New Library


The Community Council do not hold a meeting during August.

The final detailed drawings for the new library are available to be viewed at the Community Centre and the library, your comments are welcomed before planning permission is sought. The building will be internally connected with the present building and also include new toilets. The car parking area will be where the present library building stands and a children’s recreation area will be set aside on the south side of the building along with a storage building for the groups who use the Community Centre.

The present wooden library building was originally a ‘temporary’ school classroom in the early 1970s and is now well past its normal life span. To finance this construction the Council are seeking a substantial grant with the balance coming from section 106 monies

Section 106 Agreements are legal agreements between the Local Authority and a developer; and are linked to planning permissions. These agreements are drafted when it is considered that a development will have significant impact on the local area that cannot be moderated by conditions attached to a planning decision. The aim is to balance the pressures created by a new development with improvements to the surrounding area ensuring that where possible the development would make a positive contribution to the local area and community. These can include highways, education, open spaces, affordable housing, and other local capital projects. Often these contributions are made in stages as the development progresses.





Sputnik Pea Gall



This fellow traveler took off sixty years ago and it was the first of its kind. The second one carried a dog and the photo shows one of several found down at Goldsland Farm. Confused? Well, the first artificial earth satellite was, of course, Sputnik, which is Russian for Satellite or Fellow Traveller and this was launched in 1957. Later that year Sputnik 2 went into space with the dog Laika on board. And the gall in the photo is the Sputnik or Spiked Pea Gall and it is usually found on Dog Rose which was the case down at Goldsland. It is caused by a small wasp which lays its eggs in the leaves – each gall houses one grub. The Sputniks were launched in Kazakhstan which is the home of the apple – over many hundreds, possibly thousands, of years they worked their way to the west along the silk roads and with the help of traders and the guts of animals. After years of putting up with the mouth-puckering crab-apple, finally the sweet apple arrived and for our ancestors it was a life-changing event.



Dogs Trust


First of all I want to thank all those who continue to save used stamps and hand them to me to pass on to Dogs Trust in London to be sorted. You may be interested to hear that Jenny Thomas of north London, who I’ve mentioned before, has been awarded the Phyllis Mayer Argus Medal in recognition of her outstanding commitment to fundraising on behalf of stray and abandoned dogs. Jenny has been a volunteer fundraiser for Dogs Trust since 1978, during which time she has raised in excess of £ 133-00 and last year alone donated £ 24-00 through the sale of stamps, postcards and foreign currency. This year our only Dogs Trust re-homing centre at Bridgend has benefitted from Jenny’s efforts. Supporters of this charity will be delighted that this lady has been so honoured and it’s good to know that we, in a small way are contributing to the welfare of dogs here in the UK.

The Argus Medal was created in 1933 by the Canine Defence League, former name of Dogs Trust as an award in recognition of long and distinguished service by those who had devoted a great part of their lives to the cause of dogs.




Village Green Planting


We have started work on the Village Green this month planting some new shrubs and young trees. We will be pleased to hear from you of any work around the village that you think the team are able to carry out. Any suggestions will be considered and may be left in one of the What’s On boxes or can be mentioned to one of the team. This month we meet on the 4th and 18th, as usual at 9.30 at the Community Centre.



Playgroup News

Playgroup are back on Thursday 7th September from 9am until 12:45pm (and onto Gwenfo Nursery for 1pm) for all those children who are returning after the summer break. Don’t forget your lunch boxes.

We will be collecting from the Nursery week commencing the 11th September at 11:20 am for those returning. If unsure please give us a ring 029 20597494

Thursday 7th September and Friday 8th September will also be settling in days for parents and children who are new to the setting in time to start from Monday 11th September.

If you would like to know more about Playgroup life, why not call in an see us on Thursday 7th or Friday 8th September to see how we can help.

We offer extended care with Gwenfo Nursery School. Our hours of opening are Monday to Friday from 9am until 12:45pm & Wednesday 9am until 3:15pm Term Time Only.

For more information please visit our website or email us on

Our first fundraiser of the new term is with Spiritulist Medium Nataly Churchill. I’m sure some of you who have attended previous evenings are intrigued to learn more about your loved ones? The event details are as follow:



August Events



A year has gone by since we combined our Parish Magazine with that of the Parish of Sully. During this time we have tried to contribute the news of what is happening in Wenvoe and St. Lythan’s, so that combined with the events in Sully, we have an overall picture of what is going on in our part of the Ministry Area. We have not always been successful but things are improving, and any contributions from the Wenvoe and St. Lythan’s congregations are always welcome. The magazine has been renamed to “Connections” and sales, month by month, vary with some copies ending up in the waste paper bin. From this month we are encouraging our congregation in Wenvoe to subscribe £5.00 p.a. for all the copies of the magazine during the year. Money please in an envelope, with your name, and you can then collect your copy without the need to carry the monthly 50p. This will also help us to gauge the number we need to have printed, thereby cutting down on waste.

August has been it usual quiet self in church, and we miss the “Pebbles” children and parents. They bring a “buzz” into church when they join us for the communion, otherwise we have maintained a goodly congregation at the 9.30 a.m. service, though there is a concern that the 7.45 a.m. service is down in numbers attending. This is compensated in some way by an increase in numbers attending the mid week communion on a Wednesday morning. The “All Age Service” on the 4th Sunday of the month is always a lively affair and the combined service on the 5th Sunday of month brings our three congregations together in a joint act of worship. The last one was held at St. Bleddians church in St.Lythan’s and the faithful group of worshipers there had worked really hard to present the church as beautifully as possible. The church grounds looked magnificent and my lasting impression of the morning was standing with Jon in the Button Chapel watching the rain coming down at a 45 degree angle. With the uncertainty of the weather the Pilgrimage walk to Llandaff Cathedral was postponed for another time.

A Faculty is being applied for the removal of the old concrete channelling at the base of the South Wall of the Nave, to cure the damp in the walls. This has been successful elsewhere in the church and hopefully the work can be done before the Winter sets in. We also have to appoint an architect for the general care and repair of the church fabric for the next 5 years. We have just completed the work required from the last Quinquenial inspection and this has been “signed off” by our last architect, who has now retired from practice. The maintenance of our church to keep it in good repair is costly and the money raised from the Building Appeal and the “200 Club” helps towards the cost of any repairs. Please continue to support this work when appeals are made.

Jude Billngham who organises the “Fair Trade” and “Food Bank” for us writes elsewhere in “What’s On” of her concern that the “Fair Trade” brand is in danger of being diluted by some of the multi-national companies as they set up their own source of supply. Support remains strong in the parish for “Fair Trade” products and the “Food Bank” and we thank Jude and

her team for all the work they put in, in supporting these worth while causes.

The Scarecrow Festival takes place on Saturday 23rd September between 2.00 pm-5.00pm in the churchyard, with wonderful scarecrows, competitions and refreshments, followed by our Harvest Festival on the Sunday morning. There is no evening service at Wenvoe this year, as the response has been very poor over the past few years.

So forward we go into the Autumn, planning for Remembrance Sunday and Christmas. Pebbles will be back with us, with new faces and mums and dad’s. The next “Messy Church” will be on Saturday October 21st in the community centre at 3.30 pm, its FREE and all are welcome as is the invitation to join in the worship at St. Mary’s where the welcome is warm and friendly. With every blessing to all our readers

Parry Edwards





Treasurer Wanted



Due to the retirement of our Treasurer we are now looking for someone to support the Village Hall in continuing the role. The Hall is operated by a group of volunteers to ensure that there is a community venue for hire in the village. If you are interested in supporting this village cause and helping maintain the accounts please contact Kath Thomas on 02920 597847 or email






There was not a lot of entertainment the village, but we made our own fun, and everybody knew everybody, which is not the case today. When I go to the village, if I know two or three people to speak to, I am lucky. We had a dance in the old school about once a month. That was an event and great fun, and always a good night. Another big event was the fete at the Castle. Stalls of all kinds would be put up, and myself and friends, would have baskets with button holes of roses to sell, and we would have to dress for the part. The evening was the highlight – dancing on the green, in the moonlight till midnight.

It was then that all the gardeners were in demand, and we all looked forward to this. Lady Jenner had a cousin who was known to be a little bit eccentric, and she lived in Ty Pica Farm. She dressed like a gypsy, and all the school children were scared of her. Lady Jenner disowned her. Near the pub was a big pond, which is all filled in now, and has nice seats there, but a lot of watercress used to grow there, and Old Julia, as we all called her, would be there cutting the watercress and filling her basket and selling it. The children would shout over the wall "Old Julia" and she would chase them with her knife. We were really scared of her.

The milkman used to come every morning, milk straight from the Garn Farm. It would still be warm when he called. He would ladle it into your jug out of the churn. Quite a lot of people kept their own chickens and pigs. We were no exception, and always had a pig in the sty and bacon hung in the pantry. The pantry is still there and so are the hooks in the ceiling where the bacon used to be hung, but I'm afraid the pig sty was knocked down when my daughter and her husband built their house where it stood.

Trains used to be three up and three down a day. We would have to walk to Wenvoe Station to get a train to Barry and change at Cadoxton, if we were going to Cardiff. I used to work in Canton. I would cycle to Dinas Powys, get the train to Cardiff and then a tram to Canton. I would leave home on a Saturday at 8 o'clock in the morning and catch the 10 o'clock train home at night. My father would meet me at Dinas Powys and many a time he had to carry me on his back through flood waters and we would arrive home at quarter past eleven.

That was a normal Saturday's work. Often on a Christmas Eve, I have been serving a customer at half past one in the morning, and it was heaven help you if you let that customer go without buying something. It would be your cards for you, but through it all, as I say, we were happy.

One of my big enjoyments as a child was to help my brother, who worked on the Burdens Hill Farm. I loved the harvest time. I would ride on top of the loads of hay, and then ride up to the farm on the old horse's back, when the days toil was over, then I would go on the dray to Ely and get the grains for the animals. That was all great fun to me. The dray was a big old horse drawn cart and was the main means of transport in those days in the village of Wenvoe.

The little shop in the village was kept by a Mrs. Thomas and her two daughters, and she was a little bit on the mean side. I have seen her break a sweet in half to make the weight right. The Post Office was kept by a Mrs. Morgan and her daughter. The old lady lived to over 90 and the week before she died, she was delivering telegrams, which again had to be delivered by hand. The old lady was part of Wenvoe. This would be her

attire: man's cap, mans boot's, shawl, long black skirt and canvas apron. If wet, she would have a long gent's mackintosh on. The Post Office was the place to go for all the gossip of the village which was about in those days.

Walston, I remember, to be made up of little cottages, stone floors and stone staircases. These have now long since been knocked down and replaced by far more modern houses.

Once a year Wenvoe would hold a live stock show and ploughing match, for which the farm hands would enter the competition, and it would be the one with the straightest furrow would get the prize. They would then all gather in the Wenvoe Arms that night and beer would flow like water. We once found one of the competitors had slept in our out-house for the night. He thought he was home, so you can tell how many he had had. Toilets in the olden days were always a brick building at the bottom of the garden, and one dark winter's morning, no electric lights then, my mother went to pay a visit to the toilet, and sat down on a gypsy, who had gone in there to shelter from the rain and had fallen asleep. Imagine the fright my mother had.

Another treat for us children would be our yearly trip to Barry Island. Once again, we would travel in a horse drawn brake. We would all be given a bag of sweets, orange and a few nuts, and we would go down on the sands and the mothers would have got togethe r a picnic for us.



As I have said, my family' were not well off, but I don't think I missed out on many pleasures, and I am happy living in one of the last remaining houses of old Venvoe, which means so much to me and my family, and in the knowledge that Holton Way Cottage will not suffer the same fete as the cottages in Walston. Well, I think that is about all I can remember that took place, so I hope I have given you a little insite as to what Wenvoe was like in my childhood days.




Volunteer of The Year



We were delighted to hear that Mervyn Greenwood was runner-up in the Wales Volunteer of the Year awards judged by Keep Wales Tidy. It is a great achievement, particularly bearing in mind how many hundreds, possibly thousands, of volunteers there are in Wales. The judges commented: 'The application clearly shows the amazing work Mervyn does at Wenvoe Wildlife Group and his passion for the environment and the area'. Mervyn was presented with a certificate from Keep Wales Tidy and vouchers by the Wildlife Group.

Continuing our interest in Lichens we arranged for a survey to be carried out of the Lichens down at Goldsland Farm which we intend to be the basis of a Lichen Trail around the area. This is a very specialised subject and we were very pleased that Tracey Lovering from Plantlife could fit us into her busy schedule. We have now completed the programme of activities and purchases with the generous grant from Tescos. This has provided us with noticeboards, benches, arbours, tools, an orchard, wildflowers, bee hotels, hedgehog homes, nest boxes, raised beds, grass-cutting machines and strimmers, plants, remote cameras – to mention just a few.

This has been our best year for fruit from the orchards including a good selection of apples (possible around 50 kgs), quite a few plums and damsons, a handful of pears and the usual crop of medlars. If you try out any of the fruit let us know what you think – personal preferences can vary but any feedback we get is useful. Our fifth orchard will be planted down at Goldsland soon and we have heard that Dyffryn Gardens is going ahead with their new orchard in the coming months.




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