelling from hotspot areas
MARK Drakeford, First Minister of Wales, has today announced legislation which will restrict those coming from coronavirus hotspot’s from travelling to Wales.
The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has refused to impose rules which prohibit those from areas where the infection rate is high from entering low virus rate areas’s.
Mr Drakeford has made two requests to the Prime Minister requesting to impose rules which will mean those from high virus areas in England be prohibited from travelling to Wales, a request which has been denied by Mr Johnson.
The powers set by Mr Drakeford will come into force by the end of the week, unless Boris Johnson takes action sooner.
Speaking at the Plenary today, Mr Drakeford made the announcement, stating if Mr Johnson does not reply to his request by Friday then The Welsh Government will bring in legislation to restrict travel from those in English lockdown areas travelling to Wales.
Mr Drakeford said this was not a case of all those from England being restricted travel to Wales, just hotspot areas.
He said: “Evidence from public health professionals suggests coronavirus is moving from east to west across the UK and across Wales. As a general rule, it is concentrating in urban areas and then spreading to more sparsely populated areas as a result of people travelling.
“Much of Wales in now subject to local restriction measures because levels of the virus have risen and people living in those areas are not able to travel beyond their county boundary without a reasonable excuse. This is designed to prevent the spread of infection within Wales and to other areas of the UK.
“We are preparing to take this action to prevent people who live in areas where there are higher Covid infection rates across the UK from travelling to Wales and bringing the virus with them.
“I am determined to keep Wales safe.”
The legislation, which is understood to come into force Friday, October 16 at 6pm, will mean those travelling to Wales from areas of England which are classed as virus hotspot’s will be restricted.
The new legislation also restricts those travelling into Wales from high virus prevalence areas from Northern Ireland and Scotland.
The Leader of the Opposition in the Welsh Parliament – Paul Davies MS – has rounded on the First Minister over a ban on people entering Wales from England, and the Labour Party’s inability or unwillingness to publish comprehensive data proving that transmission rates are accelerating due to travel.
Mr Davies took the First Minister to task during Plenary today (October 14), and referred to a statement made by the leader of the Labour Party on September 23 when he said that the Welsh Government was not seeing any spikes at all in infection due to travel and tourism.
Mr Davies said that the people of Wales deserve to have sight of the data that underpins the Welsh Labour-led Government’s position on this matter, so that they can be confident that the Government’s actions are proportionate to the threat of the virus in their area.
Mr Davies also referred to a paper that accompanied the First Minister’s letter to the Prime Minister yesterday, a paper – that was not peer-reviewed – that confirms the data “…does not constitute definitive proof” in favour of a travel ban.
Mr Davies said: “The First Minister and his Government have acted rashly and without examining a range of other factors before a conclusion on whether to impose a travel ban or not is reached, while at the same time seemingly ignoring the fact that transmission rates in relation to travel had already peaked in August and September.
“It is incumbent on the First Minister to explain just why he has chosen to act in this way, and what supporting evidence he and his Ministers have seen to justify a ban and then publish it so it can be properly scrutinised.
“If he cannot or will not, then he must review and rescind this ban immediately.”
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- Local coronavirus restrictions imposed to control outbreaks in South Wales
- Welsh legislation will restrict those travelling from hotspot areas
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