Talysarn Ward Bulletin
July – September 2006
Congratulations Pen yr Orsedd
During August Pen yr Orsedd quarry was in the news as
they competed in the Restoration Village programme on
BBC2 to be the ones to represent Wales in the final round
of the competition. Tirwedd Cyf is the company behind
the venture of trying to restore the old workshops in
the quarry to establish a School of Engineering and workshops
which will offer quality training and work to local people.
Tirwedd Cyf is a ‘not for profit’ company
and it is backed by the quarry’s owners McAlpine
as well as Gwynedd Council and the University of Wales,
Bangor. It was a big night in Llys Llywelyn, Nantlle,
when a representative of the Restoration Village Programme
announced that Pen yr Orsedd had won the Welsh round
and that they would be going to Chichester for the final.
Cyf.’s chairman, T. Leslie Jones, relates
what happened next:
Sunday morning September 17th some 30 people from Dyffryn
Nantlle went to Chichester to support the Tirwedd Cyf
project to restore the old buildings in Pen yr Orsedd
quarry. It was a long journey to Chichester, but everyone
was enjoying themselves singing and having fun, and we
arrived in good time. After going to the hotel, we went
on to where the programme was to be broadcast and had
a meal. We were sat near to where the competitors from
Northern Ireland were, and the singing competition between
the Welsh and Irish could be heard all over the place!
There were competitors from Scotland and Northern and
Southern England, and the noise during the programme
was deafening. But, the result was very disappointing
although we had put up a brave fight and, according to
one of the programme’s representatives, we were
ahead for a long period and he was surprised that we
had not won. Though we had not been successful, our spirits
were still high and we ended with a rousing evening raising
the roof of the hotel with our singing. Is a good job
the Irish were not staying in the same place or God knows
when we would have got to our beds!
Tirwedd Cyf.’s committee are very grateful to
everyone for their support throughout this period, and
also to the Talysarn and Nantlle for their financial
support. Thanks also to Antur Nantlle for arranging for
the hoardings to be made and for paying for them, thanks
also to Gwynne and Dafydd Glyn for putting them up. The
support is still very strong with many people calling
wanting to see the buildings and site, which is very
heartening to us. We intend to press ahead with our plans
and we will let you know how things develop.
On behalf of Tirwedd Cyf., thanks to everyone for their
support and interest.
T. Leslie Jones
Restoration Village Photo Gallery (click to enlarge and scroll through images)
Crime and Safe Community Sub-group
This group has been formed in order to gather information
and to act on matters of crime and keeping the community
safe under the auspices of the Talysarn and Nantlle Partnership.
The intention is to create a network between the local
community and agencies which offer their services on
matters of security and to co-operate in order to stop
the challenge our community faces. Their first step will
be to hold an Open Day in order to create awareness,
this will happen shortly, so keep a lookout for the posters
on the notice boards.
Anyone who is interested in joining the group should
contact Dafydd in the Partnership Office 01286 881103.
Talysarn Youth Club
Gwynedd Council in co-operation with the Partnership
have opened a Youth Club in Canolfan Talysarn. This follows
work done by the Workers with young people under the
Developing Young People’s Potential Plan in the
Communities First Programme. One of the priorities to
emerge from the consultation sessions with young people
was the need to establish a Youth Club and, after much
consultation between the workers and Gwynedd Council,
the club has now opened. It will be open every Monday
a Wednesday night from 7 – 9.
Talysarn Celts FC
The Celts have made a very good start to the season.
With Ali Thomas as manager and keeping faith with the
area’s young players, this augers well for the
future. Only one game has been lost so far by the team,
and this was, so they say because Ali was on holiday.
The message therefore is – no more holidays Ali!
The Celts are very thankful to the Communities First
Trust Fund for it’s support in buying new kit.
Clwb yr Iard
A Fun Day was held during the holidays by the Club in
Llys Llywelyn, Nantlle. Despite the weather everyone
had fun and enjoyed taking part in the Craft Workshops,
playing games and being entertained by the clown. Because
of the success of the Bingo Evening which was held recently
by the club, there is great demand for a continuation.
Another evening will be arranged early in November.
Planning for Real
A group of local people and some Partnership members
are busy building a model of the area. This work involves
working with the local schools and getting the children
to take part.. Once the model is completed, a consultation
day will be held in Talysarn and Nantlle to give the
whole community a chance to participate. During these
two days anyone can add recommendations i.e. the improvements
they would like that would improve the community. This
will be done by placing cards with appropriate remarks
on the model. After holding these meetings all the recommendations
will be sorted and prioritised in order to produce an
Action Plan for the community. It’s important that
everyone is involved.
Talysarn Community Centre – Yr Hen Orsaf
After opening its doors in April this year, it is starting
to get busy around the Centre. The committee has appointed
two local people to arrange activities – Carys
Pritchard and Helen Hall. With the Centre offering a
wide range of services to the community from hiring meeting
rooms, workshops like Yoga, Bingo, Concerts, Parties
and so on, there is no better chance to take part in
the developments taking place in our community. The Centre
has a menu to suit all tastes, for a large part or small
For more information contact:
• Carys 07902319700
• Helen 07902316661
• The Centre 01286 881569
One of the activities the group have been responsible
for during the summer is placing a bench outside the
Talysarn Community Centre, and tending the flowers and
plants which have been well worth seeing around the area.
According to some people Tom and Laurie took hours to
drill holes to fix the bench to the ground, without realizing
that the drill was set in reverse. When the drill was
adjusted to go forward, they took only a few minutes
to complete the job! Thanks to the support Communities
First Trust Fund money was obtained to buy tables and
chairs. These will be a great help when holding the monthly
Afternoon Teas in Talysarn and Nantlle.
Dates of the next
Afternoon Teas are:
• Wednesday 15
November Talysarn Community
• Wednesday 13
December Llys Llywelyn Nantlle.
can be had between 2.00 and 4.00 o’clock,
and also a chance to buy the group’s home produce.
more information phone:
• Tom 01286
• June 01286 882740
• Margaret 01286 880733
Clwb Silyn have had another good few months. In July
we had a day trip to Wrexham to see the historic town
and visit the market. We then had our summer break in
August and in September started off with Tea and a Chat
whilst discussing forthcoming events. We are looking
forward to a Bingo Afternoon in October which is always
a success with our members. Clwb Silyn are also sponsoring
what we hope will become an annual event in our lovely
new Canolfan – The Village Panto! We have had a
local Cinderella story especially written for us and
the cast are busy with rehearsals for the pantomime to
be held after Christmas festivities. Some members of
the Clwb have starring roles along with people from other
community groups and plenty of village children, so we
look forward to your support – see you then.
Simply Creative Hobbies Club
Simply Creative Hobbies Club meets in Llys Llywelyn,
Nantlle, every other Wednesday 10.30 to 12.30. They would
be pleased to welcome anyone who would like to join them.
They have just been successful in securing a grant from
the Gwraidd Programme to make a wall hanging which will
hang in Llys Llywelyn, so the last few meetings have
been spent taking photographs and planning. We had a
trip to Llanberis to look at a hanging there to give
us ideas and have talked to lots of people in the village
to get ideas as we are hoping to depict the village past,
present and future. We have been fortunate to secure
the help of Hazel Carpenter and she has been a great
help with her knowledge and enthusiasm.
November 25th there will be a Christmas and Craft Fair
in Llys Llywelyn and we would love to see you there.
Talysarn and Nantlle Environment Group
Just how important the history and heritage of Dyffryn
Nantlle are to the local community, and beyond, demonstrated
in September when an assorted group of 50 people set
out for a guided walk around Dorothea quarry. The walk
was led by Dr Gwynfor Pierce Jones, local expert and
industrial archaeologist who, after a lifetime’s
interest, used Dorothea as the subject of his academic
thesis. First we were given a brief overview of the quarry’s
history from the earliest hand workings until the final
switching off of the pumps in 1969. Then our attention
was turned to the remains of the quarry buildings. Gwynfor
explained their construction, purpose and importance,
in particular the Cornish Beam Engine House, the big
mill and the "pyramids", all of which are
Scheduled Ancient Monuments. The pyramids are in fact
unique while the great beam engine is of national significance.
But equally unique, and of local significance, is the
human details which colour Gwynfor’s individual
presentation, so that we also know which were the quarrymen’s
preferred toilets (out of view of the office!) and that
the carpet in the mansion hallway was a green Axminster.
The inheritance of the slate industry is fundamental
to the local community and the site is full of archaeology.
A memorable sunny September morning. The environment
Group is hoping to make available a (very amateur) video
of the event – watch for announcements. New members
Talysarn & Nantlle Young People
The young people’s ‘Talk Shop’ will
be open between 7 and 9pm every Thursday evening at the
Talysarn Community Centre. Call in for a chat and some
fun. An opportunity for you to have your say and to improve
things for the young people of the area.
Llys Llywelyn, Nantlle
The past three months have been very busy in Llys Llywelyn,
Nantlle, with a great many activities every week. There
was an Exhibition showing what the plans by Tirwedd were
to develop the workshops in Pen yr Orsedd quarry, and
the highlight was the evening when the Restoration Village
representative announced that Pen yr Orsedd had won the
competition in Wales!
A Coffee Morning is held every Friday between 10.30am
and 12.00pm and a number of former Nantlle people come
from far and wide, as well as some present Nantlle residents,
to enjoy a cuppa and a good natter. On the second Friday
of each month there is also a Llys Llywelyn Library which
is very popular. The Leisuretime Hobbies Club meets every
other Wednesday between 10.30am and 12.30pm, and on the
second Saturday of each month an Indoor Table Top Sale
is held, which attracts people from a wide area. Blodeuwedd
also hold an Afternoon Tea and Plant Sale every other
month and it is very successful.
Coleg Harlech use the centre’s facilities to hold
a number of courses such as Computers for Beginners,
Digital Photography, Venturing in Welsh, Art for All
and Welsh for Parents, and it is hoped that more courses
will be added during the winter. Lynn R Papercrafts also
hold classes on various aspects of making greetings cards
Every Monday evening Clwb yr Iard meet to give children
under 16 a chance to have some fun and enjoy themselves.
They also held a Fun Day which started very wet, but
by the afternoon it brightened up and everyone enjoyed
themselves. The highlight was a Bingo Night which they
held to raise funds, when everyone had a barrowful of
fun and laughter. A number of Birthday Parties have been
held in Llys Llywelyn over the past months, and remember
you can hire the centre for a very reasonable cost to
hold all kinds of things like this.
During the coming weeks the Llys Llywelyn Grand Christmas
Raffle will be launched, and a Christmas and Craft Fair
will be held on Saturday 25 November between 10.30am
and 3.30pm. You can book a table for £5 (they are
filling up fast – phone Sally on 882511 to make
a reservation). It’s a chance to raise funds for
your organization, but remember only goods related to
Christmas or Craft work can be sold – no bric-a-brac.
Antur Nantlle Cyf
Antur Nantlle are pleased to have been associated with
the Talysarn and Nantlle Partnership for over three years
now and taken part in the development of the Communities
First Programme in the area.. We look forward to continuing
to shoulder the responsibilities of the Accountable Body
in the future.
Developing the community of Dyffryn Nantlle is one of
Antur Nantlle’s main objectives and seeing the
successes of local groups such as the Community Centre
Committee and Llys Llywelyn is very encouraging and deserves
Antur Nantlle have recently set up a Dyffryn Nantlle
Tourism Group and we are grateful to the Partnership
and Gwynedd Council for supporting our bid for grant
funding to commission a Tourism Report in the Nantlle
Valley. The work was undertaken by Geraint Thomas, originally
from Nantlle and Owain Rowlands from Penygroes and we
thank them for their hard work in preparing the Report.
A special event will take place in the near future to
launch the Report. The arrangements will be advertised
locally so that everyone will know what is going on.
If anyone is interested in the Tourism Group please contact
Dafydd or Beryl in our office on 01286 882688 or leave
your details with Dafydd and Wena in the Partnership
Office in Talysarn or Nantlle.
The success of the Pen-yr-Orsedd project on the Restoration
Village programme caused a lot of excitement. The whole
community stood together behind the project and everyone
got involved in the fun and drama of it all. Pulling
together as a community brings benefits and means things
can happen. We wish Tirwedd and the Pen-yr-Orsedd project
every success in the future. Antur Nantlle congratulate
everyone involved and we would be pleased to offer our
assistance, in any way we can, in the future.
information about the work of Antur Nantlle, please
CANOLFAN DECHNOLEG ANTUR NANTLLE
20 Heol y Dwr, Penygroes Gwynedd LL54 6LR
The Official Nantlle Valley Website
The www.nantlle.com group had a break over the summer
holidays but by now are back in full swing.. During the
summer months we had a variety of enquiries on the ‘Messageboard’.
Maybe someone from Talysarn and Nantlle have some on
• A gentleman form Fort
William would like to know if anyone remembers his mother
- Katherine Mary Parry who
was born in South Wales but moved to Talysarn and attended
the primary school around 1925. Also his grandfather
Thomas Ellis Parry who lived in Ty’n y Weirglodd.
And played the trombone in the band
• Paul is looking for information about Coed Madog Quarry
• Tracy Jones wants information about her great grandmother
- Mary Corwenna Jones and her grandfather Thomas Owen
Hughes who was born in ‘Cloth Hall’in 1915.
• Paul Samuels is interest in leaning about the life
of Llywelyn ap Gruffydd and wants to know the exact location
of the battlefield of Bryn Derwen / Moel Derwen
• Glenys form Liverpool wanted to know if Bron Eryri
Terrace is still standing in Llandwrog. And does anyone
have information about Cae Haidd and Llys Twrog.
• Austin Voorsanger’r grandson would like information
about the Austin Hopkinson factory in Penygroes. Does
anyone have any old photos of the factory?
The main purpose of the Messageboard is of course to
get people to talk to one another and there are a a number
of topics under discussion on the site. Many showed an
interest in the Pen-yr-Orsedd Restoration project with
145 people taking an interest or discussing the subject.
There was even one complaint from someone who tried several
times to vote but without success because he could not
During the three months of July, August and September
we had almost 9,000 visitors to the site. What better
reason for our local businesses to include their details
on the website (free of charge) – a chance to spread
the word if you are running a business in the area. Contact
• Phone us on 01286 882688
• Visit www.nantlle.com and click on ‘Businesses’ and
fill in the registration form
• Send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
We are still looking for old photos of the area and
interesting stories. We also want to know what is happening
now– if you are a member of a club, group or society,
please send your programme for the winter to us or tell
us about your activities. The Llys Llywelyn group bring
us their weekly programme which is posted on the website
so that everyone can see what is happening in Nantlle.
Young people of Talysarn a Nantlle – what would
you like to see on the website – would you like
members of the website group to come and talk to you??
We want your views about our website. – please
let us know.
We would like to thank everyone who has already contributed – keep
sending your information. We look forward to receiving
new contributions so that we can keep on developing email@example.com with
This has been a very good year for Llysiau Lleu, with
a wide variety of fruit and vegetables available from
late spring with the expectation of continuing into the
winter months. Now in its fourth year, Llysiau Lleu provides
over 20 local families with a weekly bag of vegetables,
all of which are grown at Trigonos with a supplement
of potatoes from Pant Eithinog Farm. An ever increasing
number of people are asking to join the scheme, many
of whom already buy produce regularly from ‘farm
gate’ sales at Trigonos.
People are glad to be able to buy their vegetables in
their home locality. They recognise the freshness, flavour
and quality that this allows and appreciate the fact
that neither pesticides nor chemical fertilisers are
used in their cultivation.
Band Dyffryn Nantlle
The Royal Nantlle Vale Silver Band has been busy performing
and rehearsing over recent months. Back in July, their
annual concert was held at Ysgol Dyffryn Nantlle school
hall, where the band played modern and contemporary music,
accompanied by the Dyffryn Nantlle Male Voice Choir as
well as a local folk band for an evening’s entertainment
of varied music that was enjoyed by all who attended.
Currently the band members are rehearsing for two major
competitions, Pontins in Prestatyn on the 4th November
and the North Wales Rally tournament on the 18th November.
The band will be competing at senior and intermediate
levels. Following these events the band will then plan
their annual ‘Christmas Tour’ performing
carols for the local community as well as for Christmas
shoppers outside Tesco stores. During this festive build
up period, the band will also play at the Porthmadog ‘Lighting
the Christmas Tree’ parade (25th November) an event
in which they have participated regularly in recent years.
On the 16th December a section of the band will perform
in the annual Christmas Concert at the Memorial Hall
in Penygroes, supporting music students of Yvonne Clark.
The band continues to require new members, beginners
and experienced players, and anyone interested should
contact the bandmaster Gareth Williams on 01286 882269.
Housing For Local People
After nearly three years the Dyffryn Nantlle Community
Land Trust intends to move forward early in 2007 to develop
houses for local people on part of the Gloddfa Glai site
The site is the property of Gwynedd Council and has
been noted in the Uniteray Programme for the housing
The most recent housing survey was done in 2004/5 with
the results showing clearly that local people were finding
it hard competing in the housing open market. Following
the results of the survey the Community Land Trust has
set up a local partnership in order to discuss the development
of the Gloddfa Glai site. The Talysarn and Nantlle Partnership
in Talysarn and Nantlle is one to these partnerships.
The intention is to prepare a variety of high standard
houses, under the Community Land Trusts Agreement, which
will ensure that the houses that are built will remain
affordable forever and available to local people only.