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March 2017

Supreme Court to rule next week on school absence case

The Supreme Court will next week (6 April) hand down its keenly-anticipated ruling on unauthorised school absences.

Congratulations to Ella Morgan, Year 9 at St John's

Ella won her first Welsh vest on Saturday in the siab international at Margam Park.

A Wealth of New Writing from Wales: Literature Wales announces 2017 Writers’ Bursaries


Literature Wales has announced the names of twenty-one writers who will receive a total of £70,000 in Writers’ Bursaries this year. The 2017 Writers’ Bursaries will allow these writers to take time out to write, as well as assisting small-scale travel and research.

St John's Llangrannog Trip March 2017

We went to Llangrannog in March with the Welsh department, it w

Time to leave lacklustre Labour Mrs Clwyd

Cynon Valley MP Ann Clwyd has once again spoken out against her own party and their miserable record in Wales.

Wales Ombudsman calls on Welsh public bodies to tackle ‘fear and blame culture’

A “fear and blame” culture within Welsh public sector bodies must be tackled if lessons are to be learnt from complaints, the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales has said.

Council Tax for each Area/Community 2016-2017

Notice is hereby given in accordance with section 38(2) Local Government Finance Act 1992, that at a meeting of the Council held on 10th March 2016, it was resolved, in accordance with Section 30(2) Local Government Finance Act 1992, that the following amounts of Council Tax be set for the financ


Notice is hereby given that Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council (“the Council”) have made an order under sections 32 and 35 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 (“the 1984 Act”) and of all other enabling power, the effect of which will be to:

Researchers discover small nerve cell changes in early dementia

Researchers have discovered some of the earliest changes that happen to brain cells in mice that show signs of frontotemporal dementia.

Welsh NHS “teetering on the brink of financial abyss”

An Assembly Member has today claimed that the Welsh NHS is “teetering on the brink of financial abyss”, urging “root-and-branch” re

Extra £7m funding for Welsh Autism services,

The Welsh Government has announced £7 million of funding for the National Integrated Autism Service.

Public Health (Wales) Bill – update March 2017

Following the approval of the general principles of the Public Health (Wales) Bill by the National Assembly for Wales in February, Stage 2 proceedings took place in the Health, S

Just One Small Change can help you Feel Great!

Staff across Cwm Taf University Health Board are aiming to feel healthier by taking part in a new campaign that launches today (Monday March 27 2017).

Excess waste from the new Cwmaman School going into landfill?

Below is a copy of an email directed at Head of Service–Corporate Design & Maintenance for RCTCBC, the local resident who addressed and expressed his concerns in the email has been questioning RCTC since the council dumped 1,500 tons of waste in Glynhafod an illegal act by the labour co

Nominate now for Wales Care Awards 2017

Does someone in your organisation or across the social care workforce sector deserve to be recognised for thei

Police recorded 260 cases of alleged electoral fraud last year, reveals watchdog

Police forces across the UK recorded a total of 260 cases of alleged electoral fraud in 2016, the Electoral Commission has revealed.

A Mountain Ash resident is celebrating after winning £1,000 of John Lewis vouchers

A Mountain Ash resident is celebrating after winning £1,000 of John Lewis vouchers thanks to Cardiff’s leading independent estate agency, Moginie James - and top of the wish list is a new washing machine.

Get free advice on respite relief

CARERS in Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT) are next month (April, 2017) being offered free advice on respite relief by a care agency in the area.


RNIB Cymru supporting people with learning disabilities and sight loss to live their lives

For most of us, carrying out everyday tasks and getting around safely and independently in our own homes is merely part of our daily routine. However, people with learning disabilities and sight loss can find such day-to-day tasks extremely challenging because housing does not meet their needs.

Cwm Taf University Health Board Annual LSA Audit Report 2016-2017


1. Introduction........................................................................................ 4

2. The Standards for Supervision........................................................ 4

Labour Controlled RCT Council put up your Council Tax every year and cut services

As you can see from the list the Labour party put up you council tax every year they have been in control and they still keep cutting basic public services every year.

The CVP presents Peter Macfadyen of Independents for Frome

If you would like to learn about how Frome Town Council changed politics for their community then please come along to our event Frid

St John's say a Big Congratulations to Macey Lane

Congratulations to Macey Lane who represented Wales in netball and achieved great success.

ICO statement in relation to the potential risk to patient medical records held by GPs on TPP SystmOne

An ICO spokesperson said:

“The ICO has data protection compliance concerns about SystmOne’s enhanced data sharing function and the potential risk to patients’ medical records held by GPs.

An Autism Bill for Wales

Welsh Conservatives have called on the Welsh Government to give more support to the estimated 34,000 people in Wales living

Chronic shortage of childcare places in Wales

A survey by the Family and Childcare Trust has revealed a significant shortage of childcare places in Wales – with just 20% of Welsh councils reporting enough availability in their area for every parent that worked full time.

Councils struggle to meet duties under Children Act

Some local authorities are no longer fulfilling their statutory duties to children and nearly nine out of ten local authorities are finding it “increasingly challenging”, according to a new report from the All Party Parliamen

St John's student and the Big Bang Engineering Competition at NEC Birmingham, March 2017

Medication Dispenser 

Matthew Morris designed and made an electro-mechanical device to ensure that people who require tablets, pills and medication on a regular basis, take these on time, accurately, without missing any critical prescribed medication.

Celtic Manor Gym Challenge in Aid of RNIB Cymru

Howard Jones who lives in Newport and is registered blind is a self-employed Chartered Certified Accountant and owns Howard Jones Accountancy which ope

Information Governance Survey: What councils need to do now

ICO is here to help local councils comply with the Data Protection Act and get re

Enabling Wales celebrates

Disability Wales is celebrating the achievements of the Enabling Wales project which finishes this month after a ver

Youth Select Committee applications now open

Calling young people from Wales!

The British Youth Council is recruiting a Youth Select Committee and one seat on the committee is for a young person from WALES!

Youth Select Committee: Applications now open

Nominate now – Wales Volunteer of the Year Awards 2017

There are hundreds of volunteers in our communities. Do you know of an inspirational individual or group that has made a real difference to their area or to the lives of others?

Documentaries tackle social care issues

The BBC has tackled the issue of social care – and in particular the lack of staff and funding – in two sister programmes, Panorama and Week In Week Out (in Wales).


“The most inspiring moment for me was listening to Leymah’s speech. She is such an inspirational person, a strong proud woman.

Welsh Conservatives welcome Swansea City Deal

Welsh Conservatives have today expressed ‘delight’ as the Prime Minister visits Wales to sign off the Swansea Bay City Regi

Coram and The Wales Adoption Register host first ever ‘Adoption Activity Day’ in Wales to help find families for vulnerable children

On Saturday 11 March, children’s charity Coram, in conjunction with The Wales Adoption Register, hosted the first ever Adoption Activity Day in Wales to help match children awaiting adoptive fami

St John's Pilgrimage to Rome

February Half Term 2017 was when Sixth Form pupils travelled to


Our MACS ‘Ambassadors to Auschwitz’ have commented on their harrowing educational visit with the Holocaust Educational Trust in February. Danielle Evans commented:

Rhondda Swimming Club swimmers chalk up another victory and have sights set on future success


Rhondda Swimming Club continues its rise with more competition successes, the likes of which it once could only dream.

Support small businesses in Wales

Welsh Conservatives call for Small Business Charter to boost the smallest firms

Raising Awareness of Sign Language Week

To raise awareness of Sign Language Week we chatted to Heather Patterson who works for RNIB Cymru as a Rights, Advice and Information Case Worker.

Care firm says future for workers is flexibility

PEOPLE residing in rural areas with other commitments that might prevent them from taking up a full-time job make ideal employees says an award-winning care provider in Wales (March, 2017).

Inspirational local volunteer scoops Diabetes UK Cymru award

An Aberdare woman has been honoured for her volunteering work with Diabetes UK Cymru by winning a national award.

Mountain Ash Car Boot Sale

 Just a reminder to anyone wanting to do a car boot this weekend..

Wales in danger of “sleepwalking” through five more years of decline under Labour

Welsh Conservatives will this week call on the National Assembly for Wales to recognise the ongoing failure of the Welsh La

Claire swaps reception for recruitment

CLAIRE Archer from Cwmbach near Aberdare has recently (March, 2017) been appointed as an Recruitment Administrator for an award-winning care company in Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT).

Mark Youd: Universally Human

Last year Southerndown based artist Mark Youd began work on a project inspired by a new model, and a body of work inspired by this sitter resulted.

Councils paying staff £15m for trade union time

Councils are spending more than £14.5m a year on providing ‘facility time’ for t

NRW offers free rod licences to get youngsters fishing

Spring is in the air and the weather is finally getting warmer, so what better time to get your children away from the games console and into the fresh air?

Conditions not being adhered to 3 days into the start of building Cwmaman School

The conditions clearly say,

“It has also specified that HGV movements associated with construction activities and deliveries to the site will take place between 09.30 – 12.00 and 13.00 – 15.00 hours.

You’ve Got Dragons,

After years of charming audiences at outdoor venues and sites with their Shakespearian tales, Taking Flight Theatre Company is now preparing to

Llenyddiaeth Cymru a Llywodraeth Cymru yn cyhoeddi trydydd Diwrnod Rhyngwladol Dylan Thomas

Yn dilyn llwyddiant yr ail Ddiwrnod Rhyngwladol Dylan Thomas yn 2016, mae manylion y trydydd dathliad blynyddol i un o lenorion enwocaf Cymru wedi cael eu cyhoeddi, gan gynnwys digwyddiadau ledled y DU, yn ogystal ag eraill sy’n dechrau ymddangos ym mhedwar ban byd.

The Scottish First Minister should begin putting national interests ahead of her party’s nationalist interests

The Scottish First Minister should begin putting national interests ahead of her party’s nationalist interests, the leader of the Welsh Conservatives has said.

Welsh Government introduces law to abolish Right to Buy

The Welsh Government has introduced proposed legislation to abolish the Right to Buy and associated rights.

Cynon Valley Party Meeting Royal Oak Cwmbach

Why not come along to the next Cynon Valley Party meeting in Cwmbach on Wednesday 15 March and see what the Cynon Valley Party is all about.

New Prior for Wales appointment confirmed

His Royal Highness The Duke of Gloucester, in his capacity as Grand Prior of the Order of St.

Aberdare Furnishing Company and Director fined £8,500 by Cardiff Magistrates

A furnishing company, and its sole director, were fined for failing to co-operate with South Wales Fire and Rescue Service (SWFRS) in relation to serious fire safety deficiencies within th

2017 Tir na n-Og Awards Shortlist Announced


Abacare helps unemployed get back to work

A WELSH care agency has revealed (March, 2017) it is offering re-training to unemployed individuals who are looking for work.

Call for clinicians in South Wales to champion change

Clinicians in South Wales are being urged to become Clinical Champions to help improve services in their area to deliver better care for people with diabetes.

Spring Budget 2017: key policy decisions

Local Government Lawyer sets out a number of the key policy decisions contained in the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s Spring Budget 2017 and affecting the sector.

On-the-spot fine and even prosecution if they buy alcohol for those who are not old enough to buy it themselves.

Parents, carers and other adults are once again being warned they face an on-the-spot fine and even prosecution if they buy alcohol for those who are not old eno

RAMSAY: Budget to build a stronger, fairer and better Wales

Welsh Conservative Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Nick Ramsay AM, has welcomed the Chancellor’s budget, which he say

A report on The College, Merthyr Tydfil

During each inspection, inspectors aim to answer three key questions: Key Question 1: How good are the outcomes? Key Question 2: How good is provision? Key Question 3: How good are leadership and management?

Open letter to oppose Government’s disability benefit cuts

Ahead of this week’s Budget (8th March), Disability Wales are supporting a UK wide call for the Government to reconsider planned cuts to the Work Related Activity Group (WRAG) of the disability benefit Employment Support Allowance (ESA), which will see new claimants lose out on £30-a-week, £1500

Could RCT be the location for a new prison?

It has emerged that RCT Council was the only one in Wales to respond to a request by the Ministry for Justice for suggested prison sites.

Karen for Clydach

Karen Roberts will be the Welsh Liberal Democrat candidate for the Cwmclydach ward at the forthcoming Council elections in May.

New data protection law gives people greater control over their own information

The Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham will today explain how imminent changes to data protection law will require organisations

Council applies for judicial review of one of its own planning decisions

A local authority has applied for a judicial review of one of its planning decisions, after a councillor voted in favour of an application brought by her brother-in-law.

NRW suspends permit after waste storage site blaze

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has taken action against a waste storage facility

New research: reaching accuracy after stroke improves at training speed

Published in the journal, Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, a new study suggests people who are in the chronic stages of stroke will improve their reaching accuracy at the speed at

Judge quashes planning permission for relocation of secondary school

A High Court judge has quashed a North West council’s grant of planning permission for a site to which a secondary school was to be relocated.

Dementia sufferers stay at home thanks to specialist care

PEOPLE from Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT) who suffer with dementia can receive care at home thanks to a training scheme run by a care provider in the area (March, 2017).

Knife point robbery at The Gardens, Caerphilly Road, Quakers Yard

South Wales Police are appealing for witnesses following a knife point robbery at The Gardens, Caerphilly Road, Quakers Yard.

Mountain Ash Comp in house Eisteddfod March 3rd

March 3rd, 2017 marks a very exciting day in the MACS calendar!

Welsh Ambulance Service invites members of public to Trust Board meeting

THE Welsh Ambulance Service is inviting members of the public to come and find out more about how it works.

Robbery at Premier Stores in John Street, Aberdare

South Wales Police are appealing for information after an armed robbery at Premier Stores in John Street, Aberdare.
Two men wearing balaclavas entered the store between 5.45am and 6am on 25 February armed with weapons and stole a substantial amount of money. 

Teenager who was seen breaking into a car in Mountain Ash

Quick thinking members of the public have helped us arrest and charge three teenagers for a string of offences.

Lone parent families win permission to challenge reduced benefit cap

The High Court has granted permission to four lone parent families to challenge the reduced benefit cap.

St David’s Day

St John's Church - Church in Wales denomination, was built in the latter part of the 12th Century, as a Chapel of Ease for monks from Margam Abbey.

1 in 10 Welsh school pupils have below average reading ability

More than one in ten (11.9%) Welsh school pupils have a below average reading ability, according to results from the National Readi

Major research study has the potential to transform the health of the nation

HEALTHWISE Wales has the potential to transform the health and wellbeing of the nation, Minister for Social Services and Public Health, Rebecca Evans, has said today.

Mountain Ash Comprehensive School Celebrate World Book Day 2nd March

To celebrate World Book Day on Thursday 2nd March 2017, and the overwhelming success of the first term’s use of the Accelerated Reader programme, your child will be taking part in a sponsored MACS Reading Marathon, along with all students in years 7, 8 and 9.  

Barddoniaeth Colled | Poetry of Loss

Literature Wales has announced an international programme to commemorate the death of Welsh poet Hedd Wyn and other World War One writers such as the Irish poet Francis Ledwidge who, like Hedd Wyn, died on 31 July 1917.