ABERGLASNEY GARDENS in Carmarthenshire has received almost £1m from the Heritage Lottery Fund for a project to create a new heritage horticulture training facility at the historic gardens. The project aims to provide inspiration and training for a new generation of gardeners as well as students with learning difficulties and school children and is the latest in a line of restoration projects at Aberglasney. The facility will be housed in a group of derelict farm buildings on the site, once the piggeries of Aberglasney Home Farm.
As well as restoring the traditional buildings, there are also plans for a spectacular new greenhouse. Head gardener at Aberglasney, Joseph Atkin is delighted with the news that this exciting new project has been given the support of the HLF. He said: “Aberglasney is already regarded as one of Britain’s finest historical gardens and the development of this new training facility along with the restoration of the buildings in which it will be based will ensure our continued success and a horticultural legacy for future generations.”
Joseph added: “Essentially we’re hoping to create our own ‘miniature college’ where we’ll be able to teach all of the skills that go into making a heritage garden like Aberglasney great. As well as teaching students heritage methods of gardening, the buildings we’re restoring will also house a nursery for propagating plants that I hope will make Aberglasney almost self-sufficient.” Joseph’s desire to impart his knowledge goes beyond his students too as the facility will also be open to visitors to Aberglasney.
People will be encouraged to walk in and see students and the gardening team at work. The HLF grant will also, amongst other things, fund the creation of a mini-arboretum and meadow walk, a new composting facility and a ‘green’ heating system as well as enabling the appointment of a part-time Senior Horticultural Trainer and funding two year-long traineeships in heritage horticulture skills. A new ‘Gardening through Time’ display will also be installed in Aberglasney’s Victorian Aviaries and a number of new trails on the history of the site; plants; wildlife spotting and biodiversity will be established.
Richard Bellamy, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund Wales said: “Aberglasney has a rich and varied history stretching back over many centuries and thanks to National Lottery players money, this project will provide new opportunities for local people to get involved with the Gardens and its heritage. We are particularly excited to see how the traineeships will develop much needed heritage horticultural skills and how the rich natural heritage of the Gardens will be better understood.” When all the work is complete, which is expected to be by late summer next year, the visitor experience at Aberglasney will be greatly enhanced, the area covered by the Gardens will be increased by around 20% and everyone visiting the site will gain a greater insight into heritage horticulture and its importance.
Aberglasney Gardens delighted to win 2022 Trip advisor Travellers’ Choice Award
ABERGLASNEY Gardens is thrilled to have been recognised by Tripadvisor as a 2022 Travellers’ Choice Award winner for being in the top 10% of attractions worldwide.
The Award recognises businesses that consistently deliver great service with the Gardens being rated ‘Excellent’ by 342 visitors.
The award celebrates businesses that have received great traveller reviews from around the globe on Tripadvisor over the last 12 months. As challenging as the past year has been, Aberglasney stood out by consistently delivering positive experiences to visitors.
Aberglasney’s Director of Operations Jim Stribling said: “We are delighted to have once again won an award from Tripadvisor. It is fantastic recognition for the team’s hard work and dedication. To rank among the top ten percent of those listed on Trip Advisor as one of the best places to visit is outstanding.
“We are grateful to all those who take the time to leave us a review after visiting. It is no cliché when I say all the team, be it in the gift shop, the gardeners, the tearooms and the administrative team, all take the reviews on board to help make a visit to Aberglasney the best possible experience for everyone.”
Tripadvisor, the world’s largest travel guidance platform, helps hundreds of millions of people each month become better travellers, from planning, to booking, to taking a trip. Travelers across the globe use the Tripadvisor site and app to discover where to stay, what to do and where to eat based on guidance from those who have been there before.
With more than 988 million reviews and opinions of nearly eight million businesses, travellers turn to Tripadvisor to find deals on accommodation, book experiences, reserve tables at restaurants and discover great places nearby.
As a travel guidance company available in 43 markets and 22 languages, Tripadvisor makes planning easy no matter the trip type.
“Congratulations to the 2022 Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Winners,” said Kanika Soni, Chief Commercial Officer at Tripadvisor. “The Travellers’ Choice Awards recognise the best in tourism and hospitality, according to those who matter most: your guests.
“Ranking among the Travellers’ Choice winners is always tough – but never more so than this year as we emerge from the pandemic. Whether it’s using new technology, implementing safety measures, or hiring outstanding staff, I’m impressed by the steps you’ve taken to meet travellers’ new demands. You’ve adapted brilliantly in the face of adversity.”
Council’s plan to expand bilingual education will be a gradual journey over 10 years
Warning of serious disruption on M4 and M5 today due to fuel prices protest
POLICE have warned of “serious disruption” to drivers using the M4 and M5 on Monday 4 July due to a planned protest.
Protesters intend to block the Prince of Wales Bridge from 7am until 7pm as part of a nationwide campaign against rising fuel prices.
The protest is due to start at the M4 Magor services at junction 23A eastbound and the Clevedon Interchange at junction 20 of the M5 westbound.
It is also expected to cause disruption to the M48 Severn Bridge and the M32.
Drivers are being urged to avoid the area or plan alternative routes.
Bristol Airport has issued a warning urging travellers to allow extra time if heading to or from the airport.
Police said additional officers will be brought in to ensure the protest is carried out legally.
Drivers have been advised by Gwent Police to work from home where possible and avoid the area between 7am and 7pm, with protestors planning to block parts of the road between M4 Magor services, junction 23A eastbound, and Junction 20 of the M4 between those hours.
Chief Superintendent Tom Harding said: “Gwent Police, and Avon and Somerset Police, are working jointly with neighbouring police forces and partner agencies to ensure emergency and critical services continue and to reduce disruption to both road users and local communities, however we are preparing for serious disruption throughout the day.
“I would encourage drivers to reconsider their journey, consider working from home and avoid the area where possible.
“The right to protest under UK law must be balanced with the rights of the wider community who may be affected. We have additional officers and support in place on Monday to ensure the protest is carried out in accordance with the law.”
The planned protest is thought to have been organised by the Facebook group Fuel Price Stand Against Tax, and has attracted both criticism and support online.
The latest travel disruption comes following the closure of the Severn Bridge for a second consecutive weekend, as well as the Severn Tunnel rain line which will be out of use until July 10 due to essential work. Motorists will be unable to cross the M48 Severn Bridge until 6am on Monday as it is undergoing essential work for eight months.
The bridge was first shut last weekend as painstaking work to repair and replace corroded suspension cables began. Traffic on the bridge is likely to be very heavy on Monday due to the fuel protest.
Police have told protesters banners must be tightly secured to vehicles and nobody should be walking around on the bridge during the demonstration. Protesters will stay inside their vehicles or stand beside them.
An organiser said: “We will now only be doing it on the Prince of Wales Bridge. We have to keep in mind everyone’s safety and if we block the bridge totally and there is an emergency there would be hell. Yes it means only one bridge but [due to the amount of traffic caused] there will still be a massive impact.”
Two weeks ago one of the initial M4 bridge protest organisers Ashley Fowler said : “We’re all car enthusiasts and we have all been worried about fuel prices and when I saw the post about blocking the bridges we began talking about it. Then people started asking me to make an event so we could update each other.
“I made the event because I run a car club in Cardiff which I started on social media during the pandemic lockdowns to help people’s mental health. When we can we go out to car parks and just meet up and have a chat but during the pandemic we weren’t able to do it so I made the group.
“Now we can’t meet up so much again because of the cost of fuel. I know some of them can’t drive so much because they need to feed their kids. It’s serious. People are getting really depressed about it. One of the boys in the group has actually sold his car due to fuel price rises.”
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