Friday, 7 May 2010

Plaid Cymru vote up by 50% in Clwyd West

Commenting on last night’s election result in Clwyd West, Plaid Cymru candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd said:

“We increased Plaid’s vote by over 50% in Clwyd West and secured one of the biggest swings to Plaid in the whole of the country.

“Our campaign has reinvigorated the party locally with new members, activists and supporters coming forward to help with our work and we are grateful to them and to the thousands of voters who have supported us.

“This result gives us a strong platform upon which to build for next year’s Assembly election where Plaid was just 1800 votes behind last time.”

Friday, 30 April 2010

Llyr on the BBC Politics Show

You can see Plaid Cymru Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd here on the BBC Politics Show - around 48 minutes into the programme.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Big Day in the Bay

Thanks to Plaid Cymru's team in Clwyd West for all the hours they have been putting in, day in, day out.

We had a fantastic turnout in Colwyn Bay on Saturday, with over 20 people out working. We delivered many thousands of leasflets and spoke to hundreds of people.

Hustings in Ruthin tonight organised by the Ruthin and District Civic Association - 7 p.m. at Canolfan Awelon.

The photos shows Llyr Huws Gruffydd and the team as they assemble in Colwyn Bay

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Llyr's pledges to people with Parkinson's

Plaid Cymru Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd has pledged his support for the Parkinson’s UK manifesto, 3 Pledges for Parkinson’s.

Parkinson’s UK – the support and research charity - is committed to improving life for everyone affected by Parkinson’s, and the charity has launched its manifesto, which puts forward the views of people affected by Parkinson’s to a future Government.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd said:

“I wanted to pledge my support for people with Parkinson’s after talking to Parkinson’s UK. I can well understand some of the problems faced by carers and people with the condition, and I have signed up to the Parkinson’s UK manifesto.

"If I’m elected, I will do everything in my power to make sure people affected by Parkinson’s have all the support they need.”

The manifesto highlights three main issues that people affected by Parkinson’s want to see tackled:

· Fair access to health and social care for everyone with Parkinson’s

· The right benefits and financial support for those affected

· Government investment in a cure and better treatments

These issues are economically beneficial. The economy as a whole will benefit from people with Parkinson’s getting the right health and social care. Parkinson’s nurses could cut outpatient care, saving the NHS around £million a year in England.

Val Buxton, Director of Policy, Campaigns and Information at Parkinson’s UK, said: “Too many people with Parkinson’s can’t get the support, services or treatment they need to manage their condition.

“People with Parkinson’s can get a raw deal we want as many candidates as possible to sign up to our manifesto and highlight the issues that we’ve raised.

”Our manifesto pledges make financial sense for the next Government. The NHS can save around £56million by offering the right support through nurses and therapists. And Parkinson’s nurses alone could save the NHS around £6million a year in England by cutting outpatient care.”

For information and support call the Parkinson’s UK free confidential helpline on 0808 800 0303 or visit

Parkinson’s UK is the new name for the Parkinson’s Disease Society of the United Kingdom.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Plaid ready for Abergele

Plaid Cymru's Clwyd West campaigners were joined by Dafydd Wigley this week to knock doors in Abergele. The former Plaid leader is pictured with Llyr Huws Gruffydd and some of the team.

Monday, 12 April 2010

Great day in Colwyn Bay

A large team of helpers meant that we delivered many thousands of leaflets around Colwyn Bay on Saturday, and also had the chance to meet quite a few residents taking advantage of the good weather to spend time in their gardens.

Thanks to you all for your good wishes and thanks to the Plaid Cymru Clwyd West team for your tremendous support.

Photo: Llyr Huws Gruffydd get back to work after a brief break for lunch on Saturday in Colwyn Bay

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Plaid Cymru urge stores: think Welsh

Plaid Cymru’s Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd is urging stores in the constituency to ensure the availability of Welsh milk on their shelves. He has expressed disappointment that the Cooperative and Somerfield are not stocking Welsh-branded milk.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd said:

“Some supermarkets sell milk clearly labelled as Welsh, but this is by no means universal. The Welsh dairy industry should be supported and I urge stores to ensure the availability of Welsh milk.

“I am particularly disappointed that the Cooperative is not stocking Welsh milk at the moment, and this applies to Somerfield, now that it is part of the Cooperative. This was clear when I called into the Somerfield store at Pensarn, Abergele, as well as the Cooperative in Ruthin, and they did not stock Welsh milk.

“I hope this is a temporary supply problem, as it is a blemish on the Coop’s record of supporting the Welsh economy, especially such a staple product. It’s essential that we support our local agriculture industry as much as possible and I believe that supermarkets have a role to play to help consumers proactively purchase Welsh milk.

“The Coop has a fine record in striving to provide Welsh produce in its stores, as well as placing great emphasis on fair trade and organic produce, but I look forward to them once more showing their support to local producers by stocking their shelves with bottles of milk bearing the Welsh flag.”

Llyr added:

“Over recent years, supermarkets have made efforts to provide beef and lamb originating from Wales on their shelves. I believe that it’s about time that they make more of an effort to do the same for Welsh milk.”

The photograph shows Llyr Huws Gruffydd at the Somerfield store at Pensarn.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Plaid puts heart into town centre campaign

Plaid Cymru put its heart into saving our town centres this week as Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd and honorary president Dafydd Wigley brought the campaign to the centres of Colwyn Bay, Abergele and Ruthin.

Plaid’s campaign “Town Centre Y of our community” is calling for action to reverse the trend over recent years that has seen local shops, banks, pubs and newsagents in town centres close down while large scale retailers have moved to out of town developments. Plaid Cymru say that all levels of government need to adopt policies that ensure a sustainable and healthy future for our town centres.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd said:

"Successive London governments have failed to stand up to big business, and have failed to protect our local town centre economies."

Plaid’s honorary president, Dafydd Wigley added that all levels of government need to work together in partnership with communities to ensure that town centre businesses have a viable future.

Plaid have outlined a number of proposals to put town centres back at the heart of our communities including:

· the extension of credit union principles to support small and medium sized businesses
· a change in planning regulations to promote sustainable communities
· a mandatory retail impact assessment with each major planning development
· a level playing field for smaller, local businesses

Plaid's Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd said:

“We need to restate that town centres are not only an essential part, but also the heart, of our communities and should be protected and enhanced. So much influence and power is vested in the larger retailers, many of which have moved to out of town developments. The resulting reduction of footfall in town centres has had a detrimental effect and has caused many local businesses to close.

“I believe that the Plaid proposals will go some way towards reversing this trend and redress the balance. The Westminster parties have failed Wales once more, with London governments failing to create a level playing field for smaller, local companies. Plaid's measures will help to change things around, and give local businesses the support they need to make town centres viable again.”

Dafydd Wigley, who went to school in Colwyn Bay, added:

“Town centres have an invaluable role to play. Not only are they important in terms of attracting visitors, they are also play a vital social role. Many of the most vulnerable people in our communities are unable to access the large out of town developments and rely heavily on smaller, local shops.

“We all need to work together to ensure that our town centres have a viable future. Local councils, the Assembly government and the UK government must all take steps, but this won’t achieve anything if the community itself doesn’t get involved and support our local, town centre businesses.

"The UK government needs to work together with the Welsh and local government to introduce policies to sustain our town centres. For too long the London government has left small businesses to fend for themselves while they prop up big business. Despite bailing out the banks, many small businesses are unable to secure the credit they need to survive.

"This cannot be allowed to continue and this is why Plaid is calling for action now to put our town centres back at the heart of our communities.”

PHOTO: Llyr Huws Gruffydd and Dafydd Wigley in Colwyn Bay.

Llyr's Abergele call - town centre the heart of our communities

Llyr Huws Gruffydd, Plaid Cymru parliamentary candidate for Clwyd West, says town centres like Abergele and Colwyn Bay are at the heart of our communities, in this week's Journal.

Friday, 26 March 2010

Culture Minister back at Ruthin Craft Centre

Culture Minister Alun Ffred Jones AM will this week be paying a return visit to Ruthin Craft Centre. In December 2008 he did the honours at the official opening ceremony, and tonight he will be the guest speaker at the Plaid Cymru Clwyd West dinner and election campaign launch.

Plaid’s Westminster candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd said that he was delighted that the Plaid Cymru Minister had made the time to speak at the party’s Clwyd West launch:

“Alun Ffred Jones has been very generous with his time in agreeing to be our guest speaker. The news has clearly been very well received as we have sold all the tickets available for the dinner.

“Of course, Alun Ffred had another highly successful career before entering politics, as he was renowned for his work in film and television.

“This will be our formal launch for the election, but the tone will be light-hearted, with Alun Ffred, in his inimitable way, talking about his career in film and television as well as his role as Culture Minister in our One Wales government. And who knows – party politics may get a mention.”

The venue for the dinner is the Café R, at the Ruthin Craft Centre, Heol y Parc, Ruthin.

Gweinidog dros Dreftadaeth – Alun Ffred Jones yn ol yng nghanolfan grefftau Rhuthun

Wythnos yma bydd Alun Ffred Jones AC yn ymweld a chanolfan grefftau Rhuthun. Yn mis Rhagfyr 2008 anrhydeddodd Rhuthun a’I bresenoldeb o’r blaen gan iddo fod yma yn agor yn swyddogol y Ganolfan Grefftau’. Dydd Gwener yma y 26ain y fo fydd y gwr gwadd yng nghinio lansio ymgyrch etholiad Plaid Cymru Gorllewin Clwyd.

Mynegodd Llyr Huws Gruffydd ymgeisydd Plaid Cymru yn etholiad San Steffan ei fod yn filch dros ben o feddwl fod y Gweinidog Treftadaeth wedi medru gwneud amser I annerch yn Lansiad ymgyrch Plaid Cymru yn Ngorllewin Clwyd:

“Mae Alun Ffred Jones I’w edmygu am ei barodwydd I fod yn siaradwr gwadd, a chroesawyd y newyddion yn fawr iawn gan fod yr holl docynnau I’r cinio wedi eu gwerthu.

“Wrth gwrs yr oedd Alun Ffred Jones yn dilyn gyrfa lwyddianus iawn cyn mentro I’r byd politicaidd gan ei fod wedi body n adnabyddus am ei gyfraniad I fyd ffilm a theledu.

“Dyma ein Lansiad ffurfiol ar gyfer yr etholiad, ond bydd y naws yn ysgafn a hwyliog, gan y bydd Alun Ffred yn ei ffordd ddigyffelyb yn son am ei yrfa ym myd ffilm a theledu yn ogystal ei swydd fel gweinidog treftadaeth yn Llywodraeth Cymru’n Un – a phwy a wyr efallai y cawn glywed am wleidyddiaeth parti hefyd.”

Cynleir y cinio yn Café R yn y ganolfan grefftau, Heol y Parc, Rhuthun.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Llyr Huws Gruffydd: ‘Fuel duty hike must be postponed’

Plaid Cymru’s Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd has today called for a freeze on fuel duty as Wednesday’s Budget looms.

Fuel duty is set to rise by 2.55 pence per litre from April 2010 (1% above the rate of inflation) which will cost the average family an extra £200 a year and cause further problems to small businesses already struggling with higher fuel duties. Plaid has insisted that this duty hike should be postponed.

Campaign organisations such as the Road Haulage Association and the Farmers Union of Wales have come out in support of Plaid’s calls for a fair fuel duty regulator. Under such a plan, an unexpected spike in petrol prices would lead to a freeze on fuel duty.

MPs from Plaid and the SNP have tabled an EDM urging a freeze on fuel duty and repeating calls for the establishment of a fuel duty regulator.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd said:

“It is the people of Clwyd West that will feel the pinch of this fuel hike, which will hit families, the haulage industry and agriculture.

“This is an issue that affects all parts of Clwyd West. Hard-working families see prices rise week by week, with many more people struggling to run a car. But these sky high fuel taxes impact on businesses and on prices in the shops, as costs rise to deliver food and other products to retailers.

“A freeze on fuel duty is essential.”

Geoff Dunning, chief executive of the RHA, says:

“The Road Haulage Association fully supports Plaid Cymru’s calls for a fuel duty regulator – a move that would ensure price stability as well as lower fuel taxes."

Plaid’s Westminster leader Elfyn Llwyd MP added:

“This is just punishing ordinary people for a banking system failure that the London government helped to create.

“We will continue to fight this fuel hike and urge the introduction of a fuel duty regulator at the Budget to ensure price stability as well as lower fuel taxes.”

Plaid Cymru has long campaigned for a new mechanism to cap petrol prices. Together with the SNP, a motion to amend the Finance Bill in 2008 to create a fuel duty regulator was voted down by Labour.

The creation of such a regulator is backed by leading industry voices such as the Road Haulage Association. Under such a plan, an unexpected spike in petrol prices would lead to a freeze on fuel duty.

Llyr’s pledge to protect children

Llyr Huws Gruffydd has pledged to support the NSPCC’s ‘I stand for children’ campaign which aims to make child protection a priority for the next Parliament.

Llyr said:

“As Plaid Cymru candidate for Clwyd West, I’m supporting the NSPCC’s new campaign to ensure protecting children is a political priority: I Stand for Children.”

The NSPCC’s campaign is calling on candidates to commit to a range of child protection measures including:

Making the internet safer for children

Continued funding of helpline services for children and for adults concerned about the safety or welfare of a child

Tackling domestic violence from a child's point of view

The charity’s Diana Sutton, head of the public affairs and campaigns unit at the NSPCC, said:

“We need to make sure that the next elected Government keeps child protection high on its list of priorities. By signing up to our campaign, candidates in this next general election can help. The public can play their role by letting the politicians know what they want done.”

Monday, 15 March 2010

Abergele tonight

Plaid Cymu Honorary President Dafydd Wigley will be in Abergele tonight, alongside Llyr Huws Gruffydd, speaking to members and Clwyd West constituents at the Departure Lounge, (at Travel Unlimited), 9 Market Street at 7.30 p.m.

Friday, 12 March 2010

Tottering Tories

It's been a bad few weeks for the Tories, both in Clwyd West and Aberconwy, losing councillors, losing their tempers with journalists and generally losing the plot. Now it seems they're not too sure where one constituency begins and another ends. The North Wales Weekly News clarified it for them.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Pentrecelyn Question and Answer

This week I took part in a Question & Answer Session with the Womens' Institute.

Organised by Pentrecelyn WI, they were joined by members from other neighbouring branches. Also on the panel were some well known local figures - Alun Edwards, Nia Môn and Eirwyn Evans.

The questions were very diverse to say the least, varying from our views on the John Venables case to our favourite food and holiday destinations!

The prize for the best answer of the night must go to Eirwyn who, when asked what was his greatest strength and his greatest weakness, answered that his greatest strength was that he didn't have any weaknesses!

Thank you to the WI for their wonderful welcome and hospitality.


Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Hawl i Holi - Pentrecelyn

Neithiwr mi gymerais ran mewn noson Hawl i Holi gyda Sefydliad y Merched.

Trefnwyd y noson gan gangen Pentrecelyn a daeth aelodau o ganghennau cyfagos i ymuno â nhw. Hefyd ar y panel oedd y ffigurau amlwg lleol Alun Edwards, Nia Môn ac Eirwyn Evans. Roedd y pynciau a drafodwyd yn eang a dweud y lleiaf, gyda chwestiynau yn amrywio o farn y panel am achos John Venables i'n hoff fwydydd a lleoliadau gwyliau!

Mae'r wobr am ateb gorau'r nosoon yn mynd i Eirwyn. Pan holwyd iddo be oedd ei brif gryfder a'i brif wendid fe atebodd mai ei brif gryfder oedd nad oedd ganddo unrhyw wendidau!

Diolch o galon i Sefydliad y Merched Pentrecelyn am eu croeso cynnes ac am noson hwyliog.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Payback time for Clwyd West Tories?

Following this week’s revelations about Conservative Party funding - the Tories’ major donor and deputy party chairman, Lord Ashcroft, is not domiciled in the UK for tax purposes – Plaid’s Llyr Huws Gruffydd has questioned whether the Clwyd West Conservatives intend to pay back the money they have banked from Ashcroft’s company. According to their accounts they have received a substantial five figure sum.

Llyr, who will be the Plaid candidate for Clwyd West in the forthcoming Westminster election, said:

“Despite their best efforts to portray themselves in a better light, we can see now that it’s the same old Tories. Clearly they are rife with hypocrisy and evasion, and, to cap it all, it has taken a very, very long time for them to admit that Lord Ashcroft is not domiciled here for tax purposes, and thus avoids payment of tax on a large part of his vast income.

“Their slogans about change are empty and meaningless. Whilst the rest of us are going to have to face cuts of one sort or another following the recession, leading Tories are busily avoiding tax, and in this case, donating massive amounts of money to their party.

“I believe that David Jones and his fellow Tories in Clwyd West should take a long look at themselves and decide whether it is ethical and proper to keep the money which this man channelled in their direction.”

Llyr Huws Gruffydd said that he was proud of the fact that Plaid Cymru works hard to raise its money through the membership:

“We are not under obligation to outside influences or funders who distribute largesse and then insist on a say in policy. I believe that Cameron and his cronies will find that Wales is not for sale.

“Unlike Lord Ashcroft, our hearts are here in our own country.”

According to a statement of accounts provided to the Electoral Commission, Bearwood Corporate Services made a donation of £15,000 to Clwyd West Conservative Association in 2005. Bearwood is the vehicle used by Ashcroft to pass funds to local Conservative associations. See page 5.

The home page of Ashcroft’s web site bears the legend: Belize - "If home is where the heart is then Belize is my home.”

Figures from the Electoral Commission show that Lord Ashcroft has donated more than £5million pounds to the Conservative Party to be used in key marginal seats to try and win the next election for the Conservatives.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Amser i Dorïaid Gorllewin Clwyd dalu nôl?

Yn dilyn y datguddiadau am ariannu’r blaid Gweidwadol yr wythnos hon – sef nad yw prif noddwr a dirprwy gadeirydd y blaid, yr Arglwydd Ashcroft, wedi ei gartrefu ym Mhrydain at ddibenion treth – mae Llyr Huws Gruffydd o Blaid Cymru wedi cwestiynu os yw Ceidwadwyr Gorllewin Clwyd yn bwriadu ad-dalu’r pres a gawsant gan gwmni Ashcroft. Yn ôl cyfrifon y blaid fe dderbyniwyd swm pum ffigwr sylweddol.

Dywedodd Llyr, a fydd yn ymgeisydd dros Blaid Cymru yng Ngorllewin Clwyd yn yr Etholiad Cyffredinol:

“Er gwaethaf ymdrechion i bortreadu’u hunain yn wahanol, fe welwn bellach mai’r un hen Geidwadwyr ydi plaid David Cameron. Mae nhw wedi bod yn osgoi ateb cwestiynau ar y mater yma ac mae wedi cymryd amser maith iddyn nhw gyfaddef nad yw’r Arglwydd Ashcroft wedi ei gartrefu yma at ddibenion treth, ac o ganlyniad ei fod wedi osgoi talu trethi ar lawer iawn o’i incwm sylweddol.

“Mae eu slogan am newid yn wag a diystyr. Tra bod y gweddill ohonom yn gorfod wynebu toriadau o bob math yn sgil y dirwasgiad, mae arweinwyr blaenllaw’r Ceidwadwyr yn brysur yn osgoi talu trethi, ac yn yr achos hwn yn cyfrannu symiau aruthrol i’w plaid.

“Mae angen i David Jones a’i gyd-Geidwadwyr yng Ngorllewin Clwyd ystyried o ddifrif os yw hi’n foesol ac yn weddus iddyn nhw gadw’r pres a gyfrannwyd iddynt gan y gwr yma.”

Dywedodd Llyr Huws Gruffydd ei fod yn falch o’r ffaith fod Plaid Cymru’n gweithio’n galed i godi pres drwy ei haelodau.

“Does ganddo ni ddim rhwymedigaeth i ddylanwadau allanol nac arianwyr mawr sydd yn talu pres ac yna’n mynnu dylanwadu ar bolisi. Mae angen dangos i Cameron a’i griw nad yw Cymru ar werth.

“Yn wahanol i’r Arglwydd Ashcroft mae’n calonnau ni yma yn ein gwlad ein hunain.”

Yn ôl datganiad o’u cyfrifon a gyflwynwyd i’r Comisiwn Etholiadol, fe wnaeth Bearwood Corporate Services gyfraniad o £15,000 i’r Blaid Geidwadol yng Ngorllewin Clwyd yn 2005. Bearwood yw’r cyfrwng a ddefnyddiwyd gan Ashcroft i drosglwyddo pres i wahanol rannau o’r blaid Geidwadol. Gweler tudalen 5 o’r linc.

Mae tudalen gartref gwefan Ashcroft yn dweud: Belize - "If home is where the heart is then Belize is my home.”

Mae ffigurau gan y Comisiwn Etholiadol yn dangos bod yr Arglwydd Ashcroft wedi cyfrannu mwy na £5miliwn i’r Blaid Geidwadol i’w ddefnyddio mewn seddi ymylol er mwyn cynorthwyo’r Ceidwadwyr i ennill yr etholiad nesaf.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Dydd Gŵyl Dewi / St David’s Day

Roedd hi'n hyfryd bod yng nghwmni aelodau Plaid Cymru yn Rhuthun ddydd Sul am de prynhawn fel rhan o ddathliadau Gwyl Ddewi.

Mae'r gangen wrthi'n ddyfal yn ymgyrchu ar gyfer yr etholiad, ac ar ol ei gor-wneud hi efo'r sgons a'r bara brith mi fydd hi'n dda gen i wneud ychydig o gerdded wrth ganfasio wythnos yma!

It was great to meet up with Plaid members in Ruthin on Sunday for afternoon tea as part of our St David's Day celebrations.

The local branch is already campaigning hard for the forthcoming election, and after over-indulging on scones and bara brith it'll be good to pound the streets again this week!

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Conference success

We had an excellent conference last weekend in Cardiff.

The mood was really upbeat with party members and supporters sensing that this could be a significant election for Plaid.

I took the opportunity to discuss and debate a wide range of issues at a number of fringe meetings. But the highlight has to be taking part in a policy speed-dating session which gave representatives from charities and other organisations an opportunity to discuss important issues with candidates such as myself.

I learned so much and it has made me even more determined that things must change.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd


Cafwyd cynhadledd wych yng Nghaerdydd y penwythnos diwethaf.

Roedd ysbryd pawb yn bositif iawn gydag aelodau a chefnogwyr yn synhwyro y gallai'r etholiad fod yn un arwyddocaol iawn i'r blaid.

Fe gymerais y cyfle i drafod ystod eang o bynciau yn y cyfarfodydd ymylol. Ond yr uchafbwynt imi oedd bod yn rhan o'r sesiwn Clicio Cyflym Polisi roddodd y cyfle i gynrychiolwyr o elusennau a chyrff eraill holi ymgeisyddion fel fi am faterion oedd o bwys iddynt.

Mi ddysgais lawer ac mae wedi fy ngwneud hyn yn oed yn fwy penderfynol bod angen i bethau newid.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd

Friday, 19 February 2010

Steaming south

Heading south to Cardiff this morning for Plaid's pre-election conference. It's not only an opportunity to meet people from the many organisations represented there, but also a chance to compare notes with other candidates and activists about the election campaign.

One of those will be Aberconwy's Phil Edwards, who like us in Clwyd West, is reaping the benefit of the divisions in the Tory party, most recently when senior councillor Dennis Tew (Deganwy) left the Tories to join Plaid. In Clwyd West, the Tories have now decided to re-admit someone whom they expelled a short time ago!

I'll also be talking to Dafydd Wigley and Culture Minister Alun Ffred Jones about forthcoming visits to Clwyd West.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Leader Letter

This letter from Llyr appeared in today's Leader:

I am concerned that there are a number of people who are rushing into taking instant cash from firms advertising, on television, what they claim are good prices for gold items.

These tempting offers might be far from the best available when people need cash. Rather than rush headlong into selling gold jewellery and other items, perhaps to make ends meet at a difficult time, shop around first. It may be that a local jeweller can offer better prices for gold.

These are difficult economic times and people may be lured by one of the many television advertisements being broadcast at the moment, sometimes featuring well-known personalities. But there ARE other options. Some of these companies advertising on television are effectively taking advantage of people needing extra cash, or struggling in the aftermath of Christmas expenses.

Which? report which found that gold buying services advertised on television often do not provide good value for money and recommended that they should be avoided. ‘Which? sent three pieces of brand new gold jewellery to four gold buyers that advertise on television, three independent jewellers and three pawnbrokers. The television gold buyer gave the lowest quotes consistently.

Research carried out by Which? showed that on average they paid far less than the prices offered by high street retailers, and in some cases the difference is startling. The message is clear - it's worth looking nearer to home for a better deal.

Yours faithfully

Llyr Huws Gruffydd
Plaid Cymru candidate for Clwyd West

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Disgust at charity bag dumping

Plaid Cymru’s Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd and residents in Erw Goch, Ruthin have expressed their disgust in discovering that bags being delivered to local households on behalf of Barnardo's Cymru had instead been dumped in a wheelie bin - apparently by the person delivering them!

PHOTO: Llyr Huws Gruffydd and Erw Goch resident Michelle Jones with some of the discarded charity bags

Ruthin-based Llyr, who will be the Plaid candidate in the forthcoming Westminster election, said:

“Residents in Erw Goch drew my attention to the discovery of a number of collection bags bearing the Barnardo's imprint. These are the sort of bags delivered regularly by a large number of charities, seeking donations of clothes, accessories and household items.

"There was consternation that someone collecting for a charity would do such a thing, and conjecture that the bags had been left by an individual working for an unscrupulous company operating a scam.

"Once this was drawn to my attention, we checked immediately with Barnardo's Cymru, who confirmed that the bags were theirs."

Local resident Michelle Jones said that she was 'disgusted' when a neighbour told her about the discovery:

"My neighbour has been keeping an eye on the next door property whilst the elderly occupant is away, and discovered this pile of Barnardo bags in the bin. It looks as though the person delivering them has decided to save themselves the bother of delivering to a number of other houses by quietly dumping these.

"It's really quite disgusting that someone supposedly working on behalf of a charity has done something like this. For all we know they might have disposed of more bags elsewhere, and Barnardo's will certainly have lost out."

Llyr continued:

"Barnardo's Cymru were as horrified as we were. I understand that they are taking immediate steps to trace who was responsible for this and say they will deal with it appropriately.

"That someone should do this is dismaying, to say the least, and especially at a time when all charities are desperately looking for donations. Barnardo's, who do excellent work in Wales, have clearly missed out on potential donations here.

"I would ask other residents in Ruthin and other towns in the area to check whether something similar has happened on their premises and, if so, to get in touch with Barnardo's Cymru."

Siom wrth ddarganfod bagiau elusenl

Mae ymgeisydd Plaid Cymru yng Ngorllewin Clwyd Llyr Huws Gruffydd a thrigolion yn Erw Goch, Rhuthun wedi mynegi eu siom o ddarganfod fod bagiau oedd i gael eu dosbarthu i dai lleol ar ran Barnardo’s Cymru wedi cael eu taflu i fin sbwriel – a hynny fe ymddengys gan y person oedd yn eu dosbarthu.

LLUN: Llyr Huws Gruffydd a Michelle Jones (un o drigolion Erw Goch) gyda rhai o’r bagiau elusen a gafodd eu gadael.

Dywedodd Llyr, a fydd yn ymgeisydd dros Blaid Cymru yn yr etholiad cyffredinol:

“Tynnodd rhai o drigolion Erw Goch fy sylw at ddarganfyddiad nifer o sachau casglu gyda manylion Barnardo’s arnynt. Dyma’r math o fagiau a ddosberthir yn gyson gan nifer o elusennau sy’n casglu dillad ac eitemau eraill megis nwyddau cartref.

"Roedd ‘na siom mawr y gallai rhywun oedd yn casglu ar ran elusen wneud y fath beth, ac roedd rhai’n gofidio y gallai’r bagiau fod wedi cael eu gadael gan unigolion yn gweithio i gwmni anghyfrifol allai fod yn gweithredu scam.

"Unwaith death hyn i’m sylw fe gysylltom yn syth â Barnardo's Cymru, a gadarnhaodd mai eu bagiau hwy oeddynt."

Dywedodd un o’r trigolion lleol, Michelle Jones, ei bod yn flin iawn pan ddywedodd cymydog wrthi am y darganfyddiad:

"Roedd fy nghymydog yn cadw llygad ar y tŷ drws nesaf tra bod y perchennog oedrannus i ffwrdd, ac fe ddaeth o hyd i lwyth o fagiau Barnardo’s yn y bin sbwriel. Mae’n ymddangos fod y person oedd yn eu dosbarthu wedi penderfynu peidio trafferthu mynd â nhw i rhagor o dai yn y stryd gan eu gwaredu yn y bin.

"Mae’n warthus bod rhywun sydd i fod yn gweithio ar ran elusen yn medru gwneud rhywbeth fel hyn. Pwy a wyr nad oes rhagor o fagiau wedi cael eu taflu i ffwrdd yn rhywle arall, ac mi fydd Barnardo’s o ganlyniad yn colli allan."

Ychwanegodd Llyr:

"Roedd Barnardo's Cymru yr un mor siomedig â ni. Rwy’n deall eu bod yn cymryd camau yn syth i geisio olrhain pwy oedd yn gyfrifol am hyn gan ddweud y byddan nhw’n delio â’r mater mewn modd addas.

"Mae’n drist a dweud y lleiaf bod rhywun yn medru gwneud hyn, yn enwedig ar adeg pan fod elusennau’n gorfod chwilio’n ddyfal am gyfraniadau. Mae Barnardo’s, sy’n gwneud gwaith ardderchog yng Nghymru, yn amlwg wedi colli allan ar gyfraniadau posib fan hyn.

"Rwy’n gofyn i unrhyw drigolion eraill yn Rhuthun a threfi eraill yn yr ardal i fod yn wyliadwrus rhag ofn bod rhywbeth tebyg wedi digwydd yn eu hardal nhw, ac os ydyw, i gysylltu â Barnardo's Cymru."

Monday, 15 February 2010

Llyr supports Breast Cancer Campaign

Rwyf wedi ymuno ag Ymgyrch Cancr y Fron. Ewch i
i weld sut allwch chi helpu.

I have signed up as a supporter of the Breast Cancer Campaign. To see how you can help, go to their web site

Plaid : isafswm pris ar alcohol i achub y dafarn draddodiadol

Mae tafarndai’n wynebu argyfwng ac mae ymgeisydd Plaid Cymru dros Orllewin Clwyd Llyr Huws Gruffydd ac Aelod Cynulliad gogledd Cymru Janet Ryder am weld gweithredu i’w cefnogi. Mae’nt yn galw am gyflwyno isafswm pris ar alcohol er mwyn achub y dafarn draddodiadol ac mae nhw am glywed barn tafarnwyr lleol.

Mae’r ddau wleidydd am weld cyflwyno’r isafswm pris ar alcohol er mwyn cynorthwyo tafarndai yn eu brwydr yn erbyn prisiau rhad yr archfarchnadoedd. Yn ogystal â chynorthwyo’r diwydiant tafarnau, teimlant y byddai codi pris yr alcohol rhad yn cynorthwyo i atal pobl ifanc rhag yfed yn afresymol gan gynorthwyo i leihau lefelau tor-cyfraith.

Dywedodd Llyr, a fydd yn ymgeisydd dros Blaid Cymru yn yr etholiad cyffredinol:

“Mae nifer o dafarnwyr lleol wedi lleisio’u gofidiau ynglyn â’r trafferthion mae nhw’n eu hwynebu wrth geisio cystadlu efo prisiau isel alcohol yn yr archfarchnadoedd.

“Dros yr wythnosau nesaf mi fyddwn ni’n cysylltu â thafarnwyr lleol i holi eu barn ynglyn â chyflwyno isafswm pris am alcohol.”

Mae Plaid Cymru wedi croesawu’r argymhellion a wnaed mewn adroddiad diweddar gan Bwyllgor Iechyd Ty’r Cyffredin i gyflwyno isafswm pris ar alcohol. Mae argymhellion eraill yn cynnwys cyfyngu ar hysbysebion a allai gael eu gweld gan blant ynghyd â gwahardd hysbysebu alcohol ar wefannau rhwydweithio cymdeithasol.

Ychwanegodd Llyr:

"Mae tystiolaeth gref gan Gymdeithas Meddygol Prydain – y BMA, ymhlith eraill, yn dangos y byddai cyflwyno isafswm pris ar alcohol yn medru gwneud gwahaniaeth gwirioneddol i daclo’r diwylliant o yfed yn anghyfrifol”.

“Mae’r diwylliant presenol o brisiau isel mewn archfarchnadoedd yn gwneud drwg i nifer o dafarndai yn ein cymunedau, sy’n methu cystadlu o ran prisiau, ac sydd weithiau’n ffeindio bod cwsmeriaid wedi gor-yfed cyn cyrraedd y dafarn. Mae rhai landlordiaid cyfrifol hyd yn oed yn teimlo na ddylent werthu rhagor o ddiod iddynt.

“Rwy’n awyddus i glywed barn pobl sydd yn y diwydiant tafarndai er mwyn gwybod eu safbwynt am isafswm pris ar alcohol, ynghyd ag unrhyw gamau eraill yr hoffent weld y llywodraeth yng Nghaerdydd ac yn Llundain yn eu cymryd i gefnogi eu busnesau.

“Mae’r dafarn leol yn rhan anatod o’n cymunedau ac rydym wedi colli gormod ohonynt yn y blynyddoedd diwethaf. Rwyf am weld beth allwn ni ei wneud i gefnogi’r tafarndai sydd gennym yma, ac i’w cynorthwyo i sicrhau bod ganddynt ddyfodol llewyrchus.”

Mae cryn ofid wedi bod am lefelau uchel alcoholiaeth ar draws Cymru wrth i bobl dueddu i yfed mwy adref ynghyd â phrynu diodydd llawer cryfach nag y byddent yn y gorffennol. Mae fodca rhad yn hawdd i’w gael yn yr archfarchnadoedd ac mae’r pris isel yn annog pobl i yfed llawer mwy wrth iddynt yfed cyn mynd allan am y noson.

Dywedodd Janet Ryder AC:

“Mae tafarndai cymunedol yn medru chwarae rôl pwysig wrth helpu pobl i yfed yn gyfrifol am eu bod yn lefydd i fwy na dim ond yfed. Mae nhw’n lefydd i bobl o bob oed gyfarfod, gan gynnig cwmniaeth – yn enwedig i bobl hŷn.

“Gyda chymaint o dafarndai ar draws Cymru’n wynebu amser anodd, rydym ni eisiau cynnig cymorth ymarferol iddynt.”

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Plaid : minimum alcohol price to save the traditional pub

Pubs in the area are facing a crisis, and Plaid Cymru’s Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd and North Wales AM Janet Ryder believe that strong action is needed. They say that minimum pricing on alcohol should be introduced to save traditional local pubs, and are seeking the views of local publicans.

The politicians want to see the introduction of minimum pricing on alcohol to help traditional pubs in their battle against cheap supermarket offers. As well as helping the troubled pub industry, they feel that raising the price of cheap alcohol would help deter youngsters from binge drinking and help reduce crime levels.

Ruthin-based Llyr, who will be the Plaid candidate in the forthcoming Westminster election, said today:

“Many local landlords have been raising their concerns about the difficulties they’re facing as they fight to compete with the low alcohol prices in supermarkets.

“Over the next few weeks, we will be contacting operators of licensed premises in Ruthin, Colwyn Bay, Abergele and other parts of the constituency, asking if they’d like to see the introduction of minimum pricing on alcohol."

Plaid has welcomed recommendations in a recent report by the House of Commons Health Committee to introduce a minimum price for alcohol. Other recommendations included restrictions on advertising visible to children and a ban on alcohol ads on social networking websites.

Llyr continued:

"There is very strong evidence from the British Medical Association, amongst others, that introducing a minimum price on alcohol can make a real difference in tackling the binge drinking culture.

“The current culture of low prices in supermarkets is also very bad for many of the pubs in our communities, who can’t compete on prices, and who often find themselves in a situation where customers will have had a lot to drink before they arrive. Responsible landlords might even be in a position of feeling that they can’t serve them.

“I’m seeking the views of people in pub businesses in the area to find out their views on a minimum price for alcohol, and other steps that they’d like to see government in Cardiff or London taking to support their businesses.

“The local pub is an integral part of our community and we’ve lost too many of them in recent years. I want to see what we can do to support the pubs that we have here, and to help ensure that they have a prosperous future.”

There has been concern about worryingly high levels of alcoholism across Wales as people tend to drink more on their own at home as well as buying much stronger drinks than they would have perhaps done in the past. Cheap vodka is readily available from supermarkets and the low cost encourages people to drink much more as they 'frontload' or drink before going out for the evening.

Janet Ryder AM added

“Neighbourhood pubs can play a very important role in helping people drink responsibly because they are about more than just drinking. They are places for people of all ages to meet, and for older people in particular they offer company.

“With so many pubs across north Wales facing difficult times, we want to be able to offer them practical help.”

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Plaid yn datgelu methiannau Canolfan Byd Gwaith yng ngogledd Cymru

Mae mwy na £275,000 wedi ei dalu i hawlwyr gan Canolfan Byd Gwith mewn taliadau am fethiannau yn ei gwasanaeth ar draws Cymru dros y ddwy flynedd a hanner diwethaf, gyda gogledd Cymru’n gyfrifol am elfen helaeth o hynny yn ôl ffigurau a roddwyd i Blaid Cymru.

Gwnaed y taliadau oherwydd i bobl golli budd-daliadau yn dilyn camgymeriadau, camweinyddiaeth, oedi, anghyfleustra difrifol, achosi cywilydd neu drallod difrifol.

Yn y flwyddyn ariannol 2007-08 roedd y cyfanswm a dalwyd allan yng Nghymru yn £104,537. Cododd hynny i £118,271 yn 2008-09 ac roedd yn £52,718 yn chwe mis cyntaf 2009-10. Mae’r ffigurau diweddaraf hyn yn datgelu bod gogledd Cymru’n gyfrifol am bron i hanner y cyfanswm.

Yn 2007-08 a 2008-09 cael hawl i fudd-daliadau oedd ar frig y rhestr o gwynion, yn cynrychioli 32% o’r holl gwynion yn 2007-08 a 35% yn 2008-09.

Yn ôl Canolfan Byd Gwaith, tra bod nifer y staff yng Nghymru wedi cynyddu o 4,562 i 5,398, roedd y nifer oedd yn hawlio eu bod yn ddiwaith wedi saethu fyny o 45,419 yn Ionawr 2007 i 78,234 yn Hydref 2009.

Dywedodd Phil Edwards, Ymgeisydd seneddol Plaid Cymru dros Aberconwy:

“Tra bod cynnydd wedi bod yn staff Canolfan Byd Gwaith, mae llawer o’r gweithwyr newydd ar gytundebau tymor penodol. Mae’n rhaid mesur hyn yn erbyn cau canolfannau gwaith, megis yn Llanrwst, a’r posibilrwydd o doriadau pellach yn y dyfodol. Mae’r gweithwyr o dan bwysau wrth i’w niferoedd parhaol leihau ac wrth i safleoedd gau ar draws y gogledd.

“Mae’n debyg bod symudiadau ar droed o fewn yr Adran Waith a Phensiynau (DWP) i drosglwyddo staff allan o ganolfannau gwaith i ganolfannau galw mewn ymdrech i wneud i bobl gysylltu â nhw ar y ffôn neu ar y wê. Ond yn amlwg mae’n well gan nifer fawr o bobl wneud cyswllt wyneb yn wyneb mewn amgylchiadau fel hyn, ac mae’r fath ddatblygiad yn annerbyniol.”

Nododd ymgeisydd seneddol y blaid dros Orllewin Clwyd Llyr Huws Gruffydd bod hysbysebion wedi ymddangos am weithwyr clreigol, ond nad oedd hynny o reidrwydd y newyddion da a ymddangosai:

“Mae nhw mewn gwirionedd yn dad-sgilio gwaith ac arbenigeddau mewn meysydd penodol gan ddisgwyl i weithwyr ddelio efo pob math o ymholiadau. Rydym wedi gweld bod disgwyl i staff mewn canolfannau galw masnachol gael pobl oddi ar y linell ffôn mor sydyn a phosib. Dydi hyn ddim yn awyrgylch addas i ddelio â materion cyflogaeth a diweithdra.

“Rwy‘n gofidio y byddai unrhyw doriadau mewn staff yn arwain nid yn unig at golli swyddi ond hefyd at fwy o hawliadau yn erbyn Canolfan byd Gwaith. Mae’n rhaid i’r rheolwyr ystyried yn ofalus holl oblygiadau unrhyw benderfyniad i leihau gwasanaethau a fydd yn effeithio’r cyhoedd.”

Ychwanegodd Phil Edwards:

“Ddylem ni ddim anghofio am funud bod hyn oll yn digwydd yn ystod dirwasgiad, a phan fod ein Llywodraeth Cymru’n Un yn gwneud pob ymdrech i amddiffyn gweithwyr trwy gynlluniau megis ProAct a ReAct.”

“Mae’n ymddangos o’r ffigurau yma bod toriadau swyddi yn yr Adran Waith a Phensiynau’n amlwg yn cael effaith ar ansawdd y gwasanaeth y mae staff sydd eisoes o dan bwysau yn medru ei roi.”

Friday, 12 February 2010

Jobcentre Plus failings in north Wales revealed by Plaid

More than £275,000 has been handed to claimants by Jobcentre Plus in payments for failings in its service across Wales over the last two-and-a-half years, and the north of Wales features prominently in figures obtained by Plaid Cymru.

The pay-outs cover loss of benefit due to benefit errors, maladministration, delay, gross inconvenience and embarrassment and severe distress.

In the 2007-08 financial year the total paid out in Wales was £104,537. That rose to £118,271 in 2008-09 and was £52,718 in the first six months of 2009-10. These latest figures reveal that the north and mid Wales region accounts for almost 50% of the total.

Both in 2007-08 and 2008-09 benefit entitlement was the top area of complaint, representing 32 per cent of all complaints in 2007-08 and 35 per cent in 2008-09.

According to Jobcentre Plus, while the number of staff in Wales have increased from 4,562 to 5,398, unemployment claimants have rocketed from 45,419 in January 2007 to 78,234 in October 2009.

Phil Edwards, Plaid’s Westminster candidate for Aberconwy, said:

“While there has been an increase in Jobcentre Plus staff, many of the new staff are employed on a fixed term basis. This has to be measured against job centre closures, such as Llanrwst, and the possibility of further cuts in the future. Staff are under pressure as their permanent numbers are reduced and sites closed across the north.

“There are apparently moves within the DWP to transfer staff out of job centres into call centres in an attempt to make people deal with issues by telephone or the internet. Quite clearly, there are many people who prefer face to face contact in these circumstances, irrespective of whether they have internet access, and I regard this development as unacceptable.”

Plaid’s Clwyd West candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd pointed out that whilst there were advertisements for clerical staff at the moment, this was not the good news it seemed:

“They are, in fact, de-skilling work and specialists in certain areas of work will be expected to deal with all types of queries. We’ve seen in commercial call centres that staff are expected to get people off the line as quickly as possible, and that is not the right atmosphere for dealing with employment and unemployment matters.

“I am concerned that any cuts in staff will not only lead to a loss of jobs but also an increase in claims against Jobcentre Plus. Management need to think carefully about the impact of any decision to reduce services which will affect the public.”

Phil Edwards added:

“We should not forget for a moment that all this is happening during a recession, and when our One Wales Government is making strenuous efforts to protect workers through schemes like ProAct and ReAct.

“It seems from these figures that job cuts in the DWP are clearly having an impact on the quality of service which hard-pressed staff are struggling to provide.”

PHOTO: Phil Edwards (L) and Llyr Huws Gruffydd at Westminster

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Llyr yn galw am deyrngarwch lleol: Cerdyn Cymru

Mae archfarchnadoedd a siopau eraill yn cael eu hannog i wobrwyo cwsmeriaid am brynu cynnyrch lleol trwy gynnig pwyntiau bonws ar gardiau teyrngarwch. Mae ymgeisydd Seneddol Plaid Cymru yng Ngorllewin Clwyd, Llyr Huws Gruffydd wedi ysgrifennu at siopau yn ei etholaeth i awgrymu y byddai ‘Cerdyn Cymru’ yn hwb mawr i’r economi leol.

Mae Llyr Huws Gruffydd yn annog y siopau i ystyried mabwysiadu cynllun Cerdyn Cymru, a allai fod yn gysylltiedig â chardiau teyrngarwch archfarchnadoedd ar un llaw, neu’r cardiau “siopwch yn lleol” sydd ar gael mewn ambell dref.


“Mae nifer o’r siopau mawrion bellach yn cynig rhyw fath o gynlluniau sy’n rhoi pwyntiau am deyrngarwch. Cynigir y pwyntiau am brynu cynnyrch penodol, er enghraifft gellir ennill ‘pwyntiau gwyrdd’ am fod yn amgylcheddol gyfeillgar, neu gael pwyntiau ychwanegol am brynu cynnyrch masnach deg.

“Ein hawgrym ni yw y dylid gweithredu system debyg sy’n annog cwsmeriaid i brynu nwyddau a gynhyrchwyd yn lleol, ynghyd â chynnyrch Cymreig yn gyffredinol.

“Mi fyddai’n ffordd gwych i hybu’r economi leol trwy annog cwsmeriaid i gefnogi ffermwyr a chynhyrchwyr bwyd Cymreig.

“Byddai nifer o fanteision i Gerdyn Cymru. Mi fyddai’n annog mwy o fwyta iach, yn torri i lawr ar filltiroedd bwyd, ac yn gymorth i nifer o fusnesau megis ffermwyr a chynhyrchwyr bwyd – rhywbeth allai fod yn dyngedfennol yn yr hinsawdd economaidd sydd ohoni.”

Fel rhan o Lywodraeth Cymru mae Plaid Cymru eisoes wedi gweithredu i annog pobl i brynu cynnyrch Cymreig. Llynedd fe lansiodd Gweinidog Plaid Cymru Elin Jones (sydd â chyfrifoldeb dros ffermio a bwyd) y Cynllun Gweithredu Cyrchu Lleol, sydd â’r nod o sicrhau bod mwy o gynnyrch bwyd lleol yn cael ei fwyta’n lleol.

Dywedodd Elin Jones AC:

"Mae’n dda gweld syniadau gwreiddiol i gefnogi cynnyrch Cymreig. Mi allai’r fenter leol hon fod yr union beth i gefnogi bwyd a diod lleol. Mi fydd gen i ddiddordeb gweld sut bydd hwn yn datblygu ymhellach."

Doedd ymgeisydd Plaid Cymru Llyr Huws Gruffydd ddim yn gweld rheswm pam na ddylai Cymru gael ei chynllun ei hun:

“Mae gan y Gwyddelod gynllun Shamrock lle gall siopwyr sy’n prynu cynnyrch lleol ennill pwyntiau ychwanegol ar gardiau teyrngarwch yn yr archfarchnadoedd. Mae’r Albanwyr hefyd yn edrych ar ddatblygu cynllun o’r fath.

“Byddai fersiwn Gymreig yn gymorth i helpu sicrhau bod siopwyr yma’n ffocysu ar brynu cynnyrch Cymreig, gan roi hwb i’r diwydiant amaeth yng Nghymru.

“Rydym yn annog archfarchnadoedd, siopau a chynhyrchwyr i weithio gyda’i gilydd i ystyried creu cynllun yma yng Nghymru.”

Llynedd lansiodd Elin Jones y “Cynllun Gweithredu Cyrchu Bwyd” sydd â’r nod o sicrhau bod mwy o fwyd sydd wedi ei gynhyrchu’n lleol yn cael ei fwyta’n lleol – boed trwy gytundebau sector gyhoeddus, archfarchnadoedd neu fwytai.

Mae hi hefyd yn datblygu polisi yn ymwneud a Thyfu Bwyd Cymunedol – eto, i edrych ar ffyrdd arloesol o gynyddu faint o fwyd sy’n cael ei gynhyrchu a’i fwyta’n lleol.

Llyr’s local loyalty call: a Cymru Card

Supermarkets and other stores in Colwyn Bay, Abergele, Kinmel Bay and Ruthin are being urged to reward customers with a loyalty bonus for buying local produce. Plaid’s Clwyd West Westminster candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd is writing to stores in the constituency suggesting that a ‘Cymru Card’ would boost the local economy.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd is urging stores to consider a Cymru Card scheme, which could be linked to existing supermarket loyalty card schemes, for example Tesco and the Cooperative (including Somerfield), on the one hand, or ‘shop local’ cards in different towns. Alternative schemes would be explored with those supermarket groups who do not have a loyalty card scheme, such as Morrisons and Asda.

He said:

“Many of the larger stores now offer some form of loyalty point schemes. Points are offered to encourage customers to buy certain produce, such as ‘green points’ for being environmentally friendly, or bonus points for buying Fairtrade products.

“Our suggestion is for a similar system to encourage customers to buy locally produced goods, as well as Welsh produce overall.”

“This would be an excellent way of boosting the local economy by encouraging
customers to support Welsh farmers and food producers.”

“A Welsh produce loyalty scheme would have a number of benefits. It would encourage more healthy eating, cut down on food miles, and give local businesses such as farmers and food producers a much needed boost, especially during the present economic difficulties.”

Plaid in government in Wales has already taken action to encourage people to buy Welsh produce. Plaid Minister Elin Jones AM, whose government responsibilities include food and farming, launched the Local Sourcing Action Plan* last year which aims to get more local consumption of locally produced food.

Elin Jones AM said:

"It's good to see original ideas to support Welsh produce. This local initiative could be just the thing to support local food and drink. I'll be interested to watch this develop further"

Plaid Cymru candidate Llyr Huws Gruffydd saw no reason why Wales should not have its own scheme:

“The Irish have a Shamrock scheme where shoppers can earn bonus supermarket loyalty points for buying home-grown goods. The Scots are looking to develop a similar proposal.

“A Welsh equivalent would help keep shoppers focused on buying Welsh produce and would be a shot in the arm for Welsh farmers.

“We are encouraging supermarkets, grocers and producers to work together to explore the creation of our own scheme in Wales.”

Last year, Elin Jones launched the *Local Sourcing Action Plan which aims to get more local consumption of locally produced food - whether it's through public sector contracts, supermarkets or restaurants.

She is also developing policy around Community Food Growing - again, looking at more innovative ways of increasing the amount of food locally produced and consumed.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Maes Garmon

Mi es i i Ysgol Maes Garmon yn Yr Wyddgrug heddiw i drafod polisiau Plaid Cymru gyda chriw o fyfyrwyr (gyda rhai ohonyn nhw'n byw yn etholaeth Gorllewin Clwyd). De drafodom pob math o faterion yn y sesiwn a barodd 50 munud gan gynnwys gostwng yr oed pleidleisio, ariannu addysg uwch a mwy o ddatganoli. Mi wnes i fwynhau'r profiad a hoffwn i ddweud diolch yn fawr i'r myfyrwyr am eu croeso ac am eu negeseuon o gefnogaeth ers yr ymweliad.

I visited Maes Garmon school in Mold today to discuss Plaid Cymru policies with a group of students (some of whom live in the Clwyd West constituency). We discussed all sorts of issues during the 50 minute session including lowering the voting age, higher education funding and increased devolution. I really enjoyed it and want to say a big thank you to the students for their welcome and for their subsequent messages of support.


In Pentrefoelas last night for the Clwyd West rhanbarth meeting, attended by delegates from branches across this geographically widespread constituency. A good constructive meeting to review the campaign so far and map out the coming weeks.

And - you read it here first - Culture Minister Alun Ffred Jones AM will be joining us in Rhuthun on the evening of Friday 26 March. Make a note in your diary: details soon.

Plaid Cymru's fearsome threesome

Good to see one of the London papers lavishing praise on Plaid's Westminster team. Have a look at the Independent. Praise indeed - and well-deserved. That's a team I'd like to join!

But if the Indy thinks that Plaid begins and ends at Westminster, they've got a bit to learn. You'll see the reference I mean.

In the photo with Westminster Leader Elfyn Llwyd MP (centre) are Phil Edwards (left) Plaid's candidate in Aberconwy and Llyr Huws Gruffydd, Clwyd West.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Peidiwch cael eich twyllo wrth werthu aur, medd Plaid Cymru

Byddwch yn wyliadwrus wrth werthu eitemau aur i gwmniau sy’n hysbysebu ar y teledu. Dyna ddywed ymgeisydd seneddol Plaid Cymru dros Orllewin Clwyd Llyr Huws Gruffydd sy’n rhybuddio y gallai’r prisiau a gynnigir gan y cwmniau hyn fod yn sylweddol is na gwerth gwirioneddol yr eitemau aur.


"Yn hytrach na brysio i werthu gemwaith aur ac eitemau eraill, o bosib i gael dau ben llinyn ynghyd ar adeg anodd, mae’n werth chwilio o gwmpas am y prisiau gorau. Mae’n bosib y gallai’r gemydd lleol gynnig gwell pris am aur.

"Mae’n gyfnod economaidd anodd ac fe allai pobl gael eu denu gan un o’r hysbysebion teledu sy’n cael eu darlledu’r dyddiau yma, weithiau’n cynnwys enwogion. Ond mae ‘na opsiynau eraill. Mae rhai o’r cwmniau yma sy’n hysbysebu ar y teledu’n ceisio cymryd mantais o bobl sydd angen pres ychwanegol, neu sy’n ei chael hi’n anodd ar ol gwario cymaint dros y Nadolig."

Mae ei sylwadau’n dilyn cyhoeddi adroddiad gan Which? a amlygodd nad yw’r gwasanaethau prynnu aur a hysbysebir ar y teledu bob tro’n cynnig gwerth am arian, gan argymell y dylid eu hosgoi. Anfonodd Which? dri darn o emwaith aur newydd sbon i bedwar prynnwr aur a oedd yn hysbysebu eu gwasanaeth ar y teledu, ynghyd ag at dri gemydd anibynnol a thri pawnbroker. Y prynwyr aur oddi ar y teledu roddodd y prisiau isaf bob tro.

Ychwanegodd Llyr Huws Gruffydd:

"Mae’r ymchwil a gwblhawyd gan ‘Which?’ wedi dangos bod y prisiau a dalwyd ar gyfartaledd lawer yn is na’r prisiau a gynigwyd gan emyddion y stryd fawr, ac mewn rhai achosion roedd y gwahaniaeth yn frawychus. Mae’r neges yn glir – mae’n werth chwilio yn nes at adref am well gwerth am arian.”

Mae Which? Money yn rhybuddio’r rhai sydd am werth eu haur nad yw cwmniau sy’n hysbysebu eu gwasanaeth drwy’r post ar y teledu’n cynnig gwerth am arian - ac y dylid eu hosgoi. Ar gyfartaledd roeddynt yn cynnig dim ond 6% o werth manwerthu’r aur o’i gymharu a tua 25% a gynnigwyd gan gwmniau’r stryd fawr. Roedd Which? Hefyd yn gofidio bod yr amlenni a ddefnyddiwyd i anfon eitemau yn amlwg yn cynnwys gemwaith. Ceir manylion pellach ar Which?

Monday, 8 February 2010

In Colwyn Bay today with the Mayor and Mayoress

This morning I had a meeting with the Mayor of Colwyn Bay, Plaid Cymru's Councillor Abdul Khan, and his Mayoress Margaret Burrows. Abdul represents the Glyn electoral division on Conwy County Council, as well as the Bay of Colwyn Council.

Saturday, 6 February 2010

Don't be fooled into gold rush, say Plaid

Don't rush headlong into taking instant cash from firms advertising on television what they claim are good prices for gold items. Plaid Cymru Clwyd West candidate for Westminster Llyr Huws Gruffydd has warned that these tempting offers might be far from the best available when people need cash.

He said:

"Rather than rush headlong into selling gold jewellery and other items, perhaps to make ends meet at a difficult time, shop around first. It may be that a local jeweller can offer better prices for gold.

"These are difficult economic times and people may be lured by one of the many television advertisements being broadcast at the moment, sometimes featuring well-known personalities.

"But there ARE other options. Some of these companies advertising on television are effectively taking advantage of people needing extra cash, or struggling in the aftermath of Christmas expenses."

These comments coincide with a Which? report which found that gold buying services advertised on television often do not provide good value for money and recommended that they should be avoided. ‘Which? sent three pieces of brand new gold jewellery to four gold buyers that advertise on television, three independent jewellers and three pawnbrokers. The television gold buyer gave the lowest quotes consistently.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd added:

"The research carried out by ‘Which?’ showed that on average they paid far less than the prices offered by high street retailers, and in some cases the difference is startling. The message is clear - it's worth looking nearer to home for a better deal."

Which? Money warns consumers who want to sell their unwanted gold that the companies advertising their postal services on TV offer bad value for money and should be avoided. Which? sent three pieces of brand new gold jewellery to four gold buyers that advertise on TV, three independent jewellers, and three pawnbrokers.

The TV gold buyers consistently gave the worst quotes, offering on average only around 6% of the retail price for gold compared to around 25% offered by high street retailers. Which? was also concerned that the envelopes used to send jewellery were indiscreet. Further information is available from

Your Plaid candidate - Llyr Huws Gruffydd

39 year old Llyr lives with is wife and young children on a family farm near Pentrecelyn, Ruthin in the Clwyd West constituency.

He works for an economic development company that specialises in helping set up new business and assisting existing businesses to develop and grow.

Llyr also runs his own public relations company and is a frequent broadcaster on television and radio.

Raised in Carmarthen, Llyr and his young family moved back to their family roots in Ruthin some years ago.

He is an experienced political campaigner having stood for Parliament in 2001 and for the National Assembly in 2003 – when he came within just 500 votes of being elected. He also served as a local councillor from 1996-2004 during which time he served as Mayor.

During the 2007 Assembly election Llyr was the party’s election agent for Clwyd West.

After graduating at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, Llyr spent many years as a youth worker, eventually becoming the chief officer for the Council for Wales of Voluntary Youth Services – the umbrella organisation representing all voluntary youth organisations in Wales.

Llyr then took up the post of Campaign Co-ordinator for the then Plaid Cymru President, Dafydd Wigley, in the run-up to the 1999 National Assembly elections. He also was the co-ordinator of Plaid’s European Election campaign that same year, when Plaid came very close to overtaking Labour as the largest party in Wales. Llyr subsequently worked for the new Plaid Euro MPs – running many of their campaigns on behalf of local constituents all over Wales.

Llyr is a member of Bethel Chapel, Pentrecelyn and has served as a member of the Wales Young Farmers Clubs Board of Management and as Chairman of the National Eisteddfod Youth Standing Committee. He is a former UK representative to the European Bureau for Lesser Used Languages Youth Committee and also served on the Welsh Office Voluntary Sector Forum.

Llyr was selected to be Plaid Cymru's Parliamentary candidate for Clwyd West in July 2008.