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Community directory


We want to see everyone in Carmarthenshire working together to deliver a brighter more sustainable future. Since launching the Community Challenge campaign in 2012, over 50 groups have joined. These are all involved in improving their local environment, saving resources and shrinking their carbon footprint making a better future for their children and grandchildren.

The Community Directory lists all the projects that are part of the Community Challenge, and includes a short description of each group to show the excellent work taking place. The projects have been categorised according to six themes:

  • Gardens & Food
  • Environmental Groups
  • Community Shops
  • Energy & Climate Change
  • Waste & Recycling
  • Transport.

Aberglasney Gardens
Spectacularly set in the beautiful Tywi Valley of Carmarthenshire, Aberglasney House features one of the finest gardens in Wales. A new sustainable heating system has recently been installed at the mansion to heat the grade II listed historic house. A water source heat pump draws heat from an ancient pond which is connected to the house by way of a rare eighteenth century drainage system.

It is believed to be the first geothermal system is one of the first of its type to be installed in Wales. Visit www.aberglasney.org

Banc Organics
Banc Organics is a not-for-profit community supported agriculture scheme growing organic vegetables and fruit in Bancffosfelen. A wide range of organic vegetables is grown and sold as weekly boxes. Regular Farm Days (on a Saturday or Sunday) are also held. The core group is small and any help is appreciated. Anyone interested in volunteering, contact Sue Bilsborough 01554 810894 or visit www.bancorganics.co.uk

Ferryside Village Forum
The group was set up for the benefit of the residents of Ferryside and Picton and the surrounding area. They have supported a range of initiatives over the years. The village has a thriving outdoor produce and craft market and many villagers use the market to shop locally. The group regularly carries out beach litter picks and has created growing spaces for fruit and vegetables.

Garnant Family Centre
The centre hosts an eco community garden. The environmentally-friendly area has an eco lodge, a composting toilet, raised flower beds, a poly tunnel, a vegetable and fruit patch, a chicken run and coop, a sensory garden, and play equipment including swings, climbing frames and a roundabout. Around 40 families access the centre for family support, employment skills and training, and general leisure and recreation activities. The garden is also available to community groups wishing to use for outdoor events. Contact Eira Wilshere on 01269 82594. 

Llandeilo Growers
Llandeilo Growers has developed from Transition Town Llandeilo initiative, to promote local food growing. They are hoping to acquire suitable land and facilities in order to develop significant local fruit and vegetable growing on a community and commercial basis.

They promote community involvement and bring health, social, economic and environmental benefits to people of all ages and backgrounds. In addition to providing healthy, locally grown food and with strong community involvement this project will contribute significantly in reducing food miles.

Llannon Community Allotment
The popular growing space accommodates 36 spaces growing organic produce. The one acre field also boasts an attractive pond. The thriving allotments project is run by local resident Philip Snaith. If you're interested in taking on a plot call Philip Snaith on 01269 832205 or email pjsnaith@yahoo.co.uk

Myrtle House
This busy Llanelli centre is run by 80 volunteers and is home to a fruit orchard, chicken run and coop, and a food bank. The large project is aimed at helping locals maintain a sustainable and healthy lifestyle. All fruit and vegetables are grown by community volunteers as a teaching project to improve skills, and the produce that is grown is used to serve the coffee shops and to educate people how to cook simple fresh food. All food-related kitchen and garden waste is composted to create good quality compost for re-use on the growing space. The centre is also the base of the Elim Pentecostal Church. Visit www.myrtlehouse.org.uk

National Botanical Gardens
Its mission is to inspire, educate and conserve. The gardens are host to an amazing collection of over 8000 different plant varieties, spread across 560 acres of beautiful countryside.

It's developed a range of themed gardens that appeal to a wide range of visitors, from those who just love the sight and smells of flowers to those who want to know about medicinal plants or the latest DNA research into plant evolution. It houses the world's largest single spanned glasshouse, designed by Lord Foster, that has the best display of Mediterranean climate zone plants in the Northern hemisphere. It's also helping to conserve some of the rarest plants in the world, but perhaps it's our competitive pricing and attractive.

Their new Growing the Future project helps people to grow their own food by offering training and information. For further information go to www.growingthefuture.co.uk

National Trust
The National Trust is a charity that works to preserve and protect historic places and spaces such as historic houses, gardens, mills, coastline, forests, woods, fens, beaches, farmland, moorland, islands, archaeological remains, nature reserves, villages and pubs. They are then opened to the public.

It is one of the largest voluntary conservation organisations in Europe (recruiting more than one member every minute during the summer months). The only organisation in the UK to have a larger membership is the AA. Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Torcefn Farm Produce, Pontyates
A small business engaged in producing local home grown vegetables and horticultural plants. In the main the farm grow potatoes, beans, peas, brassicas and most root vegetables selling at our local produce market in Pontyates. They are currently in discussions with the local primary schools to arrange for the children to visit their smallholding to experience how vegetables are sown, grown and harvested. Raised beds will be provided to allow the children to plant and monitor the growth of their own produce and possibly sell them for school funds.

Ty Hapus Family Centre
Ty Hapus Family Centre is a registered charity (1047689) and is based on a large housing estate in the centre of Carmarthen Town. The centre has a fruit and vegetable growing area which is maintained by staff and after school club children. The centre is used to support families in areas of need and host a number of activities. Tel: 01267 223020

Ammanford Lions Club
Ammanford Lions Club members have worked together since they formed in 1970. Their aim is to help local people and groups who need assistance sometimes by raising much needed cash. It also offers physical help such as decorating, gardening or offering someone in need a lift to visit a relative. Recently it organised an environmental poster competition with the local school, awarded the winner a prize. Visit www.e-clubhouse.org

Coleg Sir Gâr
Coleg Sir Gâr is a college of further and higher education based in Carmarthenshire in south west Wales. The college has five campuses within the county: Llanelli (Graig Campus); Ammanford; Llandeilo (Gelli Aur Campus); Carmarthen (Pibwrlwyd campus); Carmarthen (Jobswell Campus). Currently, the college has in excess of 12,000 students enrolled on a range of courses. As part of some courses students have been learning about the environment and have helped to tackle a number of projects. Recently they spent two weeks working with contractors, Tidy Towns, clearing overgrown brambles and laying a footpath made from fallen trees.

Carmarthen youth project - Dr M'z
A Carmarthen project that helps turn young people's lives around. The town based centre has opened its doors to over 1,000 youngsters, 11-25 years old - since its launch in 1997. The team takes on environmental challenges which improve the community, whether it's cleaning the riverside in a canoe, sprucing up flower planters, litter picks or gardening across the town. It's also a drop-in centre and is host to a number of activities. If you have a project that needs Dr M'z help, call Gayle Harris on 01267 222786 or visit www.drmz.co.uk

Glanymor and Tyisha Environment and Regeneration Action Group Llanelli (ERAG)
ERAG was the winner of the Carmarthenshire Community Challenge Green Award 2012. The group tackles environmental problems in their area and recently transformed a fly tipping hotspot area into a recreational park. Based within Glanymor and Tyisha Communities First ward, the group works with residents to tackle environmental degradation and help raise awareness of home energy, recycling, climate change, carbon reduction and other sustainability issues. Contact Delyth Rowland on 01554 742276.

Living River Pontnewydd/Dyfroedd Byw Pontnewydd
A group of volunteers have got together to improve the well-being of the community and the natural environment in the locality of Pontnewydd and Glyn Abbey, and make the area more attractive to visitors. They have been working hard to maintain the cleanliness of the Gwendraeth Fawr, improving the river and surrounding area and to alleviate flooding in the vicinity of Pontnewydd Bridge. Their activities include litter picking and fly tipping, habitat improvement, footpath improvement, river channel and bank improvement and brining the community together through voluntary team work.

Llanelli Environmental Network
The LEN was set up to provide greater awareness of environmental issues in the Llanelli Area and making it a greener place to live. PC 3Rs is a recently launched not-for-profit project that refurbishes old or broken IT equipment to train volunteers on placement, helping them to learn how to repair a pc, protect PCs from viruses, installing new components and upgrading existing systems. Once refurbished the PC's or laptops are donated or sold to community groups needing cheaper and reliable IT equipment. E-mail: len@llanellitown.com.

Mencap Cymru is the voice of learning disability in Wales. Mencap Cymru has over 1,500 individual members and a growing number of schools and community groups. Members regularly participate in community litter picks and can often be seen working with Keep Wales Tidy on local beaches. Visit www.mencap.org.uk.

Pontyberem Environment Group
The group is made up of seven members who get together to undertake litter clean ups, tidying up paths and hedges, and tree planting in their local area. For further info contact Yvonne Lewis on 01269 870494.

Tenants and Residents of East Carmarthen (TREC)
The group was formed three years ago in a bid to improve its members community. One of the projects undertaken by TREC was the renovation of Park Hall woodland which previously had been prone to extreme fly-tipping and anti-social behaviour. With the help of the Ty Hapus Family Centre, Richmond Park Primary School and grant funding, the area has received extensive clearance works, new pathways, interpretation panels, bird boxes, fencing, and much more which has created a woodland area for everyone to use and enjoy.

Community spirited residents in Brechfa have been helping to provide local services for more than seven years. Following the closure of their post office, and determined not to be isolated in their small, rural location, a group of volunteers have made a huge success of running the village shop. The shop provides local products and services for the benefit of the area. In 2010 a number of talks, events and workshop were held for the local community to learn about renewable energy technologies, and ways of tackling home energy insulation problems. Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels have been installed on a number of buildings including St Teilo Church Hall. LED light bulbs are being trialled and a thermal imaging camera has been bought to support home improvement plans. For further information contact Fay Sharpley.

Dryslwyn Community Shop
Dryslwyn Community Shop was established in 2008 as a community run not-for-profit post office. It has expanded to offer a wide range of services including an internet café, tearoom, grocery store and off license. The shop is managed by 26 volunteers and they perform a range of services from cleaning the premises regularly, ordering and receiving goods into stock, paying bills to managing paperwork and administration. It has more than 300 members. If you can lend a hand call 01558 668221/email: secretary@drylswyn.org.uk


Carmarthenshire Energy
Delivers energy saving and renewable energy schemes in the county. It's a not-for profit company, and recently supported the installation of a Solar PV system at Richmond Park School. It's hoping to develop a 500kW single turbine site in East Carmarthenshire. Some of the renewable energy schemes it specialises in include solar hot water panels, biomass, wind, biogas, and hydro. Visit www.carmarthenshireenergy.org

Llanfallteg Community Association
Eco friendly residents in Llanfallteg are pushing forward carbon-reduction projects in the village. The Henllanfallteg Community Association is behind a series of initiatives to reduce the area's carbon footprint. The group, which is responsible for the Millennium Community Hall, has overseen the installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels at the site, as part of Carmarthenshire's Zero Carbon Communities project.

As well as supplying free electricity it means they benefit from the government's Feed In Tariff (FIT) scheme, which is estimated to pay them around £1,800 a year for surplus power. Members of the group are now actively promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy to households in the village and have carried out a Household Energy survey of the community thanks to funding through the Carmarthenshire Environment Partnership. For further information contact Wendy Heron.

Llandovery Partnership
Forward thinking Llandovery residents are working to improve their community for future generations. A series of public meetings in 2009 led to the creation of the Llandovery Partnership and a steering group has been tasked with developing a 2020 vision for the town.

The population has remained the same for two centuries but the demographic has aged because there is not enough employment to encourage young people to stay in the area. The group says its priorities are increasing job opportunities along with growing the housing stock sustainably, developing local food projects and local energy production, and making Llandovery lovable. A new masterplan is going to be launched shortly. For further information contact Gill Wright.

Llandyfaelog Community Council
The Council maintains several amenity areas and a play area. It has also converted the majority of public lighting assets to part-night to reduce energy consumption. The council has been successful in an application to the Carmarthenshire Landscape and Heritage Grant Scheme for funding for a Community Heritage Panel Project.

Menter Cwm Gwendraeth
Menter Cwm Gwendraeth is a Welsh language and community regeneration initiative based in the Gwendraeth Valley. They have developed community projects in a range of sectors including Health and Wellbeing, The Environment, Life Long Learning, Community Regeneration, Community Safety and Children and Young People, through collaboration with key partners.

It aims to help protect and conserve the local environment and resources and works to meet and, if possible exceed, compliance with environmental legislation and to undertake improvement. Rural Development Plan funded Zero Carbon Communities and Zero Carbon Futures have provided direct support to community groups to reduce their carbon footprint and improve their local environments. Visit www.mentercwmgwendraeth.org.uk or contact Paul Thomas, Zero Carbon Futures officer.

Pentrecwrt Village Hall
With the help of Carmarthenshire County Council the hall has invested heavily in renewable energy. It is heated by a Ground Source Heat Pump supported by a Hot Water Solar panels system. A 3.7 kW photovoltaic (PV) array which last year provided an income of £1,395 far exceeds the cost electricity used in the hall.

This means that the hall has a negative carbon footprint. The profits are ploughed back into the community through small grants to those agencies which serve our area. The hall is very profitable despite £5 per hour charge. Contact Roger Adams on 01559 362975.

Transition Town Llandeilo
Llandeilo is the first Transition Town in Wales since spring 2007. It is part of a network of communities across the UK and Ireland responding locally to the challenges presented by climate change and peak oil. TTL looks at how we can reduce our carbon footprint and increase our resilience to the shocks that peak oil will bring. 

Ynni Da
Based in Gorslas, it specialises in renewable energy and energy efficiency for the domestic, community, public and business markets. Its aim is to create a sustainable future by providing innovative and appropriate renewable power and energy efficiency solutions. As well as providing workshops, Ynni Da offers a school based educational programme designed to complement classroom learning and offer professionals and cutting edge technology to inspire and co-create an action plan for a low carbon future. Visit www.ynnida.com

Lampeter Nappy Library
The real nappy library gives parents the chance to try real nappies for themselves and see how easy they really are. It means they can find out which type best suits them before they decide to buy. Real nappies are better for the environment and can save parents money. Fiona Bowden who runs the not-for-profit library also gives demonstrations.

South West Wales Sling Library
A Llanelli-based library operates a fortnightly loan scheme offering a range of baby carriers. A wide collection of luxury slings from Ring Slings, Wraps, Asian style carriers, soft structured carriers and pouches to ones available for those special occasions are available.

The library is open to anyone, from those starting out with baby wearing looking to find the perfect style of sling, to the experienced baby wearers looking to try new styles of carrier. Library drop in sessions are held weekly or if you run a group and wish the library to visit you, call Joanne on 07890 112915 or visit www.ty-melyn.co.uk

Tools for self reliance
A Gwendraeth Valley group recycles unwanted tools. It refurbishes old hand tools, donated by the public, to send to grass roots community groups across the county. From a small screwdriver to a Blacksmith's anvil, the Pontyates based toolmakers have already delivered more than 85 toolkits to groups in South West Wales. The kits help provide basic DIY training skills. Contact Colin Hill on 01269 871133.

Trysordy Community Group
Trysordy is a resource Centre providing wide ranging facilities, unusual materials and customised skill workshops. It supports all requirements for meetings, team building, events, learning, creativity, play and rehabilitation. Trysordy's scrap store opens to the public every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings. Low cost providing superb value, clean, safe waste materials from industry with art and craft supplies. Trysordy has a conference capacity with a main training for up to thirty people, workshop and kitchen. Tel: 01267 231980.

Bwcabus is a fully accessible local bus service which is tailored to the needs of the passengers by operating in response to pre-booked journey requests. The service operates from 7am - 7pm Monday to Saturday, and enables people to travel between local towns and villages within north Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion.

Whether you need to access healthcare, local services, employment, training or to visit family and friends Bwcabus can assist. Our vehicles are low floor easy access and can accommodate buggies and a wheelchair. For further information phone 01239 801 601 or go to www.bwcabus.info

Page updated on: 03/05/2016

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