Ferryside Rant

Friday, May 18, 2007

Save Ferryside Surgery - and improve it!

With the imminent retirement of Dr David Jenkins there is a risk that the surgery will cease to exist in Ferryside.

The Carmarthenshire Local Health Board has written to patients setting out its opinion and inviting comments from patients. The LHB claims that "in view of the small number of patients registered" (approximately 900) it would be very difficult to recruit another doctor. This is hard to believe with the recent reports of average GP salaries being £100,000 a year and junior doctors crying out for jobs! I suspect it is more about the LHB centralising services to cut costs.

The only options which the LHB propose are:

1. Dispersal of Ferryside patients to neighbouring practices;


2. Other GP practices in the area would be invited to run the practice as a branch surgery in Ferryside.

The deadline for the consultation is 25 June 2007 and it is essential that we all make our views known. We must maintain a surgery in Ferryside. The elderly and those without cars would find it very difficult to attend medical appointments in Kidwelly or Carmarthen.

Although everyone has been grateful for a surgery in the village, the services provided have been limited and the general administration has been appalling. It is not uncommon to wait an hour simply to collect prescribed medicines! With an elderly population it is desirable to provide a blood monitoring service in the local surgery. Whoever takes over should immediately consult patients on areas for improvement.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Welsh Assembly Election

Most of us would be delighted to see New Labour well and truly humiliated before Blair's departure. This would also be a warning to Gordon Brown who has just launched a savage attack on the pay and livelihoods of all workers in the public sector and will do anything rather than impose a greater tax burden on the rich.

You might think that a vote for Plaid Cymru would do the trick - but you would be wrong. Most politicians wait until they are in power before they renege on green promises but Plaid cannot wait that long. Local Plaid MP, Adam Price, has called for a moratorium on the building of wind farms and in North Wales the totally ineffective Plaid leader, Ieuan Wyn Jones, has backed building a new nuclear power station at Wylfa. It is no surprise that support for Plaid has dropped since the last election.

The most deserving beneficiaries of a protest vote against Labour would be the Green Party who, at least, have a consistent and principled stand against nuclear power and an awareness of the seriousness of global warming and the need for urgent action.

Cockle pickers threaten Ferryside again?

Although not officially confirmed yet that the cockle beds will be opened in 2007 it seems likely that the residents of Ferryside and Llansteffan face another invasion by hordes of cocklers this summer.

Last time the beach was seriously littered and residents had to suffer the inconvenience of a constant flow of vehicles through the village to and from the beach at all hours. The estuary was also spoilt as a holiday destination with a detrimental effect on the local tourist industry. It is essential that this does not happen again. Pressure must be put on the Welsh Assembly to ensure that cockling is properly controlled and policed.

We must also show our collective disapproval of local landowners and businesses eager to make fast money providing services to the cocklers without any regard to the consequences for the rest of us.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Best restaurant in Carmarthenshire

Newcomers and visitors to Ferryside often inquire where is a good place to eat. In my opinion the Butchers Arms in Llanddarog is undoubtedly the best pub/restaurant in Carmarthenshire, if not the whole of West Wales. The extensive lunchtime and evening menus exemplify home cooking at its best.

There is a website which provides details of menus and opening times. Give it a try but don't tell too many people - this is too good to share!



Saturday, December 02, 2006

Let's Go Organic

Organics To Go supply a range of fresh, seasonal, organic fruit and vegetables together with organic eggs, cheeses and marmalade. They grow vegetables on 20 acres of converted organic land and in large polytunnels at Golden Grove in Carmarthenshire. They also harvest fruit from a two acre orchard and market produce from eight regional organic growers.

Both conventional and organic farming are under threat because of the power of the supermarkets which push down prices by 'sourcing globally' and by playing farmer off against farmer. You can help resist this trend by suppporting OTG and get some great fruit and vegetables delivered to your door.

You can find out more at http://www.organicstogo.info .

Ferryside & Global Warming

Many homes in Ferryside are in the flood plain so global warming is an issue which we cannot ignore. Have you noticed the number of gas guzzling 4X4s running around Ferryside? It's time these people woke up to reality!

We all need to do our bit to cut carbon emissions whether car use, air flights or domestic heating and electricity consumption. Ecotricity is a small electricity supply company which is investing heavily in wind power. It is very easy to switch from SWALEC or whoever currently supplies your electricity. You can find out more at http://www.ecotricity.co.uk/ .

Anti-social bonfires

Who are these people who light bonfires in Ferryside forcing neighbours to close windows, bring in washing and clear away all the muck falling on their property? They don't seem to care a jot about the environment or their neighbours. I guess that some of them are blokes who get a juvenile kick out of lighting fires. Now that the fortnightly collection by the council makes it so easy to dispose of garden waste these bonfires are completely unnecessary. My neighbour may be a community councillor but his habit of burning garden rubbish seems thoughtless and irresponsible to me. This kind of anti-social behaviour seems to be accepted in the village but it definitely spoils my enjoyment of the garden in the summer. Isn't it time that such people showed more consideration for others?

Worst meal ever - Gwenllian Court Hotel

Recently we deserted our regular haunt to have a light lunch at the Gwenllian Court Hotel near Kidwelly. What a mistake - it was the worst meal I have ever encountered anywhere in the world! You might think that everybody in Wales knows how to make a proper cawl but obviously not the "chef" at the Gwenllian. It consisted of a stock with a few hints of vegetable to which had been added the toughest "lamb" on the planet.

I suggest the chef looks for a proper recipe. You can find a good one at http://www.bbc.co.uk/wales/mid/sites/food/pages/cawlcennin.shtml .