Offa’s Dyke Path, day 2: Chepstow to Bigsweir

May 20, 2019 0 Comments
Offa’s Dyke Path, day 2: Chepstow to Bigsweir

After breakfast we wait for three more guestwalkers, J, G and A.  It’s unusual to have as many as six in the group, and there can be drawbacks – losing members by accident on the way, for example – but it makes for a rich mix of character and conversation.  We cross the old iron […]

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Offa’s Dyke Path, day 1: Sedbury Cliffs to Chepstow

May 19, 2019 0 Comments
Offa’s Dyke Path, day 1: Sedbury Cliffs to Chepstow

A couple of ancient carriages, probably scheduled to be replaced by Transport for Wales in the year 2030, rattle their way into Chepstow Station.  One of the few adverts inside is for a useful sounding firm called Simple Cremations.  As we get out it’s raining hard, and C and I dive into the station café […]

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Offa a’r Cymry

May 12, 2019 1 Comment
Offa a’r Cymry

Offa, brenin Mercia, a fu farw yn y flwyddyn 796, yw’r unig frenin Eingl-sacsonaidd y mae ei enw yn rhan o fyd ieithyddol Cymru.  A hynny am un rheswm yn unig, oherwydd ei gysylltiad â ‘Chlawdd Offa’.  Gan ein bod ni ar fin taclo’r Clawdd ar droed, neu o leiaf y rhan ddeheuol ohono, meddyliais […]

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Steel mountain

May 4, 2019 1 Comment
Steel mountain

For an early May walk the three of us are back here in Port Talbot, a town much in the news lately.  First things first: coffee and serious cakes in a popular café, Selections, as fuel for a steep ascent.   As always in Port Talbot, smiles and friendliness greet us. Then we wander across the […]

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How to be an MP

April 28, 2019 0 Comments
How to be an MP

The news of Paul Flynn’s death in February 2019 met with widespread dismay.  Surveys tells us regularly that MPs rank lower in public estimation than almost any other group in society, with the exception of bankers, but here was an exception: a man of integrity who was true to his principles and his constituents, and […]

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The Londonification of Cardiff

April 21, 2019 6 Comments
The Londonification of Cardiff

It’s a commonplace that the UK has the least well-balanced economy in Western Europe.  While London and its region, dominated by financial and allied services, continue to grow and thrive, the rest of the country is bogged in post-industrial depression, suffering still from the effects of George Osborne’s planned ‘austerity’ (still very much with us, […]

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Three paintings in Vienna

April 14, 2019 1 Comment
Three paintings in Vienna

In the Leopold Museum in Vienna, a long wall is covered with small panels that show photographs and short lives of dozens of cultural figures who were active in the city at the start of the twentieth century: Freud, Mahler, Schoenberg, Musil, Wedekind, Klimt and many others – almost all of them well-known today.  Only […]

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Walking with windmills

April 7, 2019 0 Comments
Walking with windmills

The Heart of Wales line train leaves me at the station in Ammanford.  It’s still, sunny, and warm, the second day of summer time, with an extra hour of daylight walking.  My plan is to cross Mynydd y Betws and Mynydd y Gwair and drop down the Lliw valley to Gowerton, completing the Gower Way.  […]

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Up the Ely river

March 29, 2019 0 Comments
Up the Ely river

Where we start happens to be in south Cardiff, but could be anywhere in the world in 2019.  Apartments are stacked in Duplo’d piles, each block with a ‘concierge’ and a primary colour.  Sheds, with metal roofs shaped in shallow arcs, are home to companies that shelter behind opaque titles, usually including the word ‘global’.  […]

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Abaty Cymer, abaty dirgel

March 24, 2019 0 Comments
Abaty Cymer, abaty dirgel

Faint o weithiau dych chi’n gyrru’n gyflym ar hyd yr A470 o Lanelltud tua Dolgellau, gan anwybyddu’r lôn fach i’r chwith, yn syth ar ôl croesi afon Mawddach, sy’n arwain at Abaty Cymer?   Y dydd o’r blaen ymwelais â’r Abaty am y tro cyntaf.  O’r maes parcio, tro bach yw e lawr i’r afon, a’r […]

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