MANY of you have contacted me to express your shock and concern that the Welsh Government considerably under funds education budgets in the Vale of Glamorgan.

Education funding per pupil is over £600 less across Penarth and the Vale than the average for Wales - with £5,022 spent per pupil this year – compared to the Welsh figure of £5,628.

Parents have been unsurprisingly angered by this news – fearing the impacts it will have on local pupils’ educations.

Teachers in St Cyres, Stanwell and primary schools across Penarth work exceptionally hard – but they are not helped by a funding formula used by the Welsh Government that dates back to 1991.

It is frankly appalling that incompetence from ministers in Cardiff Bay could put everything at risk.

What’s worse is the problem goes far beyond education – and I’ve long campaigned for a fairer funding settlement for the Vale of Glamorgan.

The UK Government has provided Wales with record levels of funding – far more than Labour ever did when they were in power.

Yet the Welsh Government have squandered it.

This has to stop – since it’s clear local people will not put up with it any longer.

Marie Curie is a great charity operating in Penarth and across the Vale – so it was excellent to have the opportunity to attend the launch of this year’s Great Daffodil Appeal at the Senedd recently.

Their Cardiff and Vale Hospice – located in Penarth – does a lot of invaluable work supporting terminally ill people and their families.

But they can only do all of this with the generous support of local people.

The Great Daffodil Appeal is now in its 32nd year – and is one of Marie Curie’s biggest methods of fundraising.

So – please join me in supporting the appeal to enable Marie Curie to continue their fantastic work.

It’s certainly been a month of developments as far as the Barry incinerator is concerned.

We were initially greeted with the bad news that the Natural Resources Wales granted the plant an operating licence – which I and many others campaigned so strongly against.

But in a new twist – announced in the Senedd last week – Minister for Environment Hannah Blythyn confirmed she is “minded to” insist that an Environmental Impact Assessment be carried out as part of the latest planning application.

On top of this – she confirmed to me in an answer to a Written Assembly Question that she was happy for her officials to meet with local campaigners to discuss the incinerator.

This represents a considerable change in stance – and one I wholly welcome.

Many people assume the incinerator will only affect Barry – but being in the vicinity it has the potential to affect Dinas Powys, Sully and Penarth too.

It shows that hard work can make a difference – but I’m under no illusions that there is still plenty of scope for backtracking.

Please be assured I’ll continue to do all I can to stand up for Barry, Penarth and the whole Vale when it comes to the incinerator.