Sunday, 26 June 2011


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The flower festival as part of LLANfest turned out to be such a crowd puller that it was extended for an extra week. This took place at the 'A' part of the word LLAN (an ancient religious settlement) ... the A is the Church at Aberhafesp, just 3 miles out of Drenewydd.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

LLANfest 2011 - Y Drenewydd

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'How's the painting going?' they ask!
Well for the last month or so many of us have been getting this, that and the other ready for LLANfest, a week of Christian celebration for the local churches of Llanllwcaiairn - Aberhafesp - Newtown .... LL A N (means church in Welsh) ... so Church Festival.
My bit of the jigsaw has been mainly to do with publicity along with others in the team. But there are many other groups involved in 'Feeding - presenting - feeding 50+ students from day til' night - services - flower festival - men's evening / women's evening - feeding students - chip suppers - an evening at the bowling alley, a night with Garin Jenkins (multiple capped Rugby star) - feeding students and did I mention 'food for students'. The students - one group from Birmingham RSPA - Riverside School of Performing Arts have been putting on presentations in local schools and at the carnival. The other, large group, is from Aberystwyth. They have been cleaning toilets, setting up, pulling down, litter picking and lots more .... all the time sharing their faith in Jesus. GR8T!!!!!

Monday, 6 June 2011


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On our way to Tremadog we stopped off at the old farm house, the old family home of the man known in Wales as HEDD WYN ... 'Blessed Peace' in English. We were given a very interesting talk by a relation of the Evans family, still living and working on the farm in this most spectacular, wild and remote part of Wales.

Ellis Humphrey Evans was born on 13 January 1887 in Pen Lan, a house in the middle of Trawsfynydd, Meirionydd, North Wales. He was the eldest of eleven children born to Evan and Mary Evans. In the spring of 1887 the family moved to the isolated hill-farm of Yr Ysgwrn, a few miles from Trawsfynydd.

Ellis Evans received a basic education at elementary and Sunday school. He left school at fourteen and began work as a shepherd on his father’s farm. He had not been a particularly brilliant student but he had a natural gift for poetry. He had already composed his first poems by the age of eleven.

He took part in eisteddfodau from the age of 19 and won his first chair at Bala in 1907. In 1910 he took the bardic name Hedd Wyn, Welsh for "blessed peace", a reference to the sun’s rays penetrating the mists in the valleys of Meirionydd. Hedd Wyn's main influence was the Romantic poetry of Percy Bysshe Shelley and themes of nature and religion dominated his work. In 1913 he won the chairs at Pwllheli and Llanuwchllyn and in 1915 he was successful at Pontardawe and Llanuwchllyn. The same year he wrote his first poem for the National Eisteddfod of Wales—Eryri, an ode to Snowdon. In 1916 he took second place at the Aberystwyth National Eisteddfod with Ystrad Fflur ("Strata Florida"), an awdl written in honour of the medieval Cistercian abbey ruins in Ceredigion. He determined to win the National Eisteddfodd chair the following year. [taken from Wiki]


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The beauty of Wales is that it hard to tie it down. It isn't THIS or THAT, it is many things, has many faces, many facets, so many different moods. Just two days away gave us flat meadows, grey slate, lush woodlands, wild waves, dolphins, deep heavy clouds, pink sunsets and Mediterranean illusions.
Some of the strong colourful images shown here come from Portmeirion in North Wales. It is the creation of the architect Clough Williams-Ellis who changed the name of the secluded port of Aber Ia (Ia is cold, as in ice-cream) to Portmeirion to reflect the name of the County of Merioneth.
Having the wooded bay at his disposal, Clough started to collect things, a fireplace, a column or two, statues from here, there and almost everywhere. From this store he began to put together creations with no coherent style in the conventional sense. Buildings are not what they first seem. The grand frontage of places showing the grandeur of Italy are often false, single story accommodation with a double story front. Look even closer and what seemed like arches and columns are painted on, open windows ... painted illusion. What seems like a genuine Italy fa├žade is in fact a fireplace from the north of England, the columns being found in a farm covered in years of manure and who knows what else!
You may well have seen this place in the 'Prisoners', 'Doctor Who'. Walking around over the years you might well have caught a glimpse of playwrights, pop stars, poets Brain Epstien and one of the Beatles.
Seen from across the estuary from Harlech it looks magical .... better still, it really is!


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