03/03/2017 BBC Wales Today


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Welcome to Wales Today. Our headlines tonight:


Staggering, unacceptable, how not to run a major project -


MPs criticise the electrification of the London to Swansea rail line.


I think it's terrible, being delayed.


It's unfortunate if there was a delay because I know


commuting from Cardiff to London is quite time-consuming.


Paddy Dear was disorientated by septicaemia when he was


found dead on a school trip in Pembrokeshire, the inquest hears.


Disabled wheelchair users left stranded because buses


It really did knock my confidence and after the first time


I got stranded, I barricaded myself in the house


Why scientists in Oxfordshire are recreating Colwyn Bay


200 miles away from the north Wales coast.


Tributes on the touchline from rugby fans for the talented


international Ellie Norkett, killed in a car crash.


She played for Cardiff Metropolitan University.


Tonight, people are here to remember Ellie,


It's one of the most ambitious rail projects since the Victorian era,


promising quicker journey times from London to Swansea


But the electrification of the Great Western Mainline has


been described as a stark example of how not to run a project


The cost could be a billion pounds higher than expected and some


Network Rail says it has learned lessons and is making progress.


Will this arrive on time and on budget?


Work is underway as we speak to electrify


Faster, greener trains between London and Cardiff by 2019.


But now a group of MPs responsible for scrutinising public money has


criticised Network Rail's delivery of the project.


The project has overrun by ?1.2 billion,


which is really concerning for taxpayers.


We have also discovered in the report that


?330 million is being spent just to keep the trains on the line


while electrification is taking place.


not a single track has been electrified.


Electrification is part of the Welsh Government's vision


for the future of public transport in south east Wales.


It says the UK Government needs to get a grip of this situation


and is calling for power over rail infrastructure to be devolved.


Passengers in Cardiff today voiced their concerns.


I think it's terrible, being delayed.


Technology and everything these days.


It would be great if the trains were faster.


It's unfortunate if there was a delay because I know


commuting from Cardiff to London is quite time-consuming.


And those concerns run all the way to Swansea.


Paul Harwood is the co-founder of TechHub Swansea, which offers


He says more uncertainty over electrification means


We have had multi-millionaires, billionaires, come down


and the first time they come down


they are blown away by Swansea, by the people, the location.


The second time it is a bit of a drag because of the distance.


The third time they often don't bother because of the distance.


It puts us at a big disadvantage to places


The Severn Tunnel has had a facelift ahead of electrification.


The Chief Executive of Network Rail says the Great Western scheme


was agreed long before the scale of the work was understood.


And they've now changed the way they approach major projects.


The UK Government says it's overhauled the way it


The company says it's committed to the project.


But last year we asked the Chairman of Network Rail


whether he could guarantee the line would reach Swansea.


It certainly won't be done this side of March 2019,


which is when the five-year funding period for the railway


Beyond that, it is a matter for the Welsh Government,


the national government, but the trains will be there.


People's experience will be transformed by those trains,


whether there will be wires up west of Cardiff or not.


Millions of pounds has already been spent on preparing


these lines and stations, like this in Cardiff,


The Severn Tunnel was closed, delaying thousands of commuter


Now there's doubt from MPs whether this upgrade


was needed in the first place and when it'll be finished.


The family of a teenager who died on a school trip in Pembrokeshire


is urging others to educate themselves about the signs


of a vicious illness that led to his death.


Paddy Dear's inquest in Milford Haven heard


he had developed sepsis, which may have left him confused,


before he was found at the bottom of cliffs.


A bright young rugby mad teenager. Paddy Dear had his whole life ahead


of him. But his life was ended tragically early a year ago on a


school trip to West Wales. Paddy Dear and his school friends were at


this Ford last March on a geography field trip. He left one of the


classrooms to go to the toilet but never returned. The septicaemia had


set in, causing confusion and disorientation and his body was


found hours later 150 feet down at the bottom of these cliffs. The fort


was built in the mid-19th century to protect Milford Haven but it has


been used as a base for school field trips since the end of the Second


World War. The manager told the inquest students are warned of the


danger of the cliffs. Paddy had acute tonsillitis and developed


sepsis or blood poisoning, which may have caused confusion and


disorientation. The Pembroke sure coroner recorded a narrative


conclusion, noting Paddy died of injuries after falling from heights


while suffering from septicaemia. His family are now campaigning to


raise awareness of sepsis. We have seen in the last year that the


profile of the condition has gone up immeasurably. And I suppose if we


can take some pride in that Paddy's name has helped in raising the


profile of sepsis so that we can lower that figure of 44,000 deaths a


year. These symptoms can command within hours, sometimes even within


minutes. The symptoms of the patient can experience is confusion, high


temperature. It is a long journey home. Today's inquest is another


step in the long grieving process for Paddy Dear's family. They are


hoping his legacy can live on and no other family has to go through what


they have. South African police investigating


the death of a couple originally from the Cynon Valley have


made an arrest. It's believed Roger


and Christine Solik, originally from Abercynon,


were killed in an armed robbery A 43-year-old man from the Llanishen


area of Cardiff has been arrested as part of an investigation


into modern slavery offences. It comes after a seven month joint


operation between police in The family of a woman killed


after a multi-vehicle crash in Abergele has


described her as generous, 69-year-old Hilda Blythin died


in the incident yesterday involving Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood has


highlighted inequality and a system she claims is redistributing wealth


in the wrong way. Speaking at her party's spring


conference in Newport, she said Plaid was on a mission


to rebalance Wales. Here's our political


editor Nick Servini. Picking up votes has proved to be


heavy lifting for Plaid Cymru in recent years. But can they generate


greater support in the council elections in May? Leanne Wood was at


Newport docks this morning to see global trade in action but now it is


all about the local. With a focus on winning in Welsh town halls. In her


speech, she focused on what she called an unbalanced and unequal


country and was openly critical of the Cardiff City deal, a plan for


all the councils in south-east Wales to come together for investment. But


the biggest applause came on the subject of Brexit and immigration.


We cannot and we will not support any deal which makes it harder to


recruit those skilled workers that we need. And I reiterate to those


people who want to come to Wales to work as doctors, nurses, engineers,


you are welcome here. When these specially made Leanne Wood cupcakes


have proved sweet enough for delegates on the conference floor,


but as she marks five years in the job and comes to the end of the


first full electoral cycle, the question is, how appealing has Plaid


Cymru been to voters under Leanne Wood? It began at the European


elections in 2014 when Plaid Cymru just held on to their one MEP. In


the general election a year later, again no change with Plaid Cymru


returning three MPs. And in last year's Assembly election, Plaid


Cymru increased their numbers from 11 to 12 thanks to her own dramatic


victory in the Rhondda. The next big test will now be the council


elections in the coming weeks. You are in Newport, this is not Plaid


Cymru territory. We have always said that Plaid Cymru is a party for the


whole of Wales. If there's one thing we've learned over the past 12


months, it is that people don't feel they are being listened to. I know


that Plaid Cymru is a party that listens to people, response to the


needs of people wherever they are. That is crucial, wherever they are.


That includes Newport. Have you ever considered voting Plaid Cymru?


Occasionally. What put me off in the past has been the problems because


of the language and everything else socially. But a sour note for the


party was the decision by a tribunal today that the man heading up Plaid


Cymru's campaigning in Cardiff, Neil McEvoy, made a comment to a council


official that amounted to bullying behaviour. The party says it is


taking it very seriously because, as a party, it says it expects the very


highest standards. But elsewhere, smiles all round as Plaid Cymru's


council candidates line-up, knowing they may not have a better time to


take on Labour. Nick, Neil McEvoy has been suspended


as a councillor for one month. How difficult is this


for Leanne Wood? As I alluded to there, so much of


this conference is about the local council elections and this is a man


undoubtedly one of the high-profile council candidates the party has


got. A man many in Plaid Cymru consider a real asset and someone


who offers something a bit different. Tonight, in his outspoken


way, he has described this decision by the adjudication panel for Wales


as a farce and a show trial. It is difficult to know exactly what the


party will do. We know we have a very stern statement and


overwhelmingly, behind-the-scenes, a sense of a quandary going on. I


think a difficult decision because they know they will come under


pressure to take action against him. How big a test are these council


elections for the party? Well, speaking to people today, a real


impression from them that they feel Labour are Navin rebel position. The


big question is if they are in a position to take advantage and


whether, in particular, the fact Plaid Cymru work very closely with


Labour at the Assembly, will blunt there ability to really hurt labour.


You also have to take into account the fact that so many of the council


areas they are targeting, particularly in the south Wales


valleys, voted heavily to leave. And this is a party still so strongly


wedded to remaining in the European Union. It really was what got the


crowd going in Leanne Wood's speech today. But council elections are


very unpredictable, they are melting pot of all sorts of issues, and what


they focused on is this issue of inequality, imbalance, too


much going to Cardiff at the expense of other areas. I think it is a


subject area they know will go down pretty well on the doorstep, which


is probably what they need at this point in time.


Much more to come before seven o'clock:


Tributes tonight at the Arms Park for the talented rugby


international Ellie Norkett, killed in a car crash.


why a scale model of Colwyn Bay is being built in Oxfordshire.


Disability campaigners are calling for bus companies


to be forced to provide additional wheelchair spaces.


Department for Transport regulations say only one space is required


One bus company has told BBC Wales an additional space is possible


but it would have a knock on effect for other passengers and tax payers.


Two bus passengers who don't always have an easy journey.


Bethan says she was once told she couldn't catch the last bus


home from Abergavenny because it was against the rules.


There was already another wheelchair user on board.


Being left on the bus stop with hardly any charge in my phone,


I didn't think I was actually going to be able to get home.


It really did knock my confidence and after the first time


I barricaded myself in the house and I didn't want to come out.


She just wants the flexibility and freedom to rely on a regular bus.


There are quite a few people that have had the same problem


but it's happening time and time again.


They say they'll apologise but it just keeps happening.


Phil Anslow runs some of the bus services involved.


So is it really so difficult to remove some seats


It's not difficult at all but if we put


we would lose the capacity and we would lose 30 people.


Yeah, we could put more buses on, twice as many buses on,


but we need to be subsidised by the local councils


who, let's be honest, haven't got the money to do that.


He claims Department for Transport rules means even drop down seats


like this to create an adaptable space would still reduce capacity.


He says pre-book community transport is another option


Others say this is a nationwide issue.


I think the law and the regulation should be change.


Each bus should be able to carry at least two people in wheelchairs.


Far more disabled people are out and about living lives, working,


and we've got a government saying they want to get


disabled people into work - off benefits and into jobs.


A lot of people, the only way they can get to work is to catch a bus


and buses today are still not fully accessible to everybody.


The Department for Transport says buses should be accessible


to all and it will work with disability groups


and transport operators to find the best possible solution.


Bethan did manage to catch the bus the day we met


but she is still anxious about being left stranded in future.


Scientists have built a scale model replica of Colwyn Bay seafront 200


The model has been constructed to test improvements to the beach


and the sea defences before they're put in place for real.


Chris Dearden has been to take a look.


Not quite a sand castle and not quite Colwyn Bay beach.


This is a scaled-down replica at HR Wallingford,


The model uses coal dust instead of sand to test sea defences


because coal dust responds quicker to the waves.


that means one metre is equivalent to 50 metres in the real world.


What we do is build a complete replica of Colwyn Bay,


so we built the sea bed out to a depth of minus 10


and we also generate waves using our wave paddles.


And it's taken several weeks to get the model version


The scientists say coastlines and sea bed need to be exactly right.


An hour of testing is meant to show what a year of waves and storms


The information from this experiment will help us know whether


sea defences will hold and whether sand will stay in place.


The coastal environment is still extremely complicated and complex.


The physical processes going on are just immeasurable


in complexity and the forces involved are just immense.


And therefore, really, the best way to get an idea


of what is happening is to build this scaled model.


But severe weather in Colwyn Bay can be a very real thing.


The promenade has been damaged several times in the past few years.


In 2013, Conwy Council brought in 500,000 tonnes of sand


to help keep the waves back and protect the coast.


Now, the council wants to do the same for a new of beach


Bringing in the sand itself is a very expensive operation


so we wanted to be sure that when we did bring the sand in,


it was actually going to stay within the bay.


Carrying out a model will test the theory


But there is still work to do on the model before the sand


arrives at the real version of Colwyn Bay and Rhos-on-Sea.


Testing will continue in Oxfordshire for a few more weeks.


Sport, and a sombre evening at the Arms Park tonight, Claire.


Yes, a minute's applause will be held tonight for Elli Norkett,


the Wales rugby international who died last week.


The team she played for, Cardiff Metropolitan University,


are playing their match tonight in her memory.


The 20-year-old died in a car crash last weekend.


Her family said she was kind-hearted and caring and tonight, Cardiff


Metropolitan University are playing a match in tribute to her. It is a


British universities and colleges quarterfinal cup tie against


Loughborough. The match postponed from Wednesday because of the


tragedy. The people I have spoken to say it is not about the result, it


is about being here and paying their respects to Ellie. She was just 20


years old. Before kick-off tonight, two shirts, Ellie's shirts, number


14 and 12, will be placed on the pitch. Those shirts will be retired


for the rest of the season. And then each member of the squad will place


a rose on the pitch in tribute to her. She was in her final year at


Cardiff Metropolitan University and the Dean of the School of sport, is


here. A difficult week but it is important to note that the players


themselves wanted to be a part of tonight's tribute. Absolutely. The


players were absolutely insured about playing tonight. We spoke to


the family, they were very keen for the opportunity to play, everybody


to express the feelings they had for Ellie, who was a fantastic student,


not only in terms of sport but also her academic studies. She was an


integral part of this team. How much of a talent was she? She was very


talented at a young age. She came through from the Ospreys, she played


in the finals at Twickenham and she had a long career in front of her,


especially in the game of sevens. Team manager of the Wales women's


side, how will you remember? With huge positivity. The energy was


infectious from Ellie, whenever she was in training. She would bounce in


and would get stuck in. And I heard this week that the squad is regarded


as an extended family. You are very close in that Wales setup. Have you


managed to prepare for your next game? The rugby family across the


globe is incredibly connected so everybody has been affected by this.


We have had a lot of support for the players and for next week's game, we


take to this pitch at 11:30am next Saturday and there will be a


minute's applause and some commemoration in terms of the clubs


she was connected with. We will celebrate her fantastic life. A very


difficult night and they will be tributes at the Ospreys game


tonight. Ellie played for the Ospreys and there will be a minute's


applause before that game. The Swansea City boss, Paul Clement,


says the next four games will be crucial in their efforts


to avoid relegation. The Swans face Burnley at home


tomorrow before away games with Hull and Bournemouth


and a visit from Middlesbrough. The Swans are 16th, two points clear


of the bottom three. We have come off the back end


of a difficult run of games, having played Man City,


Liverpool and Chelsea away We picked up a good amount of points


against other teams more in and around us and that's


what we're going to have to do on Saturday, but we are very aware


that this is a very crucial period, Gareth Bale has been


suspended for two La Liga matches for his dismissal


on Wednesday night. The Wales international was shown


a straight red card in the 3-3 home draw for a shove on opponent


Jonathan Viera. Real have ten working days


to appeal the decision. The Cardiff Devils are


a club with big ambition. They are aiming to be crowned


champions of British ice hockey come the end of the season,


but they aren't They're hoping to win their first


bit of silverware on Sunday. When the Devils take


to the ice this weekend, they will know it is the first step


of what could be one of their most They are already top of


the Elite League and are on target The top eight go into the play-offs,


which the Devils will also fancy, but the first piece of silverware


this season to start their quest It's nice, everybody's buying in,


we are not changing our attitude in the locker room, we're not


getting too high, too low, I think we have a lot of character


and hopefully we can finish strong. They have won the Challenge Cup


twice and have been runners-up three times, but with the bonus


of the final being played at their new home,


they fancy their chances. Last year they lost


in the final and their season collapsed


around them. Their coach is under no illusion


how big this game is. As you can hear, we are all pumped


up for the big game on Sunday. This wasn't any different


from any other practice session. Really we are relying


on what we have put into place the last eight months here and now


we have just got to go out and enjoy it and make sure


we bring our passion and energy. With the Canadian owners


who stepped in three years ago, The owners will fly in from Calgary


and they are fully aware of the fierce rivalry


between the Devils Yes, we don't like each


other, that's for sure. No matter what happens


with the league, the play-offs, anything like that, you always


want to get that first one so the fan base can calm down


and the team can calm down and think, we've won something,


let's move on to the next one. the two best teams are going to be


battling it out for the first title. The Devils captain is Cardiff born


and he has won the cup seven times with different teams but nothing


will be sweeter than doing it again It's great to go back


playing for your home club. I've got friends who play


for Nottingham from Nottingham so it's fantastic and hopefully we


can celebrate that on Sunday night. The Devils are away


in Manchester in the league. Being crowned champions of British


ice hockey is next on the list Hopefully not so cold


and icy for the rest of us. It is looking and settled over the


weekend with rain at times. Saturday looked the better day with some


brighter spells and a heavier rain likely on Sunday. The low pressure


moves northwards tonight, allowing some drier spells into tomorrow.


Tonight, outbreaks of rain continue on and off, moving north wades --


northwards. Not as cold as recent nights at seven Celsius. Tomorrow


could be a cloudy start with lingering showers. The best of any


brightness in the east. A scattering of showers. Probably heaviest in the


West. Highs of seven Celsius in North Wales, ten in Monmouthshire.


The changeable Atlantic influence continues through the weekend. This


frontal wave could bring heavy rain, followed by this trough later in the


day. So a few showers on and off tomorrow night. Drier spells for a


time. By the early hours of Sunday, that front starts to arrive in the


south and west. And then Sunday night might start dry but that band


of heavy rain pushing in from the south-west during the morning. Fresh


winds, some dry spells developing for a time but further showers,


possibly wintry, pushing in from the south-west later in the day. So an


unsettled weekend, some dry spells, more so on Saturday, rain at times,


heaviest on Sunday and then breezy and changeable for the start of next


week. I'll have an update


for you here 8pm and again Thank you for watching.


Have a great weekend.


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