BBC BLOGS - North East Wales Weblog

Archives for January 2009

Podcast [30-01-09]

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 14:51 UK time, Friday, 30 January 2009

Podcast - NE Wales Update
uploaded 1pm Fridays
This week, there's more bad news on the jobs front with losses at Corus and news of shutdowns at Toyota. And Good Morning Wales hear from one family in Prestatyn about how the recession is affecting them. Meanwhile, reporter Matthew Richards catches up with Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber who was on a whiste-stop tour to North Wales this week with Eurovision hopeful Mark Evans; Rob Thomas meets children from Colwyn Bay helping to rebuild a school in Madagascar; and Jamie and Louise find out what makes a great Wrexham sausage.

Grrr, stuck in [Deeside] traffic - heading over to Rhyl with 1,000 others

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 12:07 UK time, Friday, 30 January 2009

Fans of social media websites like Twitter and Facebook will be familiar with this type of headline.

Basically, such sites allow you to share your feelings and thoughts in real time with friends, they can respond and then collectively you can share your comments, thoughts, frustrations, etc.

To be specific, I'm referring to a group of Facegroup users who've teamed up this week calling on Flintshire Council to 'Deal With The Traffic Congestion in Deeside'.

They've told today's Evening Leader they're fed-up with being fobbed off with ideas about ways to ease traffic going through Shotton but with very little, if anything, being done.

And so now they're voicing their disquiet. Will it make any difference? They do have strength in numbers.

And this leads me on to another story.

About 1,000 people have accepted an informal invitation to go out on the town in Rhyl this weekend.

It all came about when local primary school teach Andrea suggested a bit of reunion with a few old friends via their Facebook accounts. Word spread and, if all turn up, Rhyl can expect a busy Saturday night.

How the Corus cuts are being felt at home, far and wide

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 07:51 UK time, Tuesday, 27 January 2009

We'd been holding over breath all weekend after hearing that Corus was to announce big job cuts on Monday morning.

Truth be told, our main concern was the nearby Deeside plant and, compared with Llawern, near Newport, we got off lightly.

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More firms wield the axe

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 14:36 UK time, Friday, 23 January 2009

UPDATE [26 Jan]: Now we're waiting to hear about 2,000 cuts at Corus

This time the axe falls on staff at UPM Shotton paper mill, Deeside, which, according to the Evening Leader, is looking to cut 10 per cent of the workforce - that's 40 jobs.

The news comes on top of an announcement earlier this week that 18 jobs are going at pharmaceutical company Wokhardt UK, at Wrexham Industrial Estate.

And in addition to confirmation yesterday that 55 jobs are being lost at Marshalls which is laying off staff before finally closing the concrete paving fim at Llay.

These latest cuts take job losses to 1343 in our region since the credit crunch started to bite last May.

Tag: Jobs

Podcast [23-01-09]

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 11:26 UK time, Friday, 23 January 2009

Podcast - NE Wales Update
uploaded 1pm Fridays
This week we report on a new study showing chemicals used at a rubber plant in Wrexham could cause cancer; hospitals warn beds are full as they cope with exceptionally high numbers of emergency admissions and Roy Noble uncovers another hidden gem - this time in Llandyrnog. Good Morning Wales speaks to the St Asaph firm making instruments to be used on Mars; and how do you like your tea? Brendon Williams canvassed opinion in Wrexham.

Markets, tripe and Communism

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 08:29 UK time, Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Wrexham Butchers Market

We're looking for your help as we're in the early stages of research about the history of our markets in every town in NE Wales. Perhaps you can tell us what they mean or have meant to you over the years.

We've just uploaded the first article this morning about Wrexham's markets.

Our research highlighted the uproar when the former Vegetable Market in Wrexham got its name change in 1990 as locals felt 'People's Market' was like something from a Communist regime.

We've also found a '60s archive film showing these markets back in the day.

Ann And when we added to our site an old tripe recipe by market trader Anne - whose family ran a tripe and meat stall in Wrexham's Butchers' Market for more than 160 years - we received lots of positive comments from people who'd grown up on the stuff.

So, we're off to do some research about markets in Flintshire and Denbighshire. Perhaps you can help us by leaving your thoughts.

Flexsys staff at 'higher risk' of cancer

Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 10:58 UK time, Tuesday, 20 January 2009

BBC News Wales
A chemical used to manufacture rubber may cause cancer in workers regularly exposed to it, according to a study of workers. Researchers found that staff at the Flexsys plant who had come into contact with MBT were twice as likely to die of large intestine and bladder cancers.

'Macca Run', schools' closure concern and other links [20-01-09]

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 08:51 UK time, Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Highlights of some of the local interest stories and blogs we're following today using our shared reader [what's this?].

- Sewage anger in Coedpoeth
- More schools under threat in Denbighshire
- Police clampdown on unruly teens in Flint
- Chester Zoo's 'dating agency' for parrots
- Housing waiting list for North Wales region is the 'size of two big towns'
- 'Macca Run' action in Wrexham

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Podcast and newsletter [16-01-09]

Copy of weekly newsletter sent out to subscribers
UPDATES: Look who's coming to Llan - Popstar on the canal - Friends reunited after 60 years - More jobs to go - Over the rainbow - Rants and Raves - Father and son reach South Pole - Historic haunts

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Rock and roll - popstar Cerys on Llangollen Canal

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 08:24 UK time, Thursday, 15 January 2009

Cerys Matthews on Llangollen Canal

What is it with canal holidays that even popstars are doing it? OK, Cerys's trip was to help 2009 tourism campaign, but if you read her account, travelling along Llangollen Canal and over Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, buying supplies at local shops, chilling out with friends, and being helped through locks by other people on barges, she sounds like she has got the bug too.

Even Harrison Ford said in an interview last May that he wants to repeat his Llangollen Canal holiday after spending four days chugging along with Calista Flockhart in 2004.

Another tough week

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 15:14 UK time, Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Walking through Wrexham's Waterworld car park this afternoon I noticed for the second time in a week how many empty parking spaces there are. Usually you see motorists driving up and down the aisles trying to find a space. It must be a sign of the times.

This week's announcement that 58 jobs are going at Wrexham's JCB factory and talk that 55 jobs could go with the possible closure of Marshalls, Llay, a concrete paving firm, takes job losses in this region due to the credit crunch to 1,285 since we started keeping the grim tally last summer.

Meanwhile, over in Denbighshire, tough decisions are being considered about exactly where financial cuts should be made.

Does the council cut back on street lighting or increase parking charges - that won't help local trade, will it?

Tag: jobs

Site changes [pt.3]

One simple improvement regarding our planned move to a new-look site is the ability to provide feeds of our content [what's this?].

BBC Bristol is the first BBC Local site to adopt the new style and all you have to do to access the latest content uploaded by the web team is to click the rss icon RSS icon [what's this?] on the top right hand side of the page.

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See you in Liverpool for the finale?

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 15:23 UK time, Friday, 9 January 2009

That's where we're heading tomorrow along with an estimated 50,000 other people for a spectacular finale to mark the end to the city's reign as Capital of Culture.

The event, called the People's Celebration, will take place on the banks of the River Mersey with a fireworks display from boats and so much more.

BBC Merseyside reports that the celebration starts at 1815 GMT when the outside of the new £70m Museum of Liverpool will be used as an 80ft (24m) cinema screen showing highlights of cultural events.

See you there!

Podcast [09-01-09]

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 11:18 UK time, Friday, 9 January 2009

Podcast - NE Wales Update
uploaded 1pm Fridays
Coming up this week, we hear how councillors are seeking legal advice over plans for a windfarm off the North Wales coast; George Herd meets a woman from Denbighshire banned from using a bus after the driver told her he was worried her wheelchair could explode; and Good Evening Wales chats to the new Bishop of St Asaph. Meanwhile, Roy Noble discovers a hidden gem in Wrexham; Tom Singleton reports on a scheme to get landowners growing more unusual fruit and veg; and Mai Davies finds out how old Christmas trees are being put to good use at the National Zoo of Wales in Colwyn Bay.

Credit crunch claims another 95 jobs

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 07:56 UK time, Wednesday, 7 January 2009

The first jobs cuts of 2009 in NE Wales came yesterday with Headland Foods, Flint, announcing it was axing 95 posts due to a downturn in business - and taking the total number of job cuts in the region during the so-called credit crunch to 1,172.

Tags: jobs - creditcrunch

Chief Constable gets caught up in the action

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Nick - Web Team Nick - Web Team | 14:11 UK time, Tuesday, 6 January 2009

The Chief Constable Richard Brunstrom has been blogging about getting caught up in the action whilst an arrest was being made during a patrol in Wrexham. He writes:

"I got involved in a couple of hands-on incidents. The first was a man who had been ejected from one of the town centre clubs for poor behaviour which he then proceeded to repeat on the street in front of me and the local Inspector. All went well until the handcuffing, at which point he decided to fight, and a strong guy he turned out to be. A melee ensued and we fell to the ground in a struggling heap with the Inspector expertly pinning and immobilising a pair of thrashing legs. Unfortunately they were mine, not the offenders."

Tag: chiefconstable

Right, back to business and other links [05-01-09]

Many thanks for your Happy New Year messages to myself, colleague Alys, and other contributors of our website.

I've been getting back into the swing of things today and, as usual, I've been using our shared reader [what's this?] to highlight some local issues on the web I think you'll find interesting.

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