PEMBROKE TOWN WALLS TRUST WORKING WITH THE WILDLIFE TRUST
YMDDIRIEDOLAETH MURIAU TREF PENFRO YN GWEITHIO GYDA’R YMDDIRIEDOLAETH BYWYD GWYLLT
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
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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.
NEW PATRON DELIGHTED TO JOIN PEMBROKE TOWN WALLS TRUST 2021 AGM.
Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant of Dyfed, Sara Edwards, having kindly accepted the Trust's invitation to become Patron, attended the meeting.Elizabeth Gossage, Acting Chair of Pembroke Town WallsTrust, welcomed and thanked Her Majesty's Lord Lieutenant. Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant introduced herself, thanking the Acting Chair for her invitation to become Patron; she offered to do her best to support the Trust; thanking the trustees for all the work that they had undertaken voluntarily and praised the Trust's achievements to date.
Her Majesty's Lord Lieutenant has since quoted: " I am delighted to become Patron of Pembroke Town Walls Trust and look forward to supporting their innovative and interesting plans for the future of Pembroke Town's medieval walls."
The Acting Chair, giving her report, referred to the past very difficult and unpredictable year for the Trust.
The 2020 AGM was scheduled for the day after lockdown and was therefore cancelled. As a result, the 14th May 2019 minutes were approved at the 11th May 2021 AGM. There were no matters arising.
Fundraising events, next mentioned, vital to Pembroke Walls Trust income, were not possible this year. Particularly not being able to plan the annual " Party In the Castle" held since the Summer of 2014.
The support of Pembroke Castle Manager and Trustees is priceless for this annual event. We hope that a super event can take place next year.
We have had so many enquiries, it will be terrific to organise again, a little normality for us all. We look forward to seeing you.
The main project currently ongoing, being the restoration of the Pembroke North Walls, Mill Pond Walk, Gun Platform. Do walk along and observe the progress. It is a wondeful achievment so far. Work has proceeded, thanks to a grant from Cadw.
The Trust's contractor has since given a young man from Monkton an apprenticeship in stone masonry training, having formerly engaged him in work experience. Further work experience is planned for another young man from Milford Haven.
Pembroke Town Walls Trust's new website was launched this year. A local graduate of the Postcards and Podcasts project created a very modern new edition, which is continually updated.
The Treasurer, Mr Howard Rudge, reported a satisfactory cash flow, enabling the Trust to cover it's running costs, in spite of the lack of fundraising.
However, membership renewal fees were slow, owing to our not having Face to Face AGMs, when normally it is so easy for us all to pay.
We can advise that your membership renewal fee can be addressed to the Treasurer and posted or delivered to Foundry Hse, Commons Rd, Pembroke, at your convenience.
Trustee, Peter Thomas, proposed the acceptance of the The Annual Report and Accounts seconded by Life Member, Dr.Cllr.Simon Hancock.
The meeting was unanimously in favour.
At this point of the report, thanks our extended, on behalf of the Trust, to those members who joined the meeting via the Zoom link and those who gave their apologies.
The meeting concluded with the relection of Trustees and the formal proposals of co-opted Trustee members.
Trustees are now, Elizabeth Gossage, Martin Bell, Peter Thomas, Daphne Bush, Adrian James, Laura Evans, Malcolm White.
Mrs Elizabeth Gossage was also elected as the future Chair.
Mr Howard Rudge was elected to continue as Treasurer.
The meeting was in favour of all elections.
Final thanks on behalf of the Chair, Treasurer and Trustees to Anna Allen, Trust Minute Secretary for her superb minutes and IT support this year.