The annual Christmas tea party took place last December in the stunning setting, once again, of St Bride’s Castle, with the kind permission of the Holiday Property Bond. More than fifty people – Friends, their guests, and those staying at the castle, – gathered in the castle library. Christmas decorations and the beautiful tree all brought about a festive ambience, and the tea table groaned with delights and delicacies, provided by those who came. This event is the most popular Friends’ event throughout the year, and it gives members the opportunity to meet and catch up, as well as to enjoy the wonderful surroundings of the National Park at the start of the Christmas season.
For the first time, the beautiful, heated, indoor swimming pool was made available by the Holiday Property Bond for the Friends to use. Several were brave enough, despite the cold outside, to take full advantage of this unique opportunity, and after all that exercise, doubtless felt able to fill their plates at the tea party with clear consciences!
The annual Carol Service followed the tea party and was held, as usual, in the nearby, candlelit St. Bridget’s Church, beside the beautiful, sandy cove of St Bride’s Haven. John Potter, who played the organ, organised a series of readings and carols. Father Andrew Johnson, rector of St Bridget’s, presided, and welcomed everyone to his ancient and historic church, which was full. The singing was magnificent and the readings were delivered with clarity and confidence by members of the congregation. The generous retiring collection amounted to almost two hundred pounds for the church funds. Many thanks to all those involved with supplying the food for the tea party, and for taking part in the Service, making this event such a special part of the Christmas celebrations.
Event: A morning tour of St Justinian’s Lifeboat Station and an afternoon circular walk from the lifeboat station around to Whitesands Bay.
Details: This promises to be a really interesting day. In the morning, you can hear about the workings of the new and old lifeboat stations and the first-hand experiences of the lifeboat crew. And in the afternoon, we will walk from the lifeboat station round to Whitesands Bay and back to the car park – about 5 miles but with an opportunity to do less for those who wish. The exact route will follow in due course.
Timings and Meeting Point: St Justinian’s Lifeboat Station at 10:00. There is a Pay and Display car park about 400 yards before the lifeboat station and only very limited car parking at the site itself. Postcode: SA62 6PY.
Info from you: You MUST BOOK to attend this event because there is a maximum of 30 for the lifeboat station visit, and places are going fast. Let Steve Drinkwater know as soon as possible. Bring a picnic and we will stop somewhere during the walk. There is also a café at the Whitesands Bay car park.
Lead Organiser: Steve Drinkwater (telephone number: 01437 710009)
Event: ‘Pembrokeshire in May’ – A walk from St Davids to be led by Ian Bullock, RSPB in the morning and a guided visit to the Bishop’s Palace in the afternoon.
Details: A walk from St Davids out to Pen-dal-Aderyn (Treginnis) and round to the Lifeboat Station at St. Justinians (approximately 7 km). Those wanting to participate in the Bishop’s Palace visit in the afternoon may want to return to St Davids by the Coastal Shuttle bus, but others may wish to walk back to St Davids. Good sturdy footwear recommended.
After a self-arranged break for lunch in St Davids, we have arranged for a guided tour of the Bishop’s Palace commencing at 14:30 for about 1 hour.
Timings and Meeting Point: The walk will commence from Merrivale car park in lower St.Davids (Pit Street, SA62 6PX) at 09:30. The Shuttle leaves St Justinian’s at 12:15.
The Bishop’s Palace Tour starts at the entrance at 14:30.
Cost: You will need to pay at Merrivale car park and for the shuttle bus. The Bishop’s Palace tour is £4 at the door (Note, concessions for CAWR, English and Scottish Heritage members and over 60’s).
Lead Organiser: Ian Pattinson (telephone number: 01239 821631)
A talk about Cetacean (whales, dolphins, and porpoise) strandings and marine environmental monitoring.
2:15 pm for tea and coffee, and the talk will commence at 2:30 pm.
Haverfordwest Leisure Centre, SA61 1QX
The talk will be given by Rod Penrose, the Strandings Co-ordinator for the Welsh coast for over 20 years. It will last approximately one hour with plenty of time for questions.
On the day of the talk Rod will also hand out information leaflets. One quick word of warning: nearly all of his pictures are of dead animals, injuries and post-mortem examinations.
This is a free event but donations would be welcome to cover the costs of providing the event. There is a car park (St Thomas Green) adjacent to the Leisure Centre. Any questions to Ian Pattinson on 01239 821631.