PEMBROKE TOWN WALLS TRUST WORKING WITH THE WILDLIFE TRUST
Pembroke's medieval town walls are degrading very rapidly under the attack of the vegetation thereon. Ivy, saplings and tree roots are gradually lifting, cracking and separating the stonework and the Walls are now in sad decline. Those of you who walk along the North Walls on the Millpond will have seen the various stages of deterioration from cracking and holes appearing, to total collapse. This is your precious heritage that is now in serious danger and it could soon reach a point where not enough money can be found to correct the impending disaster.
The Pembroke Town Walls Trust has embarked on a long term maintenance and repair programme working with the Wall Owners, Pembrokeshire County Council and CADW that will last for many years to come. Having completed its major repair work at the Tabernacle Church Site, the Trust will be expanding its operations over the next twelve months and will keep the community informed as the programme of works develops. Many of you will have seen our first repair work on the North Walls underway on the site known as the Gun Platform, not far from the Town Bridge.
As part of this programme, teams of volunteers from the Wild Life Trust, led by Nathan Walton, the Wild Life Trust's Officer for Pembrokeshire, together with the Coast National Park volunteer team led by the Park Ranger, Chris Taylor, have been helping the Trust for the last eighteen months on a maintenance routine to keep the vegetation on the face of the walls under control. The attached photograph shows part of the Wild Life Trust team removing the most recent growth from the North Walls on Wednesday 7th October 2020. Removal of the vegetation reduces the weight of growth on the walls and root penetration into the lime mortar.
The Town Walls Trust is very grateful to to Nathan, Chris and their hardworking, dedicated teams who return every six months to clear the pernicious vegetation.
In the near future the Trust will be trimming back the ivy growing on the tops of the walls so that we can inspect the current condition of the wall tops, long hidden from view, and plan a programme of maintenance and repair for the tops.
Nathan Walton, the Wildlife Trust Officer for Pembrokeshire, who led the work party.
THE NEW FACE OF THE GUN PLATFORM
Pembroke Town Walls Trust Trustees, Martin Bell and Howard Rudge, Gun Platform Project Manager, recently visited the site with Cllr.Josh Beynon.
As previously reported, Cllr. Aaron Carey also visited the site, some months ago. Cllrs. Carey and Beynon both fully support the aims of the Trust with specific interest in this first restoration project on the North Walls. Councillor Carey sent a very supportive letter to the Trust saying his support is “Not only with regards to repairing and maintaining our historic walls but also the approach you have taken towards it; dealing with a variety of different partners and volunteers as well as enabling training for those learning a trade is a fantastic way to embed in the community and make this colossal project something that all of Pembroke can be proud of. I wish you the best of luck going forward, and I hope to continue to create a great working relationship between myself as local County Council member and the Town Walls Trust as well as another supportive voice for you in with Pembrokeshire County Council.”
Trustees look forward to their continued support and future visits to the site.
Trustees are also pleased to announce, at this positive stage in the restoration work, that the Pledge A Stone match funding figure now stands at £1005. Public support locally and nationwide has been unbelievable. This figure has been realised in 12 weeks. We are quite sure that everyone who has pledged will be as excited as we are at the success of idea to match fund Cadw's grant of £4125.
Your support is appreciated massively particularly during this pandemic. We hope to meet with you all when safe to do so.
As this latest photo shows, work has moved around the Gun Platform to the East Wall restoration area. The scaffolding now having been assembled to enable sheltered working for the stonemasons during inclement weather.
Our thanks once again to everyone mentioned here. Your interest and encouragement is priceless.
Please take a look at the new Pembroke Town Walls Trust website (www.pembroketownwallstrust.co.uk ) and Facebook page @pembroketownwallstrust which is regularly updated on funds and projects.
Join us too as a Trustee or volunteer., we look forward to hearing from you.