Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Somewhere Nice to Sit


This is the new bench outside the Rose and Crown.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

Small Business Saturday


This is the shop which used to be in the Alley, now moved up opposite the Buttermarket. It looks lovely now the retro furniture is in, and it's a shop with a very calming feel to it.

Friday, 20 April 2018

Words the Turtle Taught Me Launch

I arrived at the Poetry Bookshop a bit late, but managed to find a stool near the door (which was being guarded by a very friendly big brown dog). The weather was so lovely that even after 7pm it was warm and sunny enough to have the door open.
Susan Richardson is an extremely good performer of her poetry, which she has all by heart, and between the poems she talked about the different creatures she had written about, all of which are endangered in some way. The list goes from Critically Endangered (like the European sturgeon, which once swam in the Wye and is now found only in the River Garonne in France) to Least Concern. One unpleasant surprise was that Puffins are now considered to be Vulnerable, partly because of climate change. Another unpleasant surprise was the number of blue sharks that are killed every year - twenty million! They're on the list as Near Threatened.
She wrote the poems while she was poet in residence to the Marine Conservation Society. She's also poet in residence for World Animal Day and the British Animal Studies Network.
As part of the launch of this book, and to raise awareness, she is holding 30 readings, one for each of the creatures she has written about (sharks, whales, puffins, and more), mostly in coastal towns, but a few inland ones as well. Her website is at www.susanrichardsonwriter.co.uk.
The pictures that go alongside the text are by pat Gregory, who is based in Cardiff. She also has a website, at www.patgregoryart.co.uk
And Cinnamon Press have brought them together in a book that contains essays as well as the poetry and art, an unusual format that Susan Richardson said would have been very difficult to place with a large publishing company. Cinnamon Press is small, and based in North Wales. They publish fiction and non-fiction as well as poetry, including Welsh writing. They also run Envoi poetry magazine. Their website is at www.cinnamonpress.com
I bought the book, and although I suspect there will be a lot more unpleasant surprises like the 20 million blue sharks, I'm looking forward to reading it.

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Last Chance to Get Your Hay Passport!

Or your HAY bumper sticker, or any of the other Hay memorabilia sold at the King of Hay shop on Castle Street - as they are closing down soon.

Monday, 16 April 2018

Words the Turtle Taught Me

There's a poetry evening coming up at the Poetry Bookshop on Thursday at 7pm.
Cinnamon Press are launching the books Words the Turtle Taught Me by Sue Richardson with a multi-media reading from the book, accompanied by illustrations by Pat Gregory.
Sue Richardson was the resident poet with the Marine Conservation Society and, as well as the poems, has written a long essay Thirty Ways of Looking at the Sea - the Marine Conservation Society had launched an appeal to tackle the threats facing thirty different marine species while she was involved with them.

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Changes to the Plans for the Castle

The original plans for renovating the Castle have been modified a bit recently, a case of fitting the dream to the budget, I think.
So now there will not be a new café in the coach house. Instead, it will be in the body of the Castle, on the ground floor. They've put on a café for events there before, quite successfully. They're also omitting a proposed window into the Medieval tower, and delaying the second floor reading room.
And they have a grant of £150,000 from the Clore Duffield Foundation to put in a Clore Learning Space on the first floor. This will be only the second Clore Learning Space in Wales - the first is at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff. The room was chosen because of the good natural light, and will be used for workshops, talks and so on.
The contractors will be starting work soon....

Saturday, 14 April 2018

Changes at Kilverts

On the surface, hardly anything has changed, but behind the scenes things have changed a lot.
I usually do my washing at the launderette on a Friday afternoon, and spend the time that the washer is working to have a half in a nearby pub. Often, this is Kilverts, and that's where I went yesterday.
I noticed that there was no Brecon Brewery beer on offer at the pumps. Since this is the Hay Tap for Brecon Brewery, I thought that was odd, and asked about it.
It seems that, since 1st April, Kilverts has not been the Tap for Brecon Brewery. I don't know the details of what happened, but Brecon Brewery is still brewing beer, and the manager of both Brecon and Hay Taps has taken over the pubs, with a friend. They want to retain all the staff, so nobody loses their job, and to keep the pubs as unchanged as possible under the new ownership.
So the good news is that they will still be serving the same menu with the hearty pies.
However, they haven't worked out yet what they can do about the orange loyalty cards. At the moment it's not possible to use them, but they hope to get some sort of scheme going to honour the cards soon.
So I wish the new management every success in the future, and hope that Brecon Brewery continues to brew good beer.