More top reasons that a holiday in Wales is better than jetting abroad

Wales may not be the most obvious choice for a summer holiday but there is much more to this stunning country than first meets the eye. From rolling hills and picturesque valleys to miles of beautiful coastline, Wales is a holiday destination just bursting with memorable experiences.

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A report in The Mirror highlighted that there was a 10% increase in Brits opting to stay in the country rather than jetting abroad for their holidays last summer and that 80% of us agree that a ‘staycation’ is less stressful than venturing further afield. With this in mind, what top tourist treats can you enjoy in Wales this year?

Cliff jumping

With plenty of coastline and ragged cliff fronts, the opportunity for thrill seekers to go ‘coasteering’ (which includes rock climbing, cliff jumping and swimming) is plentiful. You can even spend the night suspended on makeshift beds hanging from the cliff faces of Anglesey – an adventurous take on camping for willing Welsh Coast Campers. Or you can sit tight and watch the professional cliff jumpers make their daring descent into the sea: the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series takes place in Abereiddy.

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The Hay Festival

This world-renowned book festival takes place annually in the picturesque market town of Hay-on-Wye. Don’t be deceived by the quaint setting – this literature festival is one of the most famous in the world and attracts writers, artists and politicians from across the globe. Welsh Coast Campers can help you set up nearby and enjoy the atmosphere.

TV fans’ delight

If you are a fan of hit TV shows such as Gavin and Stacey or Dr Who then there are plenty of opportunities to visit key settings for the shows in Wales. Barry in the Vale of Glamorgan offers tours dedicated to the popular comedy show, while Cardiff is home to the Dr Who attraction.

A golfer’s paradise

Keen golfers will be pleased to hear that Wales is home to a whopping 200 golf courses in a variety of different settings. From large, well-known courses such as Royal St Davids to smaller, community-led courses, there really is something for everyone – why not tour the country trying out as many courses as possible?

Wales really does pack a lot of stunning scenery into a small space! Discover your Welsh adventure this summer.

5 ways to make the most of your warm home

Thanks to the advancement of technology such as insulation, we can brace our homes for the cold outside using methods that are sustainable and cost-effective. However, there are ways to make your home more enjoyable, keeping the winter blues away and passing the colder season in your warm home using these five tips.

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1.      Socialise with family and friends

Winter should not be spent alone; there is peace of mind, comfort and warmth in the companionship of others. Fill your home with fun and laughter, especially as the festive season has passed. Continue to get together for different occasions such as board games or card games, dinner parties, movie nights, or simply to spread goodwill to others.

2.      Eat well

Food is a comfort in winter, but ensure you do not overeat. Moderation is key when it comes to indulgent temptations during the long dark evenings. Eat healthily and try to balance your diet with satisfying warm food like hot soups or curries and ensure you eat enough Vitamin D foods such as soy, fish and mushrooms.

3.      Get comfortable

Ensure your home is inviting and cosy and provide constant cheer by keeping things neat and comfortable. Your home should be properly insulated, with the central heating switched on. For boiler installation in Gloucester enquire with Gloucester boiler Installers. Do not overheat your home and ensure to only heat the rooms you are using.

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Switch on lamps and allow more light to enter as the days are so short, introduce bright colours and scents with flowers and candles. Adding blankets and rugs can create inviting and snug surroundings.

4.      Stay active

It is tempting to remain indoors as snow falls outside, but this is no excuse to skip exercise. It is crucial to your health to keep active, and you will feel more content if you maintain levels of fitness. Moving will also help keep you warm from within, so try indoor activities such as skipping rope, stair stepping, strength circuit training or lifting weights.

5.      Broaden your horizon

Use the winter months as an excuse to learn something new and spend the time at home to study any subject, skill or language. There are plenty of online courses available in any subject you choose, check out books at the library and watch video tutorials.

How to choose the right hydraulic hose

Hydraulic hose is a remarkably versatile method of moving pressurised fluid from one location to another. Because the hose is flexible, it can bend to accommodate tight corners, or it can be used across long stretches to link two pieces of equipment. It’s a great help in positioning system components because it’s so adaptable. The use of silicone has hugely extended the range of suitable applications for hydraulic hoses.

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However, this very versatility means that there are lots of different hose types available from a silicone hose manufacturer and it can be confusing to decide which is the best option. There are also many different national and international standards that apply to hydraulic hoses, but even the most common standards, such as the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), can vary from one manufacturer to another. It’s essential to have the right fittings to go with the hose, engineered to the correct tolerances.

In hydraulic hoses, size really matters

The hoses usually have an inner tube that conveys the fluid, then a layer of wire or yarn-based reinforcement around that, then an outer layer wrapping around the inner layers. The inner tube needs to be suitable for the type of fluid it’s going to be carrying. The outer layer needs to be able to resist abrasion or the elements, depending on where it is being used. Silicone tubing is extremely resistant to high temperature fluids, and this makes it ideal for applications where heat is generated or where coolant needs to be moved through a system.

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Silicone hoses have several advantages

The same properties make silicone ideal for the outer layer of a hydraulic hose because it doesn’t peel or crack when it’s exposed to hot or cold air, or to ozone at sea. Because it dampens down vibration, it’s an excellent choice where parts may be slightly misaligned because it tolerates movement. Are you wondering, where can I find a silicone hose manufacturer?

If you buy from a silicone hose manufacturer with a comprehensive stock, you can take advantage of the wide range of colours that silicone comes in. In a large or complex application, differently coloured hoses can be used to indicate which fluids are being carried.

This colour coding makes maintenance easier and can contribute to safer working.

Can in-truck cameras save operators money?

A growing number of hauliers are fitting their trucks with cameras which can simultaneously capture video of the road ahead and the driver at the wheel. Can this be cost effective?

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Costs

With rising costs from the insurance companies, hauliers are faced with fitting cameras to help settle claims for damage to their fleets. Accidents are always going to happen, but apportioning blame has always been difficult, with many disputes about who was at fault. As such, footage from a camera will make a huge difference, as this footage can be used in court, if necessary. While fitting a truck camera is not going to reduce insurance premiums, (although some companies do offer a discount), it can prevent those premiums going up in the case of a claim. With crash for cash incidents on the up, insurance has risen by 10%, so a forward facing camera could prove the innocence of your driver and reduce the occurrence of insurance fraud.

Safety

A truck camera is also a reliable safety feature. With its GPS technology, it is able to pinpoint the vehicle’s exact position, so in the case of hijacking or vehicle theft, valuable data is available for the police to track down the perpetrator.

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Data

With some truck cameras available online from Backwatch, the valuable data recorded can be used in the future for creating the most cost-effective transport routes and it can also give information back to customers regarding any delays in the delivery schedule, due to roadworks, accidents or other issues.

Efficiency

While some drivers are not happy having their working day recorded on a camera, overall it is proving to make drivers work more efficiently and more safely. This will, in time, prove cost-effective with lower fuel and maintenance costs and lower wear and tear on tyres and clutches.

Accidents

Historically, 90% of crashes are caused by human error, so a driver-facing camera can correct the bad habits of even the most experienced driver.

Decision

Haulage companies have got a tough decision to make on whether this technology is worth getting, especially with a shortage of experienced drivers. It would be advantageous if all haulage fleets adopted the use of cameras. Drivers would then have to accept them and not be able to swap over to a fleet that does not use cameras.

Why is health and safety so vital at work?

The potential for accidents and damage at work comes with a cost, whether replacing hazardous machinery or the health and wellbeing of your workforce. Health and safety systems designed to protect and safeguard have grown over the years into a robust framework that prevents and protects.

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Despite health and safety legislation, millions of working days continue to be lost due to accident and illness, making attention to health and safety not only a social responsibility but also smart business sense. Remember that the underlying principles are straightforward: to eradicate the risk to the health and safety of your employees as far as is practical.

Getting started

The Health and Safety Executive has a wide range of free leaflets to help you get started. You will need to put accident reporting and first aid procedures in place, and make sure that you have adequate employers’ liability insurance. Before implementing health and safety measures, you should always consult your workforce and conduct a business-wide assessment of your health and safety needs as the first step towards the introduction of an effective health and safety management system.

Managing health and safety

You will need to put together policy and procedure, with a clear chain of responsibility for managing health and safety at work. You must be able to plan, organise and review your preventative measures and comply with your legal obligations.

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Identifying hazard, assessing risk, controlling risk

Once you have pinpointed what can cause harm, you need to make a clear assessment of the risk of that harm actually occurring. Work out what needs to be done and act on any recommendations; for example, if you identify a faulty spiral duct and find a supplier that states ‘spiral ducts available online here’, you have actively prevented possible harm by controlling the risk.

A risk assessment should not be a weighty document that sits on a shelf; instead, it should be a working tool that demonstrates what steps you are taking to safeguard your workers from harm. Your control mechanisms should be both adequate and reviewed on a regular basis; for example, the aforementioned new spiral duct should be regularly inspected and maintained.

It is your responsibility to reduce or even eliminate risk at its source. Personal protective equipment should always be a last resort rather than a first line of defence.

12 interesting Italian food facts

If you thought Italian food was only spaghetti and pizza, then think again! Here are twelve interesting facts about Italian food to help you get better acquainted with this world-famous cuisine.

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Facts 1-6

1. If you share a dining table with an Italian, you’ll always find bread, water and wine but be careful never to place the bread upside down on the table otherwise it could bring you bad luck.

2. Italians take their dining very seriously: lunch usually begins with antipasti, followed by two other courses, dessert and an espresso coffee.

3. There are many interesting foodstuffs you’ll find on a dining table in Italy, such as horse, donkey, goat, sea urchin, sparrows, peacock and sea snails!

4. Italians usually only drink a milky coffee in the mornings as they like to dunk cakes or biscuits into cappuccinos and lattes.

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5. A familiar Italian saying before eating a meal is Buon appetito!, which is to wish diners in Italian restaurants in Dublin and around the world a good appetite.

6. Pizza originated in Naples during the 18th century when it was a flat, dry bread considered a food for poorer people. However, in 1889, once Queen Margherita tasted it, she ordered variations of ‘pizza’ from her chef who consequently created the Pizza Margherita.

Facts 7-12

7. During Christmas, Italians will eat a panettone, a special sweet bread cake. And on the 1st of January they’ll feast on lentils for good luck in the New Year.

8. There are countless types of pasta shapes and different sizes of pasta, which can be eaten either dried or fresh.

9. The word spaghetti actually means ‘strings’ from the days before factories when people would make their own spaghetti and hang them out to dry.

10. Lucrezia Borgia lends her name to the pasta we know as ‘tagliatelle’. This is in honour of her long, blonde hair and this pasta type is now widely served in many popular restaurants such as forno500.

11. The first pasta factory was opened in 1824 near Genova by the Agnese family.

12. There are various names given to the different types of establishments selling food in Italy. For example, you can buy any type of food in a Ristorante except for a pizza. For pizza you must go to a Pizzeria, of course!