The Three Horseshoes Groesfford has always been one of my favourite places to eat in the Brecon Beacons. Having just visited I know why they were recently awarded 2 rosettes for culinary excellence by the AA. This is an outstanding achievement for a small restaurant tucked away in a small residential street. Connor and the team have worked incredibly hard to achieve this and I will happily recommend to our visitors.
Once again I was organising the Hay Winter Festival 2018 stewards. The festival this year was held in the marquee in the cattle market. It was festively decorated and had a selection of stalls selling wreaths, art, drink, reading lights and of cause books by the authors giving the talks. The events were well received and the weather was quite kind. Also there was the Christmas lights ceremony, a food festival on Saturday and a vintage festival on Sunday. The events were rounded off by a community performance of the Messiah in St Mary’s church. If you are thinking of attending next year it will be on 28 November to 1 December 2019.
As part of our Brecon Beacons Ambassador scheme we visited Big Pit National Coal Museum at Blaenafon. When the mine closed over 100 years of coal mining came to an end. It was decided to preserve and share the experience of the Welsh miner in a museum. Real miners take you 90 metres underground in the same cage as they used though thankfully quite a bit slower. Oue guide Steve had worked in the mines for 35 years and as you can imagine had a few tall tales to tell . He made you feel like his first guests of the day and that he was really pleased to see you. Afterwards we went on a tour of the bath house. This facility is now a museum but still retains many of the major improvements of a miner’s life that it brought like showers , clean clothes and a canteen. It even has a water bottle fill station which is quite ironic considering our current move away from bottled water. So proves we can still learn from the past. Entry is free which is another bonus.
Part of the Brecon Beacons is a UNESCO Global Geopark. This is due to the significant geological formations that can be found there. As part of our Brecon Beacons Ambassador scheme the park geologist takes us up onto areas of the park that are full of these features but quite possibly not that well known as a tourist spot.
Cribarth Geotrail is a good example of this. There is a 3.25 mile walking trail that explores the rocky slopes of the spectacular hill rising above Craig-Y-Nos Country Park in the upper Swansea Valley (Cwm Tawe). The landscape has been carved by water and ice from the folded layers of sandstone and limestone. There are also remains of the quarrying and lime kilns which were such an important part of the 19c industrial landscape.
Aside from all the history there are of cause the views for miles around. To help you get the most from these areas and walks there are detailed leaflets to accompany the trail.
It is always a pleasure to welcome artists to Aberyscir Coach House. We have had painters and photographic artists staying and some have been kind enough to let me see some of their work. Indeed there is a watercolour hanging over the bed by Peronel Barnes.
Recently Alan Blackshaw stayed and sketched many of the Brecon Beacons views including this one of the Brecon and Monmouth canal.