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Town in Focus

What’s on? Your monthl guide to locay events l

Exploring Colwyn Bay




INSIDE J Competitions J Homes & Interiors J Food & Drink





5-12 years




INCLUDES YOUR ENTRY TO AERIAL ASSAULT & SLIDES, THE CAVES & INDOOR ADVENTURE CLIMB. Your half day pass saves you a whopping 65% (child) and 45% (adult) when compared to our regular activity prices. Not to be used with any other offer. Check online for our terms and conditions.

01492 353 123 info@adventureparcsnowdonia.com www.adventureparcsnowdonia.com

Page 2 NWM 2020



High quality, affordable prices. Available for immediate local delivery.

Snowdonia Nurseries & Garden Centre, Glan Conwy 01492 580703 www.snowdonianurseries.co.uk


DEAR READER Last month saw St Dwynwen’s Day, this month it’s St Valentine’s turn! And there is nowhere better to cosy up with your loved one than in North Wales… From a romantic stroll on the beach to a

likewise, if you live by the sea already, then a

candlelit dinner for two, you can do it all here.

country break will feel like a world away.

But perhaps the best way to really enjoy Valentine’s Day is to get away from it all with

We have seaside hotels, B&B’s, luxury

a romantic retreat.

lodges, farmhouses, cottages and swanky apartments that are all available to rent

There is a huge choice of places to stay

for a short break. Throw in a hot tub, a

in North Wales and, even if you are lucky

roaring fire and room service and you’ve got

enough to live in the region already,

Valentine’s all wrapped up!

that doesn’t mean that you can’t take full advantage of some of the amazing retreats. If you live in the countryside, then just a short drive to the beach can make you feel like you’re actually in a different country! And

Kate Hamilton Founding Editor


In this issue...

From exploring a bustling seaside town to getting back to nature in the Snowdonia National Park – it’s pretty safe to say that North Wales has it all…

We want to hear from you! J Are you organising or taking part in an event that should be covered in our what’s on listings? Then make sure you tell us! whatson@ northwalesmagazine.co.uk J Keep in touch. Send in your contributions, letters, photos and press releases and become
part of the North Wales Magazine family. editorial@ northwalesmagazine.co.uk J Subscribe. If you want
to ensure that you receive each and every copy of North Wales Magazine
then why not subscribe? All you pay for is the post and packaging. subscribe@ northwalesmagazine.co.uk J Advertise. If you own a business in North Wales and want to get your message in front of 25,000 local readers every month then drop us a line. Prices start from just £75. sales@ northwalesmagazine.co.uk

Front cover credit: © Shutterstock

NWM 2020 Page 5


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Kate Hamilton

09 What’s On


Your guide to the events taking place this February

Grant Hamilton

16 The Big Pic Conwy in the winter

19 Is anyone there?


Scott Lawson



Simon Marriott

Meet your local ghost hunter…


Carly Redgers

23 Snowdonia National Park


Are peat bogs the answer?

Nigel Smith

27 Town in Focus


Discovering Colwyn Bay

34 Community spirit


Helping cancer patients regain their confidence


37 Top ten… Romantic retreats

43 Island life

CONTACT US editorial@northwalesmagazine.co.uk sales@northwalesmagazine.co.uk subscribe@northwalesmagazine.co.uk

Church Island has quite the story to tell

49 Food & Drink


The local wining, dining and culinary scene

65 Homes & Property Get inspired by local homes and interiors


77 Walking A circuit of Flint Castle

81 Competition Two amazing prizes to win this month!

83 Community news A roundup of regional happenings

89 In my opinion Our expert columnists share their thoughts

98 Horoscopes What does February have in store for you?

Steve Goodier Lowri Llewelyn Stephen Gregory Cai Ross Pete Greensmith Sally Ann Harding Julian Hughes John Crane Sion Bashar Russell Grant


01492 472052 2nd Floor, 23A Abergele Road, Colwyn Bay, LL29 7RS North Wales Magazine is an independent, regional monthly magazine produced by KSG Publishing. It is available to pick up from a wide range of independent outlets throughout Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Wrexham, Gwynedd and the Isle of Anglesey. Disclaimer: All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part (electronically or in print) without written permission is strictly prohibited. Every attempt has been made to ensure the accuracy of published content, and any views or opinions presented are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of North Wales Magazine. The publishers assume no responsibility for any damage, loss or injury arising from participation in, or as a result of, any offer, competition, information or advertisement contained within the magazine. North Wales Magazine does not endorse any of the advertisements featured. All words and images remain the property of their respective owners and all copyrights are observed. North Wales Magazine is not associated with any newspaper group. Privacy Notice. You can read North Wales Magazine’s Privacy Notice in full at www.northwalesmagazine.com

NWM 2020 Page 7


Wrexham Glyndwr University Open Day If you’re thinking of furthering your academic study at

What’s on this...


postgraduate level, develop your career further by undertaking a professional or vocational course or just want to pursue a short or part-time course in an area that’s always interested you then Wrexham Glyndŵr University can help you to take the next step, with a variety of courses on offer. Stop by for a tour and information at 4:30pm


Banff Mountain Film Festival World From skydiving in Mexico to ice skating on the spectacular frozen lakes and fjords of Sweden, this is a collection of short, adrenaline-fuelled films made by the world’s best adventure


film-makers. There are two different sets of films to choose

Bangor on Dee Race

from – or double the adventure and come to both!

Bangor-on-Dee will hold the first fixture of 2020 on Heritage Day! Open course and Paddock tickets can be bought in


Iwan at Ucheldre - Beethoven and the Lost Penny In 2020 the classical music world pays tribute to one of its

advance at a discounted price. First race starts at 1:40pm


most endearing and remarkable sons, Ludwig van Beethoven.

Beer Festival

Iwan Llewelyn-Jones returns to Ucheldre to mark the 250th

Theatr Clwyd and Beer Heroes

anniversary of Beethoven’s birth with a series of recitals that

(Chester) and are combining

feature the piano music of this extraordinary composer. Music

forces to create an iconic

starts at 7:30pm

Craft Beer Festival featuring over 10 of the most exciting breweries, along with an 8-tap bar, live music and plenty of


Cabaret: Bardd Bardd are back with two brilliant sets of their unique

food. There are two sessions throughout the day, 1pm and 7pm. Tickets are £10.00 each, and includes a complimentary drink and branded glass

dualingual global music fusion at Pontio Bangor. Featuring the Spoken Word Poetry of Martin Daws and Emceeing of Mr Phormula; show starts at 8pm



Kinky Boots The Musical, filmed live at

Jason Manford Curtains

Kinky Boots London’s Adelphi Theatre, is strutting

The star of a new Broadway-

onto the big screen at Theatr Colwyn!

bound musical has been

Charlie is a factory owner struggling to

murdered on stage on opening

save his family business, and Lola is a

night! The entire cast and crew

fabulous entertainer with a wildly exciting

are suspects. Time to call in

idea. With a little compassion and a lot of

the local detective, Frank Cioffi.

understanding, this unexpected pair learn

With a nose for crime and an ear for music, Frank tries to find

to embrace their differences and create a

the killer whilst giving the show a lifeline. Tickets are from

line of sturdy stilettos unlike any the world

£28 at Venue Cymru

has ever seen!

NWM 2020 Page 9


What’s on this...



Puccini – Madama Butterfly One of the world’s most popular operas, Puccini’s Madama Butterfly tells the heart-breaking story of the beautiful young Japanese girl who falls in love with an American naval lieutenant – with dramatic results. Highlights include the

8th - 9th

Marie at Earth Deva Collection

melodic Humming Chorus, the moving aria One Fine Day and the unforgettable Love

Marie has many fascinating items in her collection, to include

Duet. Opera begins at 7:30pm at the Rhyl

bowls, statues and more, with many being of a mythical theme.


She will also exhibit unusual silk and gemstone jewellery at the Afonwen Centre



The Pontio Studio in Bangor invite you to an evening of belly

Celtic Royal Wedding Open Day From 11am-3pm, the event team at the Celtic Royal invite to

Comedi Club laughs with Jarred Christmas, Foxdog Studio, Catherine Bohart. Tickets are £10, show starts at 8pm

tour the wedding facilities and meet wedding suppliers to discuss your big day. Free entry to all


Rob Beckett


Craft Fair

Give the gift of laughter this Valentine’s Day. Rob Beckett is

Theatr Clwyd invite you to browse through some of the

back on tour with a brand-new stand-up show. It’s been a

best local crafts and huge range our beautifully designed

busy few years for the Mouth of the South and he’s coming

products from 10am – 4pm. Perfect for Mother’s Day

to see you at Venue Cymru to fill you in and make you laugh

shopping; free entry 14th 11th

Crafty Sisters Cymru

Cocktails, Pizzas and Fajitas A perfect treat for you and your loved

The ladies will be at the Afonwen Centre exhibiting their

one this Valentine’s Day, The Conwy

handmade Resin, fused glass, braided and gemstone jewellery,

Falls Café invites you to enjoy comfort

as well as handmade greetings cards

food with your loved ones. Must call to book


Wizard of Oz


The talented young actors and singers of the

Valentine’s Day at Rhug Estate

Llangollen Operatic Society are excited to be

Spoil your loved one for Valentines at the Rhug Estate’s Bison

performing the Wizard of Oz at Llangollen

Grill Bistro with the special Sweethearts’ four-course menu

Town Hall as part of the 80th Anniversary of the society.

and a free glass of Prosecco on arrival for those who have

Tickets are £12 Adults and £10 concessions

booked in advance. Dinner served from 6.30pm

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OUR NEXT WEDDING OPEN DAY IS S U N D A Y 5T H APRIL 1 2 - 4 P M If you just can't wait to get married we also have Whirlwind Packages* available for 2020

*T & C's apply

Deganwy Quay | Deganwy | Conwy | LL31 9DJ 01492 564100 www.quayhotel.co.uk NWM 2020 Page 11


What’s on this...

FEBRUARY 18th-22nd

Bang Bang! Monty Python’s John Cleese makes his stage writing debut with this hilarious new adaption of a classic comedy at Venue Cymru. For showtimes and prices visit the Venue Cymru website 19th 14th

Bryn Woodlands House 5th Birthday

The Fureys Formed in 1974, the folk band’s trendier than ever with a

Owners Joel and Tracey invite you to celebrate the Bryn

new generation discovering well known hits like The Green

Woodlands House fifth Birthday with their weekend

Fields of France. Watch the band live at the Pontio Bangor at

package includes cocktail tasting, a two-course meal and


entertainment. Room and meal packages still available. Fun starts at 6:30pm



For the first time ever, Theatr Clwyd is hosting

Half Term Fun at Greenwood Forest Park

Roller Disco a roller disco! Perfect for those who want to try

Visit GreenWood Family Park this this February half term

their hand at skating for the first time or if you just want to

and enjoy a live Forest theatre show, search for clues hidden

take it easy and get back into the swing of things? Daytime

around the park to claim your prize on the Syril the Squirrel

sessions from 10am-6:45pm, adult evening session with 80’s

activity trail. Also enjoy zooming down the 70m Great Green

music at 8:30pm. £10.00 per skate (including skate hire)

Run, indoor soft play, have a go at den building and explore

£6.00 spectator. Advance booking recommended

the TreeTop Towers 15th-23rd

Half Term / Half Day Adrenaline Pass Looking for a totally weatherproof day out? Grab a half day adrenaline pass for access to The Caves, Aerial Assault and Slides, and Indoor Adventure Climb at Adventure Parc Snowdonia’s epic Adrenaline Indoors facility. Entry is £19 age 5-12 / £29 age 13+.


Clwb Comedi Pontio Studio in Bangor welcome three brilliant comedians to the monthly comedy club: Tom Wrigglesworth, Louise Young and Leroy Brito. Laughter starts at 8pm

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Rapunzel Immersion Theatre proudly presents a witty, tongue-in-cheek retelling of the family favourite complete with a laugh out loud script, a host of catchy songs, heaps of audience interaction, and an exciting array of magical characters which include a wickedly boo-able witch, a clumsy Prince, and a feisty Princess with the longest hair you’re ever likely to come across! Fun starts at 2:30pm at the Rhyl Pavilion


National Theatre Live Edmond Rostand’s Cyrano de Bergerac (Broadcast)


Snowdonia Slate Trail The 90-mile marathon (yes you read correctly, 90 miles!) takes you on a scenic route from Bangor to Llanberis, Betws y

James McAvoy (X-Men, Atonement) returns to the stage in an

Coed, Beddgelert and then back to Bangor. Are you up for the

inventive new adaptation of Cyrano de Bergerac, broadcast

challenge? Get in touch with @uphilldowndale on Facebook to

live the Ucheldre from the West End in London at 7pm

learn more 22nd-23rd

Gill Benjamin Art Exhibit Local artist, Gill, paints in acrylic, of animal portraits, buildings, landscapes and seascapes. Browse through the collection at the Afonwen Centre 22nd

Rhyl 10 Mile Part of the 2020 Coastal Series, the seaside town of Rhyl welcome club and fun runners to join on a scenic, flat and fast course. Designed to help you achieve your personal 21st

Live Bands Night – HENGE

best, sign up with Run Wales

Band members Zpar, Nom, Goo and Grok bring you the gift of Cosmic Dross – a kind of music new to your world. Music starts at 7:30pm at the Ucheldre 21st

WRU Wales vs France The Wales Under 20’s Rugby team take on France at Stadiwm Zip World for an exciting match. Kick off at 7:35pm


Herman’s Hermits One of the biggest selling bands of the 60’s, not just in the UK, but around the World will take stage at the William Aston Hall singing hits like ‘I’m Into Something Good’ and ‘Mrs Brown You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter’. Enjoy an evening of nostalgia, song and laughter. Evening of Nostalgia, Song and Laughter, plus bringing all the Hits to life

NWM 2020 Page 13


What’s on this...


That’ll be the day Prepare for a nostalgia extravaganza as the UK’s No.1 Rock & Roll variety performance returns with the Best of That’ll Be The Day! 29th

Wine Festival Come and celebrate St David’s Day weekend (and 25th

ROH Ballet Live - The Cellist / Dances at a Gathering (Broadcast)

a bonus leap year day) by tasting some of Wales’ finest produce at Theatr Clwyd.

Set to the music of Chopin, watch beautifully choreographed

Meet the producers, speak to

ballet at the Ucheldre. Dancing begins at 7:15pm

them one to one about what goes into the wine, and listen to them in speaker events throughout the day. Tickets are £10


Circus of Horrors


Whether you are a rock fan or theatre goer The Circus of


Horrors has something for everyone. Don’t miss this amazing

Levellers are still going strong after 30 years in the game.

amalgamation of acts, driven by a rock ‘n’ roll sound scape, a

They have long been, and still are, one of the best live bands

show that will have you sat on the edge of your seat when not

around and they’re back in 2020 with a new studio album

falling off it with laughter.

and an extensive tour! With support act, Goldie Lookin’ Chain, the group will take stage at 7pm Venue Cymru 29th

Charlotte at Country Commissions Charlotte will be holding one of her paint your own piece workshops at the Afonwen Centre. Simply bring along a small piece of your own furniture and learn how to paint. Call the centre for more information 29th – 1st March

St. David’s Day Celebration Enjoy your Welsh favourites on a Special Saint David’s Day Menu served throughout the day on both days at the Rhug 29th

Whisky Masterclass For whisky enthusiasts we recommend this Penderyn Distillery Masterclass. As well as imparting their knowledge and experience on the importance of wood and the art of maturation, you will also learn the protocol of whisky tasting

Page 14 NWM 2020

Estate Bistro. Call to book in advance

Are you organising or taking part in an event that should be covered in our what’s on listings? Then get in touch! whatson@northwalesmagazine.co.uk





KUDOS, LAUFEN, VILLEROY & BOCH, UTOPIA. We always offer great prices, but if in doubt, we’ll happily try to beat any like for like quotation or online price for our showroom products during January. Buy locally for luxury at the lowest price.

01745 582254 rnwilliams.co.uk Chester Street, St Asaph, LL17 0RE


Page 16 NWM 2020

The Big Picture Cowny is beautiful at any time of year, but it can be especially pretty on a cold winters day… Take a brisk walk up Conwy mountain, or stroll the town walls, and appreciate the view that seems even more special when dabbled in a bit of winter sun. And when the cold finally wins out, there is an abundance of cafés in the town where you can indulge in a spot of coffee and cake, and properly recharge your batteries. © Paul Maguire / Shutterstock.com

NWM 2020 Page 17

The Friendly

Ghost Hunter Lowri Llewelyn talks all things spooky with spiritualist medium Islwyn Wynne Owen. “I started seeing things at a young age, with spirits coming to me in my dreams. I only confided in my mum and grandmother as they didn’t want me to be bullied,” says Islwyn. “My mum used to run the Willow Spiritualist Group in Holyhead, which I now run. While she sensed things that were going to happen, my nan did the likes of tea leaf readings, as did my great grandmother.” Now that some of his loved ones have passed, I wonder whether seeing spirits makes it easier to process loss. “Loss is always hard, and I still get days where I miss my loved ones. But I work with my mum; she protects me when I work with spirits. I see her on a daily basis, but it is hard that I can’t get a physical hug off her.”

NWM 2020 Page 19


Today we’re at St Baglan’s Church, overlooking the Menai

door. The following morning, around 4:30am, I woke up on

Strait from the Gwynedd parish of Llanfaglan. Islwyn

my hands and knees on the floor. I was choking and couldn’t

senses a man in his sixties sporting a beard with us,

breathe. I thought maybe it was a dry throat, so I drank and

passed in the 17 or 1800s. “Spirits show themselves and

drank, but my throat was completely blocked. And then I

communicate in many different ways,” Islwyn explains,

opened my eyes and it was a spirit! I’ve no idea who it was.

when I ask why only a select few are privy to spiritual

I pushed it away and asked for my mum and past relatives

encounters. “I think many have the gift of communicating

to help me get rid of it.”

with spirits, but on different levels and with different abilities. How strong you are defines your ability. But, I

What does his family make of sharing sleeping quarters

know many people over the years who have had the gift

with these spirits? “My daughter claims to be a skeptic.

taken from them when they’ve abused it. The way I see it, I

My son gets people stopping him saying ‘Your dad talks

work for the spirit – they are in charge.”

to dead people,’ but he doesn’t mind. My partner is open minded. A couple of years back we had a spirit in the house

At this point I notice my microphone has stopped working,

we were in. One night, I threw a ball down the hallway for

and Islwyn chuckles that he should have predicted that

the dog and it bounced up a big step into the kitchen; the

would happen. The man, who Islwyn describes as ‘a pretty

ball came rolling back down the hallway and the dog just

stern guy,’ continues to watch what we’re doing as if to

looked at the kitchen and ran back into the lounge! I didn’t

make sure we’re behaving, though Islwyn doesn’t get a

tell my partner about that spirit. We sold the house and the

sense he’s the religious type. He keeps mentioning the land

people who moved in said a spirit was hiding their letters.”

surrounding the church –perhaps a dispute? – and insists

Hopefully it was just bills...

there are more bodies here than meets the eye. “I’ve kept it quiet about this house up until now, but Islwyn’s services are in high demand, taking him to the

apparently someone had hung themselves and a few former

furthest corners of the UK from Scotland to the Isle of

residents have moved because of so much activity. But it

White, while his media appearances include Most Haunted

doesn’t bother me, really. Up until the last couple of days

and digital channel TeliMôn. Seeing ghosts out and about is

I’ve never had to open up in the house, which I wish I didn’t

one thing. What about at home? “I’ve not really ‘opened up’

have to, because that was my time out. But it’s one of those

in my own house. But a few days ago, in the early hours of

things; my family know they’re safe with me there.”

the morning, my partner heard a loud thud. We didn’t think anything of it – maybe the elderly gentleman living next

Page 20 NWM 2020

It’s difficult to tell whether Islwyn’s gift is a blessing or a


curse, with many viewing him as they key between them and the other side. “I only do the odd private reading now,” he says, “as I opened up too much once and was shown some graphic things, which upset me for a fair while.” Having encountered spirits across North Wales in locations ranging from Denbighshire asylum to The Bull Hotel in Llangefni, I’m keen to know where Islwyn considers to be the ultimate haunted spot. “Beaumaris gaol. I’ve picked up on many disturbing characters – some have murdered people, others have been wrongly accused. My friend was physically lifted up and shoved back. I was shocked to realise how strong a

gift despite its setbacks. In a society which fears death, it

spirit could be.”

must be a great comfort to know with absolute conviction your loved ones are never far away – and so, just in case, I

Beaumaris gaol is a regular haunt for Islwyn, and his most

resolve to stop sleeping naked.


recent visit in partnership with TeliMôn included a special invitation for the public to join him. It seems that opening

Images by Andrew Lai

up with the public in tow could be a dangerous business,


but Islwyn insists, “I always make sure others are well protected when doing a paranormal night, with a nonreligious prayer of protection.” n

We take one last glance at St Baglan’s Church. Islwyn seems entirely sincere in his beliefs, and I can’t help envying his

If you’d like to get in touch with your spiritual side, find Islwyn’s group on Instagram and Facebook @ thewillowspiritualistgroup, and watch videos from the gaol and more at www.telimon.com Images by Andrew Lai www.andrewlaiphoto.com

NWM 2020 Page 21

PULSE RECORDS LTD in association with BILL ELMS presents









‘A big sweeping story with real emotion!’ The Stage

‘A wonderful play!’ Lucy Meacock / Granada TV


TUE 31 MAR - SAT 4 APR 2020 Eve: (Tue-Sat - 7.30pm) / Mat: (Thu & Sat - 2.30pm) | Tickets from: £17.00

East Parade, Rhyl, LL18 3AQ.

BOX OFFICE: 01745 33 00 00 / www.rhylpavilion.co.uk

For peat’s sake How peat bogs are saving Snowdonia…

Snowdonia is a National Park of phenomenal natural diversity: rocky summits where ravens abound, violet hills ringing with heather, damp mossy woods and golden beaches. It’s a peopled land, where generations have left their mark through its patchwork fields, lichen-stamped stone walls and mosaic hedgerows. Stitched together by the element of water: a landscape of stream, river and lake. This unfolding drama occurs within a relatively small radius, a mere 823 square miles in the 8,000 that is Wales. Within that radius we have the highest mountain (Yr Wyddfa / Snowdon), the largest lake (Llyn Bala) and the wettest place (Capel Curig). Questions like these might pop up at your local quiz night and many people – whether they live, work or play in Snowdonia – would attest to knowing them.


But there’s a part of the natural fabric of Snowdonia has quietly existed for hundreds of thousands of years without due recognition: the peat bog. For the uninitiated, a peat bog is a type of wetland whose soft, spongy ground is composed largely of living and decaying mosses. It’s an ecological time capsule. If you’ve ever gone for a walk in the hills and had your welly sucked out from underneath you, you were probably walking through a bog. Damp, dark and seemingly undramatic, peat bogs make up around 12% of Snowdonia’s landmass.

NWM 2020 Page 23


Join the

Snowdonia Society today The Snowdonia Society is a conservation charity that’s been working hard to protect Snowdonia’s precious natural habitats and landscapes through campaigns and practical action since 1967. This work has been made possible through the thousands of volunteers who have lent a hand over the years, through rain or However, in an age of uncertainty about the state of the

shine, along with partner organisations. From restoring

environment, peat bogs are beginning to attract attention:

precious habitats like peat bogs and hedgerows to dry

Did you know that peat bogs hold more than twice the

stone walling and litter picks on Snowdon, volunteers

amount of carbon stored in all the world’s forests? They are

play a key part in protecting the natural and cultural

the largest natural terrestrial carbon store. And at a time

heritage of Snowdonia.

when humanity is looking to reduce the amount of carbon released into the atmosphere, peat bogs become paramount

Its work is never done and The Snowdonia Society

to making this happen.

needs as many people as possible to stand up for Snowdonia. You don’t have to volunteer to be a

The most extensive peatland area in Snowdonia is the

supporter of the Snowdonia Society. There are a

Migneint-Arenig Dduallt special area of conservation. But,

number of ways you can do your bit without wading

like many of the bogs in Snowdonia and beyond, it is under

through a peat bog (though we strongly recommend it):

pressure from land use changes. Across Snowdonia peat bogs have in the past suffered from drainage for plantation forestry and agriculture and the spread of invasive species such as Rhododendron. Today, however, thanks to Welsh Government funding and focused effort from the National Park Authority, conservation organisations and landowners,

J Become a member – Your annual subscription means we have

the resources to fund our practical work and campaigns. J Register your business to our directory of Business Members

and become an example of good practice J Donate towards our work – a little goes a long way

work is being done to bring the bogs back to life. Last year during the Snowdonia Society’s annual MaD (Make

the most weary office worker. In Japan, the practice of Shinrin

a Difference) Weekend volunteers helped restore the peat

Yoku, or forest bathing is popular with those craving relief

bogs of the Migneint. Decade-old ditches were blocked,

from the stresses of modern life. Sphagnum mosses that form

allowing the land to re-wet. In time this will help restore the

bogs have traditionally been used to cleanse and soothe,

land back to a shimmering peatland oasis of water and moss.

having antibacterial properties. Again and again, studies

Truly the emerald jewels in Snowdonia’s boggy crown.

show that spending time outdoors improves mental wellbeing and helps boost the immune system. We should take the time

If you look closely enough, these bulging blankets of moss

to appreciate these humble wetlands, and we need to do all

contain a myriad of colour, pattern and form to inspire even

we can to protect them. n

Page 24 NWM 2020

es g n e l chal r fo & s t l u ad n e r d l i ch

4 levels 80 targets 21 challenges

against the clock we are here at









31.01.20 KO 19.35

21.02.20 KO 19.35

13.03.20 KO 19.35


Page 26 NWM 2020



Colwyn Bay


Colwyn Bay is easily accessible no matter where you are coming from in North Wales, thanks to its easy proximity to the A55. But, says Steve Goddier, there is more to this seaside town than first meets the eye… Many years ago I used to help an old lady called Mary by cutting her grass each week in the summer months. For her entire adult life she had holidayed in Colwyn Bay for two weeks every July. I asked her why she went back to the same place year-on-year when there were so many other locations in North Wales she could try? She told me that when she wanted a relaxing break in a traditional resort she knew well and enjoyed spending time around, then it was Colwyn Bay for her every time – she had even stayed in the same bed and breakfast establishment for over 20 years! It was a tradition for her and she never changed her routine for all the time I knew her. And Mary knew her stuff – because ‘traditional’ sums up Colwyn Bay nicely. It’s probably fair to say that as a beach resort the town has passed its heyday but, like so many coastal locations, it has adapted and changed to appeal to a wider audience. In Victorian times Colwyn Bay was an incredibly popular summertime seaside location and even

and joggers, cyclists and dog walkers make up a large

today, standing on the promenade, you can easily visualise

percentage of the visitors to the ‘prom’, but there are many

what it must have been like with suited Victorian gentlemen

who still like to just stroll along it. And it’s a great walk too.

escorting beautifully dressed ladies holding parasols over their heads to protect them from the sun as they took the

The Wales Coast Path passes along it on its mammoth journey

sea air. There would be horse drawn carriages too for the

of 870 miles from Queensferry in the north to Chepstow in

elderly or those who just didn’t fancy going on foot and the

the south but, for those who like a good stretch of the legs on

atmosphere would be happy and light.

something perhaps not so gigantic, Colwyn Bay’s promenade runs for over three miles and makes a superb seaside walk

The passing years obviously brought changes – cars have

and is a ‘must do’ activity for any visitor to the area. Many

replaced the horse drawn carriages alongside the promenade

locals walk it regularly and have never tired of it after years

NWM 2020 Page 27


What to do

Colwyn Leisure Centre

Wales U20s

at Colwyn Leisure Centre is set to

The second phase of the development

Colwyn Bay has been home to Wales U20s games for a

begin this month. The current fitness

number of years. The best in upcoming talent in Wales

suite will be doubled in size, and the

will be taking on rivals France this month and Scotland

end product will include a large functional and free weights

in March at Stadiwm Zip World. With tickets starting

area as well as a bespoke rig. As part of this phase of

from £10 for Adults and £5 for U16s this is the perfect

the development, work is also scheduled to begin at the

opportunity to see some great rugby and witness Wales’

Performance Gym at Eirias Events Centre.

future stars in the making!

01492 577900


RGC – North Wales Rugby

The Welsh Mountain Zoo The Welsh Mountain Zoo is also known as the National

The North Wales region has risen through the leagues

Zoo of Wales, the oldest and most established Zoo in Wales

since 2012 and claimed the WRU National Cup in 2017.

having been born as a small family run business by the

That was also the year that they faced a Wales XV side in

Jackson family in 1963. Today The Welsh Mountain Zoo

front of a sell-out crowd. They are now in the Indigo Group

occupies some 37 acres of lush green landscape overlooking

Premiership, and current players include Wales 7s star Afon

Colwyn Bay and the Carneddau mountains.

Bagshaw. On Saturday 15th February RGC will be playing the


Carmarthen Quins, kick off is at 2.30pm. northwalesrugby.wales

James Barr Tennis Centre

Stadiwm Zip World Stadiwm Zip World will be hosting a wide range of stars in 2020, as

The James Alexander Barr Tennis Centre was officially

both Little Mix and Westlife are

opened in October 2003 by Welsh Assembly member Alun

all set to perform in the stadium.

Pugh. The Tennis Centre has two full size indoor tennis

On Sunday 5th July, Westlife will

courts, recognised as tournament standard courts, lit by

perform in Colwyn Bay as part of their Stadiums in the

internal floodlights and sunlight. There are also four outdoor

Summer Tour. Then, just a week later, Little Mix will be

floodlit courts. The centre is in the process of developing

bringing their unmissable live show to Colwyn Bay. The

new group classes for all ages and abilities – ring for further

group are set to perform at Stadiwm Zip World on 11th July

information or to book a court.

as part of their Speaking about the Summer 2020 tour.

01492 577923


Prom Xtra

Theatr Colwyn

Prom Xtra is a family event

Theatr Colwyn is an historical theatre and cinema utilising

taking place on Saturday

the latest in technology to offer patrons a 21st Century

2nd May along Colwyn Bay’s

entertainment experience with a traditional, friendly flavour.

promenade. Prom Xtra has loads of free activities to keep

It is a receiving theatre, a 4K digital cinema and home to the

the family entertained. Plus a funfair for all of the screamers,

cutting-edge Oriel Colwyn photography gallery. It is the UK’s

stalls for all the shopaholics, entertainment for all, and it will

oldest working cinema and also the oldest working theatre

be making the most of the beautiful beach to boot.

in Wales.



of wandering along its length from Old Colwyn to Penrhyn

The famous Victorian pier was finally closed to the general

Bay – it’s wide and has a designated cycle path too. It has been

public in 2009 and the lower end of the pier partially

pointed out on more than one occasion that this promenade is

collapsed into the sea in January 2017 before the pier was

actually longer than Rio’s Copacabana in Brazil – although the

demolished in May 2018. However, plans are in place to create

weather is possibly a little different on the North Wales coast!

a new ‘truncated’ pier and groundworks have already begun.

On gentle summers days it is a delight to stroll by the sea here, but at times of storm it can be a different story with waves

Modern day Colwyn Bay has expanded to become the second

being lashed over the railings onto the road by the wind.

largest community and business centre in North Wales and has a permanent population of around 30,000 (if you include

Page 28 NWM 2020

Hamdden Conwy Leisure Mae ein haelodau’n mwynhau mynediad at:

Our members enjoy access to:

Saith Ystafell Ffitrwydd

Seven Fitness Suites

Pedwar Pwll Nofio

Four swimming pools

Dros 150 o ddosbarthiadau ffitrwydd yr wythnos

Over 150 exercise classes each week

Cyrtiau tennis dan do ac awyr agored gyda llifoleuadau

Indoor and outdoor floodlit tennis courts Squash, badminton, and table tennis

Sboncen, badminton, a thennis bwrdd, Traciau Athletau

Various membership packages and pay-as-you-go options available

Mae ystod o becynnau aelodaeth ac opsiynau talu wrth fynd ar gael

New junior membership for 11-15 year olds

Aelodaeth iau newydd ar gyfer plant rhwng 11 a 15 oed

State of the art gym equipment

Offer campfa o’r radd flaenaf

Friendly, qualified, experienced staff Exercise programming and classes to suit all ages and abilities

Rhaglenni a dosbarthiadau ymarfer corff sy’n addas ar gyfer bob oedran a gallu

Am ragor o wybodaeth

ymwelwch â’ch Canolfan Hamdden leol, neu anfonwch e-bost atom ar hamdden.leisure@conwy.gov.uk

For more information

please visit your local Leisure Centre, or email us at hamdden.leisure@conwy.gov.uk

NWM 2020 Page 29

A luxury boutique guest house nestled in the rolling countryside of North Wales, Bryn Woodlands House offers the perfect retreat for those seeking a getaway from the hustle and bustle of life.


Based in Colwyn Bay, at the gateway to Snowdonia National Park, you have a wealth of beautiful and exciting destinations nearby to explore, from walking in the hills to relaxing on the beach. Bring your family, or well behaved dogs – there’s a warm welcome for everyone at Bryn Woodlands House.

Independent café and bar in Colwyn Bay serving a fantastic breakfast, brunch and lunch Fully licensed bar to enjoy an Espresso Martini or glass of Prosecco with your brunch We can cater for private parties up to 20 to 24 guests. If you have a Birthday / Baby Shower / Funeral Tea / School Reunion / Business Events coming up, contact us: info@hauscoffee.co.uk, or call 01492 536610 If you are passionate about great coffee and honest food come and join us!


Bryn Woodlands House, 14 Woodland Road East, Colwyn Bay, LL29 7DT


Find us on

Tel: 01492 532320 @BrynWoodlandsHouse

Wide range of Burgers, and Specials Pulled Pork, Beef, Chicken, Lamb, Salmon and Vegetarian options. 5 different Pasta Dishes, incl Chicken, Chorizo, Meatballs, Prawns and Salmon. Milkshakes with all the toppings, French Toast and Homemade Upside Down Cheesecake. All food locally sourced and all our meat is from Poyntons.

For all the latest updates follow us on FB.

Open from 11.30am-9pm 45 Abergele Road, Colwyn Bay, LL29 7RU

01492 532515

Where to stay Honeydew House

Honeydew House is located just a short walk from the beach in Colwyn Bay. This two-bedroom cottage is split over three floors, and boasts a small paved area to the front of the property. There is also off-road parking for Rhos-on-Sea and nearby Mochdre). Its well connected by

two cars (or one car and a boat!) and the owners allow a

road and rail links with the A55 Coastal Expressway running

dog – so there is no need to leave Fido at home when you

right through the town and a train station located close to

come on your beach holiday…

the town centre. The station opened in October 1849 and


was known simply as ‘Colwyn Station’ but was renamed as ‘Colwyn Bay Station’ in 1876. The Llandudno and Colwyn


Bay Electric Railway operated an electric tramway service

There is a Travelodge located just around the corner from

between Llandudno and Rhos-on-Sea from 1907 and this was

the Bay View Shopping Centre, offering an affordable yet

extended to Colwyn Bay in 1908 with the service surviving

central base for your Colwyn Bay break.

until 1956. And, if getting to the town is straightforward, then


getting around it is easy too with a good bus system and numerous taxis.

Bryn Woodlands House

Geographically Colwyn Bay is situated about halfway along

Bryn Woodlands House

the north coast of Wales and, besides a good selection of

offers the perfect retreat for

shops, the town has quite a few parks and gardens and has

those seeking a getaway

received a Gold Award in the Wales in Bloom Competition on

from the hustle and bustle of life. Based in the centre of

eight occasions.

Colwyn Bay, you have a wealth of beautiful and exciting The best-known and most visited park is Eirias Park which

destinations nearby to explore, from walking in the hills

covers 50 acres and was once known as ‘the park by the

to relaxing on the beach. Bryn Woodlands House is family

sea’. Eirias Park was created between 1921 and 1929 with

friendly, and it also accepts well-behaved dogs.

the official opening of the playing fields taking place on 27th


September 1923. Situated within the park you will find Colwyn Leisure Centre, Eirias Events Centre (which has conference

Awel y Mor

and classroom facilities for business and commerce events),

Awel y Mor is

a sports stadium (which includes a floodlit synthetic hockey

a six-bedroom

and football playing area), an indoor and outdoor tennis courts

house with hot

area, a children’s playground and a picnic area. Eirias Park is

tub, pool table

also a notable concert venue with the likes of Sir Elton John

and woodburner,

and Ollie Murs having performed here.

located just down the road in

High on a hillside above Colwyn Bay you will find the world-

Rhos-on-Sea. Sleeping ten people, Awel y Mor is within

famous Welsh Mountain Zoo which opened on 18th May 1963

walking distance of Colwyn Bay beach as well as the

and covers 37 acres. It has superb panoramic views in most

town itself.

directions and is a great family day out for kids of all ages


and the parents seem to enjoy themselves too! The zoo is

NWM 2020 Page 31


Eating and drinking Sheldon’s

well laid out and wooded with open pathways linking the

Located on Penrhyn Road Sheldon’s is a vibrant

various enclosures which house animals such as chimps,

wine and cocktail bar that is open from Tuesday to

penguins, sea lions, bears and lemurs. It’s a conservation zoo

Sunday. It serves a range of platters and lite bites,

and home to endangered species such as snow leopards, red

and has a comprehensive wine list and a good

pandas and Sumatran Tigers. For youngsters there is a jungle

selection of local beers.

adventure land and a Tarzan trail adventure playground. For


the adults to unwind in there is a great café set high up with

Chicago 1935

superb views of the surrounding coastline.

Chicago 1935 is a new American diner that can be found

A more recent development located on the seafront is the Porth

on Abergele Road. It offers a good choice of pasta dishes

Eirias complex which cost £9,000,000 to build. This impressive

as well as the USA inspired fare that you would expect

iconic building is set in the heart of the new promenade

from a diner. Burger anyone?

improvements and is visible from most areas of the promenade.

01492 532515

It is promoted as a centre for the whole of the local community

Bryn Williams at Porth Eirias

as well as visitors. There is a modern children’s outdoor play area, coffee shop and restaurant on site.

Just a stones throw away from the sea lies Bryn Williams’ bistro. This big open space with its easy,

Colwyn Bay has been home to some notable celebrities

informal mood has an open kitchen where Bryn’s team

including James Bond actor Timothy Dalton, former Monty

of chefs turn simple, local, seasonal ingredients into

Python funny man Terry Jones, Coronation Street’s William

extraordinary bistro-style food.

Roache (Ken Barlow), footballer Mickey Thomas of Manchester


United and Chelsea fame and Paula Yates. The town hosted


the National Eisteddfod in 1910 and 1947.

Haus is an independent café and bar on Penrhyn Road,

As a destination Colwyn Bay deserves so much more than

serving fantastic breakfast, brunch and lunch. If you are

just being driven through on the A55 – its well worth a day or

passionate about great coffee and honest food then look

more of anyone’s time and the mixture of historic and modern,

no further.

along with the superb seaside location, make it a North Wales


‘must visit’ location. n

Virgilio’s This family run pizziera and Portuguese grill believes that home cooking and sourcing local produce is the key to creating delicious food. It offers good quality food for a reasonable price – try its two lunchtime dishes for just £12. www.virgiliosrestaurant.co.uk

Page 32 NWM 2020

Steve Goodier is a freelance outdoor writer that specialises in North Wales. He is the author of ten outdoor books and his latest ‘Ten Best Pub Walks in Snowdonia’ will be published later this year, followed by ‘Ten Best Waterfall and Lake Walks in Snowdonia’ (www.northerneyebooks.co.uk). He is married to Paula and has two grown up children.


goldie lookin chain


Maelor Hughes








J& hiso oRhythm l s &HBlues o l Orchestra land fe a t u r i n g G I L S O N L A V I S

05 / 07 / 2020





With Special Guest Eddi Reader and Guest Vocalists RUBY TURNER & LOUISE MARSHALL


Venue Cymru, Llandudno



Rebecca Morgan Brennan has made it her mission to help people that are suffering from hair loss

Creating confidence Losing your hair is an extremely traumatic thing to experience. That’s why Rebecca Morgan is doing everything in her power to make the process as painless as possible…

“Hair loss is more common than you think,” announces Rebecca Morgan Brennan of Morgan’s Hair, Beauty & Wigs in Prestatyn. “We see up to 40 people a week who are suffering from hair loss.” It’s a staggering statistic, especially considering that hair loss isn’t something that is generally talked about. “There are numerous reasons why somebody might start to lose their hair,” continues Rebecca from the private room located at the back of her salon. “Cancer treatment, alopecia, stress and skin conditions such as psoriasis or dermatitis are some of the common causes. But, whatever is causing it, it is bound to be a traumatic


experience. That’s why we are here to help.” When people lose their hair, they tend to lose much more than their locks – they lose their confidence and, sometimes, their identity too. “People arrive here feeling anxious and leave feeling confident,” says Rebecca who, remarkably, started her career in engineering. “We have a range of treatments so we can help as many people as possible. There isn’t a single solution – we have a range of options depending on the individual.”

Such a place can be a lifeline for people who just want to look their best. And, heartbreakingly, this extends to children too. “We are about to become a ‘Gold Salon’ for The Little Princess Trust – a charity that provides wigs for children free of charge,” adds Rebecca. “We have just helped a little girl of just three who lost her hair due to leukemia, but we do boys wigs too.” The charity has been set up to ensure that children, teenagers and young adults don’t have to worry about the financial implications of having a top quality wig. All wigs from The Little Princess Trust include virgin hair, which can cost up to Catrin has completed the team at Morgan’s Hair, Beauty & Wigs

£2,000 – but there is no cost to the family. “If anyone has long hair and is thinking of having it cut, then please consider donating it to The Little Princess Trust,” says

Many people suffer

Rebecca. “Anyone who has hair longer than seven inches

from thinning of

is eligible to donate – just make sure that you fill in the

the hair and, ladies

necessary form before it lands on the salon floor!”

especially, can find this traumatic. But

And Rebecca’s help doesn’t end with hair either. She has

a simple hair piece

recently become part of the ‘Look Good Feel Better’ initiative

can often be the

which helps people to face cancer with confidence.

answer here, as Rebecca is able to match your natural hair almost exactly. And hair pieces aren’t necessarily a temporary

“We are hosting a range of workshops in Prestatyn and

solution either…

Bangor for women and children that have been through cancer treatment,” she says. “It’s about making people feel like

“We have a hair system that can be glued on which lasts for

themselves again, and it really is a great initiative. It’s free to

up to six weeks,” explains Rebecca. “At that point it is changed

attend, and it’s being supported by some really big cosmetic

here at the salon but, in the meantime, it’s just washed and

brands – meaning that attendees will get to go home with a

treated like normal hair. We also offer a complete mesh

relevant goody bag that is genuinely worth £300!”

integration service, whereby we sew on a complete hair system.”

There is no doubt that Rebecca is doing some fabulous work in North Wales for her clients – but she has also helped her

And, as the name suggests, Morgan’s Hair, Beauty & Wigs

staff too.

offers a wig service too. And we say service, because it often comes at no cost to the client. If a patient is referred to

“We have one particularly special member of the team called

Rebecca from either the dermatology or cancer departments of

Catrin,” concludes Rebecca. “She has Down’s syndrome and is

the NHS then they will be entitled to a voucher which can be

helping us out no end in the salon! She’s 24, and just wanted

redeemed at the salon.

to have an everyday normal life. I feel really proud that we are able to give that to her – although she did put us all to shame

“We have a bank of old recycled wigs here that people can

in the Christmas karaoke!” n

borrow while they are waiting for their own,” continues Rebecca. “A wig is a very personal thing – most people want it to look like their own hair, and want the style to reflect their

Further information

personality – just like when they went to the hairdressers

Morgan’s Hair, Beauty & Wigs www.morganshairandbeauty.co.uk

previously. Then there is the size, colour and length to consider.” Morgan’s is the NHS wig provider for North Wales, Chester, Cheshire, Crewe, The Wirral and Shropshire. And, along with its permanent salons in Prestatyn and Chester, it also hosts a

The Little Princess Trust www.littleprincesses.org.uk Look Good Feel Better www.lookgoodfeelbetter.co.uk

pop-up salon in Craig y Don every other Friday.

NWM 2020 Page 35


of the best

Romantic Retreats Escape the ordinary, rediscover luxury and create a memorable experience with a loved one this Valentine’s Day – or any day of the year! Whether it’s a hot tub, log fire, champagne, cosy bathrobe, roses or chocolate that tickle your fancy – we’ve got you covered with one of these ten unique and romantic retreats…

Sandy Mount House With views of the Irish Sea, experience luxury, fine dining and superior service at this new spot in Anglesey! Sandy Mount House in Rhosneigr has all the ingredients for a romantic weekend getaway. The contemporary beach house rooms are stunning – each equipped with a luxurious bed, fridge packed with local goodies, coffee maker, a morning pre-breakfast platter and Molton Brown bath products. Let chef Hefin Roberts whip you up something delicious for breakfast, lunch or dinner. We enjoyed a delectable Charred Chorizo with Honey starter, Roast Loin of Monkfish served with Spiced Tomato Arancini, Celeriac Puree and Curried Mussels Velouté, finished with a delectable fresh Lemon with Felin Honey Ice Cream. We loved the chorizo so much that we ordered it with French Toast for breakfast! The restaurant has a fantastic relaxed vibe, with great service and stylish interior – however, if you’d rather stay in your robe, ask the team to bring your food and cocktails to the room. Truly a home from home to eat, gather and sleep… www.sandymounthouse.co.uk

Plas Dinas Plas Dinas Country House is an award winning historic Country House set in Snowdonia. Formerly the home of Lord Snowdon and Princess Margaret, with ten individually styled bedrooms, five-star comforts in historic yet relaxed surroundings full to the brim of Royal memorabilia. Situated between the Snowdonia mountains and the Irish Sea, the idyllic setting and stunning views are not to be missed. Whether you take a stroll round their 15 acres in the summer or sit by the roaring log fire in the drawing room on a cold winter’s day, you’ll relax the minute you arrive. Home to the award-winning Gunroom Restaurant headed up by head chef and TV personality Daniel ap Geraint. Looking for somewhere romantic to propose? Speak with their event specialist about their secret lover’s bench! www.plasdinas.co.uk

NWM 2020 Page 37


The Forge Designed as a romantic retreat specifically for couples, the new vintage bow top caravan at The Forge in Corwen sleeps two in a traditional double bunk bed. Enjoy a charming little log cabin alongside with a kitchen, dining and chill-out space with everything you could possibly need to escape from the real world for a few days. You also get your own eco-friendly composting toilet, a hot shower and a whole field to yourself, with stunning mountain views. Plus there are two log burning stoves and a campfire to snuggle up next to, perhaps with a hot chocolate and some marshmallows while you gaze up at the stars. For just £132 per night, guests will receive complimentary free-range eggs laid by The Forge’s own chickens and a large basket of logs. www.theforgecorwen.co.uk

Plassey Holiday Park Nestled in 250 acres of park and woodland in the picturesque Dee Valley, Plassey has everything you need to make your romantic break truly outstanding. For lovers of the great outdoors, take advantage of the fishing ponds, nature trails, cycle paths and golf course facilities. Swimmers will enjoy the heated indoor swimming pool, and for those who want pure relaxation, book a treatment at their onside hair and beauty salon. Make a date at Shippon, the onsite restaurant, enjoy a romantic meal or indulge in afternoon tea for two. When it comes to accommodation, you truly are spoilt for choice. The luxury lodges and stylish safari tents mix essential luxuries with a classic slice of outdoor holiday adventure. Both offer the ultimate in five-star holiday accommodation with private Jacuzzi hot tubs, underfloor heating, and spacious living areas. They truly combine outstanding comfort with great facilities, set in a stunningly scenic location. The award-winning park also includes a range of high-quality pitches for touring caravans, motorhomes, and tents – meaning that there is something for everyone. www.plassey.com

Talhenbont Hall

Set in 100 acres of private woodland and gardens, Talhenbont Hall Country Estate is a truly a unique getaway. Peacocks wander through the estate, and the River Dwyfach runs through the grounds making it a truly idyllic setting! Once home of William Vaughan and used as a Garrison for Cromwell’s army in 1607, Talhenbont offers luxury selfcontained accommodation in the North Wales countryside. Escape the hustle and bustle of daily life and plan a romantic weekend away to reconnect. Call ahead to book a bottle of Champagne to your room, bouquet of fresh flowers and any other special requests and the team will be happy to help. We recommend taking a stroll through the ancient woodlands, simply stunning! www.talhenbonthall.co.uk

Page 38 NWM 2020

Bryn Pedw Holiday Cottage You can’t go wrong booking a cottage through North Wales Holiday Cottages. No. 2 Ty Cerrig in Bryn Pedw, just outside of Llandudno, is one of our favourites for couples. This fabulous cottage is set in this quaint hilltop village overlooking the sea, and it offers bike storage after a day out exploring the coast, hiking through the Snowdonia Mountain range or even zip lining through historic abandoned slate mines. And, at the end of such an exhilarating day, you can both curl up and relax in the spacious lounge which has a wonderful log burner for those cooler winter evenings. www.northwalesholidaycottages.co.uk

Quay Hotel

Meticulously designed throughout, the Quay Hotel & Spa in Deganwy epitomises cool sophistication on the North Wales Coast. The moment you enter the four-star hotel you are welcomed into a world of comfort and a sense of belonging. Set on the idyllic Conwy Estuary, the 4 star Quay Hotel and Spa commands awe-inspiring views of the most magical scenery in North Wales and is located within easy reach of Snowdonia National Park, the neighbouring medieval town of Conwy and Victorian Llandudno, all within close access from Chester and the North West. See for yourself why the Quay Hotel has been awarded multiple rosettes. Enjoy 24-hour room service, Freeview television, complimentary wifi, comfortable beds and even a couple’s spa treatment. Take in the spectacular views at the Ebb and Flow Restaurant and try a mouth-watering selection of award-winning culinary delights as well as specialty cocktails. For February, the Quay Hotel is running a ‘Room for Romance’ package which includes rose petals in your room and a two-course evening dinner. The package also includes full use of the leisure factices to enable you to truly unwind with your loved one, and prices start from just £92.50 per person. www.quayhotel.co.uk

NWM 2020 Page 39


Seaview Holiday Home Park Nestled among Gwysper Mountain, Seaview Holiday Home Park offers a wonderful romantic escape in North Wales. Seaview is just one of Darwin Escapes four resorts across North Wales and offers a tranquil location with stunning views of the Welsh coastline. Choose to sit back and relax from the comfort of your private decking as you take in the surrounding scenery, or cuddle on the sofa in your living room from your very own home from home, filled with everything you could possibly need for a self-catering holiday. If you’re after a more adventurous holiday, then Darwin Escapes’ North Wales resorts are ideally located for you to explore all that the country has to offer, so get on a boat ride, climb Snowdonia or get on your bikes for some outdoor treks across the mountains that are right on your doorstep. www.darwinescapes.co.uk

Hotel Portmeirion The 4-Star Hotel Portmeirion is a luxury hotel overlooking the sandy beaches of the Dwyryd Estuary in Snowdonia. It has 14 stylish bedrooms, some with lift access, a fine-dining restaurant, a bar and terrace and several relaxing lounges. Clough Williams-Ellis opened Hotel Portmeirion at Easter, 1926 as the focal point for his proposed ideal village. He retained much of the Victorian interior including an intricate Italian fireplace, the grand Mirror Room, the library carvings from the Great Exhibition of 1851 and a grand 18th Century oak staircase. Hotel Portmeirion maintains a high standard of cuisine and excellent service in a magical setting. See the dawn break over the mountains of Meirionnydd; watch the tide fill the Dwyryd estuary from shore to shore. For Valentine’s Day weekend, Hotel Portmeirion invites lovebirds to enjoy a complimentary bottle of Champagne in your room upon arrival. Book two nights’ Dinner, Bed & Breakfast on the 14th of February and enjoy a complimentary upgrade to the special Tasting Menu on one evening of your stay. This special is valid for the 14-15 February 2020 and subject to availability. www.portmeirion.wales

Aberdaron Welsh Holiday Cottage Close to a hidden beach and coast path, this wonderful retreat for two features a freestanding double-ended bath, a log burner and a four-poster king-sized bed. With the picturesque seaside village of Aberdaron just 3.5 miles away at the tip of the Llŷn Peninsula, you are well located to discover wonderful cafés and tea rooms, restaurants and pubs with sea views, catch a boat to the sacred island of Enlli (Bardsey Island) and explore the beautiful villages and resorts that are dotted around. This is a truly special retreat that is just perfect for couples. Enjoy a welcome pack which includes tea, coffee, sugar, milk and cake – and ask for a BBQ set if you want to dine alfresco! www.walescottageholidays.co.uk

Page 40 NWM 2020

Reasons to be cheerful! There is no better place to celebrate the cheerful awakening of snowdrops this month, says Stephen Gregory, than Church Island in the Menai Straight…

What’s cheerful about February? The coldest month of the

It’s a very small island, less than three acres, and it’s

year, when the coastline is lashed by bitter winds, when the

entirely taken up by the church of Saint Tysilio and the

hills are covered in a blanket of snow, when the mountains of

surrounding cemetery. You get there by strolling along the

Snowdonia are locked into another Ice Age. In the olden days,

Belgian promenade, so called because it was conceived

farmers would traditionally mark Candlemas, the second day

and built by Flemish refugees who came to the town of

of February, as only the halfway point of their winter.

Porthaethwy – that is, Menai Bridge – in the First World War. These people, men and women and children, were so moved

And yet… yes, there are reasons to be cheerful. Did you know

and gladdened by the warmth of the welcome they had

that, on the first day of February, less than six weeks since

from the townspeople that they wanted to make something

the gloom of the winter solstice, we’ve already regained 53

which would serve as a lasting sign of their appreciation.

minutes of daylight? Nearly an hour, already!

So today you can enjoy a safe, gentle walk along the Belgian promenade and cross the causeway onto Church Island.

And soon you’ll be seeing the snowdrops pushing their beautiful blooms through the frozen ground. Sometimes

Tysilio was a holy man, ultimately a saint, who sought his own

known as Candlemas bells, nicknamed the snow-piercer

refuge on this island long ago in the 6th Century. History tells us

– so lovely, so brave, and holding up their little faces to tell

he was a son of the king of Powys, and he could have accepted

us we’re only a few weeks away from the daffodils of St David’s Day.

his lot in life and enjoyed the privileges of living within a royal court. But when his older brother, Cynan, inherited the throne and became embroiled

Yes, in February there’s plenty to be hopeful

in the trials and dangers of kingship,

about. So, do what the snowdrops do –

Tysilio began to have his doubts about

hold your face up towards the sun. It’s

the responsibilities of being royal. Indeed,

up there somewhere!

when Cynan was killed in battle against the Saxons, Tysilio fled the court and opted

And if you’re looking for a good

for a completely different way of life. He found

place to see them, and to savour

his own personal sanctuary on this tiny outcrop

the sunlight of our lengthening days, take a stroll along the edge

of rock in the swiftly-flowing waters of our Menai Strait, where he became a holy man.

of the Menai Strait, just beneath the Menai Bridge itself, and onto the

There aren’t any records of how Tysilio lived and

sacred rocks of Church Island…

sheltered on the island, so we can only imagine the

NWM 2020 Page 43


simple and undoubtedly straitened existence he endured there. The church you’ll find there today, as you cross the causeway and under the yew tree, is medieval, dating from the 15th Century. In fact it was substantially renovated in the 1800s and became a Grade II listed building in 1967 – so it’s by no means an especially ancient monument. But it’s a place of peace and quiet and personal reflection, carefully maintained and used for worship and for weddings and funerals. The surrounding cemetery is well worth exploring. You can browse the headstones and graves and enjoy the curious, bewildering juxtaposition of new life and the relics of death. It’s keenly refreshing, literally invigorating, to see the delicate freshness of snowdrops and primroses in a

soldiers and labourers, poets and bishops, and still gives

cemetery, and the first bloomings of our favourite daffodils.

solace to us, the many everyday people who go there.

At the highest point of the island there’s a memorial to the local men who died in the World Wars, and from there, as you

Indeed, there’s something fascinating about islands. Tycoons

pause to remember the people who served and fell in those

and celebrities and lottery-winners splash out on their island

terrible conflicts, you can take deep, exhilarating breaths

homes. Some people can even buy their own island, asserting

and enjoy the views up and down the strait.

their exclusive independence, surrounding themselves with deep blue water and enjoying a private domain, separated

And then, as you might do in country cemeteries around

from the rest of the world.

the world, you’ll wander and ponder, you’ll stoop to the headstones and relish the names of the people who are

Conversely, in fiction, many writers have recognized their

resting forever on this island, in this unique place. Too many

readers’ fascination with islands and turned it on its head.

to mention all of them, of course, but you’re in the company of

They’ve used the island as a place of loneliness and danger

a motley gathering of human souls…

and dire imprisonment, from which every do-or-die attempt must be made in order to escape. Think of all the stories and

They could tell a few stories. There are war heroes, who

films about a man or a woman marooned on a desert island,

might not want to recount the things they’d seen. There are

and even our present-day reality TV programmes about

men who died while they were building the Menai Bridge,

islands infested with snakes and mosquitoes.

which looms over the island as a lasting memorial to their labours. There’s William Jones, the coroner who presided

Intriguing really, our ambivalence about islands. They figure

over the inquest into hundreds of people lost on the wreck

in our dreams and nightmares. They can be paradise or hell.

of the Royal Charter. There’s John Jones, a Bishop of Bangor

Church Island, a tumble of blackened rocks which have felt

who gave years of his life as a missionary in Africa.

the fierce currents of the strait for millions of years, has a relatively recent history of human habitation and usage –

And a number of remarkable wordsmiths. Pause for a

which makes it a good place for us passing through, to think

moment and applaud Thomas Hughes, who, in the 1880s, first

about our own purpose here and what might lie ahead – and

proposed and composed the lengthened name of LlanfairPG,

to enjoy the snowdrops. n

cleverly making the village forever world-famous. Conjure an image of Robert Herbert Williams, remembered as a writer of hymns and for having an extraordinarily luxuriant beard. You’ll find John Evans, who passed away in 1888 and enjoys immortality for his ‘unintentionally inane poetry’. More recently there’s Hugh Emyr Davies, a local bard buried in 1950, and another 20th Century bard, the celebrated Cynan, Albert Evans-Jones. So the island, long ago a refuge for a prince who fled royal privilege for a lifetime of prayer and personal contemplation, remains a resting place for

Page 44 NWM 2020

Stephen Gregory’s new book, an anthology of short stories entitled ON DARK WINGS, is now out in the USA from Valancourt Books. It features 14 of his stories, many of them previously published in the Illustrated London News and the London Evening Standard, as well as a Christmas ghost story he wrote especially for the North Wales magazine. Search for ON DARK WINGS at www.valancourtbooks.com to order your copy, postage free!

NWM 2020 Page 45

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FOOD & DRINK INSIDE: recipes wine cocktail of the month

NWM 2020 Page 49


Gandini Juggling


+ Elidyr Glyn

Iau 6 Chwefror Thursday 6 February 7.30pm

Gwener 28 Chwefror Friday 28 February 8pm

Theatr Bryn Terfel

Theatr Bryn Terfel

Jen Brister Under Privilege

The Other Room Theatre

Gwener 6 Mawrth, 8pm Friday 6 March, 8pm Stiwdio | Studio

Triawd o ddramâu dystopaidd A trio of dystopian dramas

AM ER I C A N N I G H T M A R E T H E S TO RY H E LA 12-14 Chwefror | February Stiwdio | Studio

The Fureys Mercher 19 Chwefror Wednesday 19 February 7.30pm Theatr Bryn Terfel

Lyngo Theatre




Cwmni Dawns Cenedlaethol Cymru National Dance Company Wales

Mawrth 17 Mawrth Tuesday 17 March 7.30pm 12+ Theatr Bryn Terfel

Milky Peaks Theatr Clwyd, Áine Flanagan Productions + Seiriol Davies

What A Wonderful World

21 + 22 Ebrill | April, 7.30pm

Sadwrn 22 Chwefror Saturday 22 February 11.30am / 1.30pm / 3.30pm


Stiwdio | Studio

Theatr Bryn Terfel


Give me five!

Gwledd Dewi Sant promises to be a spectacular evening where five chefs serve five courses, along with five matching wines – and it’s all in the name of a good cause…

From left to right: Wayne Roberts, Gorse Hill, Mark Threadgill, Portmeirion and Graham Tinsley MBE, Carden Park Hotel

On Thursday 27th February The Quay Hotel in Deganwy is

of the Castle Cottage in Harlech, is serving a twice-baked

hosting Gwledd Dewi Sant – an evening of fine food and drink.

cheese soufflé before The Quay’s very own Ian Watson makes your mouth water with a divine dessert. And, as

However, there are two things that make this event stand out

each course has been paired with a wine that compliments

from the crowd. Firstly, it is the unusual set up that is taking

the flavours perfectly, you can be assured that you are in

place behind the scenes at The Quay, for each of the five

for a fantastic evening.

courses is being created by a different chef. And it’s not any old chef line up either – Gwledd Dewi Sant has secured five

However, it doesn’t stop there, because the second reason

of the best chefs in the region in order to ensure that this

that this isn’t your average event is the reason why Gwledd

will be a meal to remember.

Dewi Sant is being hosted in the first place.

After some delicious canapés and a glass of Gavi Spumante,

There are currently over 2,000 food banks in the UK. To

Wayne Roberts of Gorse Hill will serve his hotly anticipated

put that number into perspective, there are only 1,300

starter. Mark Threadgill of Portmeirion is responsible for

McDonald’s restaurants – so you can see the vital role that

the fish course, while Graham Tinsley MBE, head chef at

food banks are currently playing in our country. Conwy Food

Carden Park Hotel, will be creating the main. Glyn Roberts,

Bank is no exception, and its existence relies solely on the

NWM 2019 Page 51


Left: Glyn Roberts, Castle Cottage Harlech

5 Right: Ian Watson, Deganwy Quay Hotel

coordinator. In addition, it has been able to part-fund with

The Sanctuary Trust the new role of Project and Marketing Manager to progress the food bank further, and hopefully generosity of local people, and fund raising events such as

increase donations further still.

this one. Finally, the funds raised at last year’s event allowed the Last year Gwledd Dewi Sant raised over £10,000 for Conwy

food bank to expand the ranges of products for babies and

Food Bank, and it was money that was desperately needed by

children. This includes nappies and pull-up pants, wipes,

the charity. That single donation allowed for the food bank

baby food and milk, cotton wool and cotton buds and bed

to take over the running of a Sanctuary Trust Van that was

mats. Previously the donations of these was very sporadic

previously used for the projects in Rochdale. It paid for the

and unreliable, but now supplies are regularly bought and

insurance, vehicle tax, MOT, repairs and put on new tyres.

kept topped up with many families who are desperate for

This has been of huge benefit to the Food Bank as the team

these items helped regularly.

are now able to pick up larger donations from organisations and businesses, pick up from multiple donation points on

So, if you’d like to help out the Conwy Food Bank this month

the same trip and employ more volunteer drivers in order to

then all you need to do is put your money where your mouth

ensure that there is a driver five days a week.

is – quite literally! Tickets for the event cost £95, and there will be an auction of prizes on the night in a bid to raise as

With the Gwledd Dewi Sant donation the food bank could

much for the Conwy Food Bank as possible.

also continue to pay six months salary of a Food Bank Co“It’s a pleasure for us to prepare a fine dining banquet for The Quay Hotel in Deganwy

an educated and appreciative audience – and even more so considering that all the proceeds to go to families who struggle to put food on the table,” concluded chef Glyn Roberts. Book now to ensure that the efforts of these fine five chefs are used to maximum effect… n

Further information Gwledd Dewi Sant 01492 544600 info@gwledddewisant.com www.gwledddewisant.com

Page 52 NWM 2020

Conwy Food Bank 01492 471793 conwyfoodbank@gmail.com www.conwyfoodbank.co.uk

NWM 2020 Page 53

OPEN DAY 7th March





Feeling romantic but don’t have anyone special to share this Valentine’s

1 1/2 ounces peach

Day with? Well fear not, because you can always get a Kiss On the Lips


at Sheldon’s!

5 ounces frozen mango mix (or mango chunks, if

The team at the “Bar in the Bay” will be serving up this impressive

you can’t find mango mix)

frozen drink this Valentine’s Day, meaning that everyone can get a Kiss

1 tablespoon grenadine

On the Lips if they’re in the mood! The colours of this fruity and tropical-

2 cups crushed ice

tasting cocktail are super fun, while the flavour is somehow the perfect blend of sweet and sour – a bit like a traditional Valentine’s date…

Kiss on the Lips METHOD

Put the peach schnapps, frozen mango and crushed ice into a blender and blend in spurts until smooth. Pour the grenadine into the bottom of a cocktail glass and then pour the blended mixture in over the top of it. Garnish with a pineapple slice and cherry.


Of course, if you’d rather sit back and relax while somebody mixed your ideal cocktail for you, then why not visit Sheldon’s in Colwyn Bay? From a Margarita to a Mojito, it has quite the cocktail selection and is quickly becoming the place to go for cocktails in North Wales. 01492 339821 www.sheldonsbar.co.uk

NWM 2020 Page 55

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I believe in order to plan the perfect event it’s important to understand your needs, we all know what we want but sometimes don’t know how to make that reality…..that’s where I come in! Advice and bespoke planning guidance for Weddings, from helping with seating plans to co-ordination on the big day …. I can cover everything. If you can dream it I can make it reality!!! During February, I am offering a free one hour consultation to help with wedding planning 07884 180 822 helen@perfectlyplannedbyhelen.co.uk www.helen@perfectlyplannedbyhelen.co.uk

Food for thought

Once the 12 days of Christmas are up

January is suddenly all about rectifying the

and with great collective relief, normality

untold damage that we did to ourselves by

resumes, one of the standard questions

eating that second mince pie and saying ‘why

one asks people is ‘Did you have a good

not’ to a third Baileys on ice. Many of you have

Christmas?’ More than ever before, this year

just gone a month without drinking a drop

I found a lot of people replied (with a deep

of booze or a scrap of meat – I haven’t taken

sigh), ‘We got through it.’

a drop for three weeks and to my chagrin, I seem to have put on two pounds!

As much as Christmas can be a wonderfully magical time of the year, it does seem to

What we often forget when we’re spending

take up every waking second of our lives for

our money ‘sculpting our guns’ so obsessively

Cai Ross is co-owner

weeks on end until a sort of mania is all but

in January is that winter is still out there to

and Maitre d’ of


be enjoyed for free. North Wales in winter

the award-winning

has a stark, icy and unique beauty that we

Paysanne Bistro in

often overlook.

Deganwy, which has

Whomever put January straight after December knew what they were doing. It’s

been serving French

the calendar equivalent of Graham Chapman’s

As such, February is the perfect time to enjoy

country-style food to

officious Colonel lifting his hand and telling

the last vestiges of winter. The mania is over.

the fine people of North

us to stop being so silly. As soon as we

Time seems to finally slow. Taking a long walk

Wales since 1988. He

even hear the word ‘January’, we picture

around the Great Orme in Llandudno against an

also writes for Calibre

ourselves pouring leftover wine down the

empty pastel sky or around the Llŷn Peninsula,

Magazine, BBC Good

sink, measuring out tiny portions of muesli

with the salty air cooling your face, you start to

Food, HeyUGuys.com

on the kitchen scales and pedalling away

feel your life start to belong to you again.

and The North Wales

like maniacs on in our living rooms like

Weekly News

those rather sanctimonious folk in those

This is, of course, unless it’s raining. Then

infuriatingly omnipresent adverts where

again, if it is, here are a couple of easy recipes

the instructor tells everyone that they’ve

for some late-winter tummy insulation, best

‘crushed’ something (or ‘smashed’; the gist is

enjoyed with the soundtrack of the pitter-

the same, I’m told).

patter of benign raindrops against the glass. n

NWM 2020 Page 57



Chorizo and white bean hotpot Serves 4

The ultimate mushrooms on toast

J 200g chorizo sausage J 50g shallots, chopped

This makes a great easy lunch and reminds me of soft bark

J 2 400g cans chopped tomatoes

falling from leafless trees as you knock them with a thick stick.

J 1 400g can butter beans J 1 400g can cannellini beans

Serves 2 J 350g mixed mushrooms (I used forestière and Shiitake mushrooms) J Knob of butter J Handful of chopped tarragon J 100ml crème fraïche J Juice of half a lemon J 4 slices of bread J 2 eggs

Slice the chorizo at a jaunty angle (about 5mm thick) and place in a deep pan. Turn up to a medium heat – you don’t need any butter or oil, the chorizo will produce its own. Fry gently for 5 minutes, then add the shallots. Once they have softened add the tomatoes, butter beans and the cannellini beans then stir and turn up the heat. Once it’s been brought to a boil, drop the heat, season and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with a lightly dressed salad and warm, crusty bread.

You’ll need two pans for this. Melt the butter in one pan while you bring some water to the boil in the other. Tear the mushrooms with your hands and fry them up in the butter with some seasoning over a medium heat. It may seem a lot, but they will reduce down. Once they have been cooked down (about five minutes), stir in the lemon juice, the tarragon and finally the crème fraïche. Drop the heat to a low simmer. Put the bread in the toaster – don’t scrimp on the bread; nice thick sourdough is just the ticket! Poach the eggs over a low heat so that you get a runny yolk. Butter the toast liberally. Spoon the mushrooms over the toast, place the poached egg on top and tuck in.

Page 58 NWM 2020

Don’t fancy cooking? 01492 582079 @PaysanneDeganwy www.paysannedeganwy.co.uk

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Raise your glass

Caru dy hun, caru dy win

Love yourself, love your wine. This probably seems like an odd title for an article, but as we head towards Valentine’s Day, I want us to focus on loving ourselves – and what we drink. A common theme in my writing is about breaking the rules. Wine for me is something that I love. I love to drink it, share knowledge, guide people, most of all enjoy it, and enjoy it with friends. Seeing people enjoy wine that you have chosen, listening to why and being able to help people to explain what they love is amazing. The journey through wine is similar to the journey of love. You meet, you explore, you find mutual likes. That journey that defines love, also defines the love of wine. As the phrase goes, you kiss a lot of frogs to find a prince/princess. You may need to try a lot of wines before you are able to find the one(s) that you like. When I first started to

complexity and the challenge of liking natural/orange wines.

drink wine, I drank whites, chilled, very cold, mostly light, easy to drink, fruity, medium dry whites. Mainly Spanish

So my point is loving wine is a journey. Some things are

and Italian, all from the supermarket, all from the lower end

constant, others change. The key, to me, is to take that

of the price spectrum (it was quantity not quality for sure).

journey and go with it. Discover what you don’t like (flavour, strength and body) as much as what you don’t.

I graduated to drier, less fruity more complex flavoured whites. At this point in time I hated red wine. It was all

But never give in, try as much as you can. Try other people’s

heavy, made my teeth furry and my mouth dry. Had odd

wines. Use tasting counters like ours. When you get the

flavours and wasn’t present.

opportunity try, try, try. Ask in bars to have a try of a wine before buying (if it is open).

My tastes changed over time and now I drink far more red wines than white. I like heavy reds from Argentina, Spain,

Go on that journey and reap the rewards. But remember to

Chile, Italy. But also love some complex reds from Croatia,

share your experience. Talk about wines with friends, share

Lebanon and New Zealand. Recently I have discovered

your wine, let people taste your wine. Encourage people to do

Italian varietals being produced in Australia (which blow my

tastings and tours (Conwy Vineyard do a great one with food

mind a little with their subtlety from a country known for


heavy hitters). As Euripides said – where there is no wine there is no love. My new passion is natural wines (which you may have

Happy Valentine’s day.

heard me promoting in the shop – LOTS). I like the


The Grape to Glass Wine Shop and Tasting Room

Tim Watson and his team run the Grape to Glass

8b Rhos Parade, Penrhyn Avenue, Rhos-on-Sea, LL29 7RE

Wine Shop and Tasting Room in Rhos-on-Sea which,

Tel: 01492 545934

as well as offering wine from far reaching lands, also


stocks locally produced beers, wines and spirits

NWM NWM 2019 2020 Page Page 61 61


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Page 62 NWM 2020

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Page 64 NWM 2020


NWM 2020 Page 65





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For more information Bryn Gobaith is currently on the market with Williams Estates for ÂŁ350,000. For further information visit www.williamsestates.com


NWM 2020 Page 67


The Selling & Letting Agents

Sales / Lettings - 3 Lancaster Square, Conwy LL32 8HT • Tel 01492 583100 Sales - 1a Penrhyn Avenue, Rhos-on-Sea LL28 4PS • Tel: 01492 549178 email: conwy@fletcherpoole.com

email: rhos@fletcherpoole.com

website: www.fletcherpoole.com


OLD COLWYN £219,950


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Page 68 NWM 2020

VALUATION - If you are thinking of moving at anytime in the near future please do not hesitate to ask for a FREE SALES VALUATION www.fletcherpoole.com

The Selling & Letting Agents

Sales / Lettings - 3 Lancaster Square, Conwy LL32 8HT • Tel 01492 583100 Sales - 1a Penrhyn Avenue, Rhos-on-Sea LL28 4PS • Tel: 01492 549178 email: conwy@fletcherpoole.com

email: rhos@fletcherpoole.com



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NWM 2020 Page 69


£269,950 Bodfari

Clos Bodrhyddan, Rhyl

Offers in the region of (O.I.R.O)

Ref: WR8963


Ref: WE6592

• Detached modern family home

• Four double bedrooms

• Unique detached converted chapel

• Picturesque views

• Two reception rooms

• Open plan kitchen/diner

• Three double bedrooms

• Stunningly presented

• Beautifully presented throughout

• Master bedroom with en-suite

• Well maintained gardens with raised gazebo and patio

• Large enclosed garden with garage and parking

• EPC rating B-83

• Feature multi-fuel burner

• Simply must be viewed

• EPC rating G-17

Tanrallt Road, Gwespyr Ref: WP3991

Page 70 NWM 2020

• 5 bedroom house

• One bedroom annex

• Stunning views

• Village location

• Immaculate condition

• uPVC double glazing throughout

• Ready to move into

• EPC rating E-47


£520,000 Clocaenog

Cilcain Road, Pantymwtn Ref: WM523


Ref: RN1691

• 4 bedroom architect designed detached house

• Far reaching views

• 3 Bedroom Character Property

• Set in approx. 0.4 acres

• Private rear garden with land

• Ample off road parking

• No chain

• Stunning views of Moel Famau

• Modern fitted kitchen

• Exposed beams and log burner

• Detached garage with studio above

• EPC rating E-41

• Spectacular open plan living room/kitchen/dining room • Underfloor heating

• Large games room

• EPC rating C-80

NWM 2020 Page 71

INSIDE OUT North Wales Magazine brings you the latest products from the world of interiors

Put a spring in your step…

Colourful Comfort The Afonwen Centre near Caerwys

It may only be February, but you can still keep your outside space

has a fabulous selection of cushions

looking good so that it’s ready to go when the spring does finally

designed and made in Great Britain.

make an appearance! “Keep all products in the garden natural and low

Choose from bright floral, soft velvets,

maintenance,” advises Jason Osborne from Llwyn Landscapes. “Use bark

deep and rich patterns, some with a

chippings to cover the soil and plant shrubs and low maintenance trees.

scandic feel or perhaps an image of

This will assist with weed control and will look neat and well kept. Limit

wildlife. All in beautiful textiles, starting

the amount of grassed areas and try using various helix and hedera ivy’s

from just £15.

to cover the ground in areas where you are unable to access. To save on


turf areas, think about artificial grass, as well as arboriculture work – such as ponds, steps, lighting and effects.” www.llwynlandscapes.co.uk

Hop into the hot tub A wood fired hot tub from RN Williams is perfect for any home, providing a greener and more energy efficient way to enjoy your garden. Cheaper to both buy and to run than a typical electric hot tub, a wood fired hot tub can heat up in under 1.5 hours which makes it perfect for impromptu use when friends and family arrive unexpectedly. With room for six people, drinks holder as standard and both LED lights and an air bubble system included – this hot tub is equally as popular with party animals as it is with romantic couples. And, while homeowners love the option of an affordable hot tub, they are equally as popular with holiday property owners who report big increases in bookings and 5-star reviewers from guests. www.rnwilliams.co.uk

NWM 2020 Page 73


A Touch of Rainbow

On a roll

The 75x75cm Marciano framed art work is

Garolla specialises in installing made-to-measure

available at Bennetts Interiors, a small family

roller shutter garage doors around the UK. For only

run Interiors and furniture store which opened

£895 you can get a white roller shutter garage door

four months ago at 6 Garage Street in Llandudno.

fitted in North Wales. Perfect for openings up to

Guaranteed to be the focal point of the room, the

2.6m wide, Garolla’s roller garage doors come with

artwork costs £150. Pop by to browse through a

two remote controls and a full guarantee in their

beautiful selection of lighting, beds, pictures and





Purple rain Add a touch of glamour with this stylish LSA jug, with matching goblets. This tall, elegant handmade jug is perfect for a refreshing punch on a warm summer evening – and a nice mulled wine on a winter’s one! Available for pick up at the Lifestyle Store located at Unit 1, Lon Parcwr Industrial Estate, Ruthin.

Page 74 NWM 2020

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www.llwynlandscapes.co.uk Page 76 NWM 2020




THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW Both the distance and time quoted allow you to explore the castle ruins

Flint may not readily spring to your mind when you consider a destination for a walk in the fresh air. However, the town is located on the north east coast of Wales and is next to the tidal Dee Estuary so there are several walking possibilities if you fancy putting on your boots and taking the sea air. Interest in the area has increased since the The Wales Coast Path was routed along the estuary here as it makes its mammoth journey of 870 miles/1,400 km from Queensferry in the north to Chepstow in the south.

J Distance: 3.0 miles/4.82 kilometres J Time: Allow 2.0 – 2.5 hours J Start: There is a free car park by Flint Castle on Castle Road in Flint. The car park is near to the R.N.L.I. station

J Grid Ref: SJ 247732 J Nearest postcode: CH6 5PH J Ordnance Survey Map: Ordnance Survey

This month’s walk is a little shorter than this however and takes

Explorer 265 – Clwydian Range (Prestatyn,

in the best this area has to offer as it explores the iconic ruins of

Mold and Ruthin)

Flint Castle, meanders alongside the pretty Dee Estuary and returns

J What to expect: This is a fairly easy walk

through the wilderness that is Flint Marshes. You will be surprised

with good paths and tracks to follow. The

at how many other walkers you encounter on this short outing and

way back through Flint Marshes can be a

the area is particularly well used by dog walkers. The going is

little confusing so follow the instructions

mostly straightforward and on good paths and tracks with little in

carefully. Make sure you supervise children

the way of ascent or descent, and if you choose a settled clear day for

carefully if you explore Flint Castle ruins.

the route you will get some great views and enjoy a stunning outing.

There are one or two minor ups and downs

As you are walking beside the estuary at times the route is best

and a few rough areas to negotiate so

avoided at high tide times.

walking boots would be advisable. As the route is a coastal one it would be

The highlight of the entire walk has to be the ruins of Flint Castle.

unpleasant in wet or windy conditions.

This was the first castle built in King Edward I’s ‘Iron Ring’ of

Also it is best avoided at high tide time

fortresses designed to encircle North Wales and subdue the Welsh

– check this out at www.tide-forecast.

nation. Building work began on Flint Castle in 1277 (to coincide with Edward’s first Welsh War) and the castle has been managed as a public monument for over 90 years. The setting is impressive and was chosen as it was only a day’s march from Chester and could be supplied via the River Dee. There is no fee for entering the castle and you should certainly take time to explore the ruins. Some of the


J Suitable for: Walkers of all abilities should be able to enjoy this route

J Dogs: OK if on a lead J Refreshments: Flint is nearby, and you will find cafés, pubs and shops here

high turrets can be climbed to via steep stairs and there are viewing platforms on top of them which are not for the faint hearted and which should be avoided on windy days!

NWM 2020 Page 77





START With your back to the sea, exit the car park via a pavement path on the right side of it following signs for ‘Flint Castle’ to pass a ‘Coast Path’ sign 2

and sculpture to reach a road. Go right following the pavement behind the


castle. At the castle entrance go right to cross the entrance bridge and explore the ruins of the castle. Exit the ruins via the bridge you used to


enter them and go immediately right to follow the castle moat to the last battlement. Here go ahead descending a path to reach a path junction right of a car park.

right again almost immediately to follow The Coast path for ‘Flint Point’. Continue down a road and at a yellow barrier and The Russel BI factory, go right following The Coast Path through a squeeze stile left of a barrier. Pass a sign for ‘Flint Foreshore’ and reach a path junction left by a footpath sign. Go left

Points of interest on this section

following The Coast Path and a sign for ‘High Tide Route’.

J Flint Castle - This was the first castle built in King Edward

Rise half left into trees and at the next footpath sign and a

1’s ‘Iron Ring’ of fortresses designed to encircle North Wales

junction right, go ahead continuing on the path with nice

and subdue the Welsh nation. Building work began on Flint

views of the Dee Estuary right. Stay ahead on the main path

Castle in 1277 (to coincide with Edwards first Welsh War) and

at all times and enter trees. Reach a path junction by double

the castle has been managed as a public monument for over

gates right and go right on the main path. Ignore any paths

90 years

going off left and continue on the main path to reach a good track heading uphill left.

2) Go right to stay left at the next path junction in woods and by a sign for ‘the Coastal Path’. Shortly cut back right to rise up

4) Go left here to rise up continuing to a junction with a good

and cut back left with nice views of the Dee Estuary. The path

track. Go left and continue past a small lake right. Take time

cuts back right again (as a rough path drops away ahead) and

to leave the path and cut left to see the soldier statue at a

then curves left to reach a ‘T’ junction. Go left and continue to

viewpoint. Afterwards return to the main path and continue on

a junction of paths with a barrier left. Go right towards the sea

it in the direction you were headed. Keep ahead to reach a ‘T’

continuing on the path with the estuary right and curve left

junction by a squeeze stile.

keeping the estuary right. Shortly curve left to follow an inlet inland and soon rise up to join a higher path and go ahead on it.

5) Go left to follow a wide path through trees and continue

Continue past factory units and a fence. At the end of the inlet

ahead at a sign for ‘Flint Castle’. At a barrier pass through a

curve right past two benches to reach a sign for ‘Flint Dock’.

squeeze stile and curve left of a barrier to pass through a barrier to a road. Go ahead to pass right of Flint Dock again.

Points of interest on this section

Keep ahead to continue down the road through industrial units.

J The Dee Estuary – this is where the River Dee flows into

At a junction go right (near a car park) to go left at the next

Liverpool Bay. The estuary starts near Shotton and soon swells

junction and walk past the entrance to Flint Castle. Continue to

to several miles wide. It forms the boundary between the

go left back to the car park and the start. n

Wirral Peninsula and Flintshire

J Flint Dock – this was built in the 1800’s to export lead from Halkyn Mountain. It was also used to ship out coal and timber. Seeing it as it is today it is difficult to believe that this was once one of the busiest places in Flint. 3) Stay ahead on the path to curve left to a road. Go right and

Page 78 NWM 2020

A WORD OF CAUTION Walking in the outdoors can be a strenuous activity and it is up to you to ensure that you are fit and healthy enough to undertake the route described and to approach the venture with caution and care. You should wear appropriate footwear and suitable clothing, take along food and drink plus carry the relevant map and a compass and be able to use it. The details given here are believed to be correct at the time of going to press. However, neither North Wales Magazine nor the author can accept responsibility for inaccuracies encountered.





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A Life in Squares photo collage worth £295 These days, the majority of our photographs are stored on computers, filed away on hard drives, left on mobile phones or hidden away in boxes gathering dust. A Life in Squares photo collage will capture these precious memories and turn them into a unique piece of artwork for your wall. The team can work from digital images, old paper photos and children’s drawings. Any shape or size photo can be used – and they don’t have to be square! Prize is a 49-image collage on a 10mm floating acrylic panel at 50cm x 50cm to the value of £295! T’s&C’s apply. www.lifeinsquares.com

To Enter In order to enter, all you need to do is email your name and address to us at competition@northwalesmagazine.co.uk by Friday 28th February, making sure that you put the name of the competition that you are entering in the subject line. Of course, you could always enter both – good luck!

North Wales Magazine has two amazing prizes to give away this February! Read on for entry details, and remember to follow our Facebook page (@northwalesmag) to ensure that you don’t miss out on any extra competitions that are taking place throughout the month. Good luck!

A Hollywood Red Carpet Facial with HEBE Aesthetics Treat yourself to an A-list treatment at HEBE Aesthetics. Using only high quality skincare, products don’t just sit on top of your skin, they are absorbed into your skin. Great before a night out, this unique facial is available at HEBE’s clinics in Wrexham and Colwyn Bay. The treatment will leave your skin feel fresh and clean. All treatments at HEBE Aesthetics are performed by an experienced and registered independent nurse prescriber, Irina Evans. T’s&C’s apply. Prize value £50 Find HEBE on Facebook @hebe.uk

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Notice We collect your information when you enter our competitions, and store this information on our systems. We will use this information to contact you if you are the competition winner, and to contact you occasionally with details of relevant offers and items which may be of interest to you. If you win the competition, your name and the town where you live may be printed in a future edition of North Wales Magazine. We will also share your information with the competition provider, and they may contact you with details of relevant offers. Please see www. northwalesmagazine.com for our full Privacy Notice.


NWM 2020 Page 81

Page 82 NWM 2020



Have you considered mediation? The stress of Christmas can be the straw that breaks the camel’s back for some relationships, making the new year a busy time for divorce lawyers. But one Conwy-based family law specialist is urging couples to consider mediation before, or instead of, taking formal legal action. Caroline Yorke (pictured), of Lanyon Bowdler Solicitors, said mediation can be a very successful way for couples to reach agreement following the breakdown of a relationship. “During mediation, couples meet with a specially-trained family mediator to explore what options are available

Charity celebrates 10th anniversary

and work towards an agreement regarding their

2020 sees a local Llandudno Charity celebrating ten

take place at any stage of the separation or divorce,

years of providing their services. Hope Restored

and we find it can be a very effective and economical

provides totally free services to the homeless and

way of making progress without the need for drawn-

vulnerable in the area. Founder Brenda Fogg and

out legal arguments or court proceedings. It is a ‘safe

her team of volunteers provide not only shelter, help

space’ in which the parties can explore various options

and advice with the social welfare system, but also

creatively, whilst knowing that they can return to a

food and clothing generously donated by the local

solicitor for advice on any discussions that take place.

community. Steve Bate from Llandudno based Printing

Furthermore, mediation is one of the few areas of

Company, Print Approved was astounded what Brenda

family law where Legal Aid is available to people who

and her team have achieved and offered not only to

qualify financially for it, and many mediators are able

chose Hope Restored to be Print Approved’s charity

to offer a Legal Aid service. We are always keen to

of the year, but also created a brand identity and

suggest mediation to clients whenever we think it will

produced a range of marketing products to promote

be appropriate.”

the invaluable services this amazing charity provides.


finances and family situation,” she explained. “It can


NWM 2020 Page 83


A butcher with a big appetite for the great outdoors is

Are your ready for a Miwtini?

raising money for vulnerable children by walking to the

The Enterprise Hub – a

top of Snowdon every week for the entire year. That means

collaboration between

keen walker Llyr Williams,

Menter Môn and M-SParc

who works for food

in Gaerwen – has

distribution firm Harlech

launched Miwtini, a

Foodservice, will have

new business start-up

climbed the equivalent of

programme for people

Everest five times, trekked

in Conwy, Denbighshire,

more than 400 miles and

Anglesey and Gwynedd.

scaled more than 150,000

The Miwtini programme

feet when he successfully

will be holding training

completes his gruelling 52-week challenge in aid of Action

sessions on a variety

for Children. The 32-year-old will be heading to the summit

of entrepreneurship topics to help individuals “make it

come rain or shine, or even ice and snow, with the aim of

happen”. The aim is for them to come into the programme

beating his current personal best time of one hour and 27

with a business idea and leave ready to start, with a

minutes tackling the strenuous Rhyd Ddu Path. Llyr, who

community of like-minded people to help them along the

lives in Llannor near Pwllheli and is a former student of

way. The workshops will encourage participants to try

Ysgol Y Moelwyn in Blaenau Ffestiniog, has worked as a

something out, making something happen, do something

butcher at Harlech Foodservice which has its headquarters

different or begin something new. The programme

on Parc Bwyd, Llanystumdwy, near Criccieth, for more than

will also highlight the Enterprise Hub’s co-working

two years. The company, which employs around 200 people

office spaces available across the region. These include

and has a satellite base in Chester, has named Action for

M-SParc on Anglesey and its satellite locations; Conwy

Children as its chosen charity during 2020. It’s a UK-wide

Business Centre in Llandudno Junction, Rhyl’s Clwyd

charity that protects and supports vulnerable children and

Chambers and bases in Ruthin, Botwnnog, Dolgellau and

young people by providing practical and emotional care.m”I


go walking every week anyway and having just achieved


Llyr to climb Snowdon once a week!

my personal best time walking up Snowdon, I thought there must be a way of doing this for charity and making it a proper challenge,” explained Llyr. “My personal best is 87 minutes to the summit. There are four or five paths you can take but I prefer the Rhyd Ddu Path as I think it’s more

Wales Coast Path to launch over 50 new itineraries

The Wales Coast Path is launching over 50 new walking

rewarding and challenging than the others, and the views

itineraries covering the entire 870-mile trail to help

are stunning. I usually walk up to the summit of Snowdon

locals and visitors alike discover new and exciting ways

six or seven times a year so to do it every week will be

to explore the Welsh coastline. These new routes have

challenging. The changing weather will obviously make

been specifically designed by a network of officers

things difficult.” Llyr, who has a two-year-old son called

who spend their days managing and enjoying the path.

Ianto, added that the biggest reward from completing the

They will aim to make the path available to all ages and

challenge will be knowing that his efforts will go towards

abilities and will be grouped into specific themes. The

helping children that need it the most.

Wales Coast Path team have already rolled out a number


of these new itineraries, with a series of short, familyfriendly augmented reality (AR) walks having been unveiled in time for the school summer holidays. These were followed in autumn by a series of longer threeday itineraries developed to provide flexibility whether you want to completely get off grid, test your fitness or are looking for a family weekend activity. The next series of itineraries to be launched will all be centred on ‘mindfulness’, and will be perfectly suited for those who want to focus on reconnecting with nature, family and themselves. www.walescoastpath.gov.uk

Page 84 NWM 2020

Experience eFoil – a UK first From April, Hydrofoil technology is coming to the beautifully sheltered Menai Straits. The latest experience to come to North Wales, one of the world’s adventure capitals, FoilRide (an extension of RibRide in Anglesey) is the only place where water sport enthusiasts can learn to eFoil in the UK, and one of very few in Europe. eFoil is a surfboard with an electric motor that flies above a hydrofoil wing, giving visitors the chance to fly above water and interact with the beauty of Wales’ iconic waterway without imposing upon it. Only a modicum of balance is required. “We are always looking at ways to expand our offering to visitors, whilst focusing on sustainability,” commented Tom Ashwell, co-founder of RibRide. “Visitors to FoilRide will get a UK first experience, in an activity that promises true mindfulness. Hydrofoiling can be learnt in just one lesson, so it’s a perfect holiday activity and we already have repeat visitors to RibRide on our waiting list. We can’t wait to see perplexed faces watching people magically fly along the Menai Strait!” RibRide is working with local community groups to identify those interested in offering the FoilRide experience to its members, including Welsh tourism courses, Island Games Sports Ambassadors, mental health charities and disability groups. www.ribride.co.uk

Adam Hender returns to Llandudno

21-year-old rising star Adam Hender has announced his first run of headline shows, stopping in Glasgow, Manchester, London and homecoming show here at Venue Cymru this month. The shows follow the release of his anthemic new single ‘Burn’, which hit 100,000 streams on Spotify in a matter of weeks, and has been heard by millions more since, as well as receiving its first play on Radio 1’s ‘Best New Pop’ show. The track is a stirring ballad, touching on the darker side of relationships. “It’s very personal to me,” says Adam. “It’s about a toxic relationship, which I’m sure plenty of people have had too. I hope people relate to it.” The tour is the first chance to catch Adam live since his triumphant hometown show in Conwy Chapel last year. Tickets cost just £13. venuecymru.co.uk

Boris Johnson recognises Llandudo charity Prom Ally offers the free loan of prom dresses and suits to school children, sixth form students and college students who otherwise couldn’t afford one. Prom Ally has helped hundreds of girls since it was set up back in 2015 by Ally Elouise, a law graduate from Llandudno who used her 21st birthday money to start it. And now Ally Elouise has been recognised by Prime Minister Boris Johnson for the difference that she is making. “I know you do this with no thought of praise or reward, but allow me to offer my own recognition of how your brilliant idea of loaning out prom dresses and suits, to those who might not ordinarily have them, is allowing students to celebrate the milestone of finishing school,” said Johnson in a personal letter to Ally Elouise. “I feel so honoured to have been chosen by the Prime Minister to receive this Points of Light Award,” added Ally Elouise. “The ultimate goal is that eventually no-one will have to miss their school prom due to financial hardship!” www.promally.co.uk

NWM 2020 Page 85

Discover new adventures, great food, a World Heritage Site, two National Trust properties, a thriving town centre and make memories by visiting Wrexham County in 2020. To plan your visit and see our new itineraries visit



Discover the


Independent Boarding and Day School, for ages 9 to 19, North Wales

For more information visit www.stdavidscollege.co.uk

Puzzle corner 



Down 1 Army dining room (4,4) 2 Leaning letter (6) 3 Armed resistance (9) 4 Smoked herring (6) 5 Sporting competitors (8) 6 Silence! (5) 7 Group of spectators (8) 8 Makes over (6) 15 Grease (9) 17 Lack of variety (8) 18 Unequal (3-5) 20 Adolescent (8) 21 E.g. Seville (6) 23 Drowsy (6) 24 Outlaw (6) 25 Experiment (5)

Down: 1 Mess hall, 2 Italic, 3 Rebellion, 4 Kipper, 5 Athletes, 6 Shush, 7 Audience, 8 Renews, 15 Lubricant, 17 Monotony, 18 One-sided, 20 Teenager, 21 Orange, 23 Sleepy, 24 Bandit, 25 Trial. Across: 9 Extremist, 10 House, 11 Solve, 12 Palestine, 13 Accelerate, 14 Ends, 16 Limpopo, 19 Student, 21 Owns, 22 Measurable, 26 Afterlife, 27 Conga, 28 Ganja, 29 Expensive.

Across 9 Radical (9) 10 Accommodate (5) 11 Find the answer (5) 12 Holy Land (9) 13 Increase in speed (10) 14 Finishes (4) 16 “The great grey-green, greasy --River� (Kipling) (7) 19 Scholar (7) 21 Possesses (4) 22 Quantifiable (10) 26 Heaven or hell, maybe (9) 27 Sort of line dance (5) 28 Marijuana (5) 29 Dear (9)

NWM 2020 Page 87


An exceptional academic and enriching education from Pre-School to Sixth Form

Excellent examination results • High academic value added Outstanding Pre-School provision for 2-4 year olds • Wrap around care included Year 7 scholarships available • Exceptional Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme Forest School and Coastal School initiatives for Prep School children RYA Accredited Sailing Centre • Remarkable Performing Arts opportunities PRE-SCHOOL NOW ACCEPTING CHILDREN FROM AGED TWO

www.rydalpenrhos.com Page 88 NWM 2020

For more information email admissions@rydalpenrhos.com or call 01492 530155

Learning by heart Many parents find themselves asking at this stage, does it

maintain breadth of study for as long as possible. Both

matter which GCSE subjects their child chooses to take and

employers and universities expect pupils to take a wide

how do you go about making sure they are studying subjects

range of options including English Language, Mathematics,

which they enjoy, are passionate about, but that will

one Modern Language, The Sciences, the Humanities, as well as a creative subject. It should be noted,

set them off on the right path towards sixth form

however, that generally students wishing to

and courses of study after school?

apply to the most academic universities should not take more than one creative

Taken at the age of 16, when your child

or practical subject.

finishes year 11, GCSEs are used by both employers and universities as

Some GCSE exam boards are

evidence of a student’s academic

deemed ‘harder’ than others. Find

ability at this stage of their education.

out which exam boards the school

They are available in a wide variety

offers in each of the subjects that your youngster in interested in

of subjects. Most children tend to

studying and ask why the school has

take between eight and 11 subjects,

chosen this particular course within

depending on the recommendation of

this subject.

their school and their academic ability. IGCSE or International General Certificate of

Some schools insist on some subjects as

Secondary Education is increasingly offered

compulsory such as Religious Education, albeit

as an option in certain subjects. These are selected by some schools as they are often considered to have more

generally in short format, which requires no coursework.

challenging content and their tendency is to have less assessed coursework, which can ensure students are better

The correct GCSE choices and good results at this stage are

prepared for the next phrase of their education.

now critical for successful UCAS applications. For example, GCSE English is now generally a universal entry requirement

When helping your child select their GCSE options, it is

for any course. Mathematics is only slightly less commonly

important to look at a number of factors:

asked for and it is now often expected for students wanting to study subjects such as psychology, business and often the

You need to look at your child’s general ability, track record in


examinations and overall performance in a specific subject. Success, general enjoyment and enthusiasm for the subject

It is important to note that a number of universities are

are strong indicators that a subject is a good choice.

asking that the results are achieved at one sitting. Some do

Often a youngster’s enjoyment of a subject at this stage of

not accept ‘re-sits’ at GCSE or standard level qualifications.

their education will correlate directly with a teacher who has

It is also considered better to take fewer subjects all in once

particularly inspired them. Make sure to enquire who will be

sitting at the end of year 11 and get higher grades. Oxford and

teaching your child if they select this subject as an option if

Cambridge and a number of popular courses at Russell Group

this is the case.

Universities now have entry requirements of 7A* GCSEs and often expect even more A*s!

Is your child better at assessment through examinations or coursework? There has been a significant increase in

Try to ensure your child feels ownership of the decision

coursework or controlled assessments in the past two years.

when choosing their subjects. The results they obtain

These can be an advantage/disadvantage depending on your

can really have an impact of the rest of their lives, so real

child. For example some subjects such as ICT, Music, Drama,

engagement in the process is critical. n

Art, Design Technology and PE have lots of practical work and controlled assessment pieces that account for over 40% of the available marks and which is very time consuming. These options will suit some students more than others. The aim is to get a suitable mixture of subject choices to

Sally Ann Harding is Senior School Head of Rydal Penrhos. She is about to embark on her 28th year at the school and her 40th in the teaching profession

NWM 2020 Page 89


EDUCATION NEWS Rydal Penrhos opens its doors to two-year-olds

New chief exec for Coleg Cambria

Coleg Cambria has appointed a new chief executive who plans to take the award-winning institution “to the next level”. Yana

Rydal Penrhos’ pre-school department

Williams has a long-term vision for the north east Wales college

is now accepting children from

and will build on the foundations laid by predecessor David

aged two. Those wishing to attend the prep school can

Jones OBE. The former CEO/Principal of

now do so from an earlier age than in previous years

Hugh Baird College in Liverpool vowed to put

thanks to a significant investment in equipment in order

students at the heart of every decision and

to make the transition to accommodate this particular

unite communities and industry behind a

age group. This includes a specialist play and learning

fresh strategy that will make Cambria “even

area for younger members of the pre-school community,

more innovative” in the future. Williams was

which was constructed by Rydal Penrhos’ maintenance

both a student and manager at the former

team, in addition to changing facilities for children who

Deeside College – which merged with Yale

are not yet potty trained. Pre-school staff have received

College in Wrexham to form Coleg Cambria in 2013 – and looks

specialist training ahead of the introduction, which is the

forward to the journey ahead. “I have always followed the

latest positive move implemented by Prep School head

college’s progress, so I’m pleased to see how it’s grown and

Lucy Davies following her appointment at the start of

am delighted to be back,” said Williams, who is originally from

the academic year. At Rydal Penrhos Prep School, young

Mold. “We have a real opportunity to become the best college

children will explore, investigate and question so that

in the UK; Cambria is established and respected, the links

they learn while their curiosity and imagination is given

and partnerships are already in place and we have a fantastic

full reign. The Pre-School department consists of a large

reputation. Together we can develop that potential across all of

open plan area with units for role play, circle and story

our sites and be the ‘can-do’ college for our communities, for

time, classroom activities/numeracy and literacy groups,

industry, and most importantly, for our students.” Her first task

construction/small world, art and wet activities, reading

will be to begin developing a strategy for the future, embracing

and computer activities. There is also a secure, fully

technology and looking at modern ways of working that reflect

enclosed and well-equipped outdoor area.

today’s society while “future-proofing” the organisation.



Wrexham Glyndwr to host European delegation Architectural Design Technology students from Wrexham Glyndwr University will host a European delegation later this year to examine the future of the growing eSports industry. The appetite globally for eSports – essentially, competitive computer gaming which is viewed by spectators – has grown hugely in recent decades and Glyndwr’s students have taken part in a Europe-wide Erasmus + project examining the kind of buildings the new industry will need – alongside students from France, Spain and Finland. Dr Colin Stuhlfelder,

requirements of eSports, such as training spaces,

Programme Leader for Architectural Design Technology, said:

analytics facilities - as well as ensuring a public facing

“With the Spanish University of Murcia’s sports expertise,

space is created as well.” Last Autumn, students from

the University of Caen in France’s specialism in inclusivity,

Glyndwr joined their European counterparts in a trip to the

the University of Kajaani in Finland’s eSports lead, and

University of Murcia’s Faculty of Sport Science in San Javier.

WGU student’s design skills, the Erasmus+ project seeks

The visit was the third of a series of Erasmus+ study

to examine how eSports can be understood, expanded to

trips which Architectural Design Technology students

a broad audience regardless of ability, and be regulated

have taken part in as part of the pan-European electronic

through a Europe-wide Ethical Charter – as well as a host

gaming industry project, and later this year, students from

of other considerations linked to engagement. Our students

across Europe will be hosted at Glyndwr for the Welsh

at Glyndwr have been examining the design implications

section of the project.

of housing gaming tournaments, as well as the associated


Page 90 NWM 2020

diwrnodau agored. 29 Chwefror 6 Mehefin

open days. 29 February 6 June

Archebwch nawr / Book now 01978 293439 wgu.ac.uk/openday

NWM 2020 Page 91

Cato Crane Auctioneers MAGAZINE


Chinese Reverse Painting on Glass C1900 £200-£300

Artist - Sir George Clausen - Sold by Us for £190,000.00’

Japanese Cranes in the Sunset £600-£800

• Free Pre-Sale Valuation at the Sale Room • Very Prompt and Courteous Service • Valuations for Probate and Sale • Valuations for Insurance • Weekly Collections and Furniture Auctions • Monthly Antiques and Fine Art Auctions • Specialist Book and Toy Auctions • International Advertising and Buyers • Specialist Removals with In-House Experienced Team • Removal of Low Value Items • Secure Insured Storage Facilities • Removals Arranged to All Parts of the UK • Live Internet Auctions

Our main offices and two auction rooms are located in Stanhope Street, opposite the Liverpool Marina. There is free on-road parking. Visits to clients in Wirral, Chester and North Wales are made every week. Evening and weekend visits to clients homes can be made by prior arrangement. To book your appointments simply call John Crane personally on either 01766 771777 or mobile 07836 209995 Cato Crane Auctioneers Liverpool Auction Rooms 6 Stanhope Street Liverpool, L8 5RF

Wirral Valuation Office 48 The Mount Heswall Wirral CH60 4RD

Chester and North Wales Tel: 01244 680055 Wirral Tel: 0151 342 2321

Email: info@catocrane.co.uk & sell@lowerpercent.co.uk


Telephone Soon For Home Visit Appraisals

Page 92 NWM 2019 2020

All Things


Fine Victorian Silver Gilt Vinaigrette by Nathaniel Mills £200£300

Valuable Napoleonic Bone Boat C1810 for Restoration

Fine Walnut Serpentine Chest of Drawers

1937/8 Meccano SS 100 Type Tinplate Sports Car with Sleek Lines

Extremely rare and desirable objects are discovered not

model was in extremely good condition having been well cared

frequently, but they do turn up when least expected. Over

for. The colours are of the standard type but other rare colour

the Christmas break we spent a few days sorting through a

variants are to be found and can increase the value by five

property which contained a large number of boxes of items

times the normal cost to over £1,000.

which a collector had stored in his house for many years. Most of the items were not of great value and under £100 each.

As you can see the sleek lines in the model make it a very pleasing shape and it still has the original white tyres and seats

On the final day of sorting a box on top of a wardrobe was found

and steering wheel. All in all a great attic discovery and a future

to contain a small model boat in the form of a first rate ship of

joy to the new owner when it comes under the hammer in our

the line that is to say it had over 100 guns on three decks. The

auction on the 12th February along with other good models.

model needed repair and restoration. This rare model is known as a Napoleonic Bone Prisoner of War Model made in about 1810.

Rarity and condition makes models valuable and recently two Scalextrics model racing cars made over £500 with us

The prisoners obviously had plenty of spare time but also the

in Liverpool. If you have old metal models of boats, cars or

skills to make these vessels from the bones they were given as

aeroplanes which have been lying around in the garage for

the staple diet was mutton stew and the laborious construction

years and have become dusty and rusty don’t despair, they will

task developed into a small prison industry, albeit with very

still sell well as model collectors are often expert paint sprayers

low output. Prisoners’ hair was utilised for the rigging and the

and get great pleasure when engaged in winter evening

skills of the imprisoned carpenters was employed in making

restoration projects.

the basic hull shapes to which the newly fashioned mutton bones were attached with tiny metal pins. Some models were

Auction prices can be variable at times with the winter and

supplied for sale in intricate straw-work boxes for ease of

spring traditionally being the best time to sell. This rule is not

transport and storage.

so applicable now with internet bidding as summer in the UK is winter in the Southern Hemisphere and people are indoors in

Only a handful of these Napoleonic models have been on the

front of their computer screens hopefully bidding well.

open market in recent years, but there are many in museums. Despite requiring extensive restoration this intricate model is

Nowadays 70% of auction lots are sold live on the Internet

expected to make £5,000 to £10,000 or more as it might be a

with many bypassing dealers and going to the end user or

long time before another one in another attic is recognised as

private collector which means better results for today’s sellers.

being very special and discovered!

Every lot is photographed and condition reports sent out to prospective bidders to ensure they are informed of any wear

Browsing through glossy vintage sports car magazines and the

or damage.

car advertised says irritatingly POA or Price on Application you can be sure that the cost will be out of reach of most of we mere

Our valuation office in Heswall is open every Friday and

mortals on the planet! I don’t know the cost of an original 1930s

during the week by appointment when I am always pleased to

Jaguar SS 100 but it will be sure to be heading towards the one

meet clients with interesting objects and pictures; it is always

million pounds mark for a fine restored example. A replica can

amazing when people bring in valuable items and pictures

cost over £100,000! Only 119 originals were constructed.

bought in charity shops by those people with sharp eyes for a bargain!

This week on a house visit in Wirral I discovered in a loft a Liverpool Binns Road Meccano built model of a touring sports

The saleroom in Liverpool is also open every day for you to bring

car based on the famous SS 100. Surprisingly this 90-year old

in items for sale by auction. n

John Crane runs Cato Crane Auctioneers which offers a free pre-sale valuation service at its busy Valuation Office in Wirral. It also offers a home visit valuation service throughout North Wales, which is ideal if you would like advice on a few objects. Cato Crane’s selling commission rates are competitive, and a rate of 8% (or lower for very high value items) is available to clients in North Wales during February 2020. You can call Cato Crane’s head office in Liverpool on 0151 709 5559 or their office in Wirral on 0151 342 2321 for further information or, alternatively you can ring John directly on 07836 209995 if you would like any auctioneering advice. You can also follow Cato Crane on Twitter and Instagram. www.catocrane.co.uk

NWM 2019 Page 93 NWM 2020 Page 93

Three places to visit in February

Getting back

to Nature

There’s plenty of wildlife across the region in February, says Julian Hughes, if you know where to look.

Aberduna, near Mold There are great views across the Alyn Valley to Moel Famau from this Wildlife Trust nature reserve. You may spook a Woodcock from beneath the trees, before it heads back to Russia to breed, and look for Snowdrops and tiny purple Dog Violets, which are the food plant for the caterpillars of Small Pearl-

“There’s a flower that shall be mine, ‘Tis the little Celandine”

bordered Fritillary that will fly here in the summer.

Lesser Celandines bring sunshine to roadside verges, ditches and stream banks of North Wales. It’s a type of Buttercup, with glossy,

Bangor Harbour

heart-shaped leaves. Its star-like flowers with up to 12 petals are a

Just a few minutes’ walk from

beacon for insects, but the petals close up before it rains. They have

the city centre, the Menai Strait

inspired generations of artists to celebrate the start of spring: from CS Lewis in The Lion,

separates mainland Wales from

The Witch and The Wardrobe, to William Wordsworth who dedicated three poems to the

Ynys Môn/Anglesey. At low tide,

little plant.the first nature you heard as you walked home on New Year’s Day.

the sand and mud provide a rich feeding ground for wading birds

Getting the goat

such as Oystercatchers, Curlews and Knots, some of which roost

Queen Bumblebees; but what will they eat? Goat Willows are

below the harbour wall when

common in damp habitats, and their male catkins appear long

the tide comes in. Take a walk

before the leaves unfurl. The catkins are covered in soft grey

along Bangor Pier and look for

‘fur’, hence the old country name of ‘pussy willow’, beneath

black-and-orange Turnstones

which the bright yellow flowers provide a welcome source of

feeding busily on the seaweed

nectar for early-emerging bugs.

covered rocks.

Credit: Derek Moore

Warm days in February will bring out flying insects, including

Looking for lost nuts

February and March are tough months for birds, as last autumn’s food windfall is almost exhausted, but the warm days of an insect-rich spring are yet to come. Animals such as squirrels and jays hide excess nuts in times of plenty. Of course, the animal that hides the food doesn’t always reap the reward. In woodland, look for the Nuthatch, with its slate-grey back and peachy belly, walking down the trunks of trees, poking its bill into the crevices of bark to find a lost nut. Or make it easier for birds by providing nuts and seeds in a feeder in your garden.

Bringing back the Beaver

Beavers became extinct in Wales in the 15th Century because of overhunting for their meat and fur. It was the same story across Europe. Credit: Klaudiusz Nocturnal and aquatic, Muchowski with waterproof fur, Beavers are a keystone mammal, creating more diverse wetlands by cutting down saplings with their teeth to create pools in rivers, that are used by a range of other species. Wildlife Trusts Wales are assessing the feasibility of reintroducing Beavers to the Afon Dyfi and are organising drop-in sessions for people who live in the area from 12-4pm on: • Friday 7 February at Cletw’r, Tre’r Ddol, Machynlleth SY20 8PN.

Friog Cliff, near Fairbourne Rising steeply from the sea to the south of the Mawddach estuary, the cliffs between Friog and Llwyngwril are home to the only seabird colony in Meirionnydd. Fulmars are first to return, usually in January, and wheel along the seaboard on stiff-wings, setting up home with a mate on a narrow ledge. In February and March, the Herring Gulls, Lesser Black-backed Gulls and Cormorants will look for a good spot to build their messy

• Monday 10 February at The Brigands Inn,

nests, heading into Cardigan Bay

Mallwyd SY20 9HJ.

to find oil-rich seafood to raise

• Thursday 13 February at Llanbrynmair

their chicks in April and May.

community centre SY19 7DJ. • Saturday 15 February at St Peter’s Church, Machynlleth SY20 8AG.

Julian Hughes grew up in North Wales, which instilled a lifelong love of nature. He lives near Llandudno, manages the RSPB’s public affairs work in Wales, and writes about the region’s wildlife.

NWM 2020 Page 95

You & Your


HOW TO KEEP YOUR PETS STIMULATED Two of the most common reasons for behaviour problems

J Create an obstacle course in the garden with climbing,

in pets are boredom and excess energy. It’s easy to focus

running and jumping points to flex their mental and

on giving your pet physical exercise, but often, mental

physical muscles

stimulation can be overlooked. All pets require mental stimulation and it is estimated that most dogs need at least 6

Spending more time with your pet learning new skills and

hours of mental activity a day. If they are not provided with

tricks can help them expand their mental ability through

an appropriate amount of stimulation, they can become bored

problem solving. It also provides a time for you to grow a

which could also lead to bad behaviour. By keeping your pet

stronger bond with your pet. Stuffable food toys, puzzles or

mentally stimulated, you can:

long-lasting chew toys, such as the Buster Activity Mats and

J Burn off extra energy your pet may have J Reduce stress levels J Help with separation anxiety J Introduce healthy and calm behaviour in puppies

KONG toy range, are perfect to keep your pet entertained.

and kittens

Some of the best ways to use a stuffable food toy are:

J As a reward after a positive walk or training session J To prevent separation anxiety by giving them to your pet as you are about to leave the house

J Improve mental stamina

J As a substitute to a walk on a rainy day

Mental exercise is easy to accomplish by simply introducing

If you require any further information, please pop in to store.

a few games into your pet’s routine. You can try hiding treats

One of the team will be happy to help you pick out some

around the house, teaching them a new trick, or making

interesting toys and treats to keep your pet happy.. n

a play date with another pet owner so that your pet can socialise. This can change your pet’s behaviour for the better. Here are a few other ideas that can easily be implemented into your pet’s routine:

J Using a wobbler or puzzle feeder can make your pet work for their meal

J Introduce a dinner time routine, such as a high five before giving your pet their meal

J Teach your pet the name of their toys, and ask them to hunt

Sion Bashar is the store manager at petplace in Abergele. Having worked for petplace for five years he has a wealth of knowledge – and a genuine love for all things pet related. Be sure to pop in and say ’Hi’.

for specific toys around the house, or in their toy box

NWM 2020 Page 97




While everyone remembers Russell Grant from his Breakfast TV appearances in the 1980’s, most people don’t realise that Russell was the first astrologer in over 300 years to present a horoscope forecast to a member of the Royal Family (HRH Queen Mother). Now dubbed the “Royal Astrologer” Russell has appeared on numerous television shows, including Strictly Come Dancing. He divides his time between London and his North Wales home near Portmeirion. www.russellgrant.com

February’s horoscopes brought to you by Russell Grant ARIES (March 21st – April 20th) Both your public and private lives will reap rich rewards around the 2nd; there will be lots of reasons for rejoicing on this magical day. After making an appearance at an important party, head off to a romantic hideaway with your partner. Valentine’s Day promises to be a happy occasion, whether you are single or attached. Toast your love with your nearest and dearest. TAURUS (April 21st – May 21st) A friend will invite you to go on holiday with them on the 2nd; you’ll make wonderful travel companions. Splash out on a gourmet restaurant on the 3rd, as you’re sure to enjoy whatever is on the menu. Valentine’s Day will find you making a glamorous entrance at a restaurant, theatre or party. If you’re looking for love, you could find it with an attractive colleague. GEMINI (May 22nd – June 21st) A rewarding job with lots of perks could come your way on the 3rd. Stop doubting yourself and accept the position; you won’t regret it. Valentine’s Day could have an exotic flair. Going to a restaurant that specialises in foreign cuisine will be a real treat. Are you single? You could find love with someone with an exotic and attractive accent. CANCER (June 22nd – July 23rd) Working with an experienced person will turn out to be exciting and energising at the start of February. The 7th is ideal for making a professional presentation. Valentine’s Day is best celebrated at a romantic hideaway; it will be difficult for your lover to keep their hands off you. Are you single? Let a relative set you up on a blind date. LEO (July 24th – August 23rd) Hard work will pay off handsomely on the 3rd. Don’t be surprised if you’re given a bonus, pay rise or other perk as thanks for your excellent contributions. Valentine’s Day could find you getting engaged or married. If you’re already in a serious relationship, your partner will give you a beautiful gift. Are you single? Be willing to give up your independence to a cultured, sophisticated love interest. VIRGO (August 24th – September 23rd) Let your romantic partner pamper and pet you on the 2nd. A little tender loving care will bring out the best in you. Valentine’s Day will be glorious if you take extra time with your appearance; prepare to receive many flattering compliments. It will be necessary to change some of your expectations about romance on the 17th; stop clinging to some fairy tale notion.

Page 98 NWM 2020

LIBRA (September 24th – October 23rd) Your job prospects are looking good as February gets up and running; if you’re unemployed, you’ll get at least one potential packed employment offer. Valentine’s Day will be especially romantic. You special someone will be especially attentive, working hard to make you happy. If you’re single, you’ll have your choice of admirers. Pick the most original suitor; you won’t be disappointed. SCORPIO (October 24th – November 22nd) A powerful attraction between you and an unusual person will be evident on the 5th. This is an excellent time to embark on a relationship. Valentine’s Day might find you spending a quiet evening with your amour in the comfort of your home. Make the occasion special with flowers & a gourmet meal. Are you single? A heartfelt confession of love could reach your ears on this wonderful day. SAGITTARIUS (November 23rd – December 21st) You’ll attract lots of admiring glances on the 7th; this is a wonderful time to attend a party. The Full Moon on the 9th brings the satisfying conclusion to a legal matter. A minibreak will be a great way to celebrate Valentine’s Day; head for a nearby beauty spot with your amour. If you’re single, you will meet someone special when you’re out and about. CAPRICORN (December 22nd – January 20th) Your powers of persuasion are very strong on the 2nd. Take this opportunity to negotiate and finalise a contract, ask for a date or make a sales pitch. A breath-taking gift could be given to you on Valentine’s Day. Are you single? Take this opportunity to splash out on some creature comforts. Promoting a creative project is highly favoured on the 21st, when you could get funding. AQUARIUS (January 21st – February 19th) Working for a large organisation like a hospital or government agency could be profitable on or around the 2nd. Valentine’s Day gives you a special glow and you’ll have no problems attracting more than a few admiring glances. The 21st is perfect for moving to a new place or renewing your lease. On the 23rd, the New Moon brings a lovely money-making opportunity. PISCES (February 20th – March 20th) An influential friend will promote your interests on the 2nd. If someone offers to write a reference, set up a blind date or arrange a job interview on your behalf, you should take them up on their offer immediately. Take yourself off to a private hideaway with your lover on Valentine’s Day. If you’re single, you may prefer to embrace your freedom than look for love.

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Profile for KSG Publishing

North Wales Magazine - February 2020