Bala is a market town and community in Gwynedd, Wales. An urban district, Bala lies within the historic county of Merionethshire, it lies at the north end of Llyn Tegid, 17 miles north-east of Dolgellau, with a population taken in the United Kingdom Census 2011 of 1,974. It is little more than this being Stryd Fawr; the High Street and its shops can be quite busy in the summer months with many tourists. Bala was ranked as having the 20th highest percentage of Welsh language speakers in Wales by electoral division, in the United Kingdom Census 2011. According to the census, 78.5% of Bala's population can speak Welsh. The Tower of Bala is a tumulus or "moat-hill" thought to mark the site of a Roman camp. In the 18th century, the town was well known for the manufacture of flannel, stockings and hosiery; the large stone-built theological college, Coleg Y Bala, of the Calvinistic Methodists and the grammar school, founded in 1712, are the chief features, together with the statue of the Rev. Thomas Charles, the theological writer, to whom was due the foundation of the British and Foreign Bible Society.
In 1800 a 15-year-old girl, Mary Jones, walked the 25 miles from her home village Llanfihangel-y-Pennant to purchase a bible in Bala. The scarcity of the Bible, along with the determination of Mary to get one, was a major factor in the foundation of the British and Foreign Bible Society in 1804. Betsi Cadwaladr, who worked with Florence Nightingale in the Crimea, who gave her name to the Health Board, came from Bala. Other famous people from the Bala area include Michael D. Jones, Christopher Timothy, Owen Morgan Edwards, born in Llanuwchllyn, T. E. Ellis, born in Cefnddwysarn. Bala hosted the National Eisteddfod in 1967, 1997 and 2009; the 2009 Eisteddfod was notable because the chair was not awarded to any of the entrants as the standard was deemed to be too low. Bala hosted the Eisteddfod Genedlaethol yr Urdd Gobaith Cymru, National Eisteddfod for the Welsh League of Youth, in 2014. On 16 June 2016, Bala's name was changed to Bale temporarily in honour of Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale; this was only for the duration of UEFA Euro 2016.
The Welsh word bala refers to the outflow of a lake. Bala, Canada, was named after the town in 1868, they have become twin towns. Set within the Bala Fault, Bala Lake is the largest natural lake in Wales at 4 miles in length and half a mile wide. At 138 feet, its depths could hide the tower of St Giles Church in Wrexham and still have 3 feet of water above; the lake has been known to freeze over—most in the severe winters of 1947 and 1963. The rare Gwyniad fish — trapped in the lake at the end of the last Ice Age, some 10,000 years ago — is in danger because its natural home is unsuitable. A member of the whitefish family, it is found only in Bala Lake. Cwm Hirnant, a valley running south from Bala, gives its name to the Hirnantian Age in the Ordovician Period of geological time; the town lies on the A494, a major trunk road that leads to Dolgellau, 18 miles to the southwest, to Ruthin and Queensferry to the northwest. The closest major urban areas to Bala are Wrexham at 30 miles, Chester at 40 miles, Liverpool, 52 miles to the northeast.
Nearby villages include Llanfor, Llanycil, Llangywer and Rhos-y-gwaliau. The Afon Tryweryn, a river fed from Llyn Celyn which runs through Bala, is world-famous for its white water kayaking. International governing bodies, the International Canoe Federation, the European Canoe Union and the British Canoe Union all hold national and international events there; the Canolfan Tryweryn National Whitewater Centre has its home in Bala. There are at least three local campsites that cater for the influx of canoeists from many parts of the world. An annual music festival known as'Wa Bala' is held in the town; the venue is similar in format to Dolgellau's Sesiwn Fawr. Nearby are the mountains Aran Fawddwy and Arenig Fawr. Coleg y Bala is at the top of the hill on the road towards Llyn Celyn; the Victoria Hall is a small old cinema, a community hall. There are several chapels: notably Capel Capel Bach; the livestock market on Arenig Street is still going strong. Bro Eryl estate was built just after World War II.
Mary Jones World, a heritage centre about Mary Jones and her Bible is located just outside the village. Bala has been served by various railway stations on the Great Western Railway: Bala Lake Halt railway station was Bala's first station, on the Bala and Dolgelly Railway Bala railway station - Bala's second station, on the Festiniog and Blaenau Railway Bala Junction railway station - The meeting point of the Bala and Dolgellau Railway and Bala Railway and the Bala and Festiniog Railway The Bala Lake Railway runs for 4.5 miles from Llanuwchllyn to the edge of the town, along a section of the former trackbed of the Great Western Railway line between Ruabon and Barmouth. It terminates at Bala railway station, which opened in 1976 on the site of the former Lake Halt station. Bala is home to Welsh Premier League football club Bala Town F. C. who play at Maes Tegid. Bala's local rugby club is Bala RFC. Michael D. Jones, a Welsh Congregationalist minister, principal of Bala theological college, a founder of the Welsh settlement in Patagonia and one of the fathers of modern Welsh nationalism, was born in Llanuwchlyn.
Christopher Timothy, born in Bala. As with the rest of the UK, Bala benefi
Abergwyngregyn is a village and community of historical note in Gwynedd, a county and principal area in Wales. Under its historic name of Aber Garth Celyn it was the seat of Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, it lies in the historic county of Caernarfonshire. It is located at grid reference SH653726, adjacent to the A55, five miles east of Bangor, eight miles west of Conwy; the Aber community, which covers an area of 2,970 hectares, has a population of 240. Abergwyngregyn shortened to Aber, is a settlement of great antiquity and pre-conquest importance on the north coast of Gwynedd, its boundaries stretch from the Menai Strait up to the headwaters of the Afon Afon Anafon. Protected to the east by the headland of Penmaenmawr, at its rear by Snowdonia, it controlled the ancient crossing point of the Lafan Sands to Anglesey. A pre-Roman defensive enclosure, Maes y Gaer, which rises above Pen y Bryn on the eastern side of the valley, has far reaching views over Irish Sea with the Isle of Man visible on a clear day.
The Roman road from Chester, linking the forts of Canovium and Segontium, crossed the river at this point. This was the seat of Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, the last native Prince of Wales, whose daughter Gwenllian of Wales was born here in June 1282, his wife, Eleanor de Montfort, died here as a result of the birth on 19 June 1282. In June 1283 Dafydd ap Gruffudd, Llywelyn's brother, who assumed the title of Prince of Wales after Llywelyn's murder in December 1282, was captured at Bera Mountain above the present village. Abergwyngregyn was one of ten sites chosen for the Welsh Cultural Heritage Initiative in 2009. Y Mŵd is an earthen mound on the valley floor in the middle of the village, at SH656726; the mound is 22-foot high with a level oval top 57 feet by 48 feet. It has been regarded as the base of a Norman castle, on that basis was renamed'Aber Castle Mound' by the Ancient Monuments Board. E. S. Armitage, in The Early Norman Castles of the British Isles, suggested that it might have been constructed by Hugh d'Avranches, Earl of Chester.
The word Mŵd in early Welsh means'vault' or'arched area', though there are traces of a ditch on the south side, no further defensive features have been identified. Other similar mounds, such as the one on which the Pillar of Eliseg near Llangollen stands, or the one at Scone in Scotland, have been found in northern and western Britain. A large structure on the valley bottom between Y Mŵd, the smithy and the water mill was excavated in 1993 and again in 2010, it appears to be the remains of a high status building from the 14th century contemporary with the last independent princes of Wales or with the early decades after the Conquest. No defensive structures have been found; the floor plan has been interpreted as a medieval hall, 11.2m by 8.0m internally, with large wings at the ends. A separate enclosure may have been used for metalworking; the 1993 dig found a bronze brooch, some medieval pottery, a coin from the years before the conquest. The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales suggests that this site could be associated with the medieval royal llys.
Aber community's population was 240, according to the 2011 census. The 2011 census showed 48.5% of the population could speak Welsh, a rise from 44.0% in 2001. The parish church was closed. Pen y Bryn is a manor house, recorded from the Jacobean period and with earlier lower stonework, on a promontory some two hundred yards to the east of the village centre, it overlooks the Menai Straits to Anglesey. With its adjacent buildings and ground works it forms a double bank and ditch enclosure now known as Garth Celyn; this is claimed to be the site of the pre-Conquest royal llys. A neolithic burial urn was discovered when a driveway was being made to the house in 1824; the valley provides the access to one of Wales's great waterfalls, the Aber Falls as the Afon Goch falls precipitously, some 120 feet over a sill of igneous rock into a marshy area where it is joined by two tributaries. Part way down it becomes known as Afon Aber; the single barrel-vault bridge at SH662720 spans Afon Aber, providing a roadway across the river, some 25 ft in width.
The date of construction is unknown, but its existence was marked on the Ordnance Survey map of 1822. The bridge provided a safe crossing for drovers leading animals on a Drovers road up the valley. Large stones in the river under the bridge mark the site of an earlier ford. Aber is the coastal crossing point for the ancient drovers and Roman road that led across the Lafan Sands to Anglesey; the Roman road from Chester crossed the river Conwy south of Tal-y-Cafn, connected with the fort at Conovium Caerhun by a short branch led up via Rowen and Bwlch-y-Ddeufaen, the Pass of the Two Stones, as an engineered overlay on top of the earlier British trackway, into Snowdonia. The Roman road descends down Rhiwiau, the valley between Llanfairfechan and Aber, follows the coastal route west, crosses the river by means of a ford, passes by the church and leads towards the major Roman fort at Segontium, Caernarfon; the drovers road from Anglesey came into the settlement on the valley bottom on the west bank of the valley bottom, where provision was made for the animals to be penned and shod, the feet of the geese to be coated in pitch, followed the valley to join with the Roman road.
Three Roman milestones have been discovered in the area. Two of these, found in 1883 in a field called Caegwag, on the farm Rhiwiau Uchaf SH6790727 are now in the Br
Dwyfor Meirionnydd (Assembly constituency)
Dwyfor Meirionnydd is a constituency of the National Assembly for Wales, created for the 2007 Assembly election. It elects one Assembly Member by the first past the post method of election. However, it is one of eight constituencies in the Mid and West Wales electoral region, which elects four additional members, in addition to nine constituency members, to produce a degree of proportional representation for the region as a whole; the constituency shares the boundaries of the Dwyfor Meirionnydd Westminster constituency, which came into use for the 2010 United Kingdom general election, created by merging into one constituency areas which were within the Caernarfon and Meirionnydd Nant Conwy constituencies. Caernarfon was a Gwynedd constituency within the preserved county of Gwynedd, one of nine constituencies in the North Wales region. Meirionnydd Nant Conwy was a Gwynedd constituency and a Clwyd constituency within the preserved county of Gwynedd and within the preserved county of Clwyd, one of eight constituencies in the Mid and West Wales electoral region.
Dwyfor Meirionnydd is a Gwynedd constituency, one of three constituencies within the preserved county of Gwynedd, one of eight constituencies in the Mid and West Wales electoral region. The other Gwynedd constituencies, however and Ynys Môn, are within the North Wales electoral region; the Mid and West Wales region consists of the constituencies of Brecon and Radnorshire, Carmarthen East and Dinefwr, Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Llanelli and Preseli Pembrokeshire. In general elections for the National Assembly for Wales, each voter has two votes; the first vote may be used to vote for a candidate to become the Assembly Member for the voter's constituency, elected by the first-past-the-post system. The second vote may be used to vote for a regional closed party list of candidates. Additional member seats are allocated from the lists by the d'Hondt method, with constituency results being taken into account in the allocation; the seat has been represented since its creation in 2007 by Dafydd Elis-Thomas of Plaid Cymru, the Assembly's former Presiding Officer.
He represented the former constituency of Meirionnydd Nant Conwy from 1999 to 2007, was the Westminster MP for the area from 1974 to 1992
Fire services in the United Kingdom
The fire services in the United Kingdom operate under separate legislative and administrative arrangements in England and Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland. Emergency cover is provided by over fifty agencies; these are known as a fire and rescue service, the term used in modern legislation and by government departments. The older terms of fire brigade and fire service survive in informal usage and in the names of a few organisations. England and Wales have local fire services which are each overseen by a fire authority, made up of representatives of local governments. Fire authorities have the power to raise a Council Tax levy for funding, with the remainder coming from the government. Scotland and Northern Ireland have centralised fire services, so their authorities are committees of the devolved parliaments; the total budget for fire services in 2014-15 was £2.9 billion. Central government maintains national standards and a body of independent advisers through the Chief Fire and Rescue Adviser, created in 2007, while Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services provides direct oversight.
The devolved government in Scotland has HMFSI Scotland. Firefighters in the United Kingdom are allowed to join unions, the main one being the Fire Brigades Union, while chief fire officers are members of the National Fire Chiefs Council, which has some role in national co-ordination; the fire services have undergone significant changes since the beginning of the 21st century, a process, propelled by a devolution of central government powers, new legislation and a change to operational procedures in the light of terrorism attacks and threats. See separate article History of fire safety legislation in the United Kingdom Comprehensive list of recent UK fire and rescue service legislation: Fire services are established and granted their powers under new legislation which has replaced a number of Acts of Parliament dating back more than 60 years, but is still undergoing change. 1938: Fire Brigades Act 1938. This Act provided for centralised co-ordination of fire brigades in Great Britain and made it mandatory for local authorities to arrange an effective fire service.
1947: Fire Services Act 1947 This Act transferred the functions of the National Fire Service to local authorities. Now repealed in England and Wales by Schedule 2 of the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004. 1959: Fire Services Act 1959 This Act amended the 1947 Act. It was repealed in Wales along with the 1947 Act. 1999: Greater London Authority Act 1999 This act was necessary to allow for the formation of the Greater London Authority and in turn the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority. In 2002, there was a series of national fire strikes, with much of the discontent caused by the aforementioned report into the fire service conducted by Prof Sir George Bain. In December 2002, the Independent Review of the Fire Service was published with the industrial action still ongoing. Bain's report led to a change in the laws relating to firefighting. 2002: Independent Review of the Fire Service published 2004: Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 only applying to England and Wales. 2006: The Regulatory Reform Order 2005 This piece of secondary legislation or statutory instrument replaces several other acts that dealt with fire precautions and fire safety in premises, including the now defunct process of issuing fire certificates.
It came into force on 1 October 2006. The DfCLG has published a set of guides for non-domestic premises: 2006: The Government of Wales Act 2006 gave the National Assembly for Wales powers to pass laws on "Fire and rescue services. Promotion of fire safety otherwise than by prohibition or regulation." But does not prevent future legislation being passed by the UK government which applies to two or more constituent countries. There are further plans to modernise the fire service according to the Local Government Association, its website outlines future changes, specific projects: "The aim of the Fire Modernisation Programme is to adopt modern work practices within the Fire & Rescue Service to become more efficient and effective, while strengthening the contingency and resilience of the Service to react to incidents. " The fire service in England and Wales is scrutinised by a House of Commons select committee. In June 2006, the fire and rescue service select committee, under the auspices of the Communities and Local Government Committee, published its latest report.
Committee report The committee's brief is described on its website: The Communities and Local Government Committee is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure and policy of the Department for Communities and Local Government and its associated bodies. Government response This document, the subsequent government response in September 2006, are important as they outlined progress on the FiReControl, efforts to address diversity and the planned closure of HMFSI in 2007 among many issues. Both documents are interesting as they refer back to Professor Bain's report and the many recommendations it made and continue to put forward the notion that there is an ongoing need to modernise FRSs. For example, where FRSs were inspected by HMFSI, much of this work is now carried out by the National Audit Office. Fire Control On 8 February 2010 the House of Commons Communities and Local Governm
National Assembly for Wales
The National Assembly for Wales is the devolved parliament of Wales, with power to make legislation, vary taxes and scrutinise the Welsh Government. The Assembly comprises AMs. Since 2011, Members are elected for five-year terms under an additional members system, in which 40 AMs represent geographical constituencies elected by the plurality system, 20 AMs represent five electoral regions using the d'Hondt method of proportional representation; the largest party in the Assembly forms the Welsh Government. The Assembly was created by the Government of Wales Act 1998, which followed a referendum in 1997; the Assembly had no powers to initiate primary legislation until limited law-making powers were gained through the Government of Wales Act 2006. Its primary law-making powers were enhanced following a Yes vote in the referendum on 3 March 2011, making it possible for it to legislate without having to consult the UK parliament or the Secretary of State for Wales in the 20 areas that are devolved.
Legislation has been introduced by the Assembly Commission which will change the name of the institution from National Assembly for Wales to the Senedd, which may be known as the Welsh Parliament. An appointed Council for Wales and Monmouthshire was established in 1949 to "ensure the government is adequately informed of the impact of government activities on the general life of the people of Wales"; the council had 27 members nominated by local authorities in Wales, the University of Wales, National Eisteddfod Council and the Welsh Tourist Board. A post of Minister of Welsh Affairs was created in 1951 and the post of Secretary of State for Wales and the Welsh Office were established in 1964 leading to the abolition of the Council for Wales; the establishment of the Welsh Office created the basis for the territorial governance of Wales. The Royal Commission on the Constitution was set up in 1969 by Harold Wilson's Labour Government to investigate the possibility of devolution for Scotland and Wales.
Its recommendations formed the basis of the 1974 White Paper Democracy and Devolution: proposals for Scotland and Wales, which proposed the creation of a Welsh Assembly. However, Welsh voters rejected the proposals by a majority of four to one in a referendum held in 1979. After the 1997 general election, the new Labour Government argued that an Assembly would be more democratically accountable than the Welsh Office. For eleven years prior to 1997 Wales had been represented in the Cabinet of the United Kingdom by a Secretary of State who did not represent a Welsh constituency at Westminster. A second referendum was held in Wales on 18 September 1997 in which voters approved the creation of the National Assembly for Wales with a total of 559,419 votes, or 50.3% of the vote. The following year the Government of Wales Act was passed by the United Kingdom parliament, establishing the Assembly. In July 2002, the Welsh Government established an independent commission, with Lord Richard as chair, to review the powers and electoral arrangements of the National Assembly to ensure that it is able to operate in the best interests of the people of Wales.
The Richard Commission reported in March 2004. It recommended that the National Assembly should have powers to legislate in certain areas, whilst others would remain the preserve of Westminster, it recommended changing the electoral system to the single transferable vote which would produce greater proportionality. In response, the British government, in its Better Governance for Wales White Paper, published on 15 June 2005, proposed a more permissive law-making system for the Welsh Assembly based on the use of Parliamentary Orders in Council. In so doing, the Government rejected many of the cross party Richard Commission's recommendations; this has attracted criticism from opposition others. The Government of Wales Act 2006 received Royal Assent on 25 July 2006, it conferred on the Assembly legislative powers similar to other devolved legislatures through the ability to pass Assembly Measures concerning matters that are devolved. Requests for further legislative powers made through legislative competence requests were subject to the veto of the Secretary of State for Wales, House of Commons or House of Lords.
The Act reformed the assembly to a parliamentary-type structure, establishing the Welsh Government as an entity separate from, but accountable to the National Assembly. It enables the Assembly to legislate within its devolved fields; the Act reforms the Assembly's electoral system. It prevents individuals from standing as candidates in regional seats; this aspect of the act was subject to a great deal of criticism, most notably from the Electoral Commission. The Act was criticised. Plaid Cymru, the Official Opposition in the National Assembly from 1999–2007, attacked it for not delivering a fully-fledged parliament. Many commentators have criticised the Labour Party's partisan attempt to alter the electoral system. By preventing regional Assembly Members from standing in constituency seats the party has been accused of changing the rules to protect constituency representatives. Labour had 29 members in the Assembly at the time; the changes to the Assembly's powers were commenced on 4 May 2007, after the election.
Following a referendum on 3 March 2011, the Welsh Assembly gained direct law making powers, without the need to consult Westminster. The Conservative-Liberal coalition government created the Commission on Devolution in Wales
Abererch is a small village and former civil parish on the Llŷn Peninsula in the Welsh county of Gwynedd. The village lies 1 mile east of Pwllheli. A river, the Afon Erch runs through the village; the parish was abolished in 1934 and incorporated into that of Llannor, now the community of Llannor. It is a Welsh-speaking village. There is a primary school, a railway station; the church of St Cawrdaf is a grade. Abererch has a beach, between Pwllheli and Penychain. Parking for the beach is near the railway station. From the beach you have a view of Harlech Castle in the east all the way down to Tywyn and to the west Pwllheli and the St Tudwals. Access to the beach is through a footpath next the camp-site; this beach is ideal for days when the wind is from the north or north west due to the sheltered bay
Welsh Ambulance Service
The Welsh Ambulance Service, formally the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust, is the national ambulance service for Wales and one of the three NHS trusts in the country. It was established on 1 April 1998 and has 2,576 staff providing ambulance and related services to the 3.1 million residents of Wales. The Welsh Ambulance Service's headquarters is located at H. M. Stanley Hospital, St Asaph, Denbighshire; the service is divided into three regions: Central and West Region – based at Ty Maes Y Gruffudd, Cefn Coed Hospital, Swansea North Region – based at H. M. Stanley Hospital, St Asaph, Denbighshire South-East Region – based at Vantage Point House, Ty Coch Industrial Estate, CwmbranThe service is investing as part of a five-year modernisation plan, this will see the end of Regions and management will be via Heads of Services aligned to the Health Board areas along with a Head of Service for the Clinical Contact Centres and Head of Service for Production which oversees the resources available within the geographical areas.
The Welsh Ambulance Service provides: Emergency Medical Services - This service responds to emergency 999 calls and GP's urgent calls. A standard crew combination for this service would consist of a Paramedic and an Emergency Medical Technician; however double Paramedic / double Technician crews are not uncommon. As of 2013, the majority of the EMS fleet consists of Wilker Mercedes Benz 519 Sprinter Ambulances and Honda CRV / Ford Focus Rapid Response Vehicles. Non Emergency Patient Transport Service - This service deals with the planned care aspect of ambulance work. NEPTS staff provide transport between home and healthcare facilities or some inter-hospital transfers. Urgent Care Service - This service bridges the gap between NEPTS and EMS, allowing for patients to be transferred between home and hospital or hospital to hospital while meeting the advanced needs that some of these patients may have. UCS ambulance crews may be allocated to EMS calls at times of high demand and following clinical telephony triage by a nurse or face to face triage by Advanced Paramedic Practitioners or Paramedic Practitioners working from a Rapid Response Vehicle.
NHS Direct Wales / 111 Wales is a 24-hour telephone and internet health advice service provided by NHS Wales to enable people to obtain advice when use of the national emergency telephone number does not seem to be appropriate but there is some degree of urgency. NHS Direct Wales / 111 Wales supports EMS Operations by providing clinical triage for "Green 3" calls that are deemed suitable. More than 45% of 999 calls have a disposition of not requiring 999 conveyance. In addition during times of escalation other calls deemed suitable are triaged, it does not replace any of the existing emergency or non-emergency medical services but complements those existing and enables callers who might not be able to diagnose themselves to be directed to care of an appropriate level of urgency, including transport to hospital if the diagnosis merits that action. Community First Responders - CFRs are volunteers from the community trained in basic first aid, oxygen administration and the use of an Automated External Defibrillator.
They are used by the ambulance service in rural areas to provide basic care, such as Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation before an EMS crew arrives. As CFRs are only sent to local calls in specified communities, they arrive before an EMS ambulance crew without the use of blue lights and sirens. Whilst most CFR teams are the sole responsibility of WAST, a number of teams are made up of regular divisions from St John Ambulance in Wales although this does not give them any exemptions. There are developing numbers of Advanced Paramedic Practitioners in the service who through their extended scope of practice are working toward advancing the service their patients receive with "see and treat" and "see and refer" models of care; this removes the need for some patients to travel in an ambulance to A&E. In 2012 a strategic review of the service was commissioned by the Welsh Government and was conducted by Professor Siobhan McClelland and published in April 2013. National Health Service NHS Direct Wales Welsh Ambulance Service NHS Direct Wales