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Swansea University makes a home for wildlife with its new four year plan

THE Mumbles Summer Festival kicked off with a parade up Newton Road to New Well lane and back by the famous Mumbles Samba Tawe Band and Dancers. Two Victorian Policemen escorted the band and the fancy dress participants along Newton Road which was closed for the evening for the event.





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Biodiversity forms the foundation of the processes we rely on for life, that is why Swansea University is committed to implementing its new Biodiversity Action Plan launched today (28 July 2016).Swansea University is blessed with a wealth of habitats across its two campuses, from the beach and dunes of the Bay to the woodland and gardens of Singleton.





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Mrs Mangel Neighbours star Vivean Gray has died


30 July

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These habitats are home to a rich variety of wildlife and provide the University with a wonderful resource, whether for teaching the next generation of ecologists vital skills and giving opportunities for research, or simply a healthy and relaxing environment for staff, students and local residents to recharge their batteries.


The Singleton Campus is regularly visited by iconic animals such as otters, polecats and kingfishers, there is a resident peregrine falcon and bats roost in the Abbey buildings.


The University is also responsible for the last remaining wilderness of the Swansea Bay coast – the 600 acres of sand dune, saltmarsh and beach of Crymlyn Burrows Site of Special Scientific Interest next door to the new Bay Campus and both campuses are open for everyone to enjoy.


Launching the new four year plan Swansea University’s Biodiversity Officer Ben Sampson said: “Whilst the University has two campuses which have very rich environments we know that we cannot be complacent. Nature is constantly under pressure. Last year’s State of the Environment report found that Europe’s biodiversity continues to be eroded, with 60% of assessed species and 77% of habitats continuing to be in unfavourable conservation status.


“ While the world is losing wildlife at an unprecedented rate, the University has already taken a number of actions to enhance and promote biodiversity across its sites. They include embedding wildlife gardening techniques in the way we look after our grounds – leaving rough uncultivated areas, reducing mowing in areas of flower-rich grassland to let plants set seed, creating log piles and using home-produced compost as a mulch to reduce the use of pesticides; nest boxes and bug hotels have been put up around the campus, and a Nature Trail established (which was launched by the well-known nature observer and TV presenter Iolo Williams).


“ Having expert ecologists and keen students at the University is a massive bonus – the campuses can be used as a living laboratory and their research helps us to understand the wildlife we share our University with, ensuring that our work to protect it is based on the best possible information available. “ The new  41 point Biodiversity Action Plan covers a range of objectives from promotion of the use of the campus green space, encouraging volunteering opportunities for staff and students, the compilation of a species list and the creation of new habitats.


“Embedding sustainability in the University's daily operations and teaching is at the heart of our institution's quest to achieve excellence in every aspect. The new Biodiversity Action Plan will help us move forward to reach our goal.”  


TV Vivean Gray – the British-born actress who played meddlesome Neighbours character Nell Mangel – has died at the age of 92.

Vivean was best known for her role in the Australian soap, but also played gossipy neighbour Ida Jessup in The Sullivans. She landed her most famous role, as busybody Mrs Mangel in Neighbours, in 1986.


The actress became an overnight star in the soap but her role was so convincing that she received abuse from viewers, and decided to leave Neighbours after two years.


“You’ve just got to have a sense of humour about the whole thing, and rationalise it by saying at least the character is working!” she once said of the reaction to her alter-ego. Neighbours executive producer Jason Herbison said in a statement: “It’s with great sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Vivean Gray.

A FAMILY trio wow's Swansea shoppers with their instruments and singing. Dad and his two sons were busking in Swansea's Oxford Street on Saturday afternoon that got crowds stopping to listen and applaud after every song.

A little drizzle did not stop hundreds of residents and tourists from afar as Australia lining the pavements taking photos and enjoying the party. Cafes and restaurants remained open till late and the local pub - The White Rose - did a rouring trade with meals at £8 for two.


There was a fun fair at the New Well Lane end for the kids, rides and stalls were also along each side of the road selling all sorts of food and drinks. Badger and the - Wave Mobile Radio Station - was there pumping out well known classic favourites to the crowds to give the evening a party atmosphere.


This event is the start of Mumbles Summer Festival which lasts a month. The tennis courts have been taken over by huge marques and rides for the children, and on Sunday Mumbles presents the - Raft Race - over a hundred thousand people watched it last year to see 50 home made rafts of all themes race each other on the one mile course to Knabs Rock. Go early if you are coming by car as parking is at a premium.

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Swansea UNI plant 1

Wild flowers in the Abbey Meadow, Singleton Campus.

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Wild flowers at the new Bay Campus.

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Visitors and staff enjoying the Nature Trail, Singleton Campus.

image010 Vivean Gray actress

“Mrs Mangel was the ultimate busybody, remembered for her conservatism and her caustic wit. She was a true soap legend and we thank her for all the wonderful memories.” Rick Maier, head of drama at Network Ten, told Australian blog TV Tonight: “Mrs Mangel and Mrs Jessup were two of our most iconic characters from one our very best character actors. “Ramsay Street changed forever, and certainly no secret was ever safe, with Mrs Mangel on the lookout. “Vivean’s contribution to Australian drama will never be forgotten. It is a very sad day for the Neighbours family.”


She moved to Australia in 1953, looking for acting work, and landed roles on the stage and in radio.


The actress is said to have moved back to West Sussex after leaving Neighbours.

Weather_Symbols_sunand cloud Buskers - The Williams family. Danny Jay Williams aged 11 - Drums. Billy Williams aged 17 - Harmonica. Dave Williams aged 48 - Guitar.

Dad - Dave Williams, 48, Billy Williams, 17, and Danny Jay Williams, 11, from Port Tennant, Swansea said that this is their first time at busking in the city streets and by looks of things its going down very well.


Dave Williams said: "The boys are all self taught with the instruments as is myself, we rehearse in the house and sing together to get the songs right."


Film producer and professional actor to the film industry Franco DeMarco said: "They are very good, the father needs to think about taking it further like, Britain's Got Talent."


A lot of Swansea shoppers all agreed that they should come back again soon.