A group of Montgomery parents with a plan to develop an exciting new playpark area by the recreation field are working with the Town Council on taking this forward. The group would like to hear from families who would use a Montgomery play area, whether as residents or visitors to the town. The group said, "We want to hear from families how you may use such an area and your ideas on how it should be designed and equipped.” They have had a fantastic response so far to an initial survey to find out how local residents and visitors to Montgomery feel about the town’s current play parks as well as considerations around a new one. With almost 70 responses in the first few weeks, they are hopeful they might have a couple of hundred by the end of June. They explained, “The information from the responses will directly inform the next steps for the parent group and Town Council to work on an outline design brief, sourcing quotes from providers and writing funding applications.” If you haven’t already completed the survey, please spend 5 minutes giving us your thoughts and share with friends, family and neighbours. http://play.montgomery.cloud/survey
While for the moment tennis facilities remain closed in Wales, Montgomery Tennis Club is looking forward to a time when tennis can recommence and has placed a contract with a specialist Wales-based company to clean and re-paint their two floodlit courts. The work on the courts should be completed by mid June and the Club hopes to be ready to welcome existing players and new members when restrictions are relaxed, perhaps following the next statement from the First Minister on 18th June. Club Chairman, Richard Macdonald, said, “Tennis facilities remain closed in Wales but we have some light at the end of the tunnel and the work going ahead on the courts is a plus side for the club. Please look at our Montgomery Tennis Club website for information and membership details. Do come along and enjoy some outdoor exercise on our courts when tennis recommences. New members are always made welcome.” Montgomery Tennis Club website: clubspark.lta.org.uk/MontgomeryTennisClub Photo from June 2019
It is good to see residents of Montgomery keeping to the rules of the Welsh Government guide lines regarding the Covid-19 virus. Many of us have been busy with various projects during this time, with lawns and gardens getting a lot of attention in the good weather we have been having. Now the restrictions have been eased a little, we can exercise more each day. It was a pity VE Day could not have been celebrated in the way we all had wished, but I think we all did our best under the circumstances. We are very lucky to be living in a neighbourhood that ‘looks out’ for each other. Take care all and keep safe. Haydn Andrew, Mayor
Martha Jones, aged 8, and Carys Richards, aged 9, both pupils of Montgomery Church in Wales School, were successful finalists in the Welsh Learners recitation at the National Urdd Eisteddfod T broadcast on S4C and Radio Cymru last week. The Eisteddfod T (Eisteddfod i ti, o'r tŷ) is an alternative Eisteddfod arranged this year due to the postponement of the traditional event due to have been held in Denbighshire. The Urdd organisers knew what a disappointment the postponement would be for their thousands of active members, so they created Eisteddfod T, a virtual eisteddfod televised daily throughout the half term week. Both Martha and Carys submitted a video of their chosen Welsh learners' recitation and were delighted each to be selected in the top 3 entries in a very popular category. Martha competed in the recitation for years 3 and below on the Monday, then Carys competed in the recitation for years 4 to 6 on the Tuesday. Both Martha’s and Carys’ videos were shown on S4C and the girls were also interviewed live from their homes. Martha was awarded runner up and Carys awarded first place for their respective competitions, which is an amazing achievement. Martha said: “I was disappointed not to be able to compete at the area Eisteddfod earlier in March because of Covid-19, so I was excited to be able to enter Eisteddfod T. When I heard I had made the top 3 I was really excited! I was a bit nervous on the day because I was the first welsh learner on the live show and I didn’t know what they would ask me, but I was pleased to be on TV representing my School.” Carys said: “I had fun recording my video at home but had no idea when I sent it in that I would be selected as a finalist. I was very pleased to be awarded first place; it was a shock but I feel very proud. I was a little nervous being interviewed on live television but it was exciting too.” Both girls were taught the recitation pieces by Ceinwen Morris of Forden. Over the last 6 years Ceinwen has kindly volunteered her time to help teach all children at Montgomery school wishing to take part in Urdd competitions including recitation, solo singing and, for the first time this year, a unison singing party. Anna Griggs, Head Teacher at Montgomery Church in Wales school, said: “After the children and Ceinwen had dedicated many hours preparing for Eisteddfod yr Urdd 2020, it was a huge disappointment when it was understandably cancelled. So for Eisteddfod T to run via online videos this year was a fantastic idea. And what a bonus to see two of our pupils finish in the top three nationally!” She added, “I want to personally thank Alwena Richards and Ceinwen Morris as they really enable our small school to have the capacity to pursue a range of Urdd competitions each year and contribute to ensuring that Welsh language and culture has a high profile at our school.” As well as the categories planned for the traditional eisteddfod, the Eisteddfod T also introduced a whole new series of categories, including lip synch, talented pets, and whole family events - all filmed at home whilst people isolated themselves. Many of the video entries are now available on the S4C website and YouTube, and the Montgomery videos can be accessed from the Montgomery Culture Community Connection YouTube channel at https://tinyurl.com/MontyCCC Individual video links: https://youtu.be/1QQEQw6EIDQ and https://youtu.be/yLr2hekDjGc Photo credit: Phil Blagg
Old Monty Cider based at Garthmyl, Montgomery have just become the first Cider and Perry producers in Wales to gain Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status for their Cider and Perry. To achieve this internationally recognised quality assurance award, their Cider and Perry must be made to very strict standards and conditions. The whole process from growing fruit to finished packaging must be carried out in Wales using 100% freshly pressed juice, no added water, concentrates or flavours, and naturally cleared and matured - the whole process being audited and inspected by Trading Standards Officers. This means Old Monty Cider are now the only company allowed to use the titles “Traditional Welsh Cider” and “Traditional Welsh Perry”.
In February, when Montgomeryshire Literary Festival was still scheduled to take place in 2020, a competition was launched for children to design a bookmark. The Monty Lit Fest committee is delighted to announce that the winner is Woody Jones, aged 10, who is a pupil at Montgomery Church in Wales Primary School. The competition was open to all children under the age of 12, who were asked to design a bookmark depicting their love of books. The entries received were of a high standard and included designs in pencil, felt tip, crayon, paint and computer-generated graphics. The wonderful creations were judged online by the sponsors of the festival including Eaves & Lord Bookshop, Field Mouse Research, Halls, Harrisons, Montgomery Vineyard and Walkers are Welcome Montgomery, with some help from 12 of the Lit Fest authors, and Woody’s design was chosen as the winner. Woody loves doodles and his bookmark reflects this with a striking black and white design. It will be reproduced as printed bookmarks, to promote the Literary Festival which will now take place in Montgomery from 11-13th June, 2021. Woody also won a personalised book bag, donated by The Clever Baggers, and a signed book by children’s author Debi Evans, in addition to some other prizes. The close runners-up were Sicily Dickinson in second place and Daisy Evans in third, who also received book bags and books. It is planned that all 27 entries will be displayed at the festival next year and as many of the judges commented, the entries were marvellous, it’s a shame there couldn’t be more than one winner. The Monty Lit Fest committee would like to thank everyone who entered, the judges and those who donated prizes for this competition, and to offer congratulations to Woody. Monty Lit Fest is an annual festival which celebrates writing in Wales and the Welsh borders. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic is was necessary to postpone this year’s festival but to find out more about the 11th – 13th June 2021 event in Montgomery, visit the website at www.montylitfest.com, follow Monty Lit Fest on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, sign up to the newsletter via the website or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also keep an eye on the Monty Lit Fest Facebook page for unfurling information about fun online events over the weekend of 12-14th June 2020, when Monty Lit Fest was originally due to be held in Montgomery. Events planned so far include a virtual launch party for Myfanwy Alexander’s new novel, ‘Burning Issue’!”
A very happy 100th birthday today, 13th May 2020, to Mr Cyril Hughes of Mortimer Road, Montgomery. Mr Hughes' neighbours planned a birthday cake and other surprises, which included a personalised message from Town Crier, Sue Blower - video at https://youtu.be/w0QQtrTAPcw Mr Hughes, who worked for Powis Estates woodlands, celebrated outside his home with his wife Margaret, as neighbours cheered and passed on their birthday wishes from a distance. Happy birthday, Mr Hughes!
Llongyfarchion i Glwb Eiddew, Trefaldwyn, sydd wedi derbyn y wobr gyntaf ar gyfer blog fideo yn Eisteddfod y Dysgwyr 2020. Dwedodd Julie Pearce, trefnydd y clwb, “Newyddion da! Mae’r clwb wedi ennill safle cyntaf ar gyfer blog fideo gan unigolyn neu grŵp. Llongyfarchiadau i bawb oedd yn ‘perfformio’ yn y fideo, a diolchiadau mawr i Paul am wneud y fideo. Mae gen i dystysgrif lyfli i’w ddangos i’r aelodau pan dan ni’n medru cyfarfod eto.” Llynedd, enillodd y clwb Grŵp y Flwyddyn, ac mae'r dystysgrif honno yn cael ei harddangos yng Nghaffi Tŷ Eiddew, lle maen nhw'n cyfarfod fel arfer. “Bydd angen i Denice cliriwch silff arall!” gwenodd Julie. Dyd’r grŵp ddim yn gallu cyfarfod ar hyn o bryd wrth gwrs, ond maen nhw’n dechrau defnyddio grŵp Facebook, a mae Julie yn meddwl am geisio cyfarfodydd Zoom i roi cyfle i bawb i siarad Cymraeg efo’n gilydd eto. Gwyliwch eu fideo nhw ar Facebook yma Congratulations to Clwb Eiddew, Montgomery, who have won first prize for a video blog in the 2020 Learners Eisteddfod. Julie Pearce, the club’s organiser, said, “Good news! The club has won first prize for a video blog by an individual or group. Congratulations to everyone who ‘performed’ in the video, and many thanks to Paul for making the video. I have a lovely certificate to show to the members when we can meet again.” Last year, the club won Group of the Year, and that certificate is displayed in the Ivy House Cafe, where they usually meet. “Denice will need to clear us another shelf!” smiled Julie. The group can’t meet at the moment of course, but they are starting to use a facebook group, and Julie is thinking about trying Zoom meetings to give everyone a chance to speak Welsh together again. Watch their video on facebook here
I would like to praise and thank the warm-hearted residents for their help and kindness shown to others during these very trying times. The help they are giving towards the vulnerable and self-isolating in the community is outstanding, but this is only to be expected in our friendly little town. I also thank the NHS staff and key workers for their dedicated service and putting themselves at risk to help others. The shops and businesses that are still able to trade are doing their best to provide essentials and some also provide a local delivery service which we are all grateful for. If you find yourself in need of anything that friends and family can't help with, please contact your designated Neighbourhood Angel who will help or put you in touch with someone who can. We must all help each other in these difficult times and remember to follow government guidelines regarding social distancing and unnecessary journeys. It is good to see we are getting regular visits from the police regarding enforcement of these guidelines. In these challenging times, maybe a phone call to family members, friends and neighbours will work wonders for morale; there is nothing like a chat, or maybe a text, WhatsApp or Facebook message for those that use them. Our hope is that this pandemic will soon be over and everything will be back to normal. We look forward to being able live our lives as before. - Councillor Haydn Andrew
With the Covid-19 virus now taking a strong hold, we must all follow the advice we are given from the various sources, which are changing day to day. I feel sorry for the organisations that have had to cancel or postpone their events in the wake of this virus. I understand it is disappointing, but hopefully it will not be too long before we can all get back to our normal lives. If you need assistance there are contact details in the directory on this website of business and services, many of which offer help in home delivery etc. Hopefully, the Trust will be taking over the running of the Town Hall in the near future. The lease is in its final preparation stages. I would like to thank everyone for their offers of help and good wishes during my recovery of my knee replacement. It was greatly appreciated. The replacement knee is almost fully recovered with thanks to the RJAH hospital. Haydn Andrew, Mayor