Monday, 18 March 2013

Cardigan makes The Sunday Times 'Top 10 Places in Wales to Live' list

It doesn't surprise me, but it is nevertheless very pleasant to see some national coverage of what is a well known fact in these here parts - that Cardigan is a beautiful, up-and-coming town with so much going for it and is a great place to live.

This Sunday Times 'Top 10 Places in Wales to Live' list didn't only name Cardigan as one of its 10, but the editor actually picked the town as her personal favourite! Quite right too!

Every community has its nay-sayers, those 'the fields are always greener on the other side' brigade - that's just human nature I'm afraid.

But with great inward investment and the longed-for completion of the restoration of our Castle and of the soon-to-start building of our new hospital both on the near horizon, as well as a vibrant community life, steeped in history, culture and tradition, I really couldn't think of many better places to live.

Could you?!

Friday, 8 March 2013

One small stanchion for man, One large stanchion for Cardigan!

Today was THE day.

After 38 years of waiting, the first of the 3 stanchions/buttresses that have apparently been holding Cardigan Castle together were removed this lunchtime in an event supported by the Welsh media and hundreds of local residents that lined Cardigan Bridge and Prince Charles Quay.

As this BBC Wales article and clip of the moment itself shows, it was a wonderfully epic moment for an event a long time in the making.

Today, I shed the chains of office and my role in local government and was once more that young child that would cross Cardigan Bridge back in the late 1980s/early 1990s and look up in awe at that imposing, secretive, impenetrable Castle with those hideous, ghastly looking stanchions, apparently propping it all up.

This lunchtime, that boy with a love of history saw the first dismantling of those 38 year old monstrosities!

It has been a fabulous day for Cardigan and in a matter of just a few weeks, all 3 will be gone and consigned to the history of our minds.

Sunday, 3 March 2013

A 12,000ft Parachute Jump in Memory of my Father, Lance Cole

I'm not keen on heights and I'm not keen on confined spaces. So combine the two and for me, you get a very uncomfortable environment.

Yet, those who know me may be surprised to read that I have for some time been rather keen on the idea of doing a parachute jump for charity. A bungee jump? Not a chance, no way. But a tandem parachute jump? Whilst I can't really explain why,'s interested me.

Lance Cole
In memory of my father, Lance Cole
My health scare before Christmas kind of reminded me of the important things in life and it gave me the idea of using my final few months as Ceredigion County Council Chairman to do something different and to raise loads of cash for a worthy cause in doing so.

As it happens, this coming June will see the 10th anniversary of my father Lance Cole's passing and it seemed only right that I remember his memory by doing something completely different and in doing so, raise money for a cause that we as a family, are close too.

For my father was born with a hole in the heart and throughout his life, often suffered with ill health due to heart-related problems. It was said by doctors that it was a medical miracle that he lived for as long as he did. When Dad passed away, he was 66.

British Heart Foundation Cymru's Defibrillator Appeal
My family as a result have long been particularly supportive of the British Heart Foundation and having supported the likes of the Welsh Air Ambulance, the RNLI and Cardigan Cancer Care during my year of office, I felt there was no better way of concluding my fundraising activity for these past 12 months than by supporting the BHF.

Their current appeal here in Wales alongside the Welsh Ambulance Service is to raise £200,000 during this and next year to fund the placement of defibrillators in rural communities that fall outside of the 'Golden 8 Minute' ambulance waiting-time zone.

Many people in Wales are dying unnecessarily from cardiac arrest. The BHF and Welsh Ambulance Service want to change this by training more people in emergency life support skills and to place many more defibrillators (AEDs) in locations across Wales.

Half of cardiac arrests out of hospital are witnessed by others. Yet only about 10% of these people survive. With more people trained in emergency life support skills and more defibrillators on the ground, many more could live.

This is why I'm supporting this cause and I hope you can help me too by giving a donation to watch me, quite literally, jump out of a plane!

You can do so here...

Thank you for reading and with your support, we can make a real difference.