HEALTH Minister Vaughan Gething lent his support to Chris Ruane as he joined him on the campaign trail in Rhyl.

Mr Ruane, Welsh Labour’s parliamentary candidate for the Vale of Clwyd, is hoping to keep his seat at this election. Mr Ruane has been the MP for the Vale of Clwyd since 1997. He lost his seat in 2015 to James Davies, Welsh Conservative, and then reclaimed in at the snap election in 2017.

The politician held his Labour Campaign launch on November 7. Mr Gething joined him on his Rhyl stomping ground on Monday, November 11 at the Royal Alex, where the North Denbighshire Community Hospital is set to be built.

“We are making a £40million investment,” Mr Vaughan said. “Its main point is its step up and step down care.

“I made the choice of investing in the Alex. It is a choice I am pleased I made and I am looking forward to it. It will make a significant difference.

“It brings care closer to home and to their own community as well as a much wider offer of care and care that is more specialised.

“Part of the rational is to take away pressures from Glan Clwyd Hospital, freeing up space and time.”

That morning, Mr Gething met with Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) and the nurse rotas were discussed as part of a wider meeting.

BCUHB has made a dramatic U-turn by shelving controversial changes to nurse rotas that could have forced staff to work an extra shift each month.

“It was a positive meeting,” Mr Gething commented.

“Staff should have a work pattern that make sense for them and allows for them to take a proper break in the working day.

“That is to be resolved with trade unions.”

Mr Gething also touched on Rhyl’s flood defence scheme and whether the scheme - which aims to reduce the risk of coastal flooding in the Garford Road area of East Rhyl and protect against a one in 50 year storm - could have started earlier.

“This is an investment of £27 million in Rhyl,” he added.

“We would always like to start things sooner.

“In the cabinet we have to make painful and difficult decisions. There is a never ending appetite to invest more money in the health services but with an ever reducing budget, we can’t do it all.”

Speaking about Mr Ruane, Mr Gething added: “I have known Chris for a very long time.

“He is deeply committed to Rhyl and the people of Rhyl are fortunate to have such a committed champion.”