Agenda item

To receive announcements by the Leader


I am sure that members will have noted the recent extensive media coverage around cases of Strep A and scarlet fever.


The rise in infections this year has mainly affected children aged under 10, and has been linked to several tragic deaths around the UK.


While this has generated headlines and has triggered widespread concern among parents and carers, Public Health Wales and Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board are reassuring and reminding people that cases still remain rare, and that children have a very low risk of contracting the disease.


The increase in cases across the UK has largely been attributed to a return to familiar social patterns following two years of pandemic conditions, and with hospitals and GP surgeries already reporting huge pressures upon their services, people are being asked to remain calm and to follow advice and guidance.


To support this, a series of frequently asked questions have been published to the Public Health Wales website along with up to date information on how you can access further support.


Members may wish to inform their constituents that this guidance is available.


Members may also be interested to know that a £1.2m upgrade is underway at Coychurch Crematorium.


The work is focusing on improving the Flower Court at the rear of the main building, and extending it out onto the grassed area adjacent to Crallo Chapel.


The intention is to help people to exit the chapel more smoothly, provide easier access to some of the facilities and avoid delays to services which sometimes occur due to a build-up of people in this area.


As a listed building which has won awards for its unique design, the extension work has been carefully tailored so that it reflects the unique character and history of the crematorium.


It is being overseen by Welsh architect Jonathan Adams, whose other projects have included the Millennium Centre in Cardiff Bay and the Sherman Theatre refurbishment in Cardiff.


The project is expected to be completed in time for summer 2023, and arrangements are in place to ensure that the crematorium can remain operational throughout the work.


In other news, I was pleased to note that a further four children’s play areas have benefitted from a £500,000 investment recently and can now offer inclusive play equipment suitable for children with disabilities and special educational needs.


The upgraded play areas, which are located in Ogmore Vale, Porthcawl, Aberkenfig and Tondu, include facilities ranging from inclusive roundabouts to new multi-play units, and represent our ongoing commitment towards providing facilities that are accessible for people of all ages and abilities.


Finally, South Wales Police are continuing to investigate the circumstances that led to the discovery of two deceased infants at a property in Wildmill last month.


Two men, aged 37 and 47, and a 29-year-old woman who were arrested on suspicion of concealing the birth of a child, are all currently on police bail.


No further details have been revealed, but the council is offering its full co-operation to officers while the investigation continues.


We are also reminding the local community of the need to avoid speculation, and to ensure that they contact police with any relevant information which could support their enquiries.