Tag: Wales

R. M. Lockley, coastwalking pioneer

June 3, 2017 2 Comments
R. M. Lockley, coastwalking pioneer

Preparing for a talk about coastwalking in Plas Brondanw in a week or two I’ve been thinking about the origins of the practice of walking around the coast of a country, and specifically Wales.  When, I wondered, did coastwalking start to become a conscious mode of walking for travellers and tourists?  Rebecca Solnit, in her […]

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Magnus Maximus, man and memory

November 21, 2016 0 Comments
Magnus Maximus, man and memory

Doing some research recently on the Roman fort and settlement of Segontium I found myself face to face with a Roman emperor, Magnus Maximus.  His story is interesting but not unusual.  Later memory of him, especially in his guise as Macsen Wledig, is singular. His face stares out of coins he had minted to cement […]

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Peter Lord’s ‘The Tradition’

October 8, 2016 0 Comments
Peter Lord’s ‘The Tradition’

In front of me is a copy of The artist in Wales, the first book to attempt a full conspectus of art in Wales, past and present.  It was written in 1957 by David Bell, when he was Curator of the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery.  It’s a drab volume, even taking into account the austere […]

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Wales and whales

August 29, 2016 3 Comments
Wales and whales

Last week several very unusual sightings of long-finned pilot whales were recorded off the coast of Wales. Pilot whales rarely leave the deep sea, but cetologists think that these examples were following food – they eat squid and small fish – that have also wandered on to the continental shelf. Today whales and other sea mammals […]

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A curious traveller in north Wales

August 20, 2016 0 Comments
A curious traveller in north Wales

There’s an excellent collaborative research project in train at the moment, led by Bangor University, called European travellers to Wales.  Its workers are busy unearthing accounts by tourists – writers and artists – from the Continent who visited Europe between 1750 and 2010.  At the same time another project, Curious travellers: Thomas Pennant and the […]

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Kyffin Williams the writer

February 5, 2016 3 Comments
Kyffin Williams the writer

The text of the 8th Kyffin Williams Annual Lecture, given at Highgate School, London on 1 February 2016. First, I’d like to thank David Smith and Highgate School for inviting me to give this year’s Kyffin Williams Lecture.  It’s very fitting that Highgate remembers Kyffin so loyally, because he was always grateful to the school […]

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Sport is not the answer

December 19, 2015 0 Comments
Sport is not the answer

According to the NHS Britain is the most obese nation in western Europe. A quarter of adults are obese. Levels of obesity have risen threefold on thirty years, and if trends continue half the population will be obese by 2050. Diabetes, heart disease and cancer are just a few of the diseases that can follow […]

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The Home Rule All Round movement

November 28, 2015 0 Comments
The Home Rule All Round movement

To get a swift appreciation of the whole sweep of Welsh history for a current project, I’ve been re-reading John Davies’s great Hanes Cymru / A history of Wales (rev. ed. 2007). It’s a big book but the pleasure of reading it is even bigger. Especially when you pause in your reading to remember John […]

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Hwyl fawr i’r byd cyhoeddus?

November 22, 2015 0 Comments
Hwyl fawr i’r byd cyhoeddus?

Ar ddydd Mercher nesaf bydd y Canghellor George Osborne yn cyhoeddi’r canlyniadau o’i adolygiad o wariant cyhoeddus. Mae’n argoeli bod yn achlysur tyngedfennol. Fel dywed William Keegan, y newyddiadurwr economaidd, yn gyson, daeth y Ceidwadwyr i rym, yn 2010 ac eto yn 2015, ar sail dau Gelwydd Mawr: taw’r llywodraeth Lafur, yn hytrach na’r bancwyr a’i […]

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John Sell Cotman in Wales

August 14, 2014 10 Comments
John Sell Cotman in Wales

There are a few great British artists we remember not for their continuous work over a lifetime, but for a short period of brilliant achievement in an otherwise (apparently) ordinary career. Two well-known examples are Samuel Palmer, in the case of the ‘visionary’ works painted during the early years of his stay in Shoreham, Kent […]

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