Tuesday, 15 June 2021

Caversham Heights Society

THE 2014–15 season of lectures and visits for the Caversham Heights Society came to an end in May with a

THE 2014–15 season of lectures and visits for the Caversham Heights Society came to an end in May with a day visit to the Merriments Gardens in Hurst Green, on the border of East Sussex and Kent, and a mini–holiday to the Gower region of South Wales.

Despite apprehension about the weather, the visit to Merriments proved to be both enjoyable and visually refreshing.

Not only were we spoilt with a beautiful sunny day (it poured the next day) but the gardens provided a splendid display of different varieties of tulips in full bloom, bluebells and many different tree blossoms with the anticipation of more to come in the weeks ahead.

The journey through the Sussex countryside was also a glorious reminder of how beautiful England is in the spring.

A few days later about 40 members of the society embarked on the annual mini–holiday, this time to South Wales. En route to our hotel in Llanelli we went via the Brecon Beacons and the Museum of Welsh Life. Given that the weather was a mixture of sunshine and showers, it was as well that we were centrally located in Llanelli where we could make day trips in different directions.

The first day was spent on the Gower Peninsula, an area of outstanding natural beauty. Getting a feel for the area with a visit to the Gower Heritage Centre, we travelled the length of the Gower to the magnificent Rhossili Bay, where the heavens opened and the winds were blowing a gale.

Fortunately, the day was redeemed by a visit, in glorious sunshine, to Mumbles at the western edge of Swansea Bay.

Because of inclement weather on the following day we decided to go to the Welsh National Wool Museum near Newcastle Emlyn in the morning.

There we were shown the whole process of taking wool fleeces from delivery through washing, carding and weaving until they emerged as blankets or sweaters. For many, this was the highlight of the tour.

The afternoon was spent in a sunny Tenby.

On the Thursday, after a visit to the National Botanic Garden of Wales, we travelled on to the magnificent National Waterfront Museum in Swansea.

This was a an insight into the industrial past of Wales and why the country produced so much coal, tin, steel and wool as well as poets and writers.

The return journey was on the day of the general election results and took us via Blaenavon and the Big Pit, a World Heritage site, where we could experience life in, and down, a coal mine. The visit made us all appreciate the difficulties and dangers of mining.

All in all, an interesting and informative few days in the heart of Wales.

New members are always welcome. Please contact Jill Hodges, our chairman, by calling 0118 959 5307 or by email at irishjill@southcote.net

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