Monday, 24 October 2011


So the long awaited bathroom renovations have finally begun, and I am finally, after a very long and frustrating search, going to have a water saving toilet...

The government tells us we need to save water.  Dwr Cymru tells us to save water.  (Personally, I knew that I should be saving water anyway, even before I was told...)  So I'm redoing the bathroom and I know that my toilet is quite old and probably uses 11 or 13 litres a flush (yes, I already did the brick in the cistern thing...)  I want to put in a water saving toilet, but can I find one?

Went into my local builders' merchant and the guy there had no idea about the water usage of any of the toilets they sell.  So I went to the internet and learned all about the differences between valve toilets and siphon toilets.  As best as I can tell, and conversations with several plumbers confirm this, siphon toilets are so clearly superior to valve toilets that I'm baffled as to why on earth the UK government ever legalised them.  So I decide I want a siphon toilet -- but if you look on plumbing supply web sites at toilets, they give you options about style, cistern shape, matching sinks, etc, but I have yet to find a mainstream website that actually tells you about water saving toilets and how much water they use.

I rang Dwr Cymru and spoke with somebody who said that yes, they would suggest that I install a water saving toilet, but no, they can't help me find one.  Waterwise has a list of water saving products for the bathroom that includes some toilets, but when I followed the links for one of the toilets, it directed me to the manufacturer's web site which in turn asked for my postcode and then suggested that my local builders' merchant that I'd already been to stocked their toilets -- don't know if this is true as I didn't bother going back there and specifically asking for this toilet, but when I first went there and asked for a water saving toilet the guy looked at me like I was mad.

I eventually found the ES4 4/2.7 litre siphon toilet but only because I was previously aware of the Green Building Store from my quest to find non-toxic wood preservative for the shed -- but I had to be very determined in my quest!  Why is this information not more readily available for consumers less motivated than myself???  And why are leak-prone valve toilets becoming more and more commonplace when they are so clearly the worse option???

The above photo shows the new cistern, still in its box, sitting on top of the old cistern -- so if it's that much smaller IN THE BOX, imagine how small it will be out of it!  And how much my water bill will go down!

Monday, 10 October 2011

Have posted the following to the Carmarthen Journal -- let's see if they print it -- not sure if I've sent it too late for this week's deadline...

10 October 2011
The Editor
Carmarthen Journal
18 King Street
SA31 1BN
Dear Sir,
There has been much said in these pages and at the meeting hosted by Llandeilo Town Council last Wednesday night about how we need Sainsbury’s in Llandeilo because it is cheaper.  I decided to check this out for myself and discovered that it is not as clear-cut as it seems.
I went to Sainsbury’s in Lampeter and checked prices on a number of items there and then checked the prices on the same items in the Co-op in Llandeilo and found that a number of basic items, including wholemeal sliced loaf, milk, cream, and margarine, are exactly the same price in both stores.  Some items, such as white granulated sugar, are cheaper in the Co-op.  Tea is cheaper in Sainsbury’s while instant coffee is cheaper in the Co-op.
The conclusion to be drawn from this is that which shop is cheaper for the individual shopper depends on what you’re buying – Sainsbury’s is not necessarily cheaper than options we already have in Llandeilo – and, in fact, milk is cheaper in CK’s than in either Sainsbury’s or the Co-op.
Another point raised at the meeting last Wednesday was how much local produce Sainsbury's would stock in the proposed store.  The representative from Sainsbury’s said that he couldn’t say how many items from SA19 there would be as there wasn’t presently a store in SA19.  In the Sainsbury’s in Lampeter, which has been open for over two years now, postcode SA48, I was unable to find a single item produced in the SA48 postcode.
As the representative from Sainsbury’s confirmed in response to my question, if, after the store is built, it then transpires that it does adversely affect local businesses or adds to the traffic and pollution problems in Llandeilo, we have no recourse.  Is it worth taking this chance?  I think not.
Yours truly,

Jessica Wecker

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Llandeilo Fawr Town Council's
Public Meeting on the Sainsbury Issue.

Llandeilo Town Council have decreed in closed session the rules for the meeting will be thus:

The Public Meeting will go ahead on Wednesday, 5 October.

The meeting will be held in the Civic Hall, Crescent Road, Llandeilo, at 7.30 PM.

The meeting will be open to all.

The Chairperson will be chosen by (?) from 5 possible options.

There will be two presentations, each lasting 15 minutes. The first presentation will be from Sainsbury outlining their proposal, and the second from Save Llandeilo's Future.

Next, a 30 minute session responding to written questions.

The closing date for written questions to be received by Roger Phillip's (Town Clerk) was 5.30 PM, Thursday, 29 September.

Next, speakers will be instructed to leave the platform, and having left the platform the speakers will be told they can leave the meeting if they wish.

No questions will be allowed from the floor.

Instead, without the speakers being present on the platform, the Council then will allow 30 minutes for the audience to debate the implications of Sainsbury's proposal amongst themselves.


Poster by Save Llandeilo's Future