NEWPORT West has always had a strong sense of community spirit, but recent festivities have strengthened this even further.

We are a community all year round, and not just on special occasions.

The arrival of the Olympic Flame in Newport brought thousands to the city streets, all eager to cheer on the torchbearers and join in with the fun.

I was fortunate to attend celebrations at the Riverfront, where it was evident that the torch’s presence in Newport would become a part of the city’s history.

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee was celebrated widely across Newport West, with street parties, fetes and informal gatherings held to commemorate Queen Elizabeth II’s 60 years on the throne.

It was great to see many individuals from the local community coming together to enjoy the jubilee, and I extend a big thank you to all those involved in organising these events.

Perhaps the ‘jewel in the jubilee crown’ was the lighting of Newport’s Jubilee Beacon on Ridgeway, Allt-yr-yn.

Individuals from across Newport and further afield helped to create the beacon, attracting thousands of people for the night-time lighting ceremony.

It was fantastic to play a part in the ceremony, and my thanks to the organisers and hosts for such a special and memorable event.

Newport West has a number of Communities First areas, located in the Malpas, Gaer, Maesglas, Duffryn, Bettws and Stow Hill wards, with funding and support provided by the Welsh Government.

The initiative aims to improve the daily lives and prospects of people living in some of the more disadvantaged communities in Wales, by providing activities such as training, community development, youth projects, job support and activities for older people.

Communities First teams make a real difference in Newport West and across Wales, helping to achieve the Welsh Government’s goals of economic regeneration, community engagement and social justice as well as uniting people in our local communities.

To find out more about Communities First and how you can get involved visit

If you would like to raise any issues please contact me on 01633 222523 or You can view my website at or follow me on Twitter at @RosemaryButler