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9" x 12" Watercolor

Arches 140#CP

 

Fall begins a season of celebrations - harvests, brlliant colors, Halloween, All Saints Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, our anniversary -- and today, my birthday!

 

To celebrate I painted some bright red rose hips - a reminder of the season and the colors I love, the hips-- the fruit of a season's work and the promise of more to come! Sort of like birthdays, I think! I kept this rather splashy simply for the joy of the season!

 

Thank you all for your constant support and encouragment - but more, your friendships and kind words. You cannot know how much you mean to me!

 

Have a slice of celebratory cake today -- on me! And please enjoy the two portraits below - gifts from my dear friends Doris and Janina!

I just want to show you part of what we are going to have for dessert,

This are some of what I made for Christmas, fruits Ladybug are Marzipan,

done with pure almond paste the only tool was a kitchen knife for the crease

my favorites are always the bananas and peach, I don't spray my fruit I like

the natural, white and dark chocolate truffles to die for:-) and the other two with the

leaf is chocolate covered cake, this are all bite size,

No need for comment but Please view this in large

Best Christmas Gifts to Make, Great Cheap Christmas Gifts, Best Christmas Gift Ever, Christmas Reindeer, Christmas Cards, Christmas Tree, Christmas Music, Christmas Gift Ideas, Best Christmas Gifts Idea, Best Xmas Gift Ever, Christmas Pictures, Best Christmas Gifts Ideas, Christmas Holiday

ift.tt/1ja2Xdp

I've taken this low resolution video today.

 

In Italy, on Christmas day we usually eat this butter made cake called "panettone". It has candied fruit and raisins in it. The one you see in the video is a small version without candied fruit and raisins. It's many calories and birds love it.

 

Our first cake for 2010. We made this to celebrate our parent's 45th wedding anniversary. Each bear represents a member of the family with a few absent members represented in the details.

 

Top and bottom teirs are dummie cakes and middle teir is moist boiled fruit cake, that has been lovingly doused in Brandy every two weeks over the last 8 or so weeks.

 

Congrats Mom and Dad!!!

Best viewed Large and on black

Dot and Grace

 

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My daughter is at it again! She has been interested in making cupcakes recently and received a lot of tools for Christmas.

 

These are birthday cupcakes for her Grandma - devils chocolate cake with blackberry buttercream icing, garnished with a plump, juicy blackberry on top. Mmmmmmmm....

 

For Macro Monday: Fruit

 

Come join me on :: Facebook ! ::

 

MADE EXPLORE 10/11/08

 

Close-up of detail

 

Thinking about Christmas Cakes & Designs I made this, which is totally inspired by Lindy smith's 3 tiered Snowflake Cake!

This cake isn't fruit cake but sponge, But we will be having a very boozy, Brandy soaked fruit cake for the Christmas period.....YUM!!!!

 

I used patchwork cutters for the snowflakes and have got to say they are really tricky to use, I have tried several ways and had broken more snowflakes than I actually made, so there was some bad language flying around :o)

For the small beads of snow I used royal icing.

Sam says I spoil him too much, that it's not his birthday until January and Christmas is only just round the corner. But I just can't help it, I love that little robot and if he wants his own iPad he can have one.

Just me and the elf on the shelf having some coffee and sweets that came all the way from Germany. Thank you so much dear Heike for this wonderful Christmas surprise!. We love the cookies, chocolate, OMG the fruit cake! and the beautiful amulet you made me of my little Keenan! I will cherish it forever! <3

 

My girls want to say Thank you to you, Zoe, Bluebelle, Dylan, and Poppy!:D xoxoxo

 

P.S. I just hid the fruit cake from everyone. It's so good I don't want to share it! LOL

 

Reiko's home-made xmas cake.

Mini Victorian Sponge Cakes

 

I am very sorry for a long (yes very long) absent from Flickr.

We had a sad chaos in our house but now it is getting better / settled now…

I hope I will be able to come back here as regular as before.

 

I wish you all the joys of Christmas and over this festive season.

Eat and drink - be merry! xx

Preserved cherries - different names (candied, crystallized, glace) but all made the same by soaking them for weeks in a colourful sugary syrup. I just buy mine at the local bulk store and use them to decorate Christmas baking.

 

These fruits actually have an interesting history. First made in the Middle East in the early 1300s they followed the trade route through Venice and Milan. By the 1500s bakers in Milan were including these red and green fruits in their Christmas panettone. From Italy, candied cherries (and other fruit) moved westward ... including into Britain for their every-famous (or infamous) "Christmas cake" ... and then across the Atlantic to become part of Canadian and American festive baking, too.

These are mini fruit cakes I made a few months back. They've been soaking gently with a drizzle of brandy put in them each month. Today I iced them. I don't profess to being that handy with the ol' icing, but they'll make nice pressies for my neighbours, some who are on their own. A perfect one person cake!

A picture of last years christmas cake. Actually I did it after christmas but I really wanted to make one ;-)

 

I know it looks very strange. But somehow this time everything went wrong.

 

But it was delicious and that's still the most important thing of a cake.

Today's lunch.

Salad from our garden, plus avocado.

Curry puffs made by me, with my great grandmother's anglo indian recipe, and sweet chilli sauce.

Orange juice.

 

My greatgrandmother, who was commonly known as "Granny" in the neighbourhood, used to make 100s of curry puffs for people when they had parties. It was a sort of small time catering business that she had. Apparently, she would line up her 7 grandchildren in an assembly line to cut and fold pastry around the minced meat. She also made fruit cakes for weddings and Christmas ... I used the same recipe for my own wedding cake.

A 9 inch fruit cake made for a charity auction for The Burnet Institute. I went a little overboard and spent way too much time on it, but I just loved making it. The design is based on a buttercream cake by Sharon Zambito, who it a cake goddess. This was entered into a Flickr Bake off throwdown with the lovely cake4you.dk, thanks Yuliya :)

As you can see I have become rather fond of my snowflake cutter and my little snowmen.

This wee fellow is the top "cupcake" for my Christmas cupcake tree.

Amazingly we're not big cake eaters and our normal Christmas cake seemed to hang on for ever, so last year our daughter suggested I did cupcakes for Christmas and made a "Christmas Tree" out of my Wilton stand.

 

The cupcakes are in fact little boiled fruit cakes made in cupcake liners with Karen's (cakebaker_cakemaker) excellent recipe.

www.flickr.com/photos/28032559@N00/2112096080/in/set-7215...

 

This was last year's "tree"

www.flickr.com/photos/abbietabbie/2125954609/in/set-72157...

 

This year's theme will be ..... surprise, surprise ..... snowflakes topped with a snowman !!!!!

 

Cakes covered in marzipan and fondant and "twinkled" to within an inch of their lives! ;o)))

Made Explore 21.12.2008

..... this is yet another of my 4'' rich fruit Christmas cakes!

With marzipan and fondant icing ...... snowmen made of fondant as well ..... and the whole cake brushed with edible pearl lustre.

I very rarely leave the edge of the board without a ribbon trim, but I felt on this occasion the silver edge was just right!

 

(The little chap standing has a snowflake in his hands which doesn't show very well I'm afraid)

Made Explore20.12.2008

 

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/n/newportwetlands/index.as...

  

This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with a new RSPB visitor centre, a café, shop and children's play area.

 

Cetti's warblers and bearded tits can be seen and heard in the reedbeds, and ducks, geese and swans visit the reserve in large numbers during the winter. You'll enjoy spectacular views of the Severn estuary all year round.

 

Newport Wetlands is a partnership between Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB.

  

Opening times

 

Open every day (closed Christmas Day), 9 am to 5 pm (Coffee Shop open 10 am to 4 pm). On Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the centre will be open from 10 am to 4 pm and the coffee shop will be open 10 am to 3.30 pm. Please note that the carpark also closes at 5:30pm.

  

Entrance charges

 

None

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

 

Autumn/winter is the best time of year for birdwatching at Newport Wetlands when migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay.

  

Information for families

 

Newport Wetlands visitor centre is ideal for children and families. Guided walks and children's activities are available on the reserve, drinks and a bite to eat can be enjoyed in the coffee shop afterwards, followed by a browse in the retail area. Children will find the outdoor children's activity area with its 4 m high simulation of the East Usk Lighthouse very entertaining. We can offer a variety of fun environmental activity and exploration days for a wide range of local interest groups.

  

Information for dog owners

 

Some access for dogs - marked footpaths on perimeter of reserve. For more information, please contact the NRW enquiry line.

  

Star species

 

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Bearded tit

 

You will often hear bearded tits before you see them. Listen for their bell-like 'pinging' calls, then watch them whizzing across the tops of the reeds. They perch up on the stems in calm weather and feed on fallen seeds on the mud at the base of the reeds.

  

Dunlin

 

Dunlins can be seen at Newport Wetlands at almost any time. They breed further north, including in the Arctic, but migrating birds pass through in spring and autumn and some also spend winter here. Watch for them probing their beaks into the mud as they feed.

  

Little egret

 

These dainty little white herons can be seen throughout the year at Newport. You can see them fishing, stirring up fish fry from the muddy bottom with their feet.

  

Little grebe

 

Listen for little grebes 'whinnying' in spring as part of their courtship displays. They are small, round birds, and remarkably buoyant despite their fluffy feathers.

  

Shoveler

 

Shovelers are commonest here in winter, but are also a regular breeding bird. Watch them using their beaks like sieves to sift out microscopic aquatic life from the water.

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

 

Spring is the start of the breeding season and is an active and exciting time of year at Newport Wetlands, as birds set about finding their mates and building nests. Breeding waders at the reserve include lapwings and oystercatchers. Bearded tits begin to nest in the reedbeds. During late April and early May, swallows and swifts begin arriving from Africa, and can be seen flying overhead. This is a great time of year to listen out for the distinctive call of the cuckoo and many plants, including orchids, will begin to burst into colourful flower.

  

Summer

 

Grass snakes can sometimes be seen soaking up the sun or skimming expertly through the water among the reeds. Around sixteen species of dragonflies, twenty-three species of butterfly and two hundred species of moth are found at Newport Wetlands. After dark is the best time for moth spotting, but visitors are likely to see species like cinnabar moths and scarlet tiger moths during the daytime. The reserve is also home to badgers, moles and wood mice. Otters live here too, but are notoriously shy of humans and can be difficult to spot. Their droppings, or ‘spraint’, are the most commonly spotted clue to their presence.

  

Autumn

 

In autumn, the reeds turn from a vibrant lush green to yellowing brown. Groups of goldfinches can be seen flitting around the reserve and are particularly visible along Perry Lane, using their long beaks to extract seeds from the teasels. Autumn is another extremely active season at Newport Wetlands, as migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay. Curlews, redshanks, dunlins and oystercatchers feed on the estuary at low tide using their long, pointy beaks to sift through the nutritious mud for worms and grubs.

  

Winter

 

The starling roost at the reserve is a not-to-be-missed wildlife experience. From October onwards, large groups of starlings gather at dusk in great black clouds. At its peak, around 50,000 birds swoop and soar overhead, chattering noisily. After a breathtaking display, the birds drop dramatically into the reedbeds where they settle for the night. Another winter treat at Newport Wetlands is a single bittern, which has been seen here most winters since 2001. Bitterns are rare and extremely secretive, moving silently through the reeds looking for fish. Parts of the reserve provide a winter home for nationally important numbers of black-tailed godwits, shovelers and dunlins.

  

Facilities

  

Information centre

 

Car park

 

Toilets

 

Disabled toilets

 

Baby-changing facilities

 

Group bookings accepted

 

Guided walks available

 

Good for walking

 

Pushchair friendly

 

Viewing points

 

Viewing screens are available.

  

Nature trails

 

There are a number of nature trails around the reserve of various lengths with easy accessibility for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

  

Tearoom

 

Coffee shop serving triple-certified organic Fairtrade coffee, fairtrade tea, Fairtrade hot chocolate, and a selection of organic cold drinks, sandwiches, baguettes, locally-produced cakes and cookies.

 

Refreshments available

 

Hot drinks

 

Cold drinks

 

Snacks

 

Confectionery

  

Shop

 

A retail outlet for all your bird food and bird care accessories with a wide selection of binoculars and telescopes. There is also a fantastic selection of gifts and children's items.

  

The shop stocks:

 

Binoculars and telescopes

 

Bird food

 

Bird feeders

 

Gifts

  

Cafe

 

Our cafe in the visitor centre has large, panoramic windows overlooking the reserve and surrounding countryside. There is a large outdoor decking area providing additional seating with the same relaxing views. We provide organic Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate, and locally-produced cakes and ice cream.

 

We serve our own exclusive coffee that is grown, imported and roasted by us. It's Fairtrade, organic and certified bird-friendly by the Smithsonian Institute, so now you can help save nature simply by enjoying a great cup of coffee!

 

We are proud to hold a Level 5 Food Hygiene rating enabling our customers to have full confidence in the food and service that we provide.

  

Opening hours

 

10 am to 4 pm daily (closed Christmas Day)

  

Highlights from our menu

 

Triple-certified coffee including cappuccinos, lattes and Americanos, all freshly-made

We are known for our Bara Brith, Welsh cakes and hot toasted teacakes

From autumn through to spring we sell steaming tasty soups which are gluten-free

We provide a variety of sandwiches and rolls made with bread from a family baker

Pole-and-line-caught skipjack tuna is used to fill delicious sandwiches or rolls

Good variety of sandwiches and cakes. Coffee excellent

  

Access to the cafe

 

The coffee shop is in the visitor centre which has wheelchair-friendly ramps into the centre and out onto the reserve.

  

Children welcome

 

There are highchairs for babies and toddlers. We provide children's lunchboxes containing a sandwich, two-finger Kitkat, apple or orange juice and a choice of wildlife face mask.

  

We use local ingredients

 

We use Welsh meats, cheeses and free-range organic eggs.

  

Dietary requirements

 

We sell vegetarian and vegan food, some wheat-free snacks and soup, and some organic food.

  

Accessibility

 

8 August 2013

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

 

Before you visit

 

Clear print site leaflet available from reception

 

Visitor Centre open 9 am to 5 pm daily, except Christmas Day. coffee shop open 10 am to 4 pm

 

Entry to the reserve is free of charge

 

Car park open 8.30 am to 5.30 pm daily

 

Three mobility scooters and two wheelchairs available to hire out free of charge. Telephone for details

 

Registered assistance dogs welcome (please do not be offended if we ask for evidence of registration)

 

A dog walking route map is available from the visitor centre. Tethering rings and drinking bowl at the visitor centre entrance

 

Check events and activities for accessibility,

  

How to get here

 

Newport Railway Station (5 miles/8 km). Taxis usually available

 

Bus stop in the reserve car park, Number 63

  

Car parking

 

Free parking, 180 m/197 yds from the visitor centre

10 blue badge spaces

85 parking spaces

Drop-off at visitor centre arranged by telephone 01633 636363

Tarmac surface, path to visitor centre compacted limestone chippings and dust

  

Visitor centre and shop

 

Entrance by wooden walkway with a maximum gradient of 1:40. Manually operated doors. Non-slip tiled surface. Low section on service counter. Hearing loop system is installed at the service counter and in the education rooms. Good natural and artificial lighting. Staff can give assistance and read out any literature if required. Binoculars are available for hire (£3.50 for the day).

  

Nature trails

 

Four main trails. All level on compacted with one incline using a zig-zag. Floating walkways have been used by wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs but caution should be taken due to buoyancy.

  

Viewing facilities

 

Natural viewing opportunities throughout the reserve. A wheelchair accessible viewing screens overlooking the reedbeds.

  

Toilets

 

Unisex accessible toilet along with separate ladies and gents available on ground floor of Visitor Centre. Level step free access. Baby changing table and a second baby facility in ladies toilets.

  

Catering

 

Step-free level access. Outside deck viewing area. Tables are well spaced apart. Good natural and overhead lighting. Non slip tiles. Accessible WC in the visitor centre.

  

Shop

 

Shop is located in the visitor centre. Level entry step free with no doors. There is step free, level access throughout. Non-slip tiled surface. Ample room. Well lit with daylight and fluorescent lighting. Promotional video usually playing with subtitles. Staff can provide assistance.

  

Classrooms

 

Two classrooms available as one room if required. Step-free, level access throughout. Non-slip flooring. Artificial even lighting. Portable hearing loop system available. Two raised ponds nearby.

  

Picnic area

 

Four picnic tables with wheelchair access outside visitor centre. Visitors free to bring their own refreshments for picnics.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

For more information

 

Newport Wetlands

 

E-mail: newport-wetlands@rspb.org.uk

 

Telephone:01633 636363

  

How to get here

 

By bicycle (Sustrans cycle route)

 

Sustrans National Cycle Network route 4 has a branch to Newport Wetlands using existing roads. The car park has a covered cycle stand. Please note that cycling on the reserve is restricted to a designated route.

  

By train

 

The nearest railway station is Newport - which is five miles from the reserve. There is a taxi rank at the station and Newport bus station is just a few minutes walk away. For train times to and from Newport visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or telephone 08457 484950.

  

By bus

 

From the Kingsway Bus Station in Newport, the Number 63 bus leaves at 7.30 am, 9 am, 11 am, 1.30 pm, 3 pm, 4.50 pm and 6 pm and stops at the bus stop in the reserve car park. Alternatively, contact Newport Bus 01633 670563.

  

By road

 

Join the A48 at either junction 24 or 28 of the M4. Follow the A48 until you come to the Spytty Retail Park roundabout. Exit onto the A4810 Queensway Meadows. At the first roundabout take the third exit onto Meadows Road and follow the brown tourist signs to the reserve.

  

Our partners

 

The Newport Wetlands project is funded by the European Union's Objective Two programme supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and secured via the Newport European Partnership, Newport City Council's allocation of the Welsh Assembly Government's Local Regeneration Fund, Newport City Council's Landfill Tax Credit Scheme, the Environment Agency Wales and Visit Wales – the Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks.

 

Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB would like to thank the communities of Newport and the volunteers who have supported Newport Wetlands.

  

Newport Wetlands Conference and Meeting Rooms

  

Set in the tranquil surroundings of a peaceful nature reserve, our excellent conference facilities offer a superb location for a great getaway from the office and provide a wonderful setting for a variety of corporate events. You will receive a warm welcome from the staff at the Visitor Centre, providing a professional and efficient service.

 

We can provide facilities for the following

 

Conferences

 

Board Meetings

 

Seminars

 

Training Courses

 

Presentations

  

Away days

 

Rooms can be arranged in boardroom, theatre style or in any other format to suit your event. We also have a range of equipment for hire including a digital projector and smart board facilities.

 

Your booking fee includes free car parking, access to the Reserve as well as the Visitor Centre, Shop and Café. The Reserve comprises of a series of lagoons and reed beds from reclaimed industrial land, which is now home to a wealth of wildlife.

 

A tour of the Reserve can be arranged as an unusual and revitalising break during a meeting or away day.

  

Catering

 

Fairtrade coffee and tea, biscuits or homemade cakes can be served throughout the day, and we can provide a freshly prepared buffet to suit your dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. Buffets include a selection of classic sandwiches, a selection of savoury items, fresh fruit and a selection of freshly baked homemade cakes.

 

Alternatively, delegates can stroll across to the café themselves and appreciate inspirational views of the reserve from the veranda.

  

The Lakeside Suite

 

A purpose built meeting room, which caters for 12 people boardroom style or 25 people theatre style.

  

The Education Facilities

 

Set in a tranquil environment, overlooking the waters edge the Education Rooms offers the perfect environment for larger events and conferences. The room can be organised in various styles and caters for up to 80 people theatre style.

 

For more information or to make a provisional booking, please contact Adrianne Jones using the details below.

 

For more information

 

Adrianne Jones

Centre Co-ordinator

E-mail: adrianne.jones@rspb.org.uk

Telephone:01633 636355

 

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/n/newportwetlands/index.as...

  

This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with a new RSPB visitor centre, a café, shop and children's play area.

 

Cetti's warblers and bearded tits can be seen and heard in the reedbeds, and ducks, geese and swans visit the reserve in large numbers during the winter. You'll enjoy spectacular views of the Severn estuary all year round.

 

Newport Wetlands is a partnership between Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB.

  

Opening times

 

Open every day (closed Christmas Day), 9 am to 5 pm (Coffee Shop open 10 am to 4 pm). On Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the centre will be open from 10 am to 4 pm and the coffee shop will be open 10 am to 3.30 pm. Please note that the carpark also closes at 5:30pm.

  

Entrance charges

 

None

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

 

Autumn/winter is the best time of year for birdwatching at Newport Wetlands when migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay.

  

Information for families

 

Newport Wetlands visitor centre is ideal for children and families. Guided walks and children's activities are available on the reserve, drinks and a bite to eat can be enjoyed in the coffee shop afterwards, followed by a browse in the retail area. Children will find the outdoor children's activity area with its 4 m high simulation of the East Usk Lighthouse very entertaining. We can offer a variety of fun environmental activity and exploration days for a wide range of local interest groups.

  

Information for dog owners

 

Some access for dogs - marked footpaths on perimeter of reserve. For more information, please contact the NRW enquiry line.

  

Star species

 

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Bearded tit

 

You will often hear bearded tits before you see them. Listen for their bell-like 'pinging' calls, then watch them whizzing across the tops of the reeds. They perch up on the stems in calm weather and feed on fallen seeds on the mud at the base of the reeds.

  

Dunlin

 

Dunlins can be seen at Newport Wetlands at almost any time. They breed further north, including in the Arctic, but migrating birds pass through in spring and autumn and some also spend winter here. Watch for them probing their beaks into the mud as they feed.

  

Little egret

 

These dainty little white herons can be seen throughout the year at Newport. You can see them fishing, stirring up fish fry from the muddy bottom with their feet.

  

Little grebe

 

Listen for little grebes 'whinnying' in spring as part of their courtship displays. They are small, round birds, and remarkably buoyant despite their fluffy feathers.

  

Shoveler

 

Shovelers are commonest here in winter, but are also a regular breeding bird. Watch them using their beaks like sieves to sift out microscopic aquatic life from the water.

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

 

Spring is the start of the breeding season and is an active and exciting time of year at Newport Wetlands, as birds set about finding their mates and building nests. Breeding waders at the reserve include lapwings and oystercatchers. Bearded tits begin to nest in the reedbeds. During late April and early May, swallows and swifts begin arriving from Africa, and can be seen flying overhead. This is a great time of year to listen out for the distinctive call of the cuckoo and many plants, including orchids, will begin to burst into colourful flower.

  

Summer

 

Grass snakes can sometimes be seen soaking up the sun or skimming expertly through the water among the reeds. Around sixteen species of dragonflies, twenty-three species of butterfly and two hundred species of moth are found at Newport Wetlands. After dark is the best time for moth spotting, but visitors are likely to see species like cinnabar moths and scarlet tiger moths during the daytime. The reserve is also home to badgers, moles and wood mice. Otters live here too, but are notoriously shy of humans and can be difficult to spot. Their droppings, or ‘spraint’, are the most commonly spotted clue to their presence.

  

Autumn

 

In autumn, the reeds turn from a vibrant lush green to yellowing brown. Groups of goldfinches can be seen flitting around the reserve and are particularly visible along Perry Lane, using their long beaks to extract seeds from the teasels. Autumn is another extremely active season at Newport Wetlands, as migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay. Curlews, redshanks, dunlins and oystercatchers feed on the estuary at low tide using their long, pointy beaks to sift through the nutritious mud for worms and grubs.

  

Winter

 

The starling roost at the reserve is a not-to-be-missed wildlife experience. From October onwards, large groups of starlings gather at dusk in great black clouds. At its peak, around 50,000 birds swoop and soar overhead, chattering noisily. After a breathtaking display, the birds drop dramatically into the reedbeds where they settle for the night. Another winter treat at Newport Wetlands is a single bittern, which has been seen here most winters since 2001. Bitterns are rare and extremely secretive, moving silently through the reeds looking for fish. Parts of the reserve provide a winter home for nationally important numbers of black-tailed godwits, shovelers and dunlins.

  

Facilities

  

Information centre

 

Car park

 

Toilets

 

Disabled toilets

 

Baby-changing facilities

 

Group bookings accepted

 

Guided walks available

 

Good for walking

 

Pushchair friendly

 

Viewing points

 

Viewing screens are available.

  

Nature trails

 

There are a number of nature trails around the reserve of various lengths with easy accessibility for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

  

Tearoom

 

Coffee shop serving triple-certified organic Fairtrade coffee, fairtrade tea, Fairtrade hot chocolate, and a selection of organic cold drinks, sandwiches, baguettes, locally-produced cakes and cookies.

 

Refreshments available

 

Hot drinks

 

Cold drinks

 

Snacks

 

Confectionery

  

Shop

 

A retail outlet for all your bird food and bird care accessories with a wide selection of binoculars and telescopes. There is also a fantastic selection of gifts and children's items.

  

The shop stocks:

 

Binoculars and telescopes

 

Bird food

 

Bird feeders

 

Gifts

  

Cafe

 

Our cafe in the visitor centre has large, panoramic windows overlooking the reserve and surrounding countryside. There is a large outdoor decking area providing additional seating with the same relaxing views. We provide organic Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate, and locally-produced cakes and ice cream.

 

We serve our own exclusive coffee that is grown, imported and roasted by us. It's Fairtrade, organic and certified bird-friendly by the Smithsonian Institute, so now you can help save nature simply by enjoying a great cup of coffee!

 

We are proud to hold a Level 5 Food Hygiene rating enabling our customers to have full confidence in the food and service that we provide.

  

Opening hours

 

10 am to 4 pm daily (closed Christmas Day)

  

Highlights from our menu

 

Triple-certified coffee including cappuccinos, lattes and Americanos, all freshly-made

We are known for our Bara Brith, Welsh cakes and hot toasted teacakes

From autumn through to spring we sell steaming tasty soups which are gluten-free

We provide a variety of sandwiches and rolls made with bread from a family baker

Pole-and-line-caught skipjack tuna is used to fill delicious sandwiches or rolls

Good variety of sandwiches and cakes. Coffee excellent

  

Access to the cafe

 

The coffee shop is in the visitor centre which has wheelchair-friendly ramps into the centre and out onto the reserve.

  

Children welcome

 

There are highchairs for babies and toddlers. We provide children's lunchboxes containing a sandwich, two-finger Kitkat, apple or orange juice and a choice of wildlife face mask.

  

We use local ingredients

 

We use Welsh meats, cheeses and free-range organic eggs.

  

Dietary requirements

 

We sell vegetarian and vegan food, some wheat-free snacks and soup, and some organic food.

  

Accessibility

 

8 August 2013

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

 

Before you visit

 

Clear print site leaflet available from reception

 

Visitor Centre open 9 am to 5 pm daily, except Christmas Day. coffee shop open 10 am to 4 pm

 

Entry to the reserve is free of charge

 

Car park open 8.30 am to 5.30 pm daily

 

Three mobility scooters and two wheelchairs available to hire out free of charge. Telephone for details

 

Registered assistance dogs welcome (please do not be offended if we ask for evidence of registration)

 

A dog walking route map is available from the visitor centre. Tethering rings and drinking bowl at the visitor centre entrance

 

Check events and activities for accessibility,

  

How to get here

 

Newport Railway Station (5 miles/8 km). Taxis usually available

 

Bus stop in the reserve car park, Number 63

  

Car parking

 

Free parking, 180 m/197 yds from the visitor centre

10 blue badge spaces

85 parking spaces

Drop-off at visitor centre arranged by telephone 01633 636363

Tarmac surface, path to visitor centre compacted limestone chippings and dust

  

Visitor centre and shop

 

Entrance by wooden walkway with a maximum gradient of 1:40. Manually operated doors. Non-slip tiled surface. Low section on service counter. Hearing loop system is installed at the service counter and in the education rooms. Good natural and artificial lighting. Staff can give assistance and read out any literature if required. Binoculars are available for hire (£3.50 for the day).

  

Nature trails

 

Four main trails. All level on compacted with one incline using a zig-zag. Floating walkways have been used by wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs but caution should be taken due to buoyancy.

  

Viewing facilities

 

Natural viewing opportunities throughout the reserve. A wheelchair accessible viewing screens overlooking the reedbeds.

  

Toilets

 

Unisex accessible toilet along with separate ladies and gents available on ground floor of Visitor Centre. Level step free access. Baby changing table and a second baby facility in ladies toilets.

  

Catering

 

Step-free level access. Outside deck viewing area. Tables are well spaced apart. Good natural and overhead lighting. Non slip tiles. Accessible WC in the visitor centre.

  

Shop

 

Shop is located in the visitor centre. Level entry step free with no doors. There is step free, level access throughout. Non-slip tiled surface. Ample room. Well lit with daylight and fluorescent lighting. Promotional video usually playing with subtitles. Staff can provide assistance.

  

Classrooms

 

Two classrooms available as one room if required. Step-free, level access throughout. Non-slip flooring. Artificial even lighting. Portable hearing loop system available. Two raised ponds nearby.

  

Picnic area

 

Four picnic tables with wheelchair access outside visitor centre. Visitors free to bring their own refreshments for picnics.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

For more information

 

Newport Wetlands

 

E-mail: newport-wetlands@rspb.org.uk

 

Telephone:01633 636363

  

How to get here

 

By bicycle (Sustrans cycle route)

 

Sustrans National Cycle Network route 4 has a branch to Newport Wetlands using existing roads. The car park has a covered cycle stand. Please note that cycling on the reserve is restricted to a designated route.

  

By train

 

The nearest railway station is Newport - which is five miles from the reserve. There is a taxi rank at the station and Newport bus station is just a few minutes walk away. For train times to and from Newport visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or telephone 08457 484950.

  

By bus

 

From the Kingsway Bus Station in Newport, the Number 63 bus leaves at 7.30 am, 9 am, 11 am, 1.30 pm, 3 pm, 4.50 pm and 6 pm and stops at the bus stop in the reserve car park. Alternatively, contact Newport Bus 01633 670563.

  

By road

 

Join the A48 at either junction 24 or 28 of the M4. Follow the A48 until you come to the Spytty Retail Park roundabout. Exit onto the A4810 Queensway Meadows. At the first roundabout take the third exit onto Meadows Road and follow the brown tourist signs to the reserve.

  

Our partners

 

The Newport Wetlands project is funded by the European Union's Objective Two programme supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and secured via the Newport European Partnership, Newport City Council's allocation of the Welsh Assembly Government's Local Regeneration Fund, Newport City Council's Landfill Tax Credit Scheme, the Environment Agency Wales and Visit Wales – the Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks.

 

Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB would like to thank the communities of Newport and the volunteers who have supported Newport Wetlands.

  

Newport Wetlands Conference and Meeting Rooms

  

Set in the tranquil surroundings of a peaceful nature reserve, our excellent conference facilities offer a superb location for a great getaway from the office and provide a wonderful setting for a variety of corporate events. You will receive a warm welcome from the staff at the Visitor Centre, providing a professional and efficient service.

 

We can provide facilities for the following

 

Conferences

 

Board Meetings

 

Seminars

 

Training Courses

 

Presentations

  

Away days

 

Rooms can be arranged in boardroom, theatre style or in any other format to suit your event. We also have a range of equipment for hire including a digital projector and smart board facilities.

 

Your booking fee includes free car parking, access to the Reserve as well as the Visitor Centre, Shop and Café. The Reserve comprises of a series of lagoons and reed beds from reclaimed industrial land, which is now home to a wealth of wildlife.

 

A tour of the Reserve can be arranged as an unusual and revitalising break during a meeting or away day.

  

Catering

 

Fairtrade coffee and tea, biscuits or homemade cakes can be served throughout the day, and we can provide a freshly prepared buffet to suit your dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. Buffets include a selection of classic sandwiches, a selection of savoury items, fresh fruit and a selection of freshly baked homemade cakes.

 

Alternatively, delegates can stroll across to the café themselves and appreciate inspirational views of the reserve from the veranda.

  

The Lakeside Suite

 

A purpose built meeting room, which caters for 12 people boardroom style or 25 people theatre style.

  

The Education Facilities

 

Set in a tranquil environment, overlooking the waters edge the Education Rooms offers the perfect environment for larger events and conferences. The room can be organised in various styles and caters for up to 80 people theatre style.

 

For more information or to make a provisional booking, please contact Adrianne Jones using the details below.

 

For more information

 

Adrianne Jones

Centre Co-ordinator

E-mail: adrianne.jones@rspb.org.uk

Telephone:01633 636355

The Back Parlor in the Fall River Historical Society

December 5th, 2014

 

Here, the Victorian method of applying cotton batting to the branches of a tree is used, although amplified to great dramatic effect, creating an avalanche that cascades toward the ground. Nearly 6,000 lights glow through the 'snow,' and are reflected in the silver and the 'ice' below.

 

More information:

 

Each year, beginning the week before Thanksgiving, the Historical Society's mansion is lavishly decorated in the Victorian manner. Holiday spirit abounds from room to room, with the focal point being a magnificent 14-foot Christmas tree in the Music Room. Aglow with thousands of lights, it is a tree guaranteed to instill holiday spirit in both young and old.

 

Traditional decorations are creatively used, working with a variety of holiday themes, to create a display unlike anything to be seen in the Fall River area. Last year's theme, "Victorian Christmas Traditions," was very well received by the public and was photographed by VICTORIAN HOMES magazine for its Christmas 2003 issue. The Music Room's tree was illuminated by the glow of 4100 white lights, was laden with silver tinsel and decorated with hundreds of mouth-blown glass ornaments typical of the Victorian period. The concept of Christmas as we know it originated in Germany and was introduced to England by Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg Gotha, consort of Queen Victoria. Americans, who strove to emulate the British traditions, quickly adopted the holiday and made it their own. Bavarian glassblowers created untold thousands of ornaments, many of which carry holiday lore. Replicas of many of these ornaments can be found on the Society's tree. Among the most popular are: the glass pickle, which was traditionally hidden on the tree, to be discovered on Christmas morning by the most perceptive child, who was rewarded with a special gift; "Crampus," a small devil-like figure with black horns made of coal, who followed Father Christmas rewarding naughty children with coal; the carrot, an ornament traditionally given to new brides to bring luck in the kitchen.

 

The parlor was banked with paper poinsettias. This plant was named as a tribute to Mr. Joel R. Poinsett, the American Ambassador to Mexico and amateur botanist, who so admired the Mexican wildflower that he brought it to North America and cultivated it in his own greenhouses. In this manner did it become a major part of our Christmas tradition today. The delicate hothouse plant was a great rarity in cold New England winters and so was often copied by nineteenth-century paper flower makers.

 

The dining room was ornamented with della robbia of sparkling crystal-beaded fruit, with the table set with a magnificent nineteenth-century Davenport china dessert service. The centerpiece of the table was a three-tiered cake traditionally decorated with candies, nuts and sugared fruit, surmounted by a pink peppermint pig. As the pig was a symbol of good luck in the Victorian era, candy-makers in Saratoga Springs, New York, began to manufacture small peppermint pigs. In observance of the tradition, those who purchased the pigs would, following the holiday meal, shatter the pig so that each family member could taste of the candy as a wish for good luck in the coming year.

 

In the bedroom stood a tree decorated entirely in nineteenth-century photographs and greeting cards, very typical of trees in Fall River homes during the nineteenth-century, documented by photographs in the Society's collection.

 

The first floor hallway was simply decorated using evergreens and holly, incorporating roses in tribute to the legend of the Christmas rose. As the story goes, a little girl happened upon the stable in Bethlehem where the Christ child lay. Upset because she had no gift to bring, she began to cry and, incredibly, her tears turned into beautiful roses.

 

While touring the museum, guests might also want to browse in the museum shop, which is filled with a vast number of unique gifts. Here you can find the right present for that someone special on your list. This year, many new mouth-blown glass ornaments will also be featured. Among our museum shop bestsellers are delectable sugar plums, the traditional Victorian candy meant to bring sweet dreams to any child that slept with one beneath its pillow.

 

The Fall River Historical Society hopes you will take advantage of this opportunity to visit. The museum will be "decked out" for the occasion in the grand manner of an elegant Victorian mansion and will be a sight to behold!

 

These are some of the highlights of the holiday exhibit last year at the Historical Society.

 

Museum hours are: Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The museum will close at 12:00 noon on Christmas Eve and will be closed Christmas Day. For further information, please call (508) 679-1071.

 

For more info: www.lizzieborden.org/VictorianChristmas.html

 

Made by my brother Trevor, for Easter.

 

Simnel cake is a light fruit cake, similar to a Christmas cake, covered in marzipan, and eaten at Easter in England and Ireland. A layer of marzipan or almond paste is also baked into the middle of the cake. On the top of the cake, around the edge, are eleven marzipan balls to represent the true apostles of Jesus; Judas is omitted. In some variations Christ is also represented, by a ball placed at the centre.

 

The cake is made from these ingredients: white flour, sugar, butter, eggs, fragrant spices, dried fruits, zest and candied peel.

 

Explore, March 30, 2013.

 

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/n/newportwetlands/index.as...

  

This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with a new RSPB visitor centre, a café, shop and children's play area.

 

Cetti's warblers and bearded tits can be seen and heard in the reedbeds, and ducks, geese and swans visit the reserve in large numbers during the winter. You'll enjoy spectacular views of the Severn estuary all year round.

 

Newport Wetlands is a partnership between Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB.

  

Opening times

 

Open every day (closed Christmas Day), 9 am to 5 pm (Coffee Shop open 10 am to 4 pm). On Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the centre will be open from 10 am to 4 pm and the coffee shop will be open 10 am to 3.30 pm. Please note that the carpark also closes at 5:30pm.

  

Entrance charges

 

None

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

 

Autumn/winter is the best time of year for birdwatching at Newport Wetlands when migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay.

  

Information for families

 

Newport Wetlands visitor centre is ideal for children and families. Guided walks and children's activities are available on the reserve, drinks and a bite to eat can be enjoyed in the coffee shop afterwards, followed by a browse in the retail area. Children will find the outdoor children's activity area with its 4 m high simulation of the East Usk Lighthouse very entertaining. We can offer a variety of fun environmental activity and exploration days for a wide range of local interest groups.

  

Information for dog owners

 

Some access for dogs - marked footpaths on perimeter of reserve. For more information, please contact the NRW enquiry line.

  

Star species

 

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Bearded tit

 

You will often hear bearded tits before you see them. Listen for their bell-like 'pinging' calls, then watch them whizzing across the tops of the reeds. They perch up on the stems in calm weather and feed on fallen seeds on the mud at the base of the reeds.

  

Dunlin

 

Dunlins can be seen at Newport Wetlands at almost any time. They breed further north, including in the Arctic, but migrating birds pass through in spring and autumn and some also spend winter here. Watch for them probing their beaks into the mud as they feed.

  

Little egret

 

These dainty little white herons can be seen throughout the year at Newport. You can see them fishing, stirring up fish fry from the muddy bottom with their feet.

  

Little grebe

 

Listen for little grebes 'whinnying' in spring as part of their courtship displays. They are small, round birds, and remarkably buoyant despite their fluffy feathers.

  

Shoveler

 

Shovelers are commonest here in winter, but are also a regular breeding bird. Watch them using their beaks like sieves to sift out microscopic aquatic life from the water.

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

 

Spring is the start of the breeding season and is an active and exciting time of year at Newport Wetlands, as birds set about finding their mates and building nests. Breeding waders at the reserve include lapwings and oystercatchers. Bearded tits begin to nest in the reedbeds. During late April and early May, swallows and swifts begin arriving from Africa, and can be seen flying overhead. This is a great time of year to listen out for the distinctive call of the cuckoo and many plants, including orchids, will begin to burst into colourful flower.

  

Summer

 

Grass snakes can sometimes be seen soaking up the sun or skimming expertly through the water among the reeds. Around sixteen species of dragonflies, twenty-three species of butterfly and two hundred species of moth are found at Newport Wetlands. After dark is the best time for moth spotting, but visitors are likely to see species like cinnabar moths and scarlet tiger moths during the daytime. The reserve is also home to badgers, moles and wood mice. Otters live here too, but are notoriously shy of humans and can be difficult to spot. Their droppings, or ‘spraint’, are the most commonly spotted clue to their presence.

  

Autumn

 

In autumn, the reeds turn from a vibrant lush green to yellowing brown. Groups of goldfinches can be seen flitting around the reserve and are particularly visible along Perry Lane, using their long beaks to extract seeds from the teasels. Autumn is another extremely active season at Newport Wetlands, as migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay. Curlews, redshanks, dunlins and oystercatchers feed on the estuary at low tide using their long, pointy beaks to sift through the nutritious mud for worms and grubs.

  

Winter

 

The starling roost at the reserve is a not-to-be-missed wildlife experience. From October onwards, large groups of starlings gather at dusk in great black clouds. At its peak, around 50,000 birds swoop and soar overhead, chattering noisily. After a breathtaking display, the birds drop dramatically into the reedbeds where they settle for the night. Another winter treat at Newport Wetlands is a single bittern, which has been seen here most winters since 2001. Bitterns are rare and extremely secretive, moving silently through the reeds looking for fish. Parts of the reserve provide a winter home for nationally important numbers of black-tailed godwits, shovelers and dunlins.

  

Facilities

  

Information centre

 

Car park

 

Toilets

 

Disabled toilets

 

Baby-changing facilities

 

Group bookings accepted

 

Guided walks available

 

Good for walking

 

Pushchair friendly

 

Viewing points

 

Viewing screens are available.

  

Nature trails

 

There are a number of nature trails around the reserve of various lengths with easy accessibility for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

  

Tearoom

 

Coffee shop serving triple-certified organic Fairtrade coffee, fairtrade tea, Fairtrade hot chocolate, and a selection of organic cold drinks, sandwiches, baguettes, locally-produced cakes and cookies.

 

Refreshments available

 

Hot drinks

 

Cold drinks

 

Snacks

 

Confectionery

  

Shop

 

A retail outlet for all your bird food and bird care accessories with a wide selection of binoculars and telescopes. There is also a fantastic selection of gifts and children's items.

  

The shop stocks:

 

Binoculars and telescopes

 

Bird food

 

Bird feeders

 

Gifts

  

Cafe

 

Our cafe in the visitor centre has large, panoramic windows overlooking the reserve and surrounding countryside. There is a large outdoor decking area providing additional seating with the same relaxing views. We provide organic Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate, and locally-produced cakes and ice cream.

 

We serve our own exclusive coffee that is grown, imported and roasted by us. It's Fairtrade, organic and certified bird-friendly by the Smithsonian Institute, so now you can help save nature simply by enjoying a great cup of coffee!

 

We are proud to hold a Level 5 Food Hygiene rating enabling our customers to have full confidence in the food and service that we provide.

  

Opening hours

 

10 am to 4 pm daily (closed Christmas Day)

  

Highlights from our menu

 

Triple-certified coffee including cappuccinos, lattes and Americanos, all freshly-made

We are known for our Bara Brith, Welsh cakes and hot toasted teacakes

From autumn through to spring we sell steaming tasty soups which are gluten-free

We provide a variety of sandwiches and rolls made with bread from a family baker

Pole-and-line-caught skipjack tuna is used to fill delicious sandwiches or rolls

Good variety of sandwiches and cakes. Coffee excellent

  

Access to the cafe

 

The coffee shop is in the visitor centre which has wheelchair-friendly ramps into the centre and out onto the reserve.

  

Children welcome

 

There are highchairs for babies and toddlers. We provide children's lunchboxes containing a sandwich, two-finger Kitkat, apple or orange juice and a choice of wildlife face mask.

  

We use local ingredients

 

We use Welsh meats, cheeses and free-range organic eggs.

  

Dietary requirements

 

We sell vegetarian and vegan food, some wheat-free snacks and soup, and some organic food.

  

Accessibility

 

8 August 2013

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

 

Before you visit

 

Clear print site leaflet available from reception

 

Visitor Centre open 9 am to 5 pm daily, except Christmas Day. coffee shop open 10 am to 4 pm

 

Entry to the reserve is free of charge

 

Car park open 8.30 am to 5.30 pm daily

 

Three mobility scooters and two wheelchairs available to hire out free of charge. Telephone for details

 

Registered assistance dogs welcome (please do not be offended if we ask for evidence of registration)

 

A dog walking route map is available from the visitor centre. Tethering rings and drinking bowl at the visitor centre entrance

 

Check events and activities for accessibility,

  

How to get here

 

Newport Railway Station (5 miles/8 km). Taxis usually available

 

Bus stop in the reserve car park, Number 63

  

Car parking

 

Free parking, 180 m/197 yds from the visitor centre

10 blue badge spaces

85 parking spaces

Drop-off at visitor centre arranged by telephone 01633 636363

Tarmac surface, path to visitor centre compacted limestone chippings and dust

  

Visitor centre and shop

 

Entrance by wooden walkway with a maximum gradient of 1:40. Manually operated doors. Non-slip tiled surface. Low section on service counter. Hearing loop system is installed at the service counter and in the education rooms. Good natural and artificial lighting. Staff can give assistance and read out any literature if required. Binoculars are available for hire (£3.50 for the day).

  

Nature trails

 

Four main trails. All level on compacted with one incline using a zig-zag. Floating walkways have been used by wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs but caution should be taken due to buoyancy.

  

Viewing facilities

 

Natural viewing opportunities throughout the reserve. A wheelchair accessible viewing screens overlooking the reedbeds.

  

Toilets

 

Unisex accessible toilet along with separate ladies and gents available on ground floor of Visitor Centre. Level step free access. Baby changing table and a second baby facility in ladies toilets.

  

Catering

 

Step-free level access. Outside deck viewing area. Tables are well spaced apart. Good natural and overhead lighting. Non slip tiles. Accessible WC in the visitor centre.

  

Shop

 

Shop is located in the visitor centre. Level entry step free with no doors. There is step free, level access throughout. Non-slip tiled surface. Ample room. Well lit with daylight and fluorescent lighting. Promotional video usually playing with subtitles. Staff can provide assistance.

  

Classrooms

 

Two classrooms available as one room if required. Step-free, level access throughout. Non-slip flooring. Artificial even lighting. Portable hearing loop system available. Two raised ponds nearby.

  

Picnic area

 

Four picnic tables with wheelchair access outside visitor centre. Visitors free to bring their own refreshments for picnics.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

For more information

 

Newport Wetlands

 

E-mail: newport-wetlands@rspb.org.uk

 

Telephone:01633 636363

  

How to get here

 

By bicycle (Sustrans cycle route)

 

Sustrans National Cycle Network route 4 has a branch to Newport Wetlands using existing roads. The car park has a covered cycle stand. Please note that cycling on the reserve is restricted to a designated route.

  

By train

 

The nearest railway station is Newport - which is five miles from the reserve. There is a taxi rank at the station and Newport bus station is just a few minutes walk away. For train times to and from Newport visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or telephone 08457 484950.

  

By bus

 

From the Kingsway Bus Station in Newport, the Number 63 bus leaves at 7.30 am, 9 am, 11 am, 1.30 pm, 3 pm, 4.50 pm and 6 pm and stops at the bus stop in the reserve car park. Alternatively, contact Newport Bus 01633 670563.

  

By road

 

Join the A48 at either junction 24 or 28 of the M4. Follow the A48 until you come to the Spytty Retail Park roundabout. Exit onto the A4810 Queensway Meadows. At the first roundabout take the third exit onto Meadows Road and follow the brown tourist signs to the reserve.

  

Our partners

 

The Newport Wetlands project is funded by the European Union's Objective Two programme supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and secured via the Newport European Partnership, Newport City Council's allocation of the Welsh Assembly Government's Local Regeneration Fund, Newport City Council's Landfill Tax Credit Scheme, the Environment Agency Wales and Visit Wales – the Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks.

 

Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB would like to thank the communities of Newport and the volunteers who have supported Newport Wetlands.

  

Newport Wetlands Conference and Meeting Rooms

  

Set in the tranquil surroundings of a peaceful nature reserve, our excellent conference facilities offer a superb location for a great getaway from the office and provide a wonderful setting for a variety of corporate events. You will receive a warm welcome from the staff at the Visitor Centre, providing a professional and efficient service.

 

We can provide facilities for the following

 

Conferences

 

Board Meetings

 

Seminars

 

Training Courses

 

Presentations

  

Away days

 

Rooms can be arranged in boardroom, theatre style or in any other format to suit your event. We also have a range of equipment for hire including a digital projector and smart board facilities.

 

Your booking fee includes free car parking, access to the Reserve as well as the Visitor Centre, Shop and Café. The Reserve comprises of a series of lagoons and reed beds from reclaimed industrial land, which is now home to a wealth of wildlife.

 

A tour of the Reserve can be arranged as an unusual and revitalising break during a meeting or away day.

  

Catering

 

Fairtrade coffee and tea, biscuits or homemade cakes can be served throughout the day, and we can provide a freshly prepared buffet to suit your dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. Buffets include a selection of classic sandwiches, a selection of savoury items, fresh fruit and a selection of freshly baked homemade cakes.

 

Alternatively, delegates can stroll across to the café themselves and appreciate inspirational views of the reserve from the veranda.

  

The Lakeside Suite

 

A purpose built meeting room, which caters for 12 people boardroom style or 25 people theatre style.

  

The Education Facilities

 

Set in a tranquil environment, overlooking the waters edge the Education Rooms offers the perfect environment for larger events and conferences. The room can be organised in various styles and caters for up to 80 people theatre style.

 

For more information or to make a provisional booking, please contact Adrianne Jones using the details below.

 

For more information

 

Adrianne Jones

Centre Co-ordinator

E-mail: adrianne.jones@rspb.org.uk

Telephone:01633 636355

Close-up

 

This is our families very Rich & Boozy Christmas Fruit Cake.

I left this very late to make

(as always)

but was advised by a flickr/facebook friend

(Abbietabbie)

to feed it with a very generous amount of brandy

while it is hot and just out of the oven......

and boy was this cake moist,

I would advise anyone to do the same

if time wasn't on their side.

I then fed the cake with brandy every morning

until it was time to marzipan it.

This deep 7" cake is covered with sugar paste

and decorated with hand cut sugar reindeer's

which are covered with edible silver glitter

and some various sized silver sugar ball scattered here and there!

The ribbons are sheer blue and green

in different widths.

"Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year!"

www.smallthingsiced.co.uk

Ice Cream Cakes by Cold Rock Aspley. Custom made from a choice of 32 flavours of ice cream and a huge range from confectionary, fruit and nuts. Call us on 0417115707 or order online www.coldrock.com.au/cake-builder/build-your-cake/

facebook.com/coldrockaspley

 

 

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/n/newportwetlands/index.as...

  

This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with a new RSPB visitor centre, a café, shop and children's play area.

 

Cetti's warblers and bearded tits can be seen and heard in the reedbeds, and ducks, geese and swans visit the reserve in large numbers during the winter. You'll enjoy spectacular views of the Severn estuary all year round.

 

Newport Wetlands is a partnership between Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB.

  

Opening times

 

Open every day (closed Christmas Day), 9 am to 5 pm (Coffee Shop open 10 am to 4 pm). On Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the centre will be open from 10 am to 4 pm and the coffee shop will be open 10 am to 3.30 pm. Please note that the carpark also closes at 5:30pm.

  

Entrance charges

 

None

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

 

Autumn/winter is the best time of year for birdwatching at Newport Wetlands when migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay.

  

Information for families

 

Newport Wetlands visitor centre is ideal for children and families. Guided walks and children's activities are available on the reserve, drinks and a bite to eat can be enjoyed in the coffee shop afterwards, followed by a browse in the retail area. Children will find the outdoor children's activity area with its 4 m high simulation of the East Usk Lighthouse very entertaining. We can offer a variety of fun environmental activity and exploration days for a wide range of local interest groups.

  

Information for dog owners

 

Some access for dogs - marked footpaths on perimeter of reserve. For more information, please contact the NRW enquiry line.

  

Star species

 

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Bearded tit

 

You will often hear bearded tits before you see them. Listen for their bell-like 'pinging' calls, then watch them whizzing across the tops of the reeds. They perch up on the stems in calm weather and feed on fallen seeds on the mud at the base of the reeds.

  

Dunlin

 

Dunlins can be seen at Newport Wetlands at almost any time. They breed further north, including in the Arctic, but migrating birds pass through in spring and autumn and some also spend winter here. Watch for them probing their beaks into the mud as they feed.

  

Little egret

 

These dainty little white herons can be seen throughout the year at Newport. You can see them fishing, stirring up fish fry from the muddy bottom with their feet.

  

Little grebe

 

Listen for little grebes 'whinnying' in spring as part of their courtship displays. They are small, round birds, and remarkably buoyant despite their fluffy feathers.

  

Shoveler

 

Shovelers are commonest here in winter, but are also a regular breeding bird. Watch them using their beaks like sieves to sift out microscopic aquatic life from the water.

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

 

Spring is the start of the breeding season and is an active and exciting time of year at Newport Wetlands, as birds set about finding their mates and building nests. Breeding waders at the reserve include lapwings and oystercatchers. Bearded tits begin to nest in the reedbeds. During late April and early May, swallows and swifts begin arriving from Africa, and can be seen flying overhead. This is a great time of year to listen out for the distinctive call of the cuckoo and many plants, including orchids, will begin to burst into colourful flower.

  

Summer

 

Grass snakes can sometimes be seen soaking up the sun or skimming expertly through the water among the reeds. Around sixteen species of dragonflies, twenty-three species of butterfly and two hundred species of moth are found at Newport Wetlands. After dark is the best time for moth spotting, but visitors are likely to see species like cinnabar moths and scarlet tiger moths during the daytime. The reserve is also home to badgers, moles and wood mice. Otters live here too, but are notoriously shy of humans and can be difficult to spot. Their droppings, or ‘spraint’, are the most commonly spotted clue to their presence.

  

Autumn

 

In autumn, the reeds turn from a vibrant lush green to yellowing brown. Groups of goldfinches can be seen flitting around the reserve and are particularly visible along Perry Lane, using their long beaks to extract seeds from the teasels. Autumn is another extremely active season at Newport Wetlands, as migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay. Curlews, redshanks, dunlins and oystercatchers feed on the estuary at low tide using their long, pointy beaks to sift through the nutritious mud for worms and grubs.

  

Winter

 

The starling roost at the reserve is a not-to-be-missed wildlife experience. From October onwards, large groups of starlings gather at dusk in great black clouds. At its peak, around 50,000 birds swoop and soar overhead, chattering noisily. After a breathtaking display, the birds drop dramatically into the reedbeds where they settle for the night. Another winter treat at Newport Wetlands is a single bittern, which has been seen here most winters since 2001. Bitterns are rare and extremely secretive, moving silently through the reeds looking for fish. Parts of the reserve provide a winter home for nationally important numbers of black-tailed godwits, shovelers and dunlins.

  

Facilities

  

Information centre

 

Car park

 

Toilets

 

Disabled toilets

 

Baby-changing facilities

 

Group bookings accepted

 

Guided walks available

 

Good for walking

 

Pushchair friendly

 

Viewing points

 

Viewing screens are available.

  

Nature trails

 

There are a number of nature trails around the reserve of various lengths with easy accessibility for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

  

Tearoom

 

Coffee shop serving triple-certified organic Fairtrade coffee, fairtrade tea, Fairtrade hot chocolate, and a selection of organic cold drinks, sandwiches, baguettes, locally-produced cakes and cookies.

 

Refreshments available

 

Hot drinks

 

Cold drinks

 

Snacks

 

Confectionery

  

Shop

 

A retail outlet for all your bird food and bird care accessories with a wide selection of binoculars and telescopes. There is also a fantastic selection of gifts and children's items.

  

The shop stocks:

 

Binoculars and telescopes

 

Bird food

 

Bird feeders

 

Gifts

  

Cafe

 

Our cafe in the visitor centre has large, panoramic windows overlooking the reserve and surrounding countryside. There is a large outdoor decking area providing additional seating with the same relaxing views. We provide organic Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate, and locally-produced cakes and ice cream.

 

We serve our own exclusive coffee that is grown, imported and roasted by us. It's Fairtrade, organic and certified bird-friendly by the Smithsonian Institute, so now you can help save nature simply by enjoying a great cup of coffee!

 

We are proud to hold a Level 5 Food Hygiene rating enabling our customers to have full confidence in the food and service that we provide.

  

Opening hours

 

10 am to 4 pm daily (closed Christmas Day)

  

Highlights from our menu

 

Triple-certified coffee including cappuccinos, lattes and Americanos, all freshly-made

We are known for our Bara Brith, Welsh cakes and hot toasted teacakes

From autumn through to spring we sell steaming tasty soups which are gluten-free

We provide a variety of sandwiches and rolls made with bread from a family baker

Pole-and-line-caught skipjack tuna is used to fill delicious sandwiches or rolls

Good variety of sandwiches and cakes. Coffee excellent

  

Access to the cafe

 

The coffee shop is in the visitor centre which has wheelchair-friendly ramps into the centre and out onto the reserve.

  

Children welcome

 

There are highchairs for babies and toddlers. We provide children's lunchboxes containing a sandwich, two-finger Kitkat, apple or orange juice and a choice of wildlife face mask.

  

We use local ingredients

 

We use Welsh meats, cheeses and free-range organic eggs.

  

Dietary requirements

 

We sell vegetarian and vegan food, some wheat-free snacks and soup, and some organic food.

  

Accessibility

 

8 August 2013

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

 

Before you visit

 

Clear print site leaflet available from reception

 

Visitor Centre open 9 am to 5 pm daily, except Christmas Day. coffee shop open 10 am to 4 pm

 

Entry to the reserve is free of charge

 

Car park open 8.30 am to 5.30 pm daily

 

Three mobility scooters and two wheelchairs available to hire out free of charge. Telephone for details

 

Registered assistance dogs welcome (please do not be offended if we ask for evidence of registration)

 

A dog walking route map is available from the visitor centre. Tethering rings and drinking bowl at the visitor centre entrance

 

Check events and activities for accessibility,

  

How to get here

 

Newport Railway Station (5 miles/8 km). Taxis usually available

 

Bus stop in the reserve car park, Number 63

  

Car parking

 

Free parking, 180 m/197 yds from the visitor centre

10 blue badge spaces

85 parking spaces

Drop-off at visitor centre arranged by telephone 01633 636363

Tarmac surface, path to visitor centre compacted limestone chippings and dust

  

Visitor centre and shop

 

Entrance by wooden walkway with a maximum gradient of 1:40. Manually operated doors. Non-slip tiled surface. Low section on service counter. Hearing loop system is installed at the service counter and in the education rooms. Good natural and artificial lighting. Staff can give assistance and read out any literature if required. Binoculars are available for hire (£3.50 for the day).

  

Nature trails

 

Four main trails. All level on compacted with one incline using a zig-zag. Floating walkways have been used by wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs but caution should be taken due to buoyancy.

  

Viewing facilities

 

Natural viewing opportunities throughout the reserve. A wheelchair accessible viewing screens overlooking the reedbeds.

  

Toilets

 

Unisex accessible toilet along with separate ladies and gents available on ground floor of Visitor Centre. Level step free access. Baby changing table and a second baby facility in ladies toilets.

  

Catering

 

Step-free level access. Outside deck viewing area. Tables are well spaced apart. Good natural and overhead lighting. Non slip tiles. Accessible WC in the visitor centre.

  

Shop

 

Shop is located in the visitor centre. Level entry step free with no doors. There is step free, level access throughout. Non-slip tiled surface. Ample room. Well lit with daylight and fluorescent lighting. Promotional video usually playing with subtitles. Staff can provide assistance.

  

Classrooms

 

Two classrooms available as one room if required. Step-free, level access throughout. Non-slip flooring. Artificial even lighting. Portable hearing loop system available. Two raised ponds nearby.

  

Picnic area

 

Four picnic tables with wheelchair access outside visitor centre. Visitors free to bring their own refreshments for picnics.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

For more information

 

Newport Wetlands

 

E-mail: newport-wetlands@rspb.org.uk

 

Telephone:01633 636363

  

How to get here

 

By bicycle (Sustrans cycle route)

 

Sustrans National Cycle Network route 4 has a branch to Newport Wetlands using existing roads. The car park has a covered cycle stand. Please note that cycling on the reserve is restricted to a designated route.

  

By train

 

The nearest railway station is Newport - which is five miles from the reserve. There is a taxi rank at the station and Newport bus station is just a few minutes walk away. For train times to and from Newport visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or telephone 08457 484950.

  

By bus

 

From the Kingsway Bus Station in Newport, the Number 63 bus leaves at 7.30 am, 9 am, 11 am, 1.30 pm, 3 pm, 4.50 pm and 6 pm and stops at the bus stop in the reserve car park. Alternatively, contact Newport Bus 01633 670563.

  

By road

 

Join the A48 at either junction 24 or 28 of the M4. Follow the A48 until you come to the Spytty Retail Park roundabout. Exit onto the A4810 Queensway Meadows. At the first roundabout take the third exit onto Meadows Road and follow the brown tourist signs to the reserve.

  

Our partners

 

The Newport Wetlands project is funded by the European Union's Objective Two programme supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and secured via the Newport European Partnership, Newport City Council's allocation of the Welsh Assembly Government's Local Regeneration Fund, Newport City Council's Landfill Tax Credit Scheme, the Environment Agency Wales and Visit Wales – the Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks.

 

Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB would like to thank the communities of Newport and the volunteers who have supported Newport Wetlands.

  

Newport Wetlands Conference and Meeting Rooms

  

Set in the tranquil surroundings of a peaceful nature reserve, our excellent conference facilities offer a superb location for a great getaway from the office and provide a wonderful setting for a variety of corporate events. You will receive a warm welcome from the staff at the Visitor Centre, providing a professional and efficient service.

 

We can provide facilities for the following

 

Conferences

 

Board Meetings

 

Seminars

 

Training Courses

 

Presentations

  

Away days

 

Rooms can be arranged in boardroom, theatre style or in any other format to suit your event. We also have a range of equipment for hire including a digital projector and smart board facilities.

 

Your booking fee includes free car parking, access to the Reserve as well as the Visitor Centre, Shop and Café. The Reserve comprises of a series of lagoons and reed beds from reclaimed industrial land, which is now home to a wealth of wildlife.

 

A tour of the Reserve can be arranged as an unusual and revitalising break during a meeting or away day.

  

Catering

 

Fairtrade coffee and tea, biscuits or homemade cakes can be served throughout the day, and we can provide a freshly prepared buffet to suit your dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. Buffets include a selection of classic sandwiches, a selection of savoury items, fresh fruit and a selection of freshly baked homemade cakes.

 

Alternatively, delegates can stroll across to the café themselves and appreciate inspirational views of the reserve from the veranda.

  

The Lakeside Suite

 

A purpose built meeting room, which caters for 12 people boardroom style or 25 people theatre style.

  

The Education Facilities

 

Set in a tranquil environment, overlooking the waters edge the Education Rooms offers the perfect environment for larger events and conferences. The room can be organised in various styles and caters for up to 80 people theatre style.

 

For more information or to make a provisional booking, please contact Adrianne Jones using the details below.

 

For more information

 

Adrianne Jones

Centre Co-ordinator

E-mail: adrianne.jones@rspb.org.uk

Telephone:01633 636355

1953: Sweet rationing ends in Britain

 

Children all over Britain have been emptying out their piggy-banks and heading straight for the nearest sweet-shop as the first unrationed sweets went on sale today. Toffee apples were the biggest sellers, with sticks of nougat and liquorice strips also disappearing fast.

 

One firm in Clapham Common gave 800 children 150lbs of lollipops during their midday break from school, and a London factory opened its doors to hand out free sweets to all comers.

 

Adults joined in the sugar frenzy, with men in the City queuing up in their lunch breaks to buy boiled sweets and to enjoy the luxury of being able to buy 2lb boxes of chocolates to take home for the weekend.

 

Do you remember your favourite childhood sweets and the excitement of going to the local sweet shop and choosing from the vast array of jars on the shelves full of colourful mouth watering temptations?

 

They were weighed by the quarter on a big old fashioned metal scale pan and packaged into small white paper bags.

 

For many of us, the Saturday ritual of sweets-buying has lingered into adulthood, and it is heartening to find so many places selling from jars. Indeed, the Bonds sweets factory in Carlisle - a major supplier - is planning to redesign its plastic jars to be squatter and wider than usual: an echo of the prewar shape. Multicoloured jars lined up on shelves are very alluring, for many of us a potent reminder of a time when the local sweet shop represented a kind of El Dorado.

 

If you thought it was just kids who ate sugar confectionery you'd be wide of the mark. Many of the lines might have been developed for children but prove a hit with adults, too. Even the tough guys (and gals) in the British armed forces love their sweets according to NAAFI figures, servicemen and women in Afghanistan last year munched their way through 923,583 bags of Haribo.

 

Here in the UK, sweetie buying habits change as we hopefully head towards warmer weather, with more people opting for fruity sweets rather than chocolate bars.

 

THE SWEETS GRAVEYARD

 

Spangles

 

Dimpled, square boiled sweets in fruit-flavoured and Old English varieties. Spangles was a brand of boiled sweets, manufactured by Mars Ltd in the United Kingdom from 1950 to the early eighties. They were bought in a paper tube with individual sweets cellophane wrapped. They were distinguished by their shape which was a rounded square with a circular depression on each face.

 

The regular Spangles tube (labelled simply "Spangles") contained a variety of translucent, fruit flavoured sweets: strawberry, blackcurrant, orange, pineapple, lemon and lime.

 

Originally the sweets were not individually wrapped, but later a waxed paper, and eventually a cellophane wrapper was used. The tube was a bright orange-red colour, bearing the word "Spangles" in a large letters. In the seventies a distinctive, seventies-style font was used.

 

Over the production period many different, single flavour varieties were introduced including Acid Drop, Barley Sugar, Blackcurrant, Liquorice, Peppermint, Spearmint and Tangerine.

 

The Old English Spangles tube contained traditional English flavours such as liquorice, mint humbugs, cough candy, butterscotch and pear drops. One of the flavours was an opaque mustard yellow colour, and one was striped.

 

The sweets' individual wrappers were striped, distinguishing them from regular Spangles. The tube was black, white and purple, and designed for a more mature and specific clientele than the regular variety.

 

Spangles were discontinued in the early eighties, and briefly reintroduced in 1994, including in Woolworths outlets in the UK. There are many nostalgic references to them from children who grew up with them. Spangles are associated with the 1970s and they, like Space Hoppers or the Raleigh Chopper, have become shorthand for lazy nostalgia for the time, as in the phrase "Do you remember Spangles?"

 

Today the Tunes brand is the only remaining relation of the Spangles brand, sharing the shape and wrapping of the original product. In the UK, Tunes no longer have the Spangles style packaging, and they are now lozenge-shaped.

 

Cabana bar

 

Very sweet coconut-centred chocolate bar with cherry twist made by Cadbury's.

 

Pineapple Mars

 

This early tropical-flavoured prototype was not a lasting success

 

Fry's Five Centres

 

Follow-up to famous Fry's Five Boys. Fry's Cream is a chocolate bar made by Cadbury's, and formerly by J. S. Fry & Sons. It consists of a fondant centre enrobed in dark chocolate and is available in a plain version, and also peppermint or orange fondant. Fry's Chocolate Cream was one of the first chocolate bars ever produced, launched in 1866.

 

There are currently three variants of Fry's Cream:

 

Fry's Chocolate Cream

Fry's Orange Cream

Fry's Peppermint Cream

 

Over the years, other variants existed:

 

Fry's Five Centre (orange, raspberry, lime, strawberry, and pineapple), produced from 1934 to 1992.

 

Fry's Strawberry Cream

Fry's Pineapple Cream

 

Cadbury's also produced a solid milk chocolate bar called Five Boys using the Fry's trademark in the 1960s. Cadbury's produced milk and plain chocolate sandwich bars under the Fry's branding also.

 

Fry's chocolate bar was promoted by model George Lazenby, later James Bond actor, in 1962.

 

The Fry's Chocolate bar was first produced in Union Street, Bristol, England in 1866, where the family name had been associated with chocolate making since circa 1759. In 1923 Fry's (now Cadbury) chocolate Factory moved to Keynsham, England, but due to the imminent closure of the factory the production of the bar will move, possibly to Poland.

 

Banjo bar

 

Banjo is a chocolate bar once available in the UK. Introduced with a substantial television advertising campaign in 1976, Banjo was a twin bar (similar in shape and size to Twix) and based upon a wafer with a chopped peanut layer and the whole covered in milk chocolate. It was packaged in distinctive navy blue - with the brand name prominently displayed in yellow block text - and was one of the first British snack bars to have a heat-sealed wrapper closure instead of the reverse-side fold common to most domestically-produced chocolate bars at that time. It was available into the 1980s. There was a coconut version also available in a red wrapper with yellow text.

 

Aztec bars

 

So many sweet lovers would love to be able to enjoy Aztec bars again. Sadly it isn't possible to buy Aztec bars at the moment. It was like a Mars Bar but not as sickly because it had nougat instead of toffee. It had a purple wrapper it was made by Cadbury's.

 

Opal Fruits

 

Mars, the manufacturers, is bringing back the sweets for a limited period in conjunction with the supermarket chain ASDA.

 

The fruit chews that were "made to make you mouth water" were replaced by Starburst in 1998, the name under which they had been exported to the US in the seventies.

 

But the iconic British brand is being revived in celebration of the tenth anniversary of the change.

 

They will be available for an initial period of 12 weeks from May 10, exclusively in ASDA stores.

 

A spokesperson for ASDA said: "The demise of the Opal Fruit was mourned across the nation, and we're really excited to be staging the exclusive comeback of this great British favourite."

 

Opal Fruits were initially introduced in Britain in the 1960s.

 

In 1998, the US brand Starburst was adopted in England in order to standardise the brand in the global marketplace.

 

Expectations are high that the move to bring back Opal Fruits will be popular with consumers.

 

As well as reverting to the original flavours of lemon, lime, orange and strawberry, the new Opal Fruits will be a strictly natural affair.

 

The limited edition will be produced using no artificial colouring or preservatives, a move that both ASDA and Mars hope will appeal to twenty-first century customers.

 

The return of Opal Fruits continues the recent trend of reviving classic brands.

 

Cadbury reintroduced the Wispa last year after an internet campaign which also involved protesters storming a stage at the Glastonbury festival.

 

Sherbert Fountain

 

Sherbet is sold in a plastic tube with twist-off lid, with a stick made from liquorice as a sherbet fountain. Many consumers regret the replacement of the former paper packaging, which allowed an extra dimension of enjoyment: the crushing of the caked lumps of sherbet as the paper cylinder was rolled between the hands. The top of the stick is supposed to be bitten off to form a straw and the sherbet sucked through it, where it fizzes and dissolves on the tongue, though many people prefer to either dip the liquorice in the sherbet and lick it off or to tip the sherbet into their mouths and eat the liquorice separately.

 

When paired with liquorice, sherbet is typically left unflavoured in a white form and with a higher reactive agent so that it causes a fizzy foam to develop in the mouth.

 

They are manufactured by Barratt, a subsidiary of Tangerine Confectionery.

 

Though some shops still sell the old-style only.

 

Sherbert Flying Saucers

 

These small pastel coloured rice paper sweets were shaped like a U.F.O. and contained delightfully fizzy sherbet.

 

Small dimpled discs made from edible coloured paper (rice paper), typically filled with white unflavoured sherbet (the same form as in Sherbet Fountains) These sweets had sherbert in the middle and a kind of melt-in-your-mouth outer shell.

 

Black Jacks Chews

 

Black Jack is a type of "aniseed flavour chew" according to its packaging. This means that it is a chewy (gelatin-based) confectionery. Black Jack is manufactured under the Barratt brand in Spain. Black Jack is very similar to Fruit Salad, which are also manufactured by Barratt.

 

Black Jacks are one of the most well-known classic British sweets. They`re aniseed-flavoured, chewy and black with a unique taste, and they make your tongue go black!

 

The original labels from the 1920's pictured a grinning gollywog - unbelievably, back then images of black people were used to advertise Liquorice. This is seen as unacceptable today, of course, and by the late 80s manufacturers Trebor deleted the golly logo. It was replaced by a pirate with a black beard.

 

In the early 1990s the pirate logo was replaced by a rather boring black and white swirl design.

 

Cabana bars

 

Cabana bars died out in about 1984, and as they were made by Rowntree (sold to Nestle in 1989) they're very unlikely to make a comeback.

 

Licorice Bootlaces

 

Long thin strips of licorice in the shape of boot laces.

 

Pineapple Chunks

 

Pineapple Flavour Hard Boiled Sweets.

 

Jamboree Bag

 

Bags of different sorts of sweets, with dodgy plastic toys and whistles etc, where are they now?

 

Rhubarb & Custard

 

Rhubarb and Custard flavoured boiled sweet, with it's two colours.

 

Gobstoppers

 

Gobstoppers, known as jawbreakers in Canada and the United States, are a type of hard sweet or candy. They are usually round, usually range from about 1 cm across to 3 cm across (though much bigger gobstoppers can sometimes be found in Canadian/US candy stores, up to 8 cm in diameter) and are traditionally very hard.

 

The term gobstopper derives from 'gob', which is United Kingdom/Ireland slang for mouth.

 

Gobstoppers usually consist of several layers, each layer dissolving to reveal a different colored (and sometimes different flavoured) layer, before dissolving completely. Gobstoppers are sucked or licked, being too hard to bite without risking dental damage (hence the US title).

 

Gobstoppers have been sold in traditional sweet shops for at least a century, often sold by weight from jars. As gobstoppers dissolve very slowly, they last a very long time in the mouth, which is a major factor in their enduring popularity with children. Larger ones can take days or even weeks to fully dissolve, risking a different kind of dental damage.

 

In 2003, Taquandra Diggs, a nine year old girl in Starke, Florida, suffered severe burns, allegedly from biting down on a Wonka Everlasting Gobstopper that had been left out in the sun. Diggs and several other victims' families filed lawsuits against Nestlé for medical bills resulting from plastic surgery as well as pain and suffering; the matters were later settled outside of court for an undisclosed amount.

 

A 2004 episode of the Discovery Channel television program "Myth Busters" episode subsection named Exploding Jawbreakers then demonstrated that heating a gobstopper in a microwave oven can cause the different layers inside to heat at different rates, yielding an explosive spray of very hot candy when compressed; Myth Busters crew members Adam Savage and Christine Chamberlain received light burns after a gobstopper exploded.

 

Acid Drops

 

Tongue-tinglingly sharp boiled sweets.

 

Barley Sugar

 

Barley sugar (or barley sugar candy) is a traditional variety of British boiled sweet, or hard candy, yellow or orange in colour with an extract of barley added as flavouring. It is similar to hard caramel candy in its texture and taste.

 

Barley sugars and other energy sweets are the only food allowed to be eaten in the New Zealand & Australian 40 Hour Famine, an annual event which draws attention to world hunger. A single barley sugar is allowed to be consumed once every 4 hours during the 40 Hour Famine. This applies to participants older than primary school age.

 

Bulls Eyes Humbug

 

Humbugs are a traditional hard boiled sweet available in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. They are usually flavoured with peppermint and striped in two different colours (often brown and tan). They have a hard outside and a soft toffee centre. Humbugs are typically cylinders with rounded ends wrapped in a twist of cellophane, or else pinched cylinders with a 90-degree turn between one end and the other (shaped like a pyramid with rounded edges), loose in a bag.

 

They are more often eaten in winter than summer, as they are considered "warming." The name of the candy is not related to the phrase "Bah, humbug" derived from Dickens' A Christmas Carol. That expression implies a general dissatisfaction with the Christmas season. However, offering humbugs around Christmas time is now seen by some as humorous or ironic, and was featured in an episode of Blackadder in this manner.

 

A similar sweet is "bulls-eye" which has black and white stripes like a humbug but is spherical like an aniseed ball. These are peppermint flavoured and are also known as bullets in the UK as they are similar in size to smoothbore musket balls.

 

Love Hearts

 

Love Hearts are a type of confectionery manufactured by Swizzels Matlow in the United Kingdom. They are hard, fizzy, tablet-shaped sweets in a variety of fruit flavours featuring a short, love-related message on one side of the sweet.

 

The sweets are small and circular, approximately 19 mm in diameter, and 5 mm in height (including the embossed decorations). Both sides are embossed with a decoration, the rear with a large outline of a heart and the front with the message within an outline of a heart. On the front of the sweet the embossing is highlighted with a red colouring.

 

The main body of the sweet is coloured in one of the 6 colours - white, yellow, orange, green, purple or red. Especially for the darker red and purple colourings this colouring is somewhat blotchy.

 

Fruit Salads

 

Fruit Salad is a type of "Raspberry & Pineapple flavour chew" according to its packaging. This means that it is a chewy (gelatin-based) confectionery. Fruit Salad is manufactured by Barratt in Spain. Fruit Salad is very similar to Black Jack, which are also manufactured by Barratt.

 

Sweet 'Cigarette' Sticks

 

(sticks wrapped in paper, in packs that looked just like real cigarettes)

 

Candy cigarettes is a candy introduced in the early 20th century made out of chalky sugar, bubblegum or chocolate, wrapped in paper as to resemble cigarettes. Their place on the market has long been controversial because many critics believe the candy desensitizes children, leading them to become smokers later in life. Because of this, the selling of candy cigarettes has been banned in several countries such as Finland, Norway, the Republic of Ireland, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

 

In the United States a ban was considered in 1970 and again in 1991, but was not passed into federal law. The U.S. state of North Dakota enacted a ban on candy cigarettes from 1953 until 1967. In Canada federal law prohibits candy cigarette branding that resembles real cigarette branding and the territory of Nunavut has banned all products that resemble cigarettes.

 

The Family Smoking and Prevention Control Act was misquoted as banning candy cigarettes. The Act bans any form of added flavoring in tobacco cigarettes other than menthol. It does not regulate the candy industry.

 

Candy cigarettes continue to be manufactured and consumed in many parts of the world. However, many manufacturers now describe their products as candy sticks, bubble gum, or candy.

 

Popeye Cigarettes marketed using the Popeye character were sold for a while and had red tips (to look like a lit cigarette) before being renamed candy sticks and being manufactured without the red tip.

 

Liquorice "Smoker's Sets"

 

Sweet smokers sets with sweet cigarettes, tobacco and liquorice pipes. CONCERNS have been raised about the availability of candy-style imitation cigarettes. The sweets, which look remarkably like a hand-rolled cigarette and packaged in replica cigarette packets.

 

"Recently there has been a trend for buying so-called retro candy such as aniseed balls and spangles. It's unfortunate that chocolate cigarettes have re surfaced but it's not illegal to sell them and it's really up to retailers to decide whether or not it's a product with which they wish to be associated."

 

Aniseed Balls

 

Aniseed balls are a type of hard round sweet sold in the UK, New Zealand and Australia. They are shiny and dark brownish red, and hard like Gobstoppers.

 

Aniseed Balls are something you either love or hate! They are flavoured by aniseed oil (obviously!), and have a very strong aniseed flavour. They last for a long time in the mouth before dissolving and in the centre of the ball is a whole rapeseed that can be crushed.

 

Butterscotch

 

Butterscotch is a type of confectionery whose primary ingredients are brown sugar and butter, although other ingredients such as corn syrup, cream, vanilla, and salt are part of some recipes.

 

The ingredients for butterscotch are similar to toffee, but for butterscotch the sugar is boiled to the soft crack stage, and not hard crack as with toffee. Butterscotch sauce is often made into a syrup, which is used as a topping for ice cream (particularly sundaes).

 

The term butterscotch is also often used for the flavour of brown sugar and butter together even where actual confection butterscotch is not involved, e.g. butterscotch pudding.

 

Food historians have several theories regarding the name and origin of this confectionery, but none are conclusive. One explanation is the meaning "to cut or score" for the word "scotch", as the confection must be cut into pieces, or "scotched", before hardening. It is also possible that the "scotch" part of its name was derived from the word "scorch".

 

However, the word was first recorded in Doncaster, in England, where Samuel Parkinson began making the confectionery in 1817. Parkinson's Butterscotch had royal approval and was one of Doncaster's attractions until it ceased production in 1977. The recipe was revived in 2003 when a Doncaster businessman and his wife rediscovered the recipe on an old folded piece of paper inside one of the famous St Leger tins in their cellar.

 

Butterscotch is an example of a genericized trademark, originally a trademark of Parkinson's.

 

Jelly Babies

 

Jelly babies are a type of soft confectionery that look like little babies in a variety of colours. There are currently several companies that make jelly babies, most predominantly Trebor Bassett (part of the Cadbury Group of companies, and famous for their liquorice allsorts) and also Rowntree (Nestlé).

 

Jelly Babies were launched by Bassett's in 1918 in Sheffield as "Peace Babies" to mark the end of World War I. Production was suspended during World War II due to wartime shortages and the fact that the name had largely become ironic. In 1953 the product was relaunched as "Jelly Babies". In March 1989 Bassett's were taken over by Cadbury Schweppes who had earlier acquired the Trebor brand.

 

Jelly Babies manufactured in the United Kingdom tend to be dusted in starch which is left over from the manufacturing process where it is used to aid release from the mould. Jelly Babies of Australian manufacture generally lack this coating.

 

Like many gummy sweets, they contain gelatin and are thus not suitable for vegetarians.

 

A popular science class experiment is to put them in a strong oxidising agent and see the resulting spectacular reaction. The experiment is commonly referred to as "Screaming jelly babies".

 

Each Bassett's Jelly Baby now has an individual name and shape, colour and flavour: Brilliant (red - strawberry), Bubbles (yellow - lemon), Baby Bonny (pink - raspberry), Boofuls (green - lime), Bigheart (purple - blackcurrant) and Bumper (orange). The introduction of different shapes and names was a new innovation, circa 1989, prior to which all colours of jelly baby were a uniform shape.

 

Jelly Babies are similar in appearance to Gummi bears, which are better known outside of the United Kingdom, though the texture is different, Jelly Babies having a harder outer "crust" and a softer, less rubbery, centre.

 

In 2007, Bassett's Jelly Babies changed to include only natural colours and ingredients.

 

In the early 1960s, after Beatles guitarist George Harrison revealed in an interview that he liked jelly babies, audiences showered him and the rest of the band with the sweets at live concerts and fans sent boxes of them as gifts.[citation needed] Unfortunately American fans could not obtain this soft British confection, replacing them with harder jelly beans instead. To the group's discomfort, they were frequently pelted with jelly beans during concerts while in America.

 

Jelly babies are popular with several of the Doctors in the television series Doctor Who. The Second Doctor was the first to have them in his pockets. The Fourth Doctor had them throughout his time on the show. They also appear briefly with the Tenth Doctor In the 2007 episode "The Sound of Drums", The Master is seen eating them.

 

Dolly mixture

 

This is a British confection, consisting of a variety of multi-coloured fondant shapes, such as cubes and cylinders, with subtle flavourings. The mixtures also include hard-coated fondants in "round edged cube" shapes and sugar coated jellies. They are sold together, in a mixture in a medium-sized packet. It is produced by various companies in different countries; the most popular brands are those produced by Trebor Bassett (now a part of the Cadbury's consortium)

 

Bonbons

 

The name bonbon (or bon-bon) stems from the French word bon, literally meaning “good”. In modern usage, the term "bonbon" usually refers to any of several types of sweets and other table centerpieces across the world.

 

The first bonbons come from the 17th century when they were made at the royal court especially for children who were eating them and chanting bon, bon!, French for good, good!.

 

Bonbon is also a colloquial expression (as in, "She sat around all day eating bon-bons while her husband was at work."). This sweet inspired Johann Strauss II to compose a waltz named, "Wiener Bonbons".

 

Chewits

 

Chewits is the brand name of a chewy, cuboid-shaped, soft taffy candy manufactured by Leaf International.

 

Chewits was launched in the UK in 1965. The sweets were originally manufactured in Southport, but after the closing of the factory in 2006 manufacture was moved to Slovakia. The original flavours consisted of Strawberry, Blackcurrant, Orange and Banana. Over the years more exotic flavours such as Ice Cream, Cola, Rhubarb & Custard, and Blue Mint were introduced as limited edition flavours. New Chewits pack designs, formats and flavours were launched in 2009.

 

Currently Chewits core flavour range includes Strawberry, Blackcurrant, Fruit Salad, Ice Cream and Orange. Ice Cream Chewits, originally released in 1989, were re-introduced in 2009 following an online petition and demand expressed on Facebook and Bebo.

 

Chewits were first advertised on television in 1976. The original advertisements featured the 'Monster Muncher', a Godzilla-resembling mascot on the hunt for something chewy to eat. The first ad featuring the Muncher threatening New York was made by French Gold Abbott and created by John Clive and Ian Whapshot. The first ad was so successful the sequel was delayed. The 'Monster Muncher' chomps and tramples humorously local and well-known international landmarks such as Barrow-in-Furness Bus Depot, a London block of flats, London Bridge, the Taj Mahal, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and the Empire State Building. The 'Monster Muncher' could only be quelled by a pack of Chewits.

 

A spin-off computer game, The Muncher, was released for the ZX Spectrum in 1988.

 

The original adverts used claymation special effects, similar in style to those made famous in the movies of Ray Harryhausen. They also included a voiceover style reminiscent of a 1950s radio serial.

 

A subsequent advertisement, originally aired in 1995, plays on the over-the-top advertising style of the post-war era. To the tune of bright 50's era orchestration, a salesy narrator exhorts viewers to try a variety of chewy consumer items in the essential guide to a chewier chew. The ad shows the 'Monster Muncher' sampling items such as Wellington boots, a rubber boat and a rubber plant in order to be ready for the chewiest of chews - Chewits.

 

In the late 1990s, Chewits experimented with ads showing multiple news casting dinosaur puppets. The catchphrase advice at the close of each 'broadcast' was to "do it before you chew it". This style of ads was relatively short-lived for Chewits.

 

With a change of advertising agencies, the puppets were replaced by colourful 2D animations. The 'Monster Muncher' was re-introduced as 'Chewie' in two popular adverts from this time. In the first, which aired in 2000, Chewie roller skates on two buses through a busy city scene. The second, which went out a year later in 2001, shows Chewie waterskiing at a popular seaside resort. The ads included a rendition of the 1994 hit song 'I like to move it' by Reel 2 Real, with the chorus, "I like to Chewit Chewit."

 

In 2003, after a further shift in advertising agencies, a new ad was aired showing a wide range of animals auditioning to be the new face of Chewits. The ad announced the return of the iconic dinosaur Chewie mascot, now dubbed 'Chewie the Chewitsaurus'.

 

In 2009, Chewits introduced the new Chewie the Chewitsaurus look, showing a contemporary, computer-game-style slick design. Chewie the Chewitsaurus features on all Chewits packaging and sponsorship activity.

 

Fizzy Cola Bottles

 

Remember that fizzy, sour cola taste you used to get from these? I think these are another sweet you either love or hate. Real cola tasting Giant fizzy bottles.

 

Milk Bottles

 

These white milk bottle shaped chewy white sweets are also known as milk gums. They were pretty popular in the UK, and are still selling well today repackaged as retro sweets.

 

Pacers

 

These were a kind of Opal Fruits spin-off, but came in peppermint and spearmint flavours. They were discontinued sometime in the 80's.

 

Sweet Bananas

 

These yummy sweet bananas, soft, juicy chews with a lovely mellow banana flavour.

 

Mackintosh's Toffee

 

Mackintosh's Toffee is a sweet created by John Mackintosh.

 

Mackintosh opened up his sweets shop in Halifax, Yorkshire, England in 1890, and the idea for Mackintosh's Toffee, not too hard and not too soft, came soon after. In 1969, Mackintosh's merged with rival Rowntree to form Rowntree Mackintosh, which merged with Nestle in 1988.

 

The product is often credited with being over 100 years old.

 

The toffee is sold in bags containing a random assortment of individual wrapped flavoured toffees. The flavours are (followed by wrapping colour): Malt (Blue), Harrogate (Yellow), Mint (Green), Egg & Cream (Orange), Coconut (Pink), Toffee (Red). The red wrapped toffees do not display a flavour on the wrapper. The product's subtitle is "Toffee De Luxe" and its motto "a tradition worth sharing".

 

Space Dust

 

Space Dust the candy that pops when placed in your mouth.

 

Bazooka bubble gum

 

It was first marketed shortly after World War II in the U.S. by the Topps Company based in Brooklyn, New York. The gum was packaged in a patriotic red, white, and blue color scheme. Beginning in 1953, Topps changed the packaging to include small comic strips with the gum, featuring the character "Bazooka Joe". There are 50 different "Bazooka Joe" comic-strip wrappers to collect. The product has been virtually unchanged in over 50 years.

 

The Topps company expanded the flavors, making them Original, Strawberry Shake, Cherry Berry, Watermelon Whirl, and Grape Rage. The Strawberry flavor is packaged in a pink and white wrapper and the Grape in a purple and white wrapper. Bazooka gum can also be found in a sugar free variety with the standard bubble gum flavor and a "Flavor Blasts" variety, claimed to have longer lasting, more intense taste. Bazooka gum comes in 2 different sizes.

 

Bazooka bubblegum is sold in many countries, often with Bazooka Joe comic strips translated into the local language. Bazooka gum is sold in Canada with cartoons in both English and French, depending upon the city. In Israel, manufactured under license to Elite, the cartoons are written in Hebrew. The gum was also sold in Yugoslavia and later in Slovenia until the local licensee allowed their license to expire in 2006. The "Bazooka Joe" cartoons are about "Bazooka Joe" and his friends. There are also "Bazooka Joe" t-shirts in return for 15 Bazooka Joe comics and $8.99 while supplies last. But the offer has been discontinued.

 

In May 2009 it was announced that the Bazooka Joe comic was to be adapted into a Hollywood movie.

 

Traffic Light lollies

 

These were a red yellow and green lolly that was a childhood favourtite sweet for many.

 

Black Magic Chocolates

 

What a huge disappointment these chocolates are!! A few years ago Nestle made an almighty mistake by doing away with THE best brand of dark chocolates, favourites of many thousands of people, and replacing them with cardboard pretend chocolate squares which tasted cheap and nasty. Most boxes ended up in the bin. Last year I had a letter from Nestle saying they were bringing the classics back, fantastic, I was straight to the shop for some, so bad was my addiction, but horribly they are nothing like the originals.

 

The dont taste or smell the same, the centres are hard and taste of chemicals, like long gone off chocolates. The bottom line is this, why change them in the first place? and when you realised you had made a mistake why not bring back the originals instead of these tacky replacements. very sad, and I still havent found any chocs like Black Magic, I still have original boxes with ribbons from the 1950's, now they were class.

 

Texan

 

Ultra-chewy, chocolate-covered nougat bar launched in the mid-70s; disappeared in the mid-80s.

 

Banjo

 

Boring two-fingered wafer bar, lasted for most of the 80s.

 

Callard & Bowser Creamline Toffees

 

A 2001 casualty; they were better than Toffos.

 

Amazin Raisin

 

1971-78 - the sweets equivalent of rum'n'raisin ice cream.

 

Freshen Up

 

Chewing gum with a liquid centre, an 80s innovation.

 

Bluebird Toffee

 

A classic, but a recent casualty of confectionery industry takeovers.

 

Jap Desserts

 

These old coconut sweets (coconut was often known as 'Jap') died a death in the early 2000s.

 

Counters (Galaxy)

 

Harmless chocolate beans cruelly cut off.

 

Pink Panther

 

Extraordinary strawberry-flavoured chocolate bars, thin like Milky Bars. An acquired taste.

 

Bandit

 

Wafer biscuit - a challenger to Penguins.

 

Club bars

 

From Jacobs. The full range has been withdrawn, but Orange is still available. Symbol guide: plain = jack of clubs; milk = golf ball; mint = green leaf. Bog-standard but likable for thick chocolate.

 

Nutty Pure

 

80s bar, with a smoky brown see-through wrapper. Peanuts encase a fudge-type caramel log centre.

 

Double Agent

 

Extremely artificial blackcurrant- or apple-flavoured boiled sweets, with a sherbet centre and spy questions on the wrapper. Classic cold war confectionery.

 

Mighty Imp's

 

Mighty Imps were really old fashioned liquorice and menthol pellets that used to turn your tongue black... lovely!

 

They were sugar free and were marketed to help you keep a clear voice and protect against a sore throat (due to the menthol content I suspect).

 

Zoom

 

This ice lolly on a stick was shaped like a rocket and was made up of three sections, each with its own distinct flavour. In sequence this was lime, lemon and strawberry.

 

Refreshers

 

Fruit flavour fizzy sweets in a roll. Raspberry, lemon, lime and orange flavours. Refreshingly fizzly.

 

White Chocolate Mice

 

These white chocolate mice were cream flavoured and are silky smooth on your tongue. You certainly will not want the cat to get these sweet mice!!

 

The top 10 Best Sales - Through the ages

 

1966

 

1 Mars bar

2 Cadbury's Dairy Milk

3 Wrigley's Spearmint Gum

4 Milky Way

5 Polo

6 Kit Kat

7 Crunchie

8 Wrigley's Arrowmint Gum

9 Rowntree's Fruit Pastilles

10 Maltesers

 

1978

 

1 Mars bar

2 Kit Kat

3 Cadbury's Dairy Milk

4 Twix

5 Yorkie

6 Milky Way

7 Bounty

8 Maltesers

9 Aero

10 Smarties

 

1988

 

1 Mars bar

2 Kit Kat

3 Marathon

4 Wispa

5 Polo

6 Extra Strong Mints

7 Fruit Pastilles

8 Flake

9 Rolo

10 Double Decker

 

1997

 

1 Kit Kat

2 Mars bar

3 Cadbury's Dairy Milk

4 Roses

5 Twix

6 Wrigley's Extra

7 Quality Street

8 Snickers

9 Maltesers

10 Galaxy

 

2004

 

1 Cadbury's Dairy Milk

2 Wrigleys Extra

3 Maltesers

4 Galaxy

5 Mars bar

6 Kit Kat

7 Celebrations

8 Quality Street

9 Haribo (total sales)

10 Roses

 

Can anyone add to the list?

When I grew up in the southern hemisphere, we always used to make little red balls and green leaves from icing sugar for Christmas cake decoration. But holly isn't abundant there and certainly with Christmas being in the middle of summer I didn't quite understand the whole symbolic of it until I moved to England. Seeing this beautiful display of colour in the drab winter months really make your heart beat just a little faster.

Ice Cream Cakes by Cold Rock Aspley. Custom made from a choice of 32 flavours of ice cream and a huge range from confectionary, fruit and nuts. Call us on 0417115707 or order online www.coldrock.com.au/cake-builder/build-your-cake/

facebook.com/coldrockaspley

 

LEGO Adventure Book on Amazon

 

Prepare to tldr

 

Early this year I intended to become more active within the community, it was great getting back into the hobby I loved. I had a new project and an offer to participate in a book by Megz.

 

And then we got pregnant. I say we because if I said "my wife got pregnant" that would infer that it was her fault or a bad thing, which it totally isn't, it's absolutely wonderful. Except my LEGO room turned into a freakin nursery over night. One moment I was happily constructing the biggest single project I had ever attempted and preparing to spend an obscene amount of money to make it even bigger, the next I'm contemplating where the hell I am going to put my huge collection of plastic toys to make room for "the fruit of my loins" (I can't beleive that was ever a thing people said).

 

Forget the incredible pain of pregnancy, the physical sacrifice that is carrying a child, the indignanty of being compared to a small water craft (I swear I didn't ... I just thought it ... about another lady who was pregnant), no, THIS is sacrifice. THIS is love. THIS is pain. Goodbye, sweet man-cave.

 

So yeah. I got over that (mostly). And, wow! Another kid. Which of course meant repainting the entire house. $650 worth of paint later and I was going to work to wind down. I even mistakenly refered to work as "home" in some kind of perverse Fraudian slip while talking to my boss. Hilarious, except it wasn't. But on the plus side, painting, like any other skill, is a matter of practice and experience. And I was getting plently of experience.

 

One thing I learned - besides paint comes out of your hair alot easier than it comes out of clothes - is that when you continually abuse your hands by working with them every day (!) you loose a great deal of fine motor control. As a legendary rock guitarist (in my mind), a LEGO Technician (yes that is a thing, really) and an elite E-Sports professional (ok , now I'm just being stupid) one kind of relies on fine motor control. And the life lesson here kids is "real work is not fun."

 

So, with my LEGO room gone I took my copy of Sun Tzu's Art of war and did what any second century Chinese general would do and turned defeat into success. I turned the whole freakin house into a LEGO room. Well, to be honest, there was really nowhere else for it to go. We have an open plan house with a combined living / dining / kitchen / study area, so yeah, LEGO house. Take that Ed Sheeran!

 

Somewhere amongst all this I managed to complete pics for Megs book and when it finally arrived (because when you live in Australia stuff takes a LONG time to get here) my zombie-tradsman, paint-caked hands could barely flip through the pages. But when I did, needless to say that I was pretty freaking impressed. Best fan publication to date. If you haven't got a copy you should click on the Amazon link at the top of this post and buy it now while it's on special. Crap, buy two. Give one to your mum, she'll love you the more for it. I should note that none of the proceeds go to the Buy Aaron An Extension So He Can Have A New Man Cave Foundation. Donations to that particular charity are welcome through Pay Pal, details provided on request and complely non-tax deductable - just in case any of you are that gullable.

 

So to make a long story even longer, my son is due Christmas Day, so it could be a rush to the hospital at any minute. It doesn't make any sense when you see it in print, but in spite of all this I'm going to have more time on my hands, which means more time for me to inflict my special brand plastic banality upon you flickrites.

 

Fairly warned be thee says I

Father Christams is full of magic. So I thought I would make him wizard-like. Marzipan covered fruit cake with extremely large glugs of brandy, scotch and ginger wine.

Ich wish everybody a Happy Halloween, may you enjoy your day and parties....... ------------

Halloween (or Hallowe'en), a contraction of All-Hallows-Even ("evening"), is an annual holiday observed on October 31, which commonly includes activities such as trick-or-treating, attending costume parties, carving jack-o'-lanterns, bonfires, apple bobbing, visiting haunted attractions, playing pranks, telling scary stories, and watching horror films.Historian Nicholas Rogers, exploring the origins of Halloween, notes that while "some folklorists have detected its origins in the Roman feast of Pomona, the goddess of fruits and seeds, or in the festival of the dead called Parentalia, it is more typically linked to the Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-an or sow-in)", derived from the Old Irish Samuin meaning "summer's end".[1] Samhain was the first and by far the most important of the four quarter days in the medieval Irish calendar[2][3] and, falling on the last day of Autumn, it was a time for stock-taking and preparation for the cold winter months ahead.[1] There was also a sense that this was the time of year when the physical and supernatural worlds were closest and magical things could happen.[2][3] To ward off these spirits, the Irish built huge, symbolically regenerative bonfires and invoked the help of the gods through animal and perhaps even human sacrifice.[1]

     

Snap-Apple Night (1832) by Daniel Maclise.

Depicts apple bobbing and divination games at a Halloween party in Blarney, Ireland.

Halloween is also thought to have been heavily influenced by the Christian holy days of All Saints' Day (also known as Hallowmas, All Hallows, Hallowtide) and All Souls' Day.[4] Falling on November 1st and 2nd respectively, collectively they were a time for honoring the Saints and praying for the recently departed who had yet to reach heaven. By the end of the 12th century they had become days of holy obligation across Europe and involved such traditions as ringing bells for the souls in purgatory and "souling", the custom of baking bread or soul cakes for "all crysten [christened] souls".[5]

 

In Britain the rituals of Hallowtide and Halloween came under attack during the Reformation as protestants denounced purgatory as a "popish" doctrine incompatible with the notion of predestination.[4] In addition the increasing popularity of Guy Fawkes Night from 1605 on saw Halloween become eclipsed in Britain with the notable exception of Scotland.[6] Here, and in Ireland, they had been celebrating Samhain and Halloween since the early Middle Ages,[7] and it is believed the Kirk took a more pragmatic approach towards Halloween, viewing it as important to the life cycle and rites of passage of local communities and thus ensuring its survival in the country.[6]

 

North American almanacs of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century give no indication that Halloween was recognized as a holiday.[8] The Puritans of New England, for example, maintained strong opposition to the holiday[8] and it was not until the mass Irish and Scottish immigration during the 19th century that the holiday was introduced to the continent in earnest.[8] Initially confined to the immigrant communities during the mid-nineteenth century, it was gradually assimilated into mainstream society and by the first decade of the twentieth century it was being celebrated coast to coast by people of all social, racial and religious backgrounds.[9]

Trick-or-treating is a customary celebration for children on Halloween. Children go in costume from house to house, asking for treats such as candy or sometimes money, with the question, "Trick or treat?" The word "trick" refers to a (mostly idle) "threat" to perform mischief on the homeowners or their property if no treat is given. In some parts of Scotland children still go guising. In this custom the child performs some sort of trick, i.e. sings a song or tells a ghost story, to earn their treats.

 

The practice of dressing up in costumes and begging door to door for treats on holidays dates back to the Middle Ages and includes Christmas wassailing. Trick-or-treating resembles the late medieval practice of souling, when poor folk would go door to door on Hallowmas (November 1), receiving food in return for prayers for the dead on All Souls' Day (November 2). It originated in Ireland and Britain,[5] although similar practices for the souls of the dead were found as far south as Italy.[19] Shakespeare mentions the practice in his comedy The Two Gentlemen of Verona (1593), when Speed accuses his master of "puling [whimpering or whining] like a beggar at Hallowmas."[20]

 

In Scotland and Ireland, Guising – children disguised in costume going from door to door for food or coins – is a traditional Halloween custom, and is recorded in Scotland at Halloween in 1895 where masqueraders in disguise carrying lanterns made out of scooped out turnips, visit homes to be rewarded with cakes, fruit and money.[13] The practice of Guising at Halloween in North America is first recorded in 1911, where a newspaper in Kingston, Ontario reported children going "guising" around the neighborhood.[21]

 

American historian and author Ruth Edna Kelley of Massachusetts wrote the first book length history of the holiday in the U.S; The Book of Hallowe'en (1919), and references souling in the chapter "Hallowe'en in America";

  

The taste in Hallowe'en festivities now is to study old traditions, and hold a Scotch party, using Burn's poem Hallowe'en as a guide; or to go a-souling as the English used. In short, no custom that was once honored at Hallowe'en is out of fashion now.[22]

     

Halloween in Yonkers, New York, US

In her book, Kelley touches on customs that arrived from across the Atlantic; "Americans have fostered them, and are making this an occasion something like what it must have been in its best days overseas. All Hallowe'en customs in the United States are borrowed directly or adapted from those of other countries".[23]

 

While the first reference to "guising" in North America occurs in 1911, another reference to ritual begging on Halloween appears, place unknown, in 1915, with a third reference in Chicago in 1920.[24]

 

The earliest known use in print of the term "trick or treat" appears in 1927, from Blackie, Alberta, Canada:

  

Hallowe'en provided an opportunity for real strenuous fun. No real damage was done except to the temper of some who had to hunt for wagon wheels, gates, wagons, barrels, etc., much of which decorated the front street. The youthful tormentors were at back door and front demanding edible plunder by the word “trick or treat” to which the inmates gladly responded and sent the robbers away rejoicing.[25]

 

The thousands of Halloween postcards produced between the turn of the 20th century and the 1920s commonly show children but do not depict trick-or-treating.[26] The editor of a collection of over 3,000 vintage Halloween postcards writes, "There are cards which mention the custom [of trick-or-treating] or show children in costumes at the doors, but as far as we can tell they were printed later than the 1920s and more than likely even the 1930s. Tricksters of various sorts are shown on the early postcards, but not the means of appeasing them".[27] Trick-or-treating does not seem to have become a widespread practice until the 1930s, with the first U.S. appearances of the term in 1934,[28] and the first use in a national publication occurring in 1939.[29]

 

Costumes

 

Main article: Halloween costume

     

People dressing in Halloween Costumes in Dublin.

Halloween costumes are traditionally modeled after supernatural figures such as monsters, ghosts, skeletons, witches, and devils. Over time, the costume selection extended to include popular characters from fiction, celebrities, and generic archetypes such as ninjas and princesses.

 

Dressing up in costumes and going "guising" was prevalent in Scotland at Halloween by the late 19th century.[13] Costuming became popular for Halloween parties in the US in the early 20th century, as often for adults as for children. The first mass-produced Halloween costumes appeared in stores in the 1930s when trick-or-treating was becoming popular in the United States.

 

Halloween costume parties generally fall on, or around, 31 October, often falling on the Friday or Saturday prior to Halloween

 

GERMAN:

  

Halloween [hæloʊˈiːn] (eingedeutscht [ˈhɛloviːn]) von All Hallows' Eve (Allerheiligenabend) benennt ursprünglich Volksbräuche am Vorabend von Allerheiligen in der Nacht vom 31. Oktober zum 1. November, die zunächst vor allem in Irland gefeiert wurden. Die zugehörigen Bräuche wurden von irischen Einwanderern ab 1830 in den USA als Erinnerung an die europäische Heimat aufgegriffen und ausgebaut.

 

Im Laufe der Zeit entwickelte sich Halloween neben Weihnachten und dem Thanksgiving-Fest zu einer der wichtigsten Feiern in den Vereinigten Staaten.

 

Im Zuge der Irischen Renaissance nach 1830 wurden in der frühen volkskundlichen Literatur eine Kontinuität der Halloweenbräuche seit der Keltenzeit und Bezüge auf heidnische und keltische Traditionen wie das Samhainfest angenommen. Bekannt und bis heute zitiert werden entsprechende Mutmaßungen des Religionsethnologen James Frazer.

 

Seit den 1990er Jahren verbreiten sich Halloween-Bräuche, angefangen in Frankreich[1] auch im kontinentalen Europa, wobei es deutliche regionale Unterschiede gibt. Dabei wurden Bräuche wie das Rübengeistern in das auch kommerziell sehr erfolgreiche Halloweenumfeld adaptiert, genauso wie traditionelle Kürbisanbaugebiete wie die Steiermark Halloween aufnahmen.[1]

Das Wort Halloween, in älterer Schreibweise Hallowe’en, ist eine Kontraktion des Wortes All Hallows' Eve (Allerheiligenabend). Wie auch bei Heiligabend ist der Vorabend des Festtages gemeint, da aus liturgischer Sicht der Tag mit Sonnenuntergang endet und der Abend bereits Beginn des Folgetages ist. Der Bezug von Halloween zum Totenreich ergibt sich demnach aus den christlichen Feiertagen Allerheiligen und Allerseelen, die in Europa im 7. bis 8. Jahrhundert eingeführt wurden.

 

Die Genese des Festtags Allerheiligen selbst geht auf die bereits 609 erfolgte Weihung des römischen Pantheons, einem ehemals "allen Göttern" gewidmeter bedeutender heidnischer Tempel, durch die römische Kirche zurück.[2] Als Sancta Maria ad Martyres wurde dieser zum Gedenken aller Märtyrer gewidmet und neu interpretiert. Im Fränkischen Reich führte Ludwig der Fromme das Fest Allerheiligen im Jahr 835 ein. So wird an Allerheiligen traditionell der Gemeinschaft der Heiligen gedacht, die nach christlichem Glauben das ewige Leben erlangt haben. Am 2. November an Allerseelen sollte durch Gebete und Fürbitten sowie durch gute Taten (zum Beispiel Geschenke an bettelnde Kinder) das Leiden der Toten im Fegefeuer gelindert werden.

 

Das Allerheiligenfest, das sich von Rom aus verbreitete, wurde ursprünglich allerdings am 13. Mai gefeiert, das Datum wurde erst von Papst Gregor III. und endgültig von Gregor IV. auf den 1. November verlegt. Wesentliche, auch im heutigen Brauchtum noch erkennbare Aspekte von Allerheiligen und Allerseelen und damit auch Halloween beziehen sich auf die Vorstellung des Fegefeuers und in dem Zusammenhang dem Bedürfnis, der Seelen Verstorbener in diesem Zwischenstadium zu gedenken oder ihre baldige Erlösung zu erbitten.

 

Bereits im Zuge der Hochmittelalterlichen wie später im Zuge der Irische Renaissance wurden einige der christlichen Aspekte bereits wieder auf tatsächliche oder angenommene heidnische Traditionen projiziert. Die entsprechende Wechselwirkung und zugehörige Widersprüche sind bis in die Gegenwart verbreitet. Zudem sind der Charakter als Unruhenacht wie die Erneuerung und Weiterverbreitung in mehreren Wanderungsbewegungen Gegenstand volkskundlicher Forschung und machen mit den besonderen Charme und Reiz von Halloween aus.

 

Herleitung aus keltischen oder vorchristlichen Traditionen [Bearbeiten]

 

Der Religionsethnologe Sir James Frazer beschrieb in seinem Standardwerk The Golden Bough (in der Ausgabe von 1922) Halloween als „altes heidnisches Totenfest mit einer dünnen christlichen Hülle“, neben dem Frühjahrsfest Beltane am 1. Mai (Walpurgisnacht) habe es sich um das zweite wichtige Fest der Kelten gehandelt. Nachgewiesen sei es seit dem 8. Jahrhundert, als christliche Synoden versuchten, solche „heidnischen Riten“ abzuschaffen.

 

Die Encyclopedia Britannica leitet das Fest aus alten keltischen Bräuchen her. Gefeiert wurde an Halloween demnach das Sommerende, der Einzug des Viehs in die Ställe. In dieser Zeit, so glaubte man, seien auch „die Seelen der Toten zu ihren Heimen zurückgekehrt“. Begangen wurde das Fest laut der Encyclopedia Britannica mit Freudenfeuern auf Hügeln (eng. "bonefires", wörtlich etwa Knochenfeuer; ursprünglich mit Bezugnahme auf das Verbrennen von Knochen des Schlachtviehs) und manchmal Verkleidungen, die der Vertreibung böser Geister dienten. Auch Wahrsagerei sei zu diesem Datum üblich gewesen.[3]

 

Das 1927 bis 1942 erschienene Handwörterbuch des deutschen Aberglaubens schreibt über den November: Die Kelten, welche das Jahr vom November an rechneten, feierten zu Beginn dieses Monats ein großes Totenfest, für das die Kirche die Feste Allerheiligen und Allerseelen setzte, und über Allerheiligen: Auf keltischem Gebiete war das Anzünden großer Feuer üblich. [...] Man kann am A.tage erfahren, was für ein Winter werden und wie sich die Zukunft – namentlich in Liebesangelegenheiten – gestalten wird. [...] Die an A. (wie die am Christtag und in den Zwölften) Geborenen können Geister sehen.

 

Meyers Konversations-Lexikon schreibt zur angeblichen keltischen Herkunft des Festes: „Legendenhaft und historisch nicht exakt zu beweisen ist eine direkte Verbindungslinie zu dem keltisch-angelsächsischen Fest des Totengottes ‚Samhain‘. Aus der Verbindung mit diesem Totengott sollen sich die Gebräuche zu Halloween ableiten, vor allem der Bezug auf das Totenreich und Geister.[4]“

 

Der älteste, wenn auch unsichere Hinweis auf das Samhain-Fest entstammt dem Kalender von Coligny aus dem 1. Jahrhundert n. Chr. Dabei wird mit Samhain auf ein Fest des Sommerendes hingewiesen (keltisch samos, gälisch samhuinn für „Sommer“), oder auf das irogälische Wort für Versammlung, samain.[5] Ein angeblicher Totengott Samhain ist historisch dabei nicht nachweisbar. Erst in deutlich späteren, mittelalterlichen Schriften über die Gebräuche der Kelten wird auf einen Bezug zum Totenreich hingewiesen. Diese sind bereits intensiv christlich beeinflusst.

Halloween wurde ursprünglich nur in katholisch gebliebenen Gebieten der britischen Inseln gefeiert, vor allem in Irland, während die anglikanische Kirche am Tag vor Allerheiligen die Reformation feierte. Von dort kam es mit den zahlreichen irischen Auswanderern im 19. Jahrhundert in die Vereinigten Staaten und gehörte zum Brauchtum dieser Volksgruppe. Aufgrund seiner Attraktivität wurde es bald von den anderen übernommen und entwickelte sich zu einem wichtigen Volksfest in den Vereinigten Staaten und Kanada.

 

Der Brauch, Kürbisse zum Halloween-Fest aufzustellen, stammt aus Irland. Dort lebte einer Sage nach der Bösewicht Jack Oldfield. Dieser fing durch eine List den Teufel ein und wollte ihn nur freilassen, wenn er Jack O fortan nicht mehr in die Quere kommen würde. Nach Jacks Tod kam er aufgrund seiner Taten nicht in den Himmel, aber auch in die Hölle durfte Jack natürlich nicht, da er ja den Teufel betrogen hatte. Doch der Teufel erbarmte sich und schenkte ihm eine Rübe und eine glühende Kohle, damit Jack durch das Dunkel wandern könne. Der Ursprung des beleuchteten Kürbisses war demnach eigentlich eine beleuchtete Rübe, doch da in den USA Kürbisse in großen Mengen zur Verfügung standen, höhlte man stattdessen einen Kürbis aus. Dieser Kürbis war seither als Jack O’Lantern bekannt. Um böse Geister abzuschrecken, schnitt man Fratzen in Kürbisse, die vor dem Haus den Hof beleuchteten.

 

US-amerikanische Halloweenbräuche verbreiteten sich von Frankreich ausgehend im Verlauf der 1990er Jahre nach Europa, wo sie einen fröhlichen und weniger schaurigen Charakter als in Nordamerika haben. Während in den Vereinigten Staaten öffentliche Klassenzimmer mit Hexenmotiven oder Rathausvorplätze mit Jack O’Lanterns geschmückt werden, ist Halloween-Schmuck in Europa auf einzelne Geschäftslokale oder Privaträume beschränkt. Speziell der Ausfall des Karnevals wegen des Golfkriegs 1991 förderte das Ausweichen auf den anschließenden Herbsttermin.[12][13] Heute erfreuen sich die abgewandelten Bräuche zunehmender Beliebtheit auch im deutschsprachigen Raum - besonders das Wochenende vor dem 31. Oktober, falls dieser auf einen Werktag fällt, wird von einer wachsenden Anzahl genutzt, um Kürbisse zu schnitzen.[14] Das Umherziehen von Tür zu Tür, das klassische "Trick or Treat", wird aber fast ausschließlich am Abend des 31. Oktober selbst praktiziert.

 

More info and lots of other languages available at:

 

de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween

Crust

 

1 pouch (1 lb 1.5 oz) Betty Crocker® sugar cookie mix

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

1 egg

 

Filling

 

1 cup white vanilla baking chips (6 oz)

1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

 

Topping

 

4 cups sliced fresh strawberries

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/3 cup water

10 to 12 drops red food color, if desired

 

Directions:

 

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom only of 15x10x1- or 13x9-inch pan with cooking spray. In large bowl, stir cookie mix, butter and egg until soft dough forms. Press evenly in bottom of pan. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.

 

2. In small microwavable bowl, microwave baking chips uncovered on High 45 to 60 seconds or until chips are melted and can be stirred smooth. In medium bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Stir in melted chips until blended. Spread mixture over crust. Refrigerate while making topping.

 

3. In small bowl, crush 1 cup of the strawberries. In 2-quart saucepan, mix sugar and cornstarch. Stir in crushed strawberries and 1/3 cup water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils and thickens. Stir in food color. Cool 10 minutes. Gently stir in remaining 3 cups strawberries. Spoon topping over filling. Refrigerate 1 hour or until set; serve within 4 hours. Store covered in refrigerator.

 

www.bettycrocker.com/cookies

This is traditional German Stollen fruit cake made with dried fruit and marzipan and covered with powdered sugar. It is usually eaten during the Christmas season.

Last year I did a series on different Christmas traditions around the world to honor my friends. This year, I'm bringing it back! The first image is for my friend from Barbados. He says they make an excellent Black Rum Fruit Cake for Christmas and if you do it right, it will last a whole year! He sent me a link to the song, "Christmas In The Caribbean" by a local Barbados band. (Hey maybe Rihanna should cover this? -^ )

 

I'm from Florida. So shorts, palm trees, beaches and seagulls are much closer to my Christmas than parkas, Christmas trees, snow, and reindeer! lol. I took this picture at an awesome sim that recreates the feel of the Caribbean. I love it! It feels so much like home to me! Go check it out:

Location: Las Islas

 

Designers shown:

Aii Ugly & Beautiful Designs, Curio Obscura, Devin Vaughn, FATEwear, Lovely Disarray, Rozoregalia, Tableau Vivant,

 

Freebie: Lovely Disarray

 

Posted to:

Bishie Style SL

devinvaughn.blogspot.com/2013/12/christmas-in-caribbean.html

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/n/newportwetlands/index.as...

  

This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with a new RSPB visitor centre, a café, shop and children's play area.

 

Cetti's warblers and bearded tits can be seen and heard in the reedbeds, and ducks, geese and swans visit the reserve in large numbers during the winter. You'll enjoy spectacular views of the Severn estuary all year round.

 

Newport Wetlands is a partnership between Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB.

  

Opening times

 

Open every day (closed Christmas Day), 9 am to 5 pm (Coffee Shop open 10 am to 4 pm). On Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the centre will be open from 10 am to 4 pm and the coffee shop will be open 10 am to 3.30 pm. Please note that the carpark also closes at 5:30pm.

  

Entrance charges

 

None

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

 

Autumn/winter is the best time of year for birdwatching at Newport Wetlands when migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay.

  

Information for families

 

Newport Wetlands visitor centre is ideal for children and families. Guided walks and children's activities are available on the reserve, drinks and a bite to eat can be enjoyed in the coffee shop afterwards, followed by a browse in the retail area. Children will find the outdoor children's activity area with its 4 m high simulation of the East Usk Lighthouse very entertaining. We can offer a variety of fun environmental activity and exploration days for a wide range of local interest groups.

  

Information for dog owners

 

Some access for dogs - marked footpaths on perimeter of reserve. For more information, please contact the NRW enquiry line.

  

Star species

 

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Bearded tit

 

You will often hear bearded tits before you see them. Listen for their bell-like 'pinging' calls, then watch them whizzing across the tops of the reeds. They perch up on the stems in calm weather and feed on fallen seeds on the mud at the base of the reeds.

  

Dunlin

 

Dunlins can be seen at Newport Wetlands at almost any time. They breed further north, including in the Arctic, but migrating birds pass through in spring and autumn and some also spend winter here. Watch for them probing their beaks into the mud as they feed.

  

Little egret

 

These dainty little white herons can be seen throughout the year at Newport. You can see them fishing, stirring up fish fry from the muddy bottom with their feet.

  

Little grebe

 

Listen for little grebes 'whinnying' in spring as part of their courtship displays. They are small, round birds, and remarkably buoyant despite their fluffy feathers.

  

Shoveler

 

Shovelers are commonest here in winter, but are also a regular breeding bird. Watch them using their beaks like sieves to sift out microscopic aquatic life from the water.

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

 

Spring is the start of the breeding season and is an active and exciting time of year at Newport Wetlands, as birds set about finding their mates and building nests. Breeding waders at the reserve include lapwings and oystercatchers. Bearded tits begin to nest in the reedbeds. During late April and early May, swallows and swifts begin arriving from Africa, and can be seen flying overhead. This is a great time of year to listen out for the distinctive call of the cuckoo and many plants, including orchids, will begin to burst into colourful flower.

  

Summer

 

Grass snakes can sometimes be seen soaking up the sun or skimming expertly through the water among the reeds. Around sixteen species of dragonflies, twenty-three species of butterfly and two hundred species of moth are found at Newport Wetlands. After dark is the best time for moth spotting, but visitors are likely to see species like cinnabar moths and scarlet tiger moths during the daytime. The reserve is also home to badgers, moles and wood mice. Otters live here too, but are notoriously shy of humans and can be difficult to spot. Their droppings, or ‘spraint’, are the most commonly spotted clue to their presence.

  

Autumn

 

In autumn, the reeds turn from a vibrant lush green to yellowing brown. Groups of goldfinches can be seen flitting around the reserve and are particularly visible along Perry Lane, using their long beaks to extract seeds from the teasels. Autumn is another extremely active season at Newport Wetlands, as migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay. Curlews, redshanks, dunlins and oystercatchers feed on the estuary at low tide using their long, pointy beaks to sift through the nutritious mud for worms and grubs.

  

Winter

 

The starling roost at the reserve is a not-to-be-missed wildlife experience. From October onwards, large groups of starlings gather at dusk in great black clouds. At its peak, around 50,000 birds swoop and soar overhead, chattering noisily. After a breathtaking display, the birds drop dramatically into the reedbeds where they settle for the night. Another winter treat at Newport Wetlands is a single bittern, which has been seen here most winters since 2001. Bitterns are rare and extremely secretive, moving silently through the reeds looking for fish. Parts of the reserve provide a winter home for nationally important numbers of black-tailed godwits, shovelers and dunlins.

  

Facilities

  

Information centre

 

Car park

 

Toilets

 

Disabled toilets

 

Baby-changing facilities

 

Group bookings accepted

 

Guided walks available

 

Good for walking

 

Pushchair friendly

 

Viewing points

 

Viewing screens are available.

  

Nature trails

 

There are a number of nature trails around the reserve of various lengths with easy accessibility for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

  

Tearoom

 

Coffee shop serving triple-certified organic Fairtrade coffee, fairtrade tea, Fairtrade hot chocolate, and a selection of organic cold drinks, sandwiches, baguettes, locally-produced cakes and cookies.

 

Refreshments available

 

Hot drinks

 

Cold drinks

 

Snacks

 

Confectionery

  

Shop

 

A retail outlet for all your bird food and bird care accessories with a wide selection of binoculars and telescopes. There is also a fantastic selection of gifts and children's items.

  

The shop stocks:

 

Binoculars and telescopes

 

Bird food

 

Bird feeders

 

Gifts

  

Cafe

 

Our cafe in the visitor centre has large, panoramic windows overlooking the reserve and surrounding countryside. There is a large outdoor decking area providing additional seating with the same relaxing views. We provide organic Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate, and locally-produced cakes and ice cream.

 

We serve our own exclusive coffee that is grown, imported and roasted by us. It's Fairtrade, organic and certified bird-friendly by the Smithsonian Institute, so now you can help save nature simply by enjoying a great cup of coffee!

 

We are proud to hold a Level 5 Food Hygiene rating enabling our customers to have full confidence in the food and service that we provide.

  

Opening hours

 

10 am to 4 pm daily (closed Christmas Day)

  

Highlights from our menu

 

Triple-certified coffee including cappuccinos, lattes and Americanos, all freshly-made

We are known for our Bara Brith, Welsh cakes and hot toasted teacakes

From autumn through to spring we sell steaming tasty soups which are gluten-free

We provide a variety of sandwiches and rolls made with bread from a family baker

Pole-and-line-caught skipjack tuna is used to fill delicious sandwiches or rolls

Good variety of sandwiches and cakes. Coffee excellent

  

Access to the cafe

 

The coffee shop is in the visitor centre which has wheelchair-friendly ramps into the centre and out onto the reserve.

  

Children welcome

 

There are highchairs for babies and toddlers. We provide children's lunchboxes containing a sandwich, two-finger Kitkat, apple or orange juice and a choice of wildlife face mask.

  

We use local ingredients

 

We use Welsh meats, cheeses and free-range organic eggs.

  

Dietary requirements

 

We sell vegetarian and vegan food, some wheat-free snacks and soup, and some organic food.

  

Accessibility

 

8 August 2013

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

 

Before you visit

 

Clear print site leaflet available from reception

 

Visitor Centre open 9 am to 5 pm daily, except Christmas Day. coffee shop open 10 am to 4 pm

 

Entry to the reserve is free of charge

 

Car park open 8.30 am to 5.30 pm daily

 

Three mobility scooters and two wheelchairs available to hire out free of charge. Telephone for details

 

Registered assistance dogs welcome (please do not be offended if we ask for evidence of registration)

 

A dog walking route map is available from the visitor centre. Tethering rings and drinking bowl at the visitor centre entrance

 

Check events and activities for accessibility,

  

How to get here

 

Newport Railway Station (5 miles/8 km). Taxis usually available

 

Bus stop in the reserve car park, Number 63

  

Car parking

 

Free parking, 180 m/197 yds from the visitor centre

10 blue badge spaces

85 parking spaces

Drop-off at visitor centre arranged by telephone 01633 636363

Tarmac surface, path to visitor centre compacted limestone chippings and dust

  

Visitor centre and shop

 

Entrance by wooden walkway with a maximum gradient of 1:40. Manually operated doors. Non-slip tiled surface. Low section on service counter. Hearing loop system is installed at the service counter and in the education rooms. Good natural and artificial lighting. Staff can give assistance and read out any literature if required. Binoculars are available for hire (£3.50 for the day).

  

Nature trails

 

Four main trails. All level on compacted with one incline using a zig-zag. Floating walkways have been used by wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs but caution should be taken due to buoyancy.

  

Viewing facilities

 

Natural viewing opportunities throughout the reserve. A wheelchair accessible viewing screens overlooking the reedbeds.

  

Toilets

 

Unisex accessible toilet along with separate ladies and gents available on ground floor of Visitor Centre. Level step free access. Baby changing table and a second baby facility in ladies toilets.

  

Catering

 

Step-free level access. Outside deck viewing area. Tables are well spaced apart. Good natural and overhead lighting. Non slip tiles. Accessible WC in the visitor centre.

  

Shop

 

Shop is located in the visitor centre. Level entry step free with no doors. There is step free, level access throughout. Non-slip tiled surface. Ample room. Well lit with daylight and fluorescent lighting. Promotional video usually playing with subtitles. Staff can provide assistance.

  

Classrooms

 

Two classrooms available as one room if required. Step-free, level access throughout. Non-slip flooring. Artificial even lighting. Portable hearing loop system available. Two raised ponds nearby.

  

Picnic area

 

Four picnic tables with wheelchair access outside visitor centre. Visitors free to bring their own refreshments for picnics.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

For more information

 

Newport Wetlands

 

E-mail: newport-wetlands@rspb.org.uk

 

Telephone:01633 636363

  

How to get here

 

By bicycle (Sustrans cycle route)

 

Sustrans National Cycle Network route 4 has a branch to Newport Wetlands using existing roads. The car park has a covered cycle stand. Please note that cycling on the reserve is restricted to a designated route.

  

By train

 

The nearest railway station is Newport - which is five miles from the reserve. There is a taxi rank at the station and Newport bus station is just a few minutes walk away. For train times to and from Newport visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or telephone 08457 484950.

  

By bus

 

From the Kingsway Bus Station in Newport, the Number 63 bus leaves at 7.30 am, 9 am, 11 am, 1.30 pm, 3 pm, 4.50 pm and 6 pm and stops at the bus stop in the reserve car park. Alternatively, contact Newport Bus 01633 670563.

  

By road

 

Join the A48 at either junction 24 or 28 of the M4. Follow the A48 until you come to the Spytty Retail Park roundabout. Exit onto the A4810 Queensway Meadows. At the first roundabout take the third exit onto Meadows Road and follow the brown tourist signs to the reserve.

  

Our partners

 

The Newport Wetlands project is funded by the European Union's Objective Two programme supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and secured via the Newport European Partnership, Newport City Council's allocation of the Welsh Assembly Government's Local Regeneration Fund, Newport City Council's Landfill Tax Credit Scheme, the Environment Agency Wales and Visit Wales – the Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks.

 

Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB would like to thank the communities of Newport and the volunteers who have supported Newport Wetlands.

  

Newport Wetlands Conference and Meeting Rooms

  

Set in the tranquil surroundings of a peaceful nature reserve, our excellent conference facilities offer a superb location for a great getaway from the office and provide a wonderful setting for a variety of corporate events. You will receive a warm welcome from the staff at the Visitor Centre, providing a professional and efficient service.

 

We can provide facilities for the following

 

Conferences

 

Board Meetings

 

Seminars

 

Training Courses

 

Presentations

  

Away days

 

Rooms can be arranged in boardroom, theatre style or in any other format to suit your event. We also have a range of equipment for hire including a digital projector and smart board facilities.

 

Your booking fee includes free car parking, access to the Reserve as well as the Visitor Centre, Shop and Café. The Reserve comprises of a series of lagoons and reed beds from reclaimed industrial land, which is now home to a wealth of wildlife.

 

A tour of the Reserve can be arranged as an unusual and revitalising break during a meeting or away day.

  

Catering

 

Fairtrade coffee and tea, biscuits or homemade cakes can be served throughout the day, and we can provide a freshly prepared buffet to suit your dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. Buffets include a selection of classic sandwiches, a selection of savoury items, fresh fruit and a selection of freshly baked homemade cakes.

 

Alternatively, delegates can stroll across to the café themselves and appreciate inspirational views of the reserve from the veranda.

  

The Lakeside Suite

 

A purpose built meeting room, which caters for 12 people boardroom style or 25 people theatre style.

  

The Education Facilities

 

Set in a tranquil environment, overlooking the waters edge the Education Rooms offers the perfect environment for larger events and conferences. The room can be organised in various styles and caters for up to 80 people theatre style.

 

For more information or to make a provisional booking, please contact Adrianne Jones using the details below.

 

For more information

 

Adrianne Jones

Centre Co-ordinator

E-mail: adrianne.jones@rspb.org.uk

Telephone:01633 636355

Traditional rich fruit cakes, as cupcakes! These are my regular fruitcake recipe, but baked as cupcakes, then iced with marzipan and sugarpaste. Made for a fayre I did this past weekend.

いちごサンタのクリスマスケーキ

...... flickr is a wonderful place to be!

Although it is a "virtual" place , sometimes virtuality becomes reality and

that is what has happened to me this Christmas!

Two of my flickr pals have sent me the most lovely and thoughtful gifts ..... I won't embarrass you both by "outing" you, but I was so thrilled to receive these lovely presents and I will think of you as I use and enjoy them!

I don't think a cake like this would travel too well overseas, so I'm afraid you'll have to share it as a little "virtual" Christmas cake (although it is real .... honestly!) as a BIG Thank You and I hope you both have a wonderful Christmas! *Hugs* xx

 

As this is a little 4" fruit cake it's possibly better to view it LARGE ! ;o))

Made Explore 18.12. 2008

That is, Christmas Day 2016. I was clearing out the kitchen cupboards this morning and came upon this mini Christmas Cake. I'd bought it in a Winter Fayre last December and had clean forgotten about it. It's home made and with a Best by Date of November 2017.

Identifier: bookofroyalblue03balt

Title: Book of the Royal blue

Year: 1897 (1890s)

Authors: Baltimore and Ohio railroad company. [from old catalog]

Subjects: Middle Atlantic States -- Description and travel

Publisher: Baltimore

Contributing Library: The Library of Congress

Digitizing Sponsor: Sloan Foundation

  

View Book Page: Book Viewer

About This Book: Catalog Entry

View All Images: All Images From Book

 

Click here to view book online to see this illustration in context in a browseable online version of this book.

  

Text Appearing Before Image:

BEEF. AU JUS ROAST YOUNG TURKEY, CRANBERRY SAUCE MASHED POTATOES BRUSSEL SPROUTS FRENCH PEAS BRAISED SWEET POTATOES ROAST REDHEAD DUCK WITH CURRANT JELLYFRIED HOMINY Cardinal Punch ALEXANDER SALAD ENGLISH PLUM PUDDING. BRANDY SAUCE HOT MINCE PIE NEAPOLITAN ICE CREAM ASSORTED CAKE NABISCO SUGAR WAFERS FRUIT ROQUEFORT AND EDAM CHEESE TOASTED CRACKERS COFFEE COGNAC The Drinking W.itcr is trom the Spring AX Deer P.irk, Md. MEALS $1.00CAR 1020 seasDii is upon him, lie is to be congratulated. But it he is compelled tobe away from home or to be traveling, he is entitled to somethinu morethan the ordinary. He should be made to feel that, tlu)uj;h atnonfistrangers, there is an atmosphere of good will around him. It is the season of general overindulgence in the good things of life.[t comes but once a ye.ir and whats the odds. He feels it, and there-fore indulges himself, .and believes he ought to have all that is comingto him. The Haltiniore \ Ohio liailroad Company tliought so, too, and l.iid

 

Text Appearing After Image:

before their jiatrons on llieir table dhote dining oars for ten days,menus that would delight the most i)ronouneed epicure. He or she whosat down to any one of these feasts can boast of a Christmas dinneras rare as could be found. Venison from Maine, wild game from themountains, strawberries from the South, were all there. On the Baltimore & Ohio there are sixteen dining cars, of whichall running west of Pittsburg serve all meals a la carte. All runningeast of Pittsburg, with the exception of two, serve table dhote dinners.Three jiarlor cafe and two buffet c:irs are included in the total number. Baltimore & Ohio Dining Car Service

  

Note About Images

Please note that these images are extracted from scanned page images that may have been digitally enhanced for readability - coloration and appearance of these illustrations may not perfectly resemble the original work.

I couldn't resist photographing these tiny cake decorations. I don't like fruit cake so I guess I will have to make a Christmas carrot cake... :-)

 

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/n/newportwetlands/index.as...

  

This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with a new RSPB visitor centre, a café, shop and children's play area.

 

Cetti's warblers and bearded tits can be seen and heard in the reedbeds, and ducks, geese and swans visit the reserve in large numbers during the winter. You'll enjoy spectacular views of the Severn estuary all year round.

 

Newport Wetlands is a partnership between Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB.

  

Opening times

 

Open every day (closed Christmas Day), 9 am to 5 pm (Coffee Shop open 10 am to 4 pm). On Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the centre will be open from 10 am to 4 pm and the coffee shop will be open 10 am to 3.30 pm. Please note that the carpark also closes at 5:30pm.

  

Entrance charges

 

None

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

 

Autumn/winter is the best time of year for birdwatching at Newport Wetlands when migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay.

  

Information for families

 

Newport Wetlands visitor centre is ideal for children and families. Guided walks and children's activities are available on the reserve, drinks and a bite to eat can be enjoyed in the coffee shop afterwards, followed by a browse in the retail area. Children will find the outdoor children's activity area with its 4 m high simulation of the East Usk Lighthouse very entertaining. We can offer a variety of fun environmental activity and exploration days for a wide range of local interest groups.

  

Information for dog owners

 

Some access for dogs - marked footpaths on perimeter of reserve. For more information, please contact the NRW enquiry line.

  

Star species

 

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Bearded tit

 

You will often hear bearded tits before you see them. Listen for their bell-like 'pinging' calls, then watch them whizzing across the tops of the reeds. They perch up on the stems in calm weather and feed on fallen seeds on the mud at the base of the reeds.

  

Dunlin

 

Dunlins can be seen at Newport Wetlands at almost any time. They breed further north, including in the Arctic, but migrating birds pass through in spring and autumn and some also spend winter here. Watch for them probing their beaks into the mud as they feed.

  

Little egret

 

These dainty little white herons can be seen throughout the year at Newport. You can see them fishing, stirring up fish fry from the muddy bottom with their feet.

  

Little grebe

 

Listen for little grebes 'whinnying' in spring as part of their courtship displays. They are small, round birds, and remarkably buoyant despite their fluffy feathers.

  

Shoveler

 

Shovelers are commonest here in winter, but are also a regular breeding bird. Watch them using their beaks like sieves to sift out microscopic aquatic life from the water.

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

 

Spring is the start of the breeding season and is an active and exciting time of year at Newport Wetlands, as birds set about finding their mates and building nests. Breeding waders at the reserve include lapwings and oystercatchers. Bearded tits begin to nest in the reedbeds. During late April and early May, swallows and swifts begin arriving from Africa, and can be seen flying overhead. This is a great time of year to listen out for the distinctive call of the cuckoo and many plants, including orchids, will begin to burst into colourful flower.

  

Summer

 

Grass snakes can sometimes be seen soaking up the sun or skimming expertly through the water among the reeds. Around sixteen species of dragonflies, twenty-three species of butterfly and two hundred species of moth are found at Newport Wetlands. After dark is the best time for moth spotting, but visitors are likely to see species like cinnabar moths and scarlet tiger moths during the daytime. The reserve is also home to badgers, moles and wood mice. Otters live here too, but are notoriously shy of humans and can be difficult to spot. Their droppings, or ‘spraint’, are the most commonly spotted clue to their presence.

  

Autumn

 

In autumn, the reeds turn from a vibrant lush green to yellowing brown. Groups of goldfinches can be seen flitting around the reserve and are particularly visible along Perry Lane, using their long beaks to extract seeds from the teasels. Autumn is another extremely active season at Newport Wetlands, as migratory wildfowl and wading birds begin to arrive ready for their winter stay. Curlews, redshanks, dunlins and oystercatchers feed on the estuary at low tide using their long, pointy beaks to sift through the nutritious mud for worms and grubs.

  

Winter

 

The starling roost at the reserve is a not-to-be-missed wildlife experience. From October onwards, large groups of starlings gather at dusk in great black clouds. At its peak, around 50,000 birds swoop and soar overhead, chattering noisily. After a breathtaking display, the birds drop dramatically into the reedbeds where they settle for the night. Another winter treat at Newport Wetlands is a single bittern, which has been seen here most winters since 2001. Bitterns are rare and extremely secretive, moving silently through the reeds looking for fish. Parts of the reserve provide a winter home for nationally important numbers of black-tailed godwits, shovelers and dunlins.

  

Facilities

  

Information centre

 

Car park

 

Toilets

 

Disabled toilets

 

Baby-changing facilities

 

Group bookings accepted

 

Guided walks available

 

Good for walking

 

Pushchair friendly

 

Viewing points

 

Viewing screens are available.

  

Nature trails

 

There are a number of nature trails around the reserve of various lengths with easy accessibility for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

  

Tearoom

 

Coffee shop serving triple-certified organic Fairtrade coffee, fairtrade tea, Fairtrade hot chocolate, and a selection of organic cold drinks, sandwiches, baguettes, locally-produced cakes and cookies.

 

Refreshments available

 

Hot drinks

 

Cold drinks

 

Snacks

 

Confectionery

  

Shop

 

A retail outlet for all your bird food and bird care accessories with a wide selection of binoculars and telescopes. There is also a fantastic selection of gifts and children's items.

  

The shop stocks:

 

Binoculars and telescopes

 

Bird food

 

Bird feeders

 

Gifts

  

Cafe

 

Our cafe in the visitor centre has large, panoramic windows overlooking the reserve and surrounding countryside. There is a large outdoor decking area providing additional seating with the same relaxing views. We provide organic Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate, and locally-produced cakes and ice cream.

 

We serve our own exclusive coffee that is grown, imported and roasted by us. It's Fairtrade, organic and certified bird-friendly by the Smithsonian Institute, so now you can help save nature simply by enjoying a great cup of coffee!

 

We are proud to hold a Level 5 Food Hygiene rating enabling our customers to have full confidence in the food and service that we provide.

  

Opening hours

 

10 am to 4 pm daily (closed Christmas Day)

  

Highlights from our menu

 

Triple-certified coffee including cappuccinos, lattes and Americanos, all freshly-made

We are known for our Bara Brith, Welsh cakes and hot toasted teacakes

From autumn through to spring we sell steaming tasty soups which are gluten-free

We provide a variety of sandwiches and rolls made with bread from a family baker

Pole-and-line-caught skipjack tuna is used to fill delicious sandwiches or rolls

Good variety of sandwiches and cakes. Coffee excellent

  

Access to the cafe

 

The coffee shop is in the visitor centre which has wheelchair-friendly ramps into the centre and out onto the reserve.

  

Children welcome

 

There are highchairs for babies and toddlers. We provide children's lunchboxes containing a sandwich, two-finger Kitkat, apple or orange juice and a choice of wildlife face mask.

  

We use local ingredients

 

We use Welsh meats, cheeses and free-range organic eggs.

  

Dietary requirements

 

We sell vegetarian and vegan food, some wheat-free snacks and soup, and some organic food.

  

Accessibility

 

8 August 2013

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

 

Before you visit

 

Clear print site leaflet available from reception

 

Visitor Centre open 9 am to 5 pm daily, except Christmas Day. coffee shop open 10 am to 4 pm

 

Entry to the reserve is free of charge

 

Car park open 8.30 am to 5.30 pm daily

 

Three mobility scooters and two wheelchairs available to hire out free of charge. Telephone for details

 

Registered assistance dogs welcome (please do not be offended if we ask for evidence of registration)

 

A dog walking route map is available from the visitor centre. Tethering rings and drinking bowl at the visitor centre entrance

 

Check events and activities for accessibility,

  

How to get here

 

Newport Railway Station (5 miles/8 km). Taxis usually available

 

Bus stop in the reserve car park, Number 63

  

Car parking

 

Free parking, 180 m/197 yds from the visitor centre

10 blue badge spaces

85 parking spaces

Drop-off at visitor centre arranged by telephone 01633 636363

Tarmac surface, path to visitor centre compacted limestone chippings and dust

  

Visitor centre and shop

 

Entrance by wooden walkway with a maximum gradient of 1:40. Manually operated doors. Non-slip tiled surface. Low section on service counter. Hearing loop system is installed at the service counter and in the education rooms. Good natural and artificial lighting. Staff can give assistance and read out any literature if required. Binoculars are available for hire (£3.50 for the day).

  

Nature trails

 

Four main trails. All level on compacted with one incline using a zig-zag. Floating walkways have been used by wheelchairs, scooters and pushchairs but caution should be taken due to buoyancy.

  

Viewing facilities

 

Natural viewing opportunities throughout the reserve. A wheelchair accessible viewing screens overlooking the reedbeds.

  

Toilets

 

Unisex accessible toilet along with separate ladies and gents available on ground floor of Visitor Centre. Level step free access. Baby changing table and a second baby facility in ladies toilets.

  

Catering

 

Step-free level access. Outside deck viewing area. Tables are well spaced apart. Good natural and overhead lighting. Non slip tiles. Accessible WC in the visitor centre.

  

Shop

 

Shop is located in the visitor centre. Level entry step free with no doors. There is step free, level access throughout. Non-slip tiled surface. Ample room. Well lit with daylight and fluorescent lighting. Promotional video usually playing with subtitles. Staff can provide assistance.

  

Classrooms

 

Two classrooms available as one room if required. Step-free, level access throughout. Non-slip flooring. Artificial even lighting. Portable hearing loop system available. Two raised ponds nearby.

  

Picnic area

 

Four picnic tables with wheelchair access outside visitor centre. Visitors free to bring their own refreshments for picnics.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

For more information

 

Newport Wetlands

 

E-mail: newport-wetlands@rspb.org.uk

 

Telephone:01633 636363

  

How to get here

 

By bicycle (Sustrans cycle route)

 

Sustrans National Cycle Network route 4 has a branch to Newport Wetlands using existing roads. The car park has a covered cycle stand. Please note that cycling on the reserve is restricted to a designated route.

  

By train

 

The nearest railway station is Newport - which is five miles from the reserve. There is a taxi rank at the station and Newport bus station is just a few minutes walk away. For train times to and from Newport visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or telephone 08457 484950.

  

By bus

 

From the Kingsway Bus Station in Newport, the Number 63 bus leaves at 7.30 am, 9 am, 11 am, 1.30 pm, 3 pm, 4.50 pm and 6 pm and stops at the bus stop in the reserve car park. Alternatively, contact Newport Bus 01633 670563.

  

By road

 

Join the A48 at either junction 24 or 28 of the M4. Follow the A48 until you come to the Spytty Retail Park roundabout. Exit onto the A4810 Queensway Meadows. At the first roundabout take the third exit onto Meadows Road and follow the brown tourist signs to the reserve.

  

Our partners

 

The Newport Wetlands project is funded by the European Union's Objective Two programme supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and secured via the Newport European Partnership, Newport City Council's allocation of the Welsh Assembly Government's Local Regeneration Fund, Newport City Council's Landfill Tax Credit Scheme, the Environment Agency Wales and Visit Wales – the Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks.

 

Natural Resources Wales, Newport City Council and the RSPB would like to thank the communities of Newport and the volunteers who have supported Newport Wetlands.

  

Newport Wetlands Conference and Meeting Rooms

  

Set in the tranquil surroundings of a peaceful nature reserve, our excellent conference facilities offer a superb location for a great getaway from the office and provide a wonderful setting for a variety of corporate events. You will receive a warm welcome from the staff at the Visitor Centre, providing a professional and efficient service.

 

We can provide facilities for the following

 

Conferences

 

Board Meetings

 

Seminars

 

Training Courses

 

Presentations

  

Away days

 

Rooms can be arranged in boardroom, theatre style or in any other format to suit your event. We also have a range of equipment for hire including a digital projector and smart board facilities.

 

Your booking fee includes free car parking, access to the Reserve as well as the Visitor Centre, Shop and Café. The Reserve comprises of a series of lagoons and reed beds from reclaimed industrial land, which is now home to a wealth of wildlife.

 

A tour of the Reserve can be arranged as an unusual and revitalising break during a meeting or away day.

  

Catering

 

Fairtrade coffee and tea, biscuits or homemade cakes can be served throughout the day, and we can provide a freshly prepared buffet to suit your dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options. Buffets include a selection of classic sandwiches, a selection of savoury items, fresh fruit and a selection of freshly baked homemade cakes.

 

Alternatively, delegates can stroll across to the café themselves and appreciate inspirational views of the reserve from the veranda.

  

The Lakeside Suite

 

A purpose built meeting room, which caters for 12 people boardroom style or 25 people theatre style.

  

The Education Facilities

 

Set in a tranquil environment, overlooking the waters edge the Education Rooms offers the perfect environment for larger events and conferences. The room can be organised in various styles and caters for up to 80 people theatre style.

 

For more information or to make a provisional booking, please contact Adrianne Jones using the details below.

 

For more information

 

Adrianne Jones

Centre Co-ordinator

E-mail: adrianne.jones@rspb.org.uk

Telephone:01633 636355

Children decorated the cake this year again.

クリスマスケーキ。子どもたちがデコレーションしました。

 

PENTAX *ist DS2 / PENTAX FA35mm

This is a painting by Henry Utoaluga.

  

(POEM HOLDING TANK)

 

CAMERA

 

This little machine gives the daily

Heaviness some levity. Captures

Moments so perfectly. Images –

Cherish them but beware of them,

They’re just one small part of a

Much bigger picture, one moment

In a much bigger story. Regardless

Of whether the overall story is going

Hopelessly or otherwise, smile for

My lens like it’s going to end happily.

 

FORMING

 

Clouds hide the stars tonight. No rain,

Not yet, no wind, just a stillness that

Amplifies any calm or disquiet you came

Here with. In emptiness like this, the

Mind tries to fill in the blanks. So maybe

It’s my imagination, but I think there’s

Something forming in the void. It won’t

Reveal itself, not yet, but I just feel it.

Can’t attach good or bad associations

To it, just have to wait and see. So will

My dread be justified, or will it surprise

Me when out pops something good?

Could be music trying to define itself from

Noise, or meaning seeking to make itself

Clear through chaos. Life itself, they say,

Formed through particles, through like

Minded molecules that just needed time

To cluster around a center before they

Could figure out how they fit together.

If that can happen in a darkness longer

And far more uncertain than ours, then

We have no reason to fear whatever

Might be forming in the void.

 

WHAT THEY WHISPER ABOUT CHOCOLATE

 

The depression I didn’t realize I’d been

Carrying around for months suddenly

Vanished after one small cup of my

Friend’s koko samoa. Maybe the old

Family recipe just has a kick to it, but

Suddenly my senses remembered their

Capacity for optimism . Optimism does

Not have to mean being unrealistic, it’s

More of an attitude that even if things

Don’t go your way, you needn’t feed

Your pessimism till you’ve grown fat

On despair without even trying. As far

As mood improvements go, that was

Pretty significant for me. So of course

My first thought was to seek an increased

Koko dose, but rather than court certain

Chocolate addiction, I’d rather adopt a

Chocolate philosophy, i.e. remember the

Sweet regardless of how sour things get.

What’s whispered about the seemingly

Innocent chocolate might not be merely

Old wives’ tales - cook it up right and it’s

Really more like a medicine.

 

MENEHUNE

 

The day shift begins before morning

Hoping to make the world right again

In time for another day. So goes the

Myth of the little men who always put

Everything back together so well that

We can’t even tell what a horrendous

Mess was made during the night. If

That reality ever came to light there’d

Be laws to lock up everyone under 30

Between dusk and daybreak. Daybreak

Is a misnomer – what gets broken each

Night? Hearts, wills, confidences, bonds,

Promises, plans, marriages, friendships,

Partnerships, battleships, faith – you

Name it. If someone wasn't repairing as

Much of the damage as they can, then

There'd be no point in any of us getting

Out of bed. Damaging, nasty, careless,

Heartless - don't you ever wonder why

Our whole world doesn't just stop? It's

Little men laboring at their repairs to

Make sure we're back together just as

Fast as we all fall apart. It's not just for

This endless work that each of these

Little men truly deserves a medal, it's

Also for knowing the truth but never

Giving up on us.

 

PROVE

 

I can’t prove clouds don’t have emotions

When they drop rain, can’t prove roaches

Mean to be rude, can’t prove fish deny the

Existence of nets, can’t prove the desert lets

Its winds whip its sands from malice. Can’t

Prove if barking is ever justified or just an

Indulgence, nor whether a breeze means to

Be nice on purpose or is just being itself. So

Much I can’t prove, no wonder I anticipate

Skepticism. There’s really no right or wrong,

True or false, or good or bad, is there? It just

Depends on the circumstances. There’s only

What’s agreed upon or not. If only we could

Agree on something, anything, who knows

What else might fall into place? But if you

Want proof, you’ll have to ask a scientist. As

For me, I’d only say, I see it like this, do you?

 

POLAR BEAR

 

Life on the ice isn't as cold when you

Don't waste your warmth. I should

Know, I'm a Polar Bear. It isn't so

Empty if you see a different kind of

Fullness. You say it's barren but I'm

Not starving. Not to brag but you need

To know where to look to sustain

Your life on the ice. My only worry is

This rumbling that shakes the cold

Ground. The volcano has to either

Melt its way through or take it's fire

Somewhere else. Isn't this earth a

Contradiction? So warm deep within,

With a surface so cold. Just like some

People we know? I don't blame them.

After all, you just survive wherever you

Find yourself. I should know, because

I'm a Polar Bear.

 

WIL – BUR

 

Truth can be like a horse that

Will take you places you could

Never imagine going. Provided,

Of course, that you don’t find

Yourself flat on your ass every

Time it throws you for a loop.

 

ESSENCE

 

Eternal – not subject to our changing

Human moods, nor the evolution of

Our flesh. Has always been there and

Always will be. Temorary – our roles

And our hour upon the stage. In the

Midst of grand illusions, you might

Catch a glimpse of the truth. In the

End it’s all just so much drama, but

The essence of the story lasts long

After lights have dimmed. We may

Change over and over, looking for a

Foothold in this soap opera life, but

The essence never changes, never

Needs to, and any time you like, you

Can return to it. Be true to the

Essence and it will be true to you

 

LOVE AND WAR

 

Heart is both weapon and defense when

You enter this fray. Know your weapon

Well, use it wisely. The only thing worse

Than receiving the wound that’s hardest

To heal is knowing you’ve given it. At least

Those wounded in war still long to fight

Another day, but woe to those wounded

In love who no longer care whether they

Continue or simply cease.

 

FORMULAS

 

Would you love me if I was always on TV?

Would you love me if I played rugby? Would

You love me if I had the money to buy you

An elephant? Would you love me if I had

Big muscles? A King Dong like King Kong?

Would you love me if I needed love to get

Off drugs? Would you live me if everyone

Else did? If no one else did? Would you

Love me if I spanked your bare butt with a

Belt for being bad, like your daddy did? If I

Punished you for being bad? If I forgave

You for being bad? How ‘bout if I was the

Baddest badass in the history of badness?

How ‘bout if I said you were sacred to me?

Is it fair I have to figure through so many

Formulas for yours when all you have to

Do is be yourself?

 

PAPER

 

Papers rule my life, my whole being

Is just a series of papers. Thank you

Trees for turning into paper, Term

Paper, rolling paper, news paper, wall

Paper, paper plates, certificates of birth,

Death and divorce. Diplomas. Pages

And pages of unfinished poems. Hey

My blank page dear, it sure looked good

On paper. Paper tiger. Someone cut me

Out of the paper and said now you're

Printed material made flesh. When I die

Please wrap me in paper and offer me

On special at KS with the frozen fish.

Maybe the one I love will fry me for her

Sunday feast and finally our flesh will

Become one until she flushes me out

After wiping away my last traces with

Paper.

 

NOTES

 

You can never force a true harmony,

Only sing what you’d sing anyway,

Let someone else sing what they’d

Sing with or without you, and the

Notes either blend naturally or not.

Same old song since Adam and Eve,

But our notes make it new and the

Harmony makes it ours.

 

WATER

 

Water, fall from the sky. Life,

Rooted or otherwise, needs

What you bring. Water, go

Underground. Cool the Earth

And she’ll hide you away from

The jealous sun wanting to

Take you back no sooner than

You’re given. Water, make me

Clean. Get beneath the dirt,

Flow. Nothing is dirty by nature,

Only by design or neglect, and

Even the purest water joins as

A river to find the sea together..

 

CONVENTIONAL

 

If conventional would make you

Comfortable, then curse anything

Original in me. Out, unconventional,

Halu! Fee, fi, fo, fidual, I smell the

Blood of an individual. I stopped

Paying attention to convention long

Ago, much to my own detriment,

But now I want to repent. Please

Lord let me be average again. I want

To be normal. I want to be boring, to

Blend in, to not be noticed, except

By you. Let me be so well adjusted

And healthy in mind, body and

Haircut it’s sickening. Being myself

For better or worse has been bad for

My social standing, so Convention,

Please lock me in the cage of your

Protective embrace. Convention,

Take me to your ample breasts so

Like a typical faceless citizen I can

Suck to my heart’s content.

 

MONSTER

 

Last time I checked there wasn’t

A trail of dead bodies in my wake,

Nor broken hearts like bread crumbs

Leading back to a hidden lair in the

Forest of doomed love. So I’m at a

Loss as to what kind monster you

Think I am, and why. But all that

Frankenstein had to do to scare

Someone was just be himself.

 

BREAKFAST BIRDS

 

Birds in the morning flock to steal my dogs’

Breakfast, cause my canines are so occupied

Eating they don't notice the thievery. Eating

Is contagious - when one feeds, others want in

On the act. Like when love gives off its warm

Glow that others can’t help but find attractive

Too. When two feed, twice as many want in

On the act. Usually we see sharing as positive,

And want to let our friends in on our good thing.

But just because birds are remarkably consistent

In contributing their saxophone impressions and

Little hip hop moves every morning, is this from

Friendship or just a free breakfast?

 

PAINTER

 

Long before entering politics, Hitler

Wanted to be a painter. It’s true! I

Looked it up. As a very young man,

Hitler loved art, music, architecture,

And his country’s history. For awhile

He tried making a living by selling his

Watercolors on the streets of Vienna.

He wasn’t very successful, but one of

His watercolors has survived and you

Can see it online. That watercolor, to

Me, looks skillful enough, but twice the

University of Vienna rejected Hitler, said

His work lacked sufficient evidence of

Ability, crushing is aspiration to paint

Seriously. Instead he enlisted in the

Amy and the rest is history. 5.5 million

Killed. It would be unfair to blame the

University of Vienna (how could they

Have known), but still it's tempting to

Speculate on how differently history

Could have turned out had Hitler

Been able to stick to his painting.

 

RIFLE

 

I can see it clearly and I don’t

Like it, but clarity is the kind of

Dangerous gift you just have to

Learn how to handle. It’s like

When you’re given a rifle, you

Can use it to terrorize or to put

Food on the table.

 

CUT

 

First just a tiny one to remind me I’m

Not afraid of pain. Growing numb

Terrifies me more. Look, my body is

Liquid, it flows. Color small crimson

Hearts on m arm – your Valentine’s

Card. Cut deeper, somewhere no one

Will see the scars, my tattoos of your

Gain at my loss. Cut your name into

My skin – I’m your billboard dripping

Red. Cut open a window so this bird

Of prey eating me inside can fly into

The night.

 

BREAKFAST

 

Cereal and milk welcome the day

With a dip together. Toast opens

Itself to richness from butter, then

Feels a little tart from jam. Omelet

Anticipates a special sauce bringing

Out hidden nuances in its warm mix

Of flavors. Coffee takes in its two

Favorites, sugar for sweetness and

Cream to mellow its edge. I finish

Them all off. We’ll do it again

Tomorrow, promise.

 

MARAE

 

Everyone deserves a place of safety for their

Relationship to the eternal. Somewhere the

Spirits of that which you cherish most deeply

Are protected and can live and breathe. Here

I stand outside your marae. I call in greeting.

No answer comes from within. Without your

Welcome, I cannot enter. If you judge me as

Unworthy of your sacred ground or displeasing

To your spirits, I will call no more. I leave as I

Came, quietly, with respect. Inside, your spirits

Can hear me, and know my heart and mind. Is

It they who say deny me, or am I one you wish

To hide from them?

 

THE JUSTICE SYSTEM

 

When you return to the scene of the

Crime, is it to see if anything’s changed?

No, nothing’s changed – what’s good will

Always be good, and what’s bad is still

Bad. All that changes is our ability to

Tell one from the other.

 

TALIBAN

 

What they want is not genuine creativity

Or self expression. What they want is

Politically correct lies. We fight the

Taliban in Afghanistan? Too late! We

Already have them in our back yard.

 

MANNERS AND MORALS

 

I wish I could just make you feel good.

Many moons ago, when this all started,

That was sort of the point. Everything

Said and done since then may tend to

Obscure a related point, which is how

Ridiculously easily you could make me

Feel good if you wanted to. I was busy

Calling your manners and morals into

Question, so it may have slipped my

Mind to mention it. But yeah, in those

Few moments where it seemed like

There was something to be optimistic

About, nothing before or since has

Ever felt better. How could I get so

Preoccupied with manners and morals?

Maybe thinking my own had to adhere

To some high standard, but funny how

Little they matter now. In spite of the

Worst possible thoughts I could have

About you, if I thought you could still

Feel good about me then all I’d do is

Try and make you feel good.

 

PRICELESS

 

Like a diamond in a shop window I stop

And stare at, something personal makes

This more than just another glittering rock.

It feels like everything meant for me,

Everything I was meant for, so naturally

I start conjuring what the future should

Be, will be, already is. Fatally forgetting

This is not mine yet, as much as I firmly

Believe no one else will ever love it more.

How obscene to see something precious

As this subject to an exchange rate, to be

Lost or gained through trade. This could

Turn me criminal - stick ‘em up mister

And watch me walk away with what you

Only thought was yours. Is any price too

High for what’s priceless? What a tragedy

To see it fall into the hands of one who

Would treat it as worthless, just another

Glittering rock.

 

NAVIGATING

 

The word friendship evokes kind winds

And calm seas. It’s friend, someone you

Can be close to, plus ship, something

That travels great distances, certainly

Further than one could swim or paddle

A canoe. Sounds like you and a friend

Can make the voyage together. Sad,

Then, how so many friendships and

Fledgling loves lie shipwrecked on the

Rocky shores of mistrust and betrayal.

Sailing can be dangerous. It’s not clear

Who’s captain and neither of us have

The map, only a compass of the heart.

Stars might guides us or storms could

Throw us off course. Pirates try for a

Piece of us, sirens entice us towards

The rocks for spite and Moby Dick

Rams our ship for sport. The reward

For all the risks is arriving somewhere

We’d never reach alone, provided we

Survive navigating each other’s waters.

 

BOP TEMPLATE

 

Jazz rose up from the streets, coming

From somewhere I couldn’t see. This

City’s warm even in the middle of the

Night. So many working at night, in

Reverse of the natural order like bats

Or owls. Ask them if they’d take the

Day shift and they say that’s crazy.

The day is just so much play acting.

You can’t fake it at night, you know.

Night is the truth, where we came

From, where we’re going. Why do

You think a coyote needs moonlight

To sing the blues? Night is the truth,

Man. I nod and follow the streetlights,

Wondering if all those dreams of

Normal people don’t just float in the

Air this time of night, or if some find

Their way into the horns of a jazz

Band during the late set and get

Breathed back out as music .

 

BULLSHIT GLASSES

 

In the back of my mind there’s a

Voice saying, “You’re wasting your

Time. Trying to cast your pearls

Before a swine.” That brings out

The part of me that’s stubborn

As a mule (and maybe as stupid)

That says, “No! If she could just

Take off her Bullshit Glasses then

She would see it too. I know it!”

But of course the other side of

That coin is maybe I’m the one

Who can’t take off his own.

 

STRING THEORY

 

For better or worse, my poetry comes

Out most naturally when I’m in a highly-

Strung emotional state. This doesn’t

Mean I’m not a fairly reasonable human

Being the rest of the time. Still, I don’t

Recommend a highly-strung emotional

State no matter what it does for your

Poetry. For one thing, it won't work

Wonders on your general affability or

Outlook on life. For another, you have

To check constantly to ensure your

Highly-strung strings haven’t gone out

Of tune, and take caution not to strum

Them so passionately that one of them

Goes pwack and snaps.

 

(Note: The closest approximation to the sound of a snapping guitar

string is "pwack", although you won't find it in most dictionaries.)

 

BAD HISTORY MONTH

 

Do you think a deception

Is any less of a deception

Just because it involves a

Computer? It still becomes

Part of a bad history, one

More nail in the coffin of

Honesty and trust.

 

DISPOSABLE

 

Sacrificed again on the altar of your pride,

Only I don’t feel such a holy object. More like

A surrogate for your interests in an offshore

Account. Trying to petition the Gods offering

Breadcrumbs in hope of gold? He who receives

Your sacrifice, on high or down low as you

Decide, knows the difference between what’s

Truly valuable to you and what’s decidedly

Disposable. You’ll be rewarded accordingly

With blessings of the disposable variety.

 

BOXES

 

Sometimes people deserve the boxes

We put them in. Other times the boxes

We choose for them say more about us.

Careful not to mislabel. Nothing worse

Than putting a right thing in a wrong box

And shelving it somewhere you’d rather

Forget. Put me in a rubbish box and you

May find one day you’re searching the

Dump in vain for what you threw away.

 

POEMS

 

Poems are… Individual flowers from the

Mind’s garden, plus an occasional weed…

Escaping pus from a wound inside that

Won’t heal… Shards of debris from an

Emotional explosion equal to the creation

Of the universe… An SOS from a ghost ship…

Little eruptions of volcanoes undersea

Dreaming of being islands… Notes posted

For God on what you hope and pray is his

Refrigerator… Flying the flag of your true

Self to see who salutes… Something you

Sleepily clean up in the morning from

Your soul’s front porch… Proof positive

So-called sanity, when accepted without

Question, would happily render a death

Sentence on a deeper reality… Usually

Permanence’s enemy, change’s friend…

(Unless it’s the kind of open permanence

That provides poets sanctuary…) Written

In tears, sweat, blood, and other juices we

Can use to make poems in private... All this,

Plus. On and on, on and on, on and on.

  

JESTER

 

In medieval times, even a jester toasted by

The court could find himself separated from

His head for saying the wrong thing at the

Wrong moment. Nothing uplifts and nothing

Wounds as surely as humor. The jester’s lot

Was bringing merriment yet stopping short

Of heresy, which must have taken incredible

Insight and skill. He walked a tightrope: be

Funny or starve, but calculate the laughter

Carefully or be stabbed. Can you imagine

What stress the poor jester would come

Under, having to make light of even the

Darkest circumstances? And when a King

Or Queen revealed themselves as the true

Fool, it fell to the jester to save royal face by

Appearing an even bigger clown. I have no

Doubt more than a few monarchs treasured

Their jesters for this very reason. I’ve felt

Making someone else smile was a matter

Of life or death, worried terribly over my

Wording, sensed imminent doom when it

Seemed I’d gotten it wrong. A jester needs

A keen eye for tragedy, given how easily he

Could become one. No wonder even today

So many comics are also alcoholics.

 

JAGGER AT 70 a/k/a BLUNTLY ON YOUR BIRTHDAY

 

Yours will remain a most unlikely, most

Amazing tale – two teens (you and Keith)

Inspired to play the devil’s music and

Ending up feted as gods. Was your own

Mephistophelian trade 20 untouchable

Years followed by 30 in exile on main

Street? Did all your satanic majesty

Culminate in artistic bankruptcy amidst

More dough than Robert Johnson would

Have dared to dream of? Sorry I’m so

Blunt on your birthday, but being studied

(Not just a stud) comes with your cultural

Role, and your truest believers still can’t

Figure what happened after Tattoo You.

So what, Sir Mick, if you won’t likely be

Mentioned in history with the same awe

As Picasso or even Muddy? It’s only rock

And roll. Like our own Prometheus,

You’re still rolling - we find something

Oddly comforting in that, even if with

Each push your peaks just grow further

Distant. Meanwhile, naïve believers

Unwisely await miracles, like one more

Stones album worthy of your past to

Silence every told-you-so, to prove it’s

Never too late if you’re not too lazy.

 

(Note: Jagger and I share the same birth month - July - but I'm on the 9th and he's on the 26th so I'm a Cancer and he's a Leo.)

 

SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE

 

An obvious mystery, one’s person’s gold,

Another’s garbage. One man’s madonna,

Another’s whore. One woman’s devotion,

Another’s indifference. All personal, and

If you’re not careful, all subject to change

Without notice.

 

ALL IN TRADE

 

Our passions, hopes, time, attention

Exceptions, investments, generosity,

Resilience, forgiveness, willingness to

Risk, all in trade for that one thing we

Haven’t found yet. Your space, special

Places, faithfulness, kisses, intimacy,

Tendency to see the diamond but not

The blood behind it, all in trade for that

One thing you haven’t found yet. The

Devotion I’ve reserved for someone

Deserving, openness when I’m not

Inclined to close up, a skill I learned of

Nurturing, songs I learned from

Loneliness and joy, all in trade for that

That one thing I haven’t found yet, the

One perfect exchange that makes

Everything right, makes sense of the

Mysteries, makes the contradictions

Finally reveal the truths they hide.

 

DIFFERENCE

 

Despite all you disbelieve about yourself,

You could still make a difference if you

Wanted to. In case no one’s told you,

Your whole pose is one of indifference.

By all appearances, you don’t care, and

That impression will remain unless you

Try somehow to change it. Neither one

Can win when playing by two different

Sets of rules. Someday when all your

Shit has hit the fan, you’ll understand

How you can’t fight for someone while

You’re also fighting with them. Even if

The effort ends up seeming to not even

Make much difference, the truth will

Always be that you tried, not that you

Simply settled for the hand-outs of fate.

 

AD INFINITUM

 

You can find a new friend… And another…

And another… And another ad infinitum,

Till you eventually realize these aren’t

Really friends at all, only bargain hunters

Out to get what they want as easily and

As cheaply as they can. But maybe that’s

All you’re shopping for too. Careful how

You advertise – your brand name already

Has a reputation on the market, thanks

To all the free samples you’ve given. If

You think these friends of yours are truly

Friends, try putting them all in the same

Room together and see how friendly

They are face to face, among those who

They have something in common with.

Or better yet, invite them all to your

Wedding if you ever have one – I’m

Sure you’ll be proud to introduce them

All to your spouse.

 

MY WORLD

 

My thoughts have gotten so disjointed,

Like a planet coming apart. My center

Of gravity can’t hold it together. And so

My world goes flying off in a million

Different pieces. I was always trying to

Go in more than one direction at once,

But not like this. I feel the explosion, tear,

Rip, crack in my time-space continuum,

Violence of involuntary end. How there’s

Still a voice to say these words, I don’t

Know. I could already be a ghost. Feels

Like I’ve been away, and I have to admit

The familiar feels more comforting when

You know it won’t last forever, just for

A long time.

 

SUSPICIONS

 

Suspicions can be creative. Take information,

Make a story, then feel betrayed by your own

Imagination. My suspicions could fill novels,

Television shows, dramas that leave audiences

Traumatized by the tension. My suspicions

Always seem plausible enough to unnerve me,

So why not the public too? When all is said

And done, I really know nothing, so suspicions

Fill that void, channeling passions like a lost,

Warlike tribe wreaking havoc in anger at being

Denied their homeland, or so they believe.

This is how destruction, emotional or physical,

So easily follows when suspicions inform

Initiative and explode.

 

PROTECT

 

Protect your ego by justifying what you’ve

Done as right from your point of view. If

Someone has a different perspective, it’s

Just their problem. They don’t have to

Walk in your shoes. If you walk roughshod

Over someone else’s feelings, it’s just

Their problem. Maybe next time they’ll

Know better than to get in your path. Fine,

You protect your ego and I’ll protect mine.

 

ALMOST VEGETARIAN

 

They say Americans spend more on porn

Than they put into their pensions. Ok, so

Much for technology and progress, but if

We’re such sex experts why can’t we get

Our pigs to breed as fast as we eat them?

One more Sunday, no pig on the table at

Louise. Too expensive, I’m told. We have

A pork shortage, something must be done.

Encourage your pigs to be more romantic,

Get them drunk, read them the works of

Anne Rice, play them Marvin Gaye non-

Stop, tell them it’s Valentine’s Day, offer

Honeymoon specials, open more motels,

Tell them the Sexual Revolution happened

In the ‘70s and they’re behind the times.

Guilt trip them into getting it on, whatever

It takes, our plates are lonely. Meanwhile,

The pigs are thinking, why should we breed

Just to be eaten? We won’t contribute to

Your Butthead Buffet. We refuse. What if

The tables were turned and we consumed

All the unwanted fruit of your porn addictions?

The pigs have always wanted to say that,

They just had to find the language.

 

FREE ASSOCIATION IS ALIVE AND WELL

 

Fork tongue Nike, window spy whiskey,

Hooligan stadium, rabbit transit, card

Socket, pie face casino night, sliding scale,

Fall through the ice, trash dress muddy,

Front view frog, hard drug drive-thru, milk

Cowboy, shoulder tattoo map, treasure in

Every pack of Cracker Jacks, heron robs

National treasury, Hal open the pod bay

Doors, run away from home and join the

Circus, civil wars and domestic violence,

Homeland insecurity, Merrill Lynch Mob,

Liz Pharisee, every purchase with us a

Guaranteed betrayal of your faith, buy

Now cry later, crocodiles in Manhattan

Sewers, here pussy, bluebird paintbrush,

Able-bodied volunteers needed for

Beaver company, Frankenstein pop singer

Rejuvenates alternative music, cream shirt,

Scream soda, intravenous and Mars, let’s

Go out to the bald game, we interrupt this

Program just because we can, you got a

Problem with that?

 

WAR STORY

 

Caught in the crossfire of your

Good and bad selves, I’m just a

Casualty of battle. If Heaven’s

Own angels rebelled, small

Wonder we can’t resist the bad

Side of ourselves. A door more

Easily opened than closed. Like

Money changers in a holy temple,

What you first invited you must

Eventually fight or else surrender

To completely. In the end, good

Usually wins, but bad can make

A memorable stand. Entering

The crossfire means being shot

By both sides, since bullets don’t

Know friend from foe, and in self

Defense you’re advised to just

Keep firing and ask questions

Later. The best I can say is I

Survived, though I wish it all

Had meant more than just

A good war story.

 

SILVER

 

The Moon doesn’t hold anger or sadness

In spite of all it’s seen. Know why I shine?

Asks the Moon. Everyone’s troubles have

Rubbed against me since the dawn of time.

In appearance I’m not as constant as my

Cousin the Sun, but he burns like never

Ending passion while I rise, fall, and rise

Again in endless reflection. As I reflect all

I’ve seen, I use the troubles for fuel to

Provide you a light in the darkness. I’m a

Symbol. My cycle is renewal, while Mr. Sun

Might burn out one day if he’s not careful.

 

COUP

 

Do you envision a golden future where

Everyone’s forgotten the truth about

You? Most dictators do, but soon their

Own conscience makes them unable to

Settle comfortably into their newfound

Security. Subtly, they feel threatened

Not by what anyone’s done but by what

Everyone knows, not by what anyone’s

Said but by what they suspect you must

Be thinking. There’s no bigger threat to

A liar than those they can rely on to tell

The truth. No bigger threat to a cheater

Than those who play fair. No bigger

Threat to someone drunk on power

(Or just alcohol) than the sober. No

Bigger threat to the guilty than the

Innocent. Everyone must buy in or

Be edited out.

 

NEW AMUSEMENTS

 

Hey you Pharisees, if you show up

At my sacred mountain, be sure to

Take off your shoes. With faith you

Can walk on hot coals, but with

Attitude all you’ll find is your fancy

Footwear melted. Be respectful or

You'll regret it. Lightning will fry you

If you run amok at night. Try an orgy

In the forest, as if it's some disco

With trees, and you’ll fall into rivers

Hidden underground full of hungry

Fish who’ll love you. This ain’t no

Disneyland, and it did quite well

Without you before you walked

In acting like you own the place.

 

STOLEN BY THE SKY

 

Legend has it craters are the lovers and

Wives of mountains stolen by the sky.

Sheltering them from unsympathetic

Eyes, the moon hides craters within his

Glow. No stranger to separation’s pain,

The moon spends half his time shining

With undeniable brilliance and the other

Half hidden in cold darkness hoping his

Wounds heal in time for his next

Scheduled appearance. And when has

The moon ever kept us waiting? Some

Mothers soothe children to sleep telling

Stories of the craters on the moon. See

How some craters have already made

Room for mountains they still await.

Remember how others, long ago,

Embraced mountains so closely as to

Become one with them, until a black

Hole with a jealous heart, a cosmic

Storm, a hungry magnetic asteroid or

Heaven for reasons unknown reached

Down to snatch the mountains away.

See how easily these craters could catch

All manner of moon and star material to

Fill them again, but curiously, how most

Choose instead to remain empty.

 

CHILD

 

The older I get, the more I intuit

That it’s children, not adults, who

Have the right idea. Everything’s

Open, everything’s new, it’s all

One big possibility. Whoever came

Up with the bright idea that we

Have to carve ourselves in stone

When we hit 18 needs a lobotomy

From Dr. Ramone to re-connect

With their inner child. Is insight

That just closes us off really

Insight at all?

 

INDEX

 

I never figured clarity of expression

Could come across as so dramatic,

But if I stopped clocks the way I

Stop conversations, the digital age

Would be in for some major shit.

If I like you, I'll say look at it this

Way: no matter how different you

Are, you're still walking on the same

Flowers and stones and breathing

The same air as everyone else.

We're all an index of each other's

Possibilities.This is bad. This is

Good.

 

UP AGAINST THE WALL STREET IN YOU

 

The fates have granted me the grace of

Keeping the catastrophe quiet. Declaring

Bankruptcy’s a private matter, even if the

Currency’s only emotions. Feelings subject

To foreclosure. Liquidate these dreams,

They have amusement value. See the

Easily amused nod their approval. They

Can relate to being left holding the bag.

It’s nice they sympathize, and avert their

Eyes as I face an exile of uncertain length.

In exile, one at least has small freedoms.

Returning is not one of them. I can’t see

Anything bringing me back, once I’ve been

Tagged as unmanageable, too risky an

Investment, certain only to compromise

Your profits. In exile, one at least has small

Comforts, like appearing free while serving

A sentence of indefinite confinement inside.

Fools the easily amused, at least. But it’s all

Show, far from sweet, with the bitter taste

Of the incomplete.

 

SHAKESPEARE SHOE FITS

 

Strange name, Shakespeare. Evokes images

Of primitives trying to scare off progress, or

To pursue spear as a euphemism, civilized

Males reading Playboy. Seriously, it’s kind

Of comic, the name Shakespeare. A name

Like Deathspeare would be sexier, or

Bloodspeare more macho. But try picture

The enemy quaking in fear hearing

Shakespeare. Doesn’t quite fly. Sounds like

Braveheart shaking his sword, Robin Hood

Shaking his bow, Sir Lancelot shaking his

Lance a lot, the Three Musketeers shaking

Their rapiers or Bonnie and Clyde shaking

Their machine guns. Weapons must be

Scary, not shaken like a martini or a

Maraca. So with the name Shakespeare,

What would you do to be taken seriously?

We don’t know what really drove him, but

Wouldn’t he be having the last laugh if his

True reason for writing so relentlessly was

He was mad at being laughed at? So next

Time you’re angry, channel that negative

Energy into something creative. They might

Still hear your echo 400 years later.

 

DEFINITION

 

I’ve always been grateful for my place

In the world, but I never bothered to

Define it, for a statement as to what

I am would be a comparison to what

I am not, and my knowledge of what

I am not is at best surface level, so

Who am I to talk? Thank you for

Telling me who I am. I know you’re

Trying to be helpful, but why do I

Suspect you’re the one who really

Needs help? What makes you such

An authority? I want to be one too.

Does it take a degree? A badge? A

Gun? A certain tattoo? Or do you

Just pick a definition of yourself that

You like, wear it like wrapping paper

Around a gift to the world, and hope

This colorful sight inspires someone

Or other to sing happy birthday to

You because you appear to fit their

Definition of cake-deserving?

 

BRICKS

 

These poems are just so many bricks

In a fragile wall a cold stare could

Crumble or a warm smile could melt.

I wish I could change many things,

But the truth is I haven't a clue how

To change anything. Arguably I have

A clue how to write a poem, though

I can hear critics my disagreeing. At

The risk of sounding even more

Egotistical than usual, if this is what

I can do with their cynicism ringing

In my ears, think what I could do if

I could hear you singing my praises!

On a cold day in hell, you might scoff,

But who knows. If sincerity only gets

Me in trouble, then maybe it’s the

Utterly ridiculous that might make

You see things differently. If we

Can’t share a reality, we can always

Share an idea, as innocently as the

Public shares germs. Imagination:

Change in the dark, germinating. I

Just keep laying bricks, sometimes

High like a wall, other times low,

Down to earth, imagining a road.

 

THE UNDEAD

 

I know you don’t want it so I’m

Trying to destroy it but it won’t

Die. It just gets uglier each time

It crawls from the grave and says,

I come from you - send me six

Feet under, but isn’t it really a

Part of you you’re trying to bury?

I reply, you got that right – part

Of me I don’t want to see walking

Around, looking over my shoulder

In the mirror, in pictures, in stories.

A constant reminder of cursed love,

Of failure, and the other partner in

Your creation doesn’t want you

Either. Living things with limited

Insight are so challenged grasping

The concept of inconvenience.

 

SORTING ITSELF

 

Heavy rain, stay inside. Stay inside, look

Inside. Just as turbulent, even more so.

The storm outside is nothing. Nature is

Sorting itself, throwing air, water and

Light into a fray while the earth tries

To remember dryness and warmth,

Knows they’ll come again, but wishes

They’d put on some speed. I try to see

My troubles as my life sorting itself.

Hoping that, as with nature, in the end

A balance will be restored. As the storm

Clearly shows, a lot of conflict goes into

The making of a sunny day.

 

SYMBOLIC

 

Hey Sky, who you crying for all day

And all night? Freud said water

Symbolizes emotion. Sky wants to

Grow fat on emotion, hold it all in,

Gain substance like Earth, hoping

Earth might look up from its typical

Lazy passivity and actually take

Notice for a change. But alas, Sky

Can’t keep the weight on. Gets to

A certain size and it all comes flying

Off from gravity. Most Americans

Would be envious. And predictably,

Earth just callously says thanks for

The drink, call me sometime, ok?

Stevie Ray Vaughn sang “The Sky Is

Crying” with a lot of emotion, as is

Only fitting for this tale of yearning

Frustrated every time, no matter

How sincere or how determined.

 

WERE I SANTA CLAUS

 

The joy’s in the giving of gifts as much

As the receiving. And were I Santa Claus,

You wouldn’t have to wait till Christmas.

Were I the master gift builder, I’d make

Myself into one you’d want to unwrap,

A present you’d enjoy again and again,

Something you’d accept without the

Slightest hesitation, indulge in with no

Second thoughts, omit mentioning to

Your friends to avoid them becoming

Covetous, something you’d sighed for

Each time you saw it in the shop window.

In other words, I wish I were chocolate.

 

EXPERTS

 

I'm such an expert - I know

Exactly what you mean and

Exactly what you're thinking

Even before you do. You're

Such an expert - you know

Exactly what I mean and

Exactly what I'm thinking

Even before I do. Things

Can get complex, unclear.

Lucky we’re such experts.

 

OUR BEST

 

Maybe Las Vegas can make you rich

Beyond your wildest dreams, but how

Often does that happen? Please don't

Use our best as a gambling chip.

 

DESERVE

 

Bad guys in movies get

What they deserve. Why

Not nice guys in real life?

 

ROCKS

 

People ‘round here throw rocks so

Often you’d think they’d never sinned.

I wish Cupid could aim arrows on my

Behalf as accurately as my neighbors

Aim rocks at transgressing dogs, cats

Advertising a heat, birds soiling the

Clothesline, pigs digging up the roses,

And sometimes one another.

 

SPYING IN PERSPECTIVE

 

Our nation, born of rebellion, founded on the

Ideal of liberty or death. If leaders take the

Liberty of spying on their citizens, it must be

For our own good. Traitors walk among us,

Trying to establish a new dark ages. Humans

Are fallen by nature and foolish in notion, so

Thank the Lord we have so many laws for our

Own protection. Laws fill books that fill rooms

Which fill buildings. No wonder you can break

A law without even knowing. Laws, it seems,

Come and go these days like Vegas paychecks.

Do they still need probable cause to probe into

Our private business? Just some little bird that

Whispers nasty things? Words on my t-shirt

They don’t like seeing? A blip on their radar

Screen they think is me flying on a broom?

It changes so fast, I don’t bother keeping

Track. All I know is, in today’s USA, if you’re

A conservative wage slave you’re ok (for now),

But any deviation could place you under

Suspicion. Part of the standardization plan

For our own good. We’re a democracy, an

Equal partnership between people and our

Leaders . We should be as honest with them

As they are with us.

 

REMEMBER?

 

Remember when I tried reaching out to

You? At first you seemed pleased, but

Then you treated me like you wished I

Would just go away. So I did. Why do

You still wear that hurt look? Even

When I’ve done what you want, you’re

Not happy? Doesn’t seem likely. Must

Be it’s just someone else now who’s

Making you sad.

 

PEARLS

 

When our pearls have fallen in the

Pig sty, who will pull them out? All

The crap in the world can’t tarnish

Their true worth, only obscure it.

But who’ll be left with dirty hands?

Is saving something precious worth

Sorting through something ugly?

 

CONTINUED NEXT PHOTO OVER ("CYCLONE SCENE")

The Dining Room of the Fall River Historical Society

December 5th, 2014

 

This nine-foot tabletop tree is decorated in the traditional manner, with figural blown glass ornaments. The overwhelming number of ornaments provide a spectrum of the color that dazzles visitors.

 

More info:

 

Each year, beginning the week before Thanksgiving, the Historical Society's mansion is lavishly decorated in the Victorian manner. Holiday spirit abounds from room to room, with the focal point being a magnificent 14-foot Christmas tree in the Music Room. Aglow with thousands of lights, it is a tree guaranteed to instill holiday spirit in both young and old.

 

Traditional decorations are creatively used, working with a variety of holiday themes, to create a display unlike anything to be seen in the Fall River area. Last year's theme, "Victorian Christmas Traditions," was very well received by the public and was photographed by VICTORIAN HOMES magazine for its Christmas 2003 issue. The Music Room's tree was illuminated by the glow of 4100 white lights, was laden with silver tinsel and decorated with hundreds of mouth-blown glass ornaments typical of the Victorian period. The concept of Christmas as we know it originated in Germany and was introduced to England by Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg Gotha, consort of Queen Victoria. Americans, who strove to emulate the British traditions, quickly adopted the holiday and made it their own. Bavarian glassblowers created untold thousands of ornaments, many of which carry holiday lore. Replicas of many of these ornaments can be found on the Society's tree. Among the most popular are: the glass pickle, which was traditionally hidden on the tree, to be discovered on Christmas morning by the most perceptive child, who was rewarded with a special gift; "Crampus," a small devil-like figure with black horns made of coal, who followed Father Christmas rewarding naughty children with coal; the carrot, an ornament traditionally given to new brides to bring luck in the kitchen.

 

The parlor was banked with paper poinsettias. This plant was named as a tribute to Mr. Joel R. Poinsett, the American Ambassador to Mexico and amateur botanist, who so admired the Mexican wildflower that he brought it to North America and cultivated it in his own greenhouses. In this manner did it become a major part of our Christmas tradition today. The delicate hothouse plant was a great rarity in cold New England winters and so was often copied by nineteenth-century paper flower makers.

 

The dining room was ornamented with della robbia of sparkling crystal-beaded fruit, with the table set with a magnificent nineteenth-century Davenport china dessert service. The centerpiece of the table was a three-tiered cake traditionally decorated with candies, nuts and sugared fruit, surmounted by a pink peppermint pig. As the pig was a symbol of good luck in the Victorian era, candy-makers in Saratoga Springs, New York, began to manufacture small peppermint pigs. In observance of the tradition, those who purchased the pigs would, following the holiday meal, shatter the pig so that each family member could taste of the candy as a wish for good luck in the coming year.

 

In the bedroom stood a tree decorated entirely in nineteenth-century photographs and greeting cards, very typical of trees in Fall River homes during the nineteenth-century, documented by photographs in the Society's collection.

 

The first floor hallway was simply decorated using evergreens and holly, incorporating roses in tribute to the legend of the Christmas rose. As the story goes, a little girl happened upon the stable in Bethlehem where the Christ child lay. Upset because she had no gift to bring, she began to cry and, incredibly, her tears turned into beautiful roses.

 

While touring the museum, guests might also want to browse in the museum shop, which is filled with a vast number of unique gifts. Here you can find the right present for that someone special on your list. This year, many new mouth-blown glass ornaments will also be featured. Among our museum shop bestsellers are delectable sugar plums, the traditional Victorian candy meant to bring sweet dreams to any child that slept with one beneath its pillow.

 

The Fall River Historical Society hopes you will take advantage of this opportunity to visit. The museum will be "decked out" for the occasion in the grand manner of an elegant Victorian mansion and will be a sight to behold!

 

These are some of the highlights of the holiday exhibit last year at the Historical Society.

 

Museum hours are: Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The museum will close at 12:00 noon on Christmas Eve and will be closed Christmas Day. For further information, please call (508) 679-1071.

 

For more info: www.lizzieborden.org/VictorianChristmas.html

 

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/about.aspx

  

Situated on the banks of the Conwy estuary, with magnificent views of Snowdonia and Conwy Castle, this reserve is delightful at any time of year.

 

Conwy's a great place to get close to wildlife, to spend time with family and friends, or just take time out in fantastic scenery that embraces 4,000 years of human history. There’s a network of pushchair-friendly trails with viewpoints and hides to make the most of your visit and plenty if information to explain what you're watching. Perhaps you’ll meet one of our friendly volunteer wildlife guides who can help you discover just a little bit more?

 

In our Visitor Centre, our warm welcome will ensure you have exactly what you need for your visit. We have events to suit everyone from keen birdwatchers to beginners or young families, whether your interest is wildlife, history, art or any number of other subjects.

 

We love our food at Conwy so why not visit our monthly Farmers' Market or call in at the Waterside Coffee Shop, overlooking the lagoon, and enjoy a drink, a snack or light lunch using delicious local produce. We have a well-stocked shop, too, with good advice on everything from feeding birds to new binoculars.

 

We welcome group visits, but please book these with us in advance so that we can give you the best possible service. Entry rates are listed below, but we can also organise guided walks for a flat-fee of £30 for a group of up to 15 people, £50 for a group of 15 to 30 people. Please ring the reserve at least six weeks before your proposed visit to arrange a group visit.

  

Opening times

  

The shop and visitor centre is open every day (except Christmas Day) from 9.30 am-5 pm. The coffee shop is open from 10 am-4.30 pm (to 4 pm from November to March).

  

Entrance charges

  

Members free. Non-members: adults £3, concessions £2, children £1.50. Family ticket £6.50.

  

If you are new to birdwatching...

  

Why not join a guided walk with our volunteers every Saturday at 11 am? They will help you spot and identify the birds. You can hire a pair of binoculars from us (£3 a visit). Just ask at reception.

  

Information for families

  

From our Visitor Centre, you can collect one of our Bingo cards, encouraging you all to take a closer look at the reserve. Bingo cards change according to season and are available in Welsh or English. There's a self-guided Discovery Trail, and all the tracks are pushchair-friendly. The Waterside Coffee Shop has a popular toybox to occupy little hands while you're enjoying a cuppa.

  

Information for dog owners

  

Sorry, we don't allow dogs, except registered assistance dogs, because there are breeding birds and, in winter, roosting birds on the reserve. There’s a popular dog walk along the estuary, running north from the reserve.

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/star_species.aspx

  

Star species

  

Our star species are some of the most interesting birds you may see on your visit to the reserve.

  

Black-tailed godwit

  

These elegant, long-billed waders can be seen on the estuary and lagoons here in autumn. Look out for their striking black and white wingbars as they take flight.

  

Lapwing

 

Look - and listen - for the acrobatic aerial displays of lapwings over the grassland in spring as they stake a claim to territories and try to attract a mate. These wonderful birds can be seen throughout the year.

  

Sedge warbler

  

Another warbler that returns from Africa in spring, the sedge warbler is easy to see because it 'pirouettes' up into the air from the tops of the bushes, singing its scratchy song as it goes.

  

Shelduck

  

Colourful shelducks are present in large numbers most of the year, with smaller numbers in summer. You can see them in flocks on the estuary and the lagoons.

  

Water rail

  

Water rails can be seen from the hides in winter. A bit of patience should reward you with a sighting of one of these skulking birds weaving in and out of the reeds.

   

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/seasonal_highlight...

  

Seasonal highlights

  

Each season brings a different experience at our nature reserves. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

  

Spring

  

Lapwings perform their tumbling display flights. Grey herons build their nests. Birdsong increases from April as migrants arrive from Africa. Cowslips burst into flower around the coffee shop. Orange-tip and peacock butterflies take nectar from early flowers.

  

Summer

  

Warblers sing from the reedbeds and scrub. Common blue butterflies and six-spotted burnet moths feed on the bright yellow bird's foot trefoil. Young ducks and waders hatch. A profusion of wild flowers, including delicate bee orchids. Stoats hunt on the estuary track. Little egret numbers build up following the breeding season.

  

Autumn

  

Waders pass through on migration. Ducks arrive for the winter. Grassland is rich in fungi. Dragonflies lay eggs on warm afternoons. Sea buckthorn and brambles are festooned with berries. Buzzards soar over the nearby woods.

  

Winter

  

Huge flocks of starlings settle down to roost at dusk. Water rails may be seen from the Coffee Shop. Close-up views of buntings and finches at the feeding station. Gorse bursts into flower from January. Look for tracks of birds and mammals in the snow.

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/facilities.aspx

  

Facilities

  

Facilities

 

•Visitor centre

•Car park : Ample parking with cycle racks.

•Toilets

•Disabled toilets

•Baby-changing facilities

•Picnic area

•Binocular hire

•Group bookings accepted

•Guided walks available

•Good for walking

•Pushchair friendly

  

Viewing points

  

Along the trails there are three hides and three viewing screens from which you get great views of wildlife and the scenery.

  

Nature trails

  

There are three nature trails that together create a circular loop of just under two miles. The Blue Tit and Redshank Trails are entirely accessible by wheelchairs and pushchairs; the Grey Heron trail is unpaved and can be bumpy.

  

Tearoom

  

Hot and cold drinks, lunches, cakes and snacks are available from the Waterside Coffee Shop, which stocks a range of Fairtrade and local produce.

 

Refreshments available

 

•Hot drinks

•Cold drinks

•Sandwiches

•Snacks

•Confectionery

  

Shop

  

Our friendly and knowledgeable team can help with advice on everything from a new pair of binoculars, the right book to go birdwatching or bird food and feeders that will suit your garden.

  

The shop stocks:

 

•Binoculars and telescopes

•Books

•Bird food

•Bird feeders

•Nestboxes

•Outdoor clothing

•Gifts

  

Educational facilities

  

Our friendly field teachers run a variety of activities and educational programmes for children. These fun and inspirational sessions are available for schools, youth groups and clubs. For more information contact Charlie Stretton on 01492 584091 or email conwy@rspb.org.uk. Educational facilities include an indoor activity room which is available for children's parties and community events. Please call for more information.

  

Group visits

 

We welcome group visits, but please book these with us in advance so that we can give you the best possible service. Entry rates are listed above, but we can also organise guided walks for a flat-fee of £30 for a group of up to 15 people, or £50 for a group of 15 to 30 people. Please ring the reserve at least six weeks before your proposed visit to arrange a group visit.

  

For more information

 

Contact us

 

Tel: 01492 584091

E-mail: conwy@rspb.org.uk

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/conwyconnections.aspx

  

Enhancing RSPB Conwy nature reserve for people and nature

  

Over the next few months, RSPB Conwy will be transformed with a fresh look and exciting new facilities. We've been dreaming of this for years! Find out more about Conwy Connections and what you can look forward to.

  

What we've got planned

  

In autumn 2012 we started a programme of work that we're calling Conwy Connections.

 

The brownfield land that connects the visitor centre and coffee shop will be transformed into what we're calling 'Y Maes' - the 'village square' of the reserve. It'll be a place for families and friends to meet, relax and explore.

 

Hillocks and hummocks will provide elevated views of the reserve and the Conwy valley. It includes a play area, tunnel, picnic area, wildlife meadow, events area and much more.

 

Landforms and natural features will introduce more children to nature, stimulating learning through play and their own imaginations. It's going to be a wonderful place for everyone, throughout the year.

 

We're also constructing a new building which we're calling the 'observatory.' It will be a fantastic indoor space, built into the bank with the lagoon right in front of it. It's going to be a great place to watch wildlife, and we'll use it for events throughout the year.

 

It's by no means a run-of-the mill design. This very special, green construction will be built out of straw bales, rendered with clay on the inside and lime on the outside.

 

Other elements of the project that are yet to happen include new artwork for Talyfan Hide, a new viewpoint to be built on Y Ganol footpath and a big art installation. Watch this space!

  

It's all thanks to our supporters

  

The Communities and Nature project is supporting the Conwy Connections with £179,000. The Crown Estate pledged a generous £55,000 to build the new observatory. Tesco plc decided to donate the money it collected in its stores in Wales from the Welsh Government's 5p single-use bag levy to RSPB Cymru and a portion of this goes towards our project.

 

The fantastic volunteers of the RSPB Conwy Support Group also raised an impressive £30,000 towards the match-funding in less than two years. This shows huge support for what was proposed, for which we're very grateful.

 

We've also been able to install solar panels in the coffee shop and improve the car park, thanks to Conwy Connections.

 

Roll on August!

 

The Conwy Connections launch will take place on Friday 30 and Saturday 31 August 2013. It'll be a fun-filled day for you and all the family to enjoy the new facilities first-hand.

 

Why not sign up to our mailing list to receive our regular bulletin? Email us, follow us on Twitter or read the latest news on our blog.

 

Conwy Connections is an initiative part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government and is a component element of the Countryside Council for Wales' Communities and Nature strategic project.

 

RSPB Cymru would also like to thank those whose donations support RSPB Conwy nature reserve and visitor facilities, including The Crown Estate, Cemlyn Jones Trust, Environment Wales, Tesco Plc, Conwy Town Council and the RSPB Conwy Support Group.

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/accessibility.aspx

  

Accessibility

 

9 July 2012

 

This is a Summary Access Statement. A full access statement is available to download from this page.

  

Before you visit

 

•Clear print site leaflet available from our reserve reception

•Free entry to members, Entrance fee for non members. Carer or essential companion admitted free with disabled visitor

•No dogs, except Registered Assistance Dogs. A water bowl is at the visitor centre

•Pushed wheelchairs for hire, free of charge, bookable in advance

•Visitor Centre open 9.30 am to 5 pm. Cafe open 10 am to 4 pm (4.30 pm in summer). Closed Christmas Day. Trails open outside visitor centre opening hours

•Check accessibility for events and activities

•RSPB Conwy is featured in A Rough Guide to Accessible Britain.

  

How to get here

 

•Llandudno Junction Railway Station less than a mile away

•Bus stop at Tesco or Llandudno Junction.

  

Car parking

 

•Eight Blue Badge spaces at visitor centre

•Large car park

•Gates locked at 5 pm

•Drop off outside the visitor centre

•Rolled stone surface

•No lighting

•No height restrictions

•Estuary viewed from parking outside entry gate.

  

Visitor centre and shop

  

Entry by three steps or a ramp with handrails on both sides. Heavy manual doors open outward. All one level with step-free entry and non-slip vinyl surface. Lowered counter. Two seats in reception. Good lighting. Clear print materials. Most text in English and Welsh. Binoculars hire. Some goods may be difficult to reach. Staff available to assist.

  

Nature trails

  

Three signposted trails, mainly flat; a mixture of surfaces including rolled slate and boardwalk. Benches provided. Information boards in large print.

  

Viewing facilities

  

Three viewing hides with adjacent viewing screens. Three stand-alone viewing screens with variable height viewing slots. Occasional weekend staffing at hides.

  

Toilets and baby changing facilities

 

A unisex accessible toilet with baby changing facility is in the coffee shop. Visitor toilets are behind the coffee shop.

  

Catering

  

Coffee shop 30 m past the visitor centre along a tarmac path. Panoramic windows on a single level with vinyl flooring. Self-service with staff available. Colour-contrasted crockery. Large-handled cutlery.

  

Picnic area

 

10 tables with wheelchair spaces between the visitor centre and the coffee shop. Visitors are welcome to consume their own food and drink here.

  

Education facilities

  

Step-free, level access throughout. Flexible layout. Non-slip vinyl flooring. Good lighting.

 

Help us improve accessibility by sending feedback to the Site Manager.

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/optics.aspx

  

Thinking of buying binoculars or a telescope? Interested in using a digital camera with a telescope, but don't know where to start?

 

Book an appointment with an expert. Our one-hour field demonstrations will help you choose the best equipment for you – in the sort of conditions that you'll be using them, not just looking down the high street.

 

Telephone us on 01492 584091 to arrange your time with our advisers.

 

We also hold monthly demonstration weekends – check out our events page for details.

 

Chris Lusted, one of our optics team, says: 'Whether it's your first pair of binoculars, or you're thinking of upgrading your telescope, I love helping people to discover the world outside the window. I spend my spare time testing out new gear so that I can give customers the best advice.

 

'Everyone's different – your eyes, your hands, the places you go – so what's right for one person will be different from the next. I want people to appreciate birds well, so we can secure their future.'

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/directions.aspx

  

How to get here

  

By train

 

The nearest train station is Llandudno Junction, less than a mile from the reserve. The quickest route is to turn left out of the station and take the first left down Ferndale Road. Follow the footpath to the right and turn left over the road bridge (Ffordd 6G). The road goes past Tesco and a cinema complex to the large A55 roundabout. The reserve is on the south side of the roundabout and is signposted.

 

A more enjoyable, but slightly longer walk, is just over a mile. Turn left out of the station and take the first left down Ferndale Road. Go under the bridge and after 200 m, go under another bridge and immediately up steps to join Conwy Road. Walk towards Conwy and at the start of the gardens, drop to your right and loop beneath Conwy Road through an underpass. Then it’s over the footbridge and follow the estuary track for half a mile until you get to the reserve car park.

 

A map to the reserve is on posters at Llandudno Junction railway station. If you’re travelling here by train, take advantage of our offer of a free drink. Present a valid rail ticket for arrival at Llandudno Junction in the Waterside Coffee Shop on the day of travel, and we’ll give you a free cup of tea or filter coffee.

  

By bus

  

The nearest bus stop is the number 27 at Tesco, follow directions as above. Many other buses stop nearby in Llandudno Junction (number 5, 9, 14, 15, 19 and 84), directions are as from the train station.

  

By road

  

From the A55, take junction 18 (signposted Conwy and Deganwy) and follow the brown RSPB signs. The reserve is on the south side of the roundabout. From Conwy, Deganwy and Llandudno, take the A546/A547 to the Weekly News roundabout, drive south past Tesco and the Cinema complex (Ffordd 6G) and cross the roundabout over the A55. The entrance to the reserve is on the south side.

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/history/index.aspx

  

Conwy is an upside-down nature reserve. Until the late 1980s, it was a river. Twice a day the tide went out and revealed huge mudbanks. Waders fed on the mud, and at high tide roosted along the railway embankment.

 

And then their world changed. What happened could have been disastrous for wildlife, but thanks to some inspired thinking and hard work, new habitats and a popular reserve were created. We also highlight some of the historic features to look out for when you visit.

  

This is where we came from

  

We're an upside-down nature reserve because the earth you walk over sat at the bottom of the Conwy estuary for thousands of years. In the 1980s, the government decided to build a road tunnel through the estuary to relieve traffic congestion in the old walled town of Conwy.

 

The design was revolutionary - it was the first immersed tube tunnel in the world. But it came at a price: the final outside bend of the river would be 'reclaimed' and covered with the silt from the riverbed. After the tunnel was built, this land might have been grassed over and grazed, but for a moment of wisdom from a town planner from Aberconwy Borough Council, Dave Phillips.

 

Over a pint with countryside ranger John Davies, they wondered whether the lagoons could become the centre of a new wetland. A phone call to the RSPB, and several years of meetings and negotiations later, after the tunnel was opened by HM The Queen in October 1991, work began to create the neighbouring reserve.

  

www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/c/conwy/history/4000years....

  

Stand on the reserve and you can see 4,000 years of human history that stems from the Conwy valley's importance as a 'highway', first by boat, later by train and more recently by road.

 

Most of the west bank of the Conwy is in the Snowdonia National Park. The land here has been worked for more than 4,000 years: Stone Age quarries produced axes for export, early Celts lived in roundhouses and grew crops and livestock in field systems with terraced cultivation, burying their dead in cromlech chambers that remain in today's landscape.

 

After the Roman invasion of modern-day England, the Celtic tribes kept the Romans at bay for several years, using their knowledge of the hills to sabotage the Roman forces and undertake guerrilla warfare. The Romans' superior technology and organisation eventually won through and they took over the Celtic forts, such as Pen-y-gaer, which guard the Roman road through the hills to Anglesey.

 

After the Romans left, the land returned to the local tribes until after the Normans conquered England. Then this area became the Checkpoint Charlie of Wales – Celtic Wales on the west bank and lands ruled by English lords on the east. There were plenty of skirmishes, with castles built, occupied and knocked down, and battles fought on the shoreline that reputedly made the River Conwy run red with blood.

  

A tale of two castles

  

From the reserve, you can look north to two castles: on the east bank is the Vardre, fortified from Roman times until its abandonment and destruction by Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, Prince of Wales, in 1263. On the west bank is the impressive Conwy Castle, one of eight huge fortresses built by English king, Edward I when he conquered Wales. Built between 1283 and 1289, the castle and the town were built with 6-foot thick town walls to keep the Welsh out. At £15,000 (about £9 million today), it was the most expensive of the 'iron ring' of castles built by Edward.

 

The village to the south, Glan Conwy, has been a settlement for at least 1500 years. Llansanffraid Glan Conwy means 'Church of St Ffraid on the bank of the River Conwy'. The parish was founded, according to legend, when St. Bridget (Ffraid in Welsh) sailed from Ireland on a green turf and landed here - a tale which probably stems from the arrival of Irish Christians in the 5th century.

 

Glan Conwy was a busy port in the Georgian era with ships commuting to Chester and Bristol, carrying flour from the mill, fruit from the farms, timber and slates from the upper Valley and iron from the furnace at Bodnant. Until the railway line was built, Glan Conwy was a shipbuilding village, with ships that went as far as Australia, and a row of warehouses along the wharf where the A470 now lies.

 

This part of the estuary was notoriously hazardous for ships, with fast tidal races and frequent winter storms. Several boats sank here, the remains of one being obvious in the muddy saltmarsh just off the reserve.

 

The fast-flowing tidal river below the castle kept out invaders and was dangerous for early ferries. Many people drowned trying to cross it, including passengers aboard the Irish mailcoach. Engineer Thomas Telford designed the causeway (known as The Cob) and suspension bridge as part of the first North Wales coast road, which with the Castle and estuary provides a scenic backdrop to the reserve.

 

The railway from Llandudno Junction to Blaenau Ffestiniog Railway, that runs alongside the reserve, was opened in 1863 to carry slate to a purpose built dock at Deganwy. Building the Cob altered the flow of the main channel in the estuary, reducing Glan Conwy's role as a port and the railway finished the boat traffic almost overnight, and with it a way of life, with its own language, was gone.

 

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