Spanish Polvorones & German Lebkuchen



Christmas Walnut Cookies from Spain.


1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup caster sugar

2 cups plain flour

1/2 cup ground walnuts

1 cup chopped walnuts

Icing sugar to coat after baking + extra to serve

Preheat oven to 160C fan

Use an electric mixer, hand held or stand type, it does get hard. Beat the butter in a large bowl until it becomes light and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat until well blended. Beat in the flour in two goes, and then the ground and chopped walnuts. Divide the mixture into two, forming into two balls. Wrap seperately in cling film and chill in the fridge for about 30 – 40 minutes. On a floured surface roll a ball into a long sausage and divide into 25 pieces. With floured hands roll each piece into a ball and place on a buttered baking tray about 1/2 inch apart. Bake in the oven for about 18 – 20 mins until the base is golden brown and the top is just pale golden in colour. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Repeat with the second ball of mixture. While the second batch are cooking, roll the cooling Pol-vores gently in icing sugar and return to rack. Sprin-kle more icing suger over to serve.







Christmas Spicy Cookies from Germany

250g plain flour

85 g ground almondslebkuchensm

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/2 tsp ground all spice

1 1/4 tsps cinnamon powder

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

175ml clear honey

85g butter

1 tbsp lemon juice

1/2 lemon and 1/2 orange finely zested

100g icing sugar

1 egg white beaten.


Preheat oven 160C Fan

Sieve all dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix well. Melt the honey and butter in a basin over sim-mering water until butter melts then pour into flour mixture. Add the lemon juice, lemon and orange zests. Mix well with a hand held mixer until the dough is thoroughly combined.Cover with cling film and cool in the fridge overnight to let flavours com-bine. Divide dough into two and on a floured surface roll each one into a sausage. Divide each half into 12 -13 pieces. With floured hands roll each piece into a ball and flatten into a disc about 10mm thick. Divide the discs between buttered baking trays and bake for about 15-18 mins or until touched lightly no inprint remains. Cool on wire racks. While still warm, glaze the lebkuchen with icing glaze, made below.

Mix icing sugar and egg together to form a smooth, runny icing. Brush each cookie with the icing, leave to dry completely.








Watch Co-ordinators





Watch Co-ordinators met on Wednesday 26 October 2016

Walston Close, Greave Close and Port Road. New Co-ordinators have volunteered for these roads. We greatly appreciate their help.

Clos Llanfair. – A Co-ordinator is needed for this road.

Neighbourhood Watch is a national organisation where individuals in a community offer to keep alert for any suspicious activity in their areas. In Wenvoe we aim to have a Co-ordinator for each road in the village and we encourage Co-ordinators to introduce themselves to the residents in their areas. There is an Annual General Meeting held about February to which any Resident is invited. There are also 2 meetings in a year for Co-ordinators.

If you are interested in being a Co-ordinator please contact Jackie Gauci on 2132 8539 or Alan French on 2059 8092.

We would like to include residents in The Grange and St Lythan’s estates in the scheme and are considering the best way this can be achieved.

It was reported that small, empty cylinders about the size of a hand torch, had been found on Grange Field. They might have been used to sniff a gas and this was reported to the police.


Alan French






Thanks to Hirers




The Village Hall would like to wish all the hirers and villagers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Thank you to everyone who supports village events and help to keep the hall running for all villagers. We are currently selling our Raffle tickets £1 each if anyone would like to support us to raise funds to keep the hall running Please see any member of the committee.

The hall is available to hire for more detail please email





New Books for Nov – Dec



The Wenvoe Community Library

Contact us on   029 2059 4176

New Books Up to 16 Nov 2016



Christmas Cookbook – Jamie Oliver
Being a Dog – A Horowitz
Graveyard of Hesperides – L Davies
Dance of Death – E Marston
Night Music – J Connoly
Make your own Jumper – N Laforseca
R is for Russia – V Kabakov
In Vino Veritas – Peter Turnbull
Life Unstyled – Emily Henson


How loud can you burp? – Glenn Murphy
Robots and the whole Technology Story – Glenn Murphy
Ocean – Izzie Howell
Research on the Edge of Space – Angela Royston
Whizzy Science – Anna Claybourne
Handy Horse Projects – Isabel Thomas
Beauty and the Beast – Cari Meister
I Want to be a Brachiosaurus – Thomas Kingsley

Welsh language

Saith Selog – Enid Blyton
Yr Argae Haearn – Myrddin ap Dafydd
Supertaten – Sue Hendre & Paul Linnet

Green garden bags and blue recycling bags are available for purchase from the library









December Planning Updates

December Planning Updates


The following applications have been approved.

44 Walston Road. To install a raised platform/concrete base with wooden fence on top of a boundary wall.

Land at The Rectory, Wenvoe. Development of 12 dwellings and associated infrastructure

Outbuildings at Sutton Mawr, Waycock Road Change of use of existing outbuildings to ancillary residential accommodation

Land outside St Lythan’s Park, Old Port Road. Raising of canopy to tree 'T7'


The proposed diversions of footpaths 21 and 22 through The Grange site are to be the subject of a planning inspector’s enquiry to be held in April next year.

Low cost housing. Purchasers have to be first time buyers and are charged 70% of the purchase price. The other 30% is owned by the housing association but canplanningupdate be purchased from them. At the present time there are 3 properties at the Redrow site and 4 at the Bellway site available. Under the present rules these are only available for Vale residents and families including aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces. Before applicants are sought outside the area the council considered greater effort should be made to find local purchasers. The council agreed to discuss the possibility of seeking purchasers from the Cardiff area next spring after all other avenues have been exhausted.

Councillors received a report on a recent meeting between the Vale 106 officer, councillors and library representatives relating to replacing the library building.

The defibrillator should now be installed in its box outside the Community Centre and the initial demonstration on how the equipment is used will have taken place. If you would like to attend a demonstration on the use of this vital piece of equipment please contact the Clerk to the Council (see page 2) who will arrange an additional course(s) when he has sufficient numbers, usually around 20 participants.

Allotment wardens reported on a bonfire on the allotments that got out of hand and resulted in the attendance of the fire brigade to extinguish it.

The two fir trees on the Village Green have been removed resulting in an improved appearance of the area.




November News and Coming Up



Everyone was welcomed by our president, especially our visitors, Roz, Ann and Gwyneth .We hope they will join us again. Then we thoroughly enjoyed an evening of “Call My Bluff” superbly prepared by our member Betty with teams joining us from Culverhouse Cross, Dinas Powys and Penarth. From some very good teams congratulations must go to the winners, Pam, June, Mo and Roz. We are very grateful to Betty for all the time and thought she put in for a very successful evening.


Members were reminded of forthcoming events within our Link.

Dec. 6th Four members to attend Dinas Powys Christmas party.

Dec 14th Culverhouse Cross Christmas coffee morning at Wenvoe Garden Centre

Dec. 15th Penarth WI is hosting the Link Carol Service, 2pm at Elfed Ave Church.


Transport will be arranged at our Dec meeting for those who wish to attend any events.

We were sorry to hear that Sue Webley has recently suffered a fall and we wish her well as she recovers. Marlene continues to make steady progress following her hip operation.

Our next meeting will be on December 1st at 7.00pm at the Church Hall when we will be holding our Christmas party.

In the meantime, the President and Committee would like to wish everyone




baubles01s A Happy Christmas and good health in 2017. baubles02s








The Harlequin Ladybird,




dec-harlequin-nnNovember in the parish saw an invasion although you might not have noticed it. The Harlequin Ladybird, which only arrived in Britain in 2004, is now well-established over most of Britain, even having been spotted as far north as the Shetlands. Less common in Scotland and North and Mid Wales it is very common in South Wales and during November would have found its way into many buildings if a window was left open. Whilst they are generally harmless to humans they are a major threat to our native species. With huge appetites, once they have run out of aphids to eat they move on to the eggs and larvae of other ladybirds as well as moths and butterflies. In the 1980s it was introduced to North America to help to control aphids on crops but quickly became the dominant species. Its introduction here was probably accidental. It took the Grey Squirrel 100 years to colonise Britain, the Harlequin just 10. Whilst they are bigger than our native ladybirds they come in a huge range of colours and patterns, the one featured in the photo being a common form spotted in both the Village Hall and Community Centre last month. You can help by reporting sightings to the Ladybird Survey – – where you will find a lot more information on what they look like and where they have been seen.







Autumn Programme Talks


This Month's Talks


Paul Gregory on Community and Post

Our autumn programme continued with a presentation by Paul Gregory on Community and Post. Paul’s talk was about how his life had revolved around public service and as a child much of this service was in the church starting off as a choir boy and then later a server and Eucharist minister.

When he left school in 1971 he passed the Post Office’s aptitude test and became a telegram delivery boy. It was interesting to learn that India was the last country to have telegrams and that service only finished last year. It was a standing joke in the P.O. that there were only two sizes of uniform – too big or too small. In the 70’s it was a strict regime and fines of one shilling were imposed if you were caught smoking or not wearing a cap.

During his time with the Post Office having worked his way through the various duties including delivering mail to the docks area of Cardiff ,Paul saw many changes within the Royal Mail service. One of the roles he particularly enjoyed was visiting schools to tell them about the postal service all done with the aid of Postman Pat.

In retirement Paul is still helping the community by working for the Rotary Club and he was a scout assistant until 3 years ago.



Cathy Farr – Author

Our next talk was by author, Cathy Farr who became a writer almost by accident. As a child she had loved writing and making up stories about her imaginary Post Officefriends.

One of the main characters of her novels came from seeing an Irish wolfhound whilst doing a management course at the Turnberry Golf Hotel. Cathy fell in love with the breed and decided that at some point she would own one but until that time came she started to write stories about “Fellhounds” an imaginary dog muchbook-01 bigger than a wolfhound.

Many years later having taken a creative writing course and done a law degree at the Open University Cathy had time to turn her scribblings into her first novel  “ Moon Chase”. This is about how the brave and loyal Fellhounds would protect their masters, the Fellmen of Thesk. Cathy read us the opening sequence of this book and I am sure many of our members bought the book to see what happened next.

This book was self- published as was the sequel “Moon Crossing" and it was fascinating to hear how Cathy found illustrators to bring her characters alive.

Happily Cathy achieved her ambition and owned an Irish wolfhound called Finn and now owns another called Mojo.

Recently Cathy has written an entirely different genre of book under the name of Carolyn Swann – this book “It’s All About Me” tells the story of Madeleine Edwards who meets the very wealthy and recently divorced Haden Elliot and determines to become Mrs Elliot the Third. Whereas Cathy’s other books are suitable for all ages this one is an adult read.


Perhaps we should encourage our community library to have a section on local authors.



Phil Bowen  on "The Mary Rose"

We welcomed back Phil Bowen to talk to us about the Mary Rose, the Tudor ship which sank in 1545. Phil gave us a very graphic account of how the ship sank in under one minute with Henry VIII watching from the shore from where they were they could hear the screams of the sailors as they succumbed to their watery grave.

Because the ship was entombed in mud it was well preserved and it was finally raised from the seabed on Monday October 11th 1982 watched by thousands on television. Since then much work has taken place preserving this historic vessels for future generations.mary-rose03

Using reconstructed photos of various members of the crew Phil took us back to the Tudor era describing the day-to-day lives of the archer, the surgeon and the cook. The thousands of artefacts recovered from the ship meant that by studying these much could be learnt about life on board. What became very obvious by studying the artefacts was that Tudor officers led a very different lifestyle to the sailors.

Today Swansea University are working very closely with the trust so new facts are coming life all the time. Recently DNA was extracted from the remains of a food material and this was identified as being from cod caught off Nova Scotia. There is so much material for researchers to look at that the story of the Mary Rose will continue to unfold for many more years.

Phil had been a teacher before retirement and everyone agreed how much more interesting history would have been with someone who could entertain whilst still educating their audience.










November’s Expeditions


Abercarn to Mynydd Llwyd 

Our drive to the beginning of this walk was very promising as we climbed quite a way, passing narrow terraces in Abercarn, to arrive at a parking area in the forest near Llanfach. It was a misty day, no rain but we were surrounded by light clouds.

We started out on good forest tracks, as usual heading uphill. After a while we came to an area where some extensive tree felling had been done. The track was totally covered by wood – branches, sawdust and twigs – making the going quite hard but at least there was no mud. In view of the tree felling it was decided to alter our plans and stay on the main track rather than branch off onto a footpath. A good decision as the footpath was very steep!

dec-f-img_5956smAll morning we walked uphill along Nant Gwyddon, through some glorious autumnal colours yellow from the larches, browns and oranges from beeches, oaks, and other species. One tree drew our attention as we debated which animal it most resembled – an elephant from one side and a stag from the other. The route continued up Craig y Trwyn and then northeast to the edge of the forest. Although cloudy it was a warm day for November and we became pretty warm ourselves.

As we emerged onto moor land visibility was quite low, so we decided to take advantage of a line of pylons to guide us and walked towards the nearest one before turning east. A track followed the line of pylons which made the going easy and at last we were on level ground.

When the pylon line changed direction, the shape of the pylon arms changed to carry the tension of the power line as it turned the corner. Just beyond here was a radio mast on Mynydd Llwyd which indicated that we should turn south and then southwest back towards the woodland. On this stretch we could see sunlight shining over the land in the distance and the clouds around us dispersed as they lifted but it remained overcast where we were.

Before re-entering the woods, we stopped for lunch on a grassy bank, overlooking a valley of autumnal colour. The ground around us was covered in tiny examples of several different types of fungi, which could only be seen because they were so close.

Now it was downhill through the forest and we could see our morning path across Craig Pant-glas. As we continued a slight breeze stirred the air and it appeared to start snowing – the fine larch needles drifting in the same way as snowflakes do when they first start falling. It created a lovely atmosphere and brought a smile to our faces.

Returning to the cars we had walked 8.8 miles and climbed 1300ft (so much for thinking we were doing most of the climbing by car at the start). We drove down to the visitor centre in Cwmcarn for a cup of tea, at 90p a cup or £1 a large cup – very good value. Map 166.



Efail Isaf and the Garth

We parked in Efail Isaf on a bright morning and set out on good paths towards the Garth. A steady climb across open land allowed us to arrive at the trig point on the top of Garth hill surprisingly easily – much easier than the steep climb from Gwaelod y Garth which we had done in the past. Garth Hill burial mounds are four early – middle bronze age (around 2000BC) dec-f-img_5942smround barrows, the area is within the parish of Pentyrch. A brief stop for a summit photo and we were descending towards Soar.

The sun was shining and now and again, as a gust of wind blew, a scattering of leaves fell from surrounding trees looking like a golden rain shower. There were some fine fungi covering an old tree stump being used as a gate post and also lots growing at our feet.

We made our way northwest and north past Gwaelod-y-garth towards Coed y Gedrys, passing what appeared to be an entrance to a drift mine. Now the forecast cold wind started to blow and the temperature began to drop. We had lunch in an open area overlooking an Industrial Estate to the east in the Taff valley and open land to the north. We really appreciated the heat of the sun as the wind cut into us.

We headed generally east towards Tonteg Unexpectedly we came across a cardboard cut out figure high up in a tree – reminiscent of Boris Johnson’s zip wire ride.



Returning to Efail Isaf we walked through a large number of rather nice new houses before getting back to the start. Another 8 miles and 1300ft walked. We went to Arthur Llewellyn Jenkins on the way home, where we had huge pots of tea – very refreshing. Map 151.





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