A group of 14 volunteers and three staff members travelled to the Cardiff area on the 18th of October on a visit arranged by Plas Glyn-y-Weddw through local bus company, Caelloi.
The gallery started to forge links with the Friends of Insole Court a few years ago and now that renovation work is taking place at the mansion, a visit was arranged to see the developments. Impressive work has taken place to transform the old stables at Insole, introducing a very important commercial element to the charity which is running the venture.
Meg Anthony, the charity’s new Director gave us a guided tour of the site and explained the exciting plans for the future of Insole Court. We were kindly treated to tea and cake at the end of our visit.
Following the visit to Insole Court, we all checked into the conveniently positioned Holiday Inn at Cardiff City Centre, a stone’s throw from the Principality Stadium (formerly known as the Millennium Stadium). A relaxing evening was spent in preparation for the second day.
A free morning was held the following day, with a walk arranged at 10.30 for those who wanted to visit the National Museum to view the eye-opening feast on offer, others took the opportunity to start their Christmas shopping.
At 1 o’clock, Wil, our careful driver picked us up at the hotel and took us to the Albany Gallery, which has close connections with Plas Glyn-y-Weddw spanning many years due to the kindness of Mary Yapp and the Andrews family. Nick Holly’s excellent exhibition was on show, many of us were seeing his paintings for the first time and doted at them.
After leaving the Albany, there was one other important site left to visit before turning for home, which was the Nantgarw Porcelain Museum, close to the A470 north of Pontypridd. A warm welcome was given by the museum’s trustees, and it was fascinating to learn that the museum is run solely by volunteers. Having such strong links with the Plas, it was a pleasure to visit this museum where our fine porcelain was produced nearly two centuries ago.
After having an opportunity to watch a short film on the site’s history and a guided tour led by very knowledgeable volunteers, we enjoyed interesting chat over tea and cake (again!). Two hours went by much too quickly, and it was time to say farewell and head back home. We arrived at the Cross Foxes inn near Dolgellau for an evening meal just after 7pm before Wil drove us safely to Pwllheli.
I would like to thank everyone who came with us on this memorable journey, to Wil for his company and to the Caelloi bus company for their professional and meticulous service.
A visit to Swansea to see the newly re-opened Glyn Vivian art gallery is to be arranged for the spring, remember to book a place soon!
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