On a sunny and cool morning in November 2023, nine volunteers and a very enthusiastic spaniel helped PCNPA ranger Richard Vaughan and community archaeologist Tomos Jones to hack at brambles and saplings near the paths at Nevern Castle. Several came from different parts of Pembrokeshire to lend a hand, and stories were exchanged of digs and clearances on all sides. Lunch was very pleasant at the picnic tables, and we went home well exercised and, if not exactly sun-tanned, nevertheless having enjoyed time in the fresh air. Thanks once again to Angie and James at the Trewern Arms for the use of their car park.
Once again, Friends of Nevern Castle took a stand at Nevern Show, to promote knowledge of the castle and connect with visitors and local residents who might not know of it. Gaynor, Mick, Kath and Alan chatted to people who’d turned out on a very pleasant day to enjoy the competitions, crafts, and exhibitors at the lively Show. We talked to lots of people! Of the 35 conversations we made a note of: So, plenty of scope for promoting the castle and its fascinating history. Many said they’d plan to visit the castle now. Well … they would, I suppose! We handed out copies of various bits of literature: the Nevern Trail Guide; an introductory booklet about the castle; and the leaflet about Friends of Nevern Castle. Everyone was very positive and supported our aims. Teenagers were very interested, having learned about the period in school. There was quite fascination in the artefacts that had been dug up, as well as the historical events. Those who knew the site also enjoy its tranquillity today. One lady remembered the nature trail, now dilapidated, and suggested we restore it. It felt very worthwhile and interesting to speak to so many people from… Continue reading Nevern Show 2023
The first Annual General Meeting of the Friends of Nevern Castle was held at the Trewern Arms on 12th July. During the past year, we have: In the coming year, we plan to: Find the minutes here.
Tomos Jones, PCNPA Community Archaeologist, led a group on a tour of Newport Castle, St Brynach’s Church, and Nevern Castle. Early Purple Orchid seen at the Castle today
Alan represented Friends of Nevern Castle at the Pilgrimage Today conference in Enniscorthy, Co.Wexford in March 2023. The gathering celebrated the opening of the Wexford-Pembrokeshire Pilgrim Way from Ferns in SE Ireland across the sea to St Davids. The meeting, sponsored by the Ancient Connections project and British Pilgrimage Trust, was attended by about 80 people including artists, businesses and places of interest along the route, officers of Visit Pembrokeshire and Fáilte Ireland, together with academics studying tourism and pilgrimage. Alan was also there for his part as a software developer in Pererin Wyf, a project sponsored by Ancient Connections which links people of the Irish and Welsh diasporas worldwide. Some notes from the conference “Pilgrimage” for me recalls Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. But these days it’s the big trend in travel. A quick Google reveals heaps of articles, TV series, and personal accounts. Travel companies, tourist destinations and everyone that provides services along the way are talking about it. The conference in Enniscorthy was for those providing for travellers. We talked about what makes a good pilgrimage that people will enjoy, and perhaps encourage them to return. “Pilgrimage” is more than a hiking holiday, although it’s that too. There’s additionally… Continue reading Pilgrimage conference
Friends of Nevern Castle conducted a tour of the Castle for a group of 9-10 year olds from St Dogmaels Primary School on 14th November 2022. While walking around the site, we looked at mock-up pictures, talked about the characters of the time, and had great fun role-playing the coming and goings between Norman and Welsh control. And of course we talked about archaeology. The teachers said afterwards: (Photos: Miss Hughes, Ysgol Llandudoch.)
Friends of Nevern Castle showed round a group of visitors from Ireland on Sunday 23/10/2022. The visit was a first trial of a guided tour round the castle. We told the story of the main characters in its 90-year history, while explaining the visible remains and showing artists’ impressions of what it looked like at the time. While there are commercial guided tours that come to the Castle, there is scope for us to guide smaller tours and school groups, as part of our aim of promoting knowledge and awareness of the castle. The Irish group were also shown around St Brynach’s Church and the Pilgrims’ Cross. During the weekend, they also visited Dyfed Shire Horses, Tafarn Sinc, Castell Henllys, and several sites around Aberystwyth. They visited Wales as part of the CUPHAT project run by Aberystwyth University, which aims to develop types of tourism that respect culture and heritage. It focuses on West Wales and County Wexford, areas with long traditional links across the Irish Sea. Part of the project takes people involved in places of cultural and heritage interest to visit each other’s sites, to compare notes and with a view to developing some resources in common.
Inaugural meeting of the Friends of Nevern Castle Enthusiasts for Nevern Castle met on Wednesday 30/3/2022, kindly hosted by the Trewern Arms. We created a formal association, with a constitution and the usual officers. We’ll be able to open a bank account, apply for grants, etc. Friends of Nevern Castle is being set up as an association with the purpose of informing visitors and local residents – particularly young ones – about the Castle and the important history and heritage it represents. The meeting included a wide representation from St Brynach’s Church, Pembrokeshire County Council, Nevern Village Hall, the Trewern Arms, Nevern Community Council, local residents, and history enthusiasts. Current and planned activities include: Refresh the display panels, website, and leaflets Organise school visits and guided tours Run events like last year’s barbecue. Help with the maintenance of the site as a place for peaceful enjoyment by all. These activities are complementary to the professional work done by Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority in maintaining the grounds and the remaining fabric of the Castle. The site is owned by Nevern Community Council – that’s you and me, if you live in Nevern or Moylgrove. Click here for a short presentation… Continue reading Friends’ Meeting – Trewern 30/3/2022
About 50 people attended the barbecue in the bailey in the August bank holiday 2021. We’re looking to hold more events in the future.