Beach clean to help make a difference

12 September 2017

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As part of Cooke & Arkwright’s commitment to helping to protect the environment, as demonstrated by our ISO 14001 Environmental Management certification, members of staff volunteer to undertake an annual exercise that actively helps to make a difference.

In April 2017 a group of volunteers from the firm went to Swanbridge in Sully to carry out a community beach clean in collaboration with Surfers Against Sewage (SAS). Swanbridge is directly opposite Sully Island, popular with visitors at low tide when it can be accessed from the beach. SAS provided all the equipment and health and safety advice, and permission for the clean-up was granted by the owner of the beach. The volunteers worked in two groups starting from separate ends of the beach.

The teams spent around two hours collecting litter which had been washed up on the beach. Despite the owner of the beach arranging for periodic beach cleans, we were surprised by the amount of rubbish we collected. It highlighted just how much litter and debris is in circulation in our seas. Amongst other things there was a half-full, large discarded thermos flask, yards of fishing line and hooks, shoes and flip flops. Around 10 large bags of rubbish were collected, with far and above the main culprit being plastic items.

Planning is underway to identify another worthwhile activity that will help to make a difference in 2018.

Cooke & Arkwright have been providing rating valuation advice to The Welsh Rugby Union Limited (“WRU”) and Millennium Stadium plc for many years. They were recently successful in achieving substantial reductions in the assessments of the Millennium Stadium, covering both the 2005 and 2010 rating list. These negotiated reductions yielded savings of c.£3.5m which, crucially, allows the WRU to re-invest in rugby throughout Wales. They advise the WRU across the group portfolio including the National Centre of Excellence in the Vale of Glamorgan. The valuation issues across the WRU portfolio are complex requiring a high level of understanding of the funding and finances of professional sport in Wales. Cooke & Arkwright’s experience and understanding of these issues and application to the rating valuation have yielded these substantial negotiated reductions. The WRU and the Millennium Stadium entrust our work to organisations with the required levels in experience and expertise in dealing with these complex issues. I am glad to say we have this expertise in Wales. I would have no hesitation in recommending ratepayers making use of this Welsh based expertise.

Steve Phillips, Group Finance Director, Welsh Rugby Union Group