THE closure of an agricultural machinery dealership in Crymych has been described as a “huge blow” to north Pembrokeshire’s economy by one of Wales’ biggest farming unions.

Riverlea said it is merging its two main depots in Crymych and Whitland. Closing Crymych in the coming months and creating one main depot in Whitland, 17 miles away.

The move will mean employees previously based at Crymych will have to commute to Whitland to keep their jobs.

the firm has been based in Crymych for more than half a century and employs up to 20 people in the village.

The workers will now face a 35-mile round-trip daily commute to the Whitland site.

Company owner David Hill said all staff “will continue exactly as before” and that the transition was likely to take place slowly over the coming months.

Mr Hill said the company was also exploring the possibility of of operating at satellite sites to provide further coverage, but said it was a case of “business as usual”.

However the Farmers’ Union of Wales (FUW) says that has described the closure as “sad news” and a “sign of the times”.

“This is a huge loss for the rural economy in north Pembrokeshire,” said FUW managing director Alan Davies.

“Unfortunately it is a sign of the times and reinforces just how dependant these second and third sector businesses are on farming.

“Twenty jobs in Crymych are as important as hundreds in other parts of Wales.

“It’s time for the Welsh Government to recognise rural Wales needs support.

“We know cabinet secretary for economy and infrastructure Ken Skates is consulting on business support, and we’ll be responding accordingly, highlighting the need for more rural focus and less interest on attracting foreign investment.”