Event Reports

The Ceredigion Association of National Trust Members arrange an annual programme of events. These include formal meetings with guest speakers, coffee mornings, afternoon teas, day trips to National Trust properties and weeks away.

Below are reports from some of these events.

Event Reports


Our visit to Erddig, by Wrexham, started well with a stop for coffee and lots of cake at The Nags Head, Garthmyl.

Arriving at Erddig, the staff warmly welcomed us and had organised an introductory talk in the courtyard. The Yorke family, who had lived at Erddig for over 250 years hardly ever threw anything away, so when Philip Yorke III offered the house, the estate and his homes nearby, to the National Trust it was the largest bequest the Trust had ever had.

The family had always valued and documented, with portraits and poems, their many servants who lived and worked at Erddig. Their below-stairs stories added extra historical interest to the revival of the property.

A warm, sunny, autumn day made the restored Eighteenth Century designed garden, with a lake and orchards, a delight to explore. Freshly baked scones with our cream tea rounded off a very pleasant and informative visit.

CANTM June Meeting, Garden Party

Once again we were lucky with the weather for our Garden Party. Held in Gillian’s comfortable and attractive home and garden in Llanfarian, the event was enjoyed by all who attended as they relaxed in the warmth of the June sunshine and enjoyed strawberries, cakes and sandwiches combined with the chance to catch up with old friends and acquaintances and make new ones. This is one of our main fund raising events of the year and we are grateful for all who not only give freely of their time but also provide the food for the event. Without their hard work and generosity and Gillian allowing us the use of her home this successful fund raising event would not be possible.


CANTM’s June visit to two castles in North Wales was bathed in beautiful, warm sunshine.

Denbigh Castle showed itself at its very best – atop the hill with magnificent views over the town that grew up beneath it and the countryside around. An impromptu talk by the CADW guide brought the extensive ruins to life. For centuries the castle had dominated the area, but in the Civil War the Roundheads finally destroyed its military capabilities. Now it’s a delightful venue for corporate events, weddings and its many visitors.

Gwrych Castle, Abergele, was built between 1812 and 1822, in the medieval style, by Lloyd Hesketh Bamford – Hesketh in memory of his maternal ancestors, the Lloyds of Gwyrch. The long site, tucked into the hill, gives wonderful views to the sea. After several owners in the late 20th Century the Castle had been left unguarded and uncared for. But a young schoolboy, who passed it every day vowed to return it to its glory.

Now, as a renowned historian, Dr Mark Baker has galvanised organisations and volunteers to create Gwyrch Castle Preservation Trust, which now owns the site. So the long process of further restoring Gwyrch’s grandeur can really begin, making it safe and viable for the future. An unenviable task, but what an asset to the local area it could be once again. After a cream tea in the grounds we left wishing it all the luck in getting further funding for its restoration.

CANTM March meeting 2018

Lunch at The Hafod, Devil’s Bridge and a talk about The Pine Marten Recovery Project

Pine Martens are a delightful attractive small furry mammals that once lived and roamed freely in forests and woodlands across England, Wales and Scotland. Unfortunately, over the last century or so they had disappeared in England and Wales, mostly due to deforestation and game hunting, remaining only in Scotland. The Vincent Wildlife Trust with a thirty year history of pine marten research has been operating a Pine Marten Recovery Project aimed at re-introducing pine martens back into the wild. David Barvin, a member of staff of the Vincent Wildlife Trust with special responsibilities with this venture came to speak to us in the Hafod Hotel, Devil’s Bridge. It was felt the choice of Devil’s Bridge for our meeting was appropriate as an area in the Devils’ Bridge locality was chosen by the Trust as the most suitable habitat to re-introduce pine martens back in to the wild in Wales.


In 2015 twenty pine martens from Scotland were introduced in to the wild followed by a further nineteen in 2016. Each pine marten has a radio collar enabling research and tracking of the project. Dr. Barvin gave us a most informative and interesting account of this exciting venture and his illustrated talk was very well received after a delicious lunch in the hotel dining room.

CANTM Winter Warmer, February 2018

This event at CANTM is a regular favourite, on a cold wintry day it is an ideal event to warm the cockles of your heart and enjoy traditional Welsh food and good company. This year was no exception and a crowd of some twenty five of our members got together for that very reason. This year we did not have a speaker but nevertheless the event was enjoyed by all as it enabled a good opportunity to socialise and chat with fellow members. The food was delicious and hearty – warming cawl and the traditional apple pie – just right for a lunch on a grey February day. As usual there was coffee on arrival and a raffle but the most striking thing was the hum of chatter indicating that members were just enjoying each other’s company as well as the traditional food.


CANTM January Meeting 2018
CANTM January Meeting 2018

Our annual Coffee Morning in January was a very successful and enjoyable morning in the Waunfawr Hall on Monday January 22nd 2018. This event is always popular and did not disappoint this year. On arrival tea or coffee and biscuits were served with an opportunity to circulate, buy raffle tickets and visit the stall. This event is a social event with a fund raising element and we were able to raise some money as a contribution to the annual donation we make to Llanerchaeraon.

After enjoying our coffee, our speaker, Michael Freeman, gave us a fascinating talk on little known aspects of our highest peak in Wales – Mount Snowdon. Michael gave us some amusing impressions of Snowdon, not always complimentary, from walkers as early as the late seventeenth and early eighteenth century who ventured to Snowdon’s summit, often in appalling circumstances. Without the benefits of modern footwear, technical clothing nor weather forecasting, these intrepid walkers and climbers encountered hazardous conditions to brave the elements. There were some basic cabins on the summit which provided some limited comfort but nevertheless such an expedition must have been challenging to say the least. This early period saw an increase in early tourism in the remoter parts of Britian, including Wales, as well as a growth of painting landscapes in these areas, due to unrest on the Continent after the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars which resulted in fewer foreign travels by the wealthy.

Barbara Hogger, our Acting Chairman for the day, gave the vote of thanks , thanking the speaker for an interesting, amusing and informative talk.

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