VOICES FROM WALES – THIRTY FIVE OF FIFTY-TWO, ROUTE 66 -TAFFS ON TOUR
Ian Gravell and Robin Bowen, motor bike enthusiasts and friends for years decided at the start of 2019 to plan an adventure of a lifetime.
From May 26th to June 26th they endured the mother road of America -= Route 66. Taking a month out of their busy lives they wanted to fulfil a dream that they had held in their imaginations for maybe thirty years.
Driving west on their motor bikes following a dream of a journey from Chicago to the Californian west. A dream sold to their younger lives by Hollywood and the film Industry of the USA.
Both men have had life threatening accidents in the past but their passion for the motor bike has lasted.
Ian delivers his travelogue with huge zeal of meeting new characters and an honest pleasure in seeing landscapes only seen in books.
I introduce you to:
Bow and Ianto – Taffs on Tour – ‘Making America Great Again’ - 2019
VOICES FROM WALES – THIRTY TWO OF FIFTY-TWO, YELLOW FACED CANARY GIRLS
Pembrey Country Park is a coastland parkland that has Cefn Sidan beach as its main attraction.
During the Great War of 1914-18 the park was used as a base for a munition factory which gave women employment from all over West Wales. The Royal Ordnance Factory was developed on a large scale.
Many of the women who worked there were stained yellow by the toxic chemicals that they were handling. They became known as the ‘canary girls’.
In 2018 a community workshop provided by Lorraine King and Andy Edwards for Pembrey Primary School took place. It was a storytelling session which ended up in the children writing the lyrics and Lorraine adding melody and the guitar parts. By the end of the afternoon the children sang and recording their song.
VOICES FROM WALES – THIRTY OF FIFTY-TWO, Introducing The 'Tin Shed' Experience
On June 4th, 2011 after 18 months of hard work by a small team of enthusiasts, an old derelict zinc garage in Laugharne was transformed into The Tin Shed Experience and opened to the Public. In a short space of time the museum became number one attraction in Carmarthenshire and at one point, number two museum in Wales.
Run by Seimon Pugh-Jones and his partner Meinir (Min) Evans, its popularity and reputation grew. It became a much-loved venue for music, the arts and history, with its unique and quirky style.
Its charm was based on the concept of being the opposite of most museums. Recycling and low carbon footprint was a major aspect of its development and also its low-tech approach, with interaction and visitor care a priority.
We concentrated on the period between 1914 to 1945.
The Tin Shed was just not a museum, it was also a venue for music events, its exhibits were used in film and TV and regularly loaned to theatre groups and other historical events/displays, some of which provided funding for the upkeep of the museum.
We achieved the Hall of Fame with trip advisor with amazing reviews. We've appeared in national newspapers. Our exhibits along with myself have appeared in a number of TV shows, TV dramas and radio shows.
In addition to normal daily visitors we worked closely with a number of schools and various groups including:
local businesses in bringing over 40,000+ visitors to the area. We helped create a feel-good factor within Laugharne.
Future Plans Due to the success of the previous museum our aim is to relocate the 1914 - 1945 museum to a new site. To integrate the museum into the community, to work with people with similar historical interests, schools and various charitable organisations.
VOICES FROM WALES – TWENTY NINE OF FIFTY-TWO, CILGERRAN CORACLE RACES
The Coracle Races are part of the Cilgerran Festive Week, an annual celebration bringing together the whole village in a number of activities from children’s sports to fancy dress and carnival. The main event is the traditional coracle racing which took place on Saturday August 24th 2019 on the River Teifi not far from the Castle ruins in Cilgerran.
The coracle is a small, rounded, lightweight boat traditionally used for net fishing of Atlantic salmon and sea trout known locally as sewin in the rivers of Wales. The tradition is kept alive by fisherman on the River Towy and Teifi.
The races give opportunities to novices and experts throughout the day
VOICES FROM WALES – TWENTY EIGHT OF FIFTY-TWO, CARMARTHENSHIRE WATER SAFETY PARTNERSHIP
Within Mother Bear Productions we are finding that we have raced ahead in our challenge of one video a week for Americymru. Prepared videos are being held up from being released for weeks after they are ready to be published. So we now intend to release videos once they are ready. It may be that some weeks we’ll release two videos.
This week we concentrate on the Carmarthenshire Water Safety Partnership and the extremely important work that Adam and other charity workers do towards water safety awareness in the county and all over Wales.
VOICES FROM WALES – TWENTY SEVEN OF FIFTY-TWO, BOSWORTH DAY AT ST PETER’S CHURCH CARMARTHEN
The Battle of Bosworth, the last battle of The War of The Roses is celebrated/commemorated in Carmarthen in August annually. The battle took place on 22 August 1485. The House of Lancaster was victorious over Richard and the House of York. Henry Tudor was crowned King, it was the beginning of the Tudor dynasty.
What’s Carmarthen got to do with Bosworth?
Sir Rhys ap Thomas was a Welsh soldier and supported Henry at Bosworth. It is believed that Rhys was the man who delivered the fatal blow to Richard III. The warrior poet of the time, Guto’r Glyn described the death of Richard as a vicious blow to the head with a battle axe, "killed the boar, shaved his head."
He was supposedly knighted on the battlefield and in return for his loyalty to Henry VII he was rewarded with titles that made him one of the most influential men in Wales.
Sir Rhys’s tomb is now situated in St Peter’s Church Carmarthen.
VOICES FROM WALES – TWENTY SIX OF FIFTY-TWO, WALK FOOTBALL IN WALES
Sport is loved all over Wales and football is a game that I was brought up on. There was no rugby for my generation in Carmarthen until you were Under 11 and then it was 15 a side District game on a full size pitch! The rugby clubs of town only offered the sport to Youth and Senior teams. All primary schools had the tradition of playing football on a Friday afternoon , eleven a side on specially prepared smaller pitches.
Rugby enthused us as youngsters, world class Gareth Edwards, Barry John , icons of the sport displayed their skills in the Five Nations Championship. But football lived alongside rugby and offered us other Welsh sporting heroes: John Charles , Leighton James, Gary Sprake, Terry Hennesey, Brian Flynn.
As we get older, joints creak, muscle get sore and sometimes the heart beats to an irregular pace but the older generation can still feel the buzz of the team ethic and the thrill of competition in walk football sessions at the same pitch that I would have played those primary school cup finals : Richmond Park, Carmarthen.
Josh Edwards, is coach at Carmarthen Town AFC – ‘ The Old Golds ’.
Check the video out and find a club near you and start enjoying sport again.
VOICES FROM WALES – TWENTY FIVE OF FIFTY-TWO, SPOKEN WORD SATURDAY
Spoken Word Saturday is held on the second Saturday of the month at the Zion Chapel in Llanelli. It is organised by Eleanor Shaw of People Speak Up . It attracts young and old and is open to all. It gives people an opportunity to perform prose and poetry in front of a knowledgeable and caring audience.
The afternoon has invited guests who headline the afternoon: a musical performer and a professional story teller. The afternoon is held as part of Theatr Ffwrnes.
This week Ioan Hefin led the professional performers with excerpts from a new venture, Play and a Pint, that he was taking on tour around pubs and venues in Carmarthenshire. Ioan is a university lecturer in Carmarthen and is an accomplished actor, https://www.imdb.com/name/nm2955942/
Last week a good friend and board member of People Speak Up , Mark Montinaro, died. He had been a supporter of Spoken Word Saturdays since the very beginning and was a regular performer. Although not known by all the performers on this day he was remembered with recitals of his poetry, personal stories and poetry written in his memory.