Charlie Ross with Cloverlands Model Car Museum trustees Max Tomlinson, Bruce Lawson and John Nunn.
A Mid Wales charity museum, which is home to a collection of around 5,000 model cars, is to feature on the popular BBC One TV antiques series Bargain Hunt on Monday, March 6.
Show presenter Charlie Ross, an antiques expert and auctioneer, paid a visit with the film crew to the Cloverlands Model Car Museum at its new home in Llanfair Caereinion last autumn.
His visit to Cloverlands Model Car Museum, which moved from Montgomery to Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway’s base last year, was part of filming for a new series of Bargain Hunt, having previously stopped off at Oswestry Antiques Fair.
He quizzed the Cloverlands trustees about cars in the collection as diverse as a Delahaye, Rolls-Royce, Fiat and Benz. The first Benz was driven 50 miles in Germany by Bertha Benz in 1886, nine years before the first car was seen in Wales. It was the longest drive my any man or woman at that time.
The Bargain Hunt episode featuring the museum, which Ross described as “a wonderful collection with so many memories”, will be broadcast on BBC One on March 6 at 11.45am in Wales and 12.15pm in England.
Anybody who misses the episode can always catch it on iPlayer for 30 days after its transmission date. The museum hopes to have its new website - www.cloverlandscarmuseum.com – ready before the broadcast.
Museum trustee Bruce Lawson said: “We can’t wait to see the episode featuring the museum. The timing is perfect, as the museum reopens on April 1.
“Charlie was quite taken aback by the rarity of some of the models we have in the museum. For filming, we highlighted six or seven models, some dating to 1911, so we’ll have to wait to see how many are featured in the programme.”
The museum opened in its new home last June and has increased footfall greatly, with up to 50 visitors daily. Opening hours are 11am to 4.15pm at weekends and group visits are arranged by appointment.
A selection of more than 1,000 replica models is for sale at the museum for visitors who wish to take away a memento.
Originally established at Montgomery Institute in 2015, the museum began with a collection of around 2,000 models amassed by late motoring historian and model maker Gillian Rogers, of Trefnanney, near Welshpool. She was aware of the move to Llanfair but sadly died on December 27 last year before in happened.
Ten other collections have since been loaned or given to the museum, including one from Canada, 1,000 Grand Prix and touring cars and a fine display of American cars.
Mr Lawson provides the narration for a video film about the museum - https://youtu.be/51rjrfCXJ8g - which was produced as a tribute to Gillian and all the sponsors and friends at its first home in Montgomery.
Both Cloverlands and the Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway are members of MWT Cymru, which represents more than 600 tourism and hospitality businesses across Powys, Ceredigion and Southern Snowdonia.
For more information about the museum, visit https://www.facebook.com/cloverlandsmuseum or contact Mr Lawson at email@example.com or on Tel: 01686 668004.
A rare Roman cut glass found at Abermagwr Romano-British villa is now displayed in the archaeology gallery at Ceredigion Museum in Aberystwyth.
In 2021, a partnership between the museum and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales attracted £1,000 funding from the Association for Roman Archaeology (ARA) to display fragments of a unique Roman glass vessel.
The villa at Abermagwr was discovered during aerial photography in 2006 and excavated by Dr Jeffrey L. Davies and Dr Toby Driver between 2010-‘15, in a volunteer-led community project.
It remains the only known Roman villa in the county and the most remote one in Wales. The finds have been researched over time and the best have been put on public display at the museum.
The finds include parts of Ceredigion’s earliest known slate roof, just one of the innovations discovered at the villa.
The most recent Roman finds handed to the museum are the cut glass fragments. The ARA grant funded a bespoke mount, made by a museum specialist, to enable the delicate glass fragments to take pride of place in the museum’s archaeology gallery.
Roman cut glass is rare. Only one cut glass beaker is on permanent display in the British Museum and the design on the Abermagwr vessel is unparalleled in Roman Britain.
Professor Jennifer Price was struck by the rarity and quality of the glass vessel, describing it as “of outstandingly high quality….[which] must have been an extraordinary item of luxury. Its quality is vastly superior to the rest of the glass vessels found at the villa.”
Professor Barry Burnham, of University Trinity Saint David, Lampeter, said: “Its discovery so far west in Wales is all the more significant because it is vastly superior to the general range of glass material found anywhere in the principality.
“This raises interesting questions about how it came to be here, who owned it and what it signifies in terms of social status and economic links.”
Carrie Canham, museum curator, said: “When I was at school, we were taught that the Romans didn’t have a significant presence in West Wales, but local excavation results have overturned that assumption.
“This extraordinary object shows that the villa at Abermagwr was the home of comparatively wealthy Romans enjoying the good things in life. I’m extremely grateful to the ARA for the funding that will enable visitors to the museum to see it displayed to its best advantage.”
Councillor Catrin M.S. Davies, Ceredigion County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for culture, leisure and customer services, said: “It’s very intriguing to hear about the rare Roman cut glass here in Ceredigion.
“Thanks to Carrie and the team at Ceredigion Museum and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales for their work and the Roman Archaeology Society. I look forward to seeing the pieces in the museum as it is important that we are aware of our past and respect and learn from it."
The museum is open Monday to Saturday between 10am – 5pm. For more information, visit ceredigionmuseum.wales/
Abermagwr Reconstruction 2018.
Canaletto (1697 – 1768) ‘The Stonemason’s Yard’, about 1725, oil on canvas, 123.8 x 162.9 cm.
© The National Gallery, London.
The National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth is one of a dozen partner venues chosen to display 12 ‘National Treasures’ from May 10 next year to celebrate the 200th birthday of the National Gallery.
National Treasures is a key strand of the programme celebrating the gallery’s bicentenary. Each partner venue will receive a masterpiece from the gallery’s collection and will curate around it, involving interpretation, community engagement and events or exhibitions.
The National Library of Wales will be loaned The Stonemason’s Yard, an oil on canvas painted by Canaletto (1697-1768) in about 1725.
Giovanni Antonio Canal, known as Canaletto, was born in Venice, the son of a theatrical scene painter. He was very influential, famed for his precisely depicted and evocative views of the city.
Canaletto's early pictures for local patrons are his most accomplished: these carefully designed, individual, and atmospheric studies include 'The Stonemason's Yard'.
He found that providing formulaic paintings for tourists was very lucrative. Still highly skilled works, they were produced by him often in collaboration with an organised workshop.
Canaletto was favoured by English collectors and visited England repeatedly between 1746-‘56, painting works like 'Eton College'.
For the duration of the displays, 35 million people, more than half the UK population, will be within an hour’s journey of a National Gallery masterpiece.
The paintings will be loaned for between two and four months, with the final displays concluding on September 10 next year.
The opening of National Treasures around the UK kickstarts a year of bicentenary celebrations, where activities showcase the gallery across the nation.
Gabriele Finaldi, National Gallery director, said: “In our bicentenary year, we want to reaffirm our role as the nation’s gallery. Our collection belongs to the UK public and we’re very pleased to work with such an exciting range of partner venues to help realise this.
“These exhibitions provide a unique opportunity for people all over the country to see up close some of the greatest works from the history of western art.”
The Deputy Minister for Arts and Sport, Dawn Bowden, has launched a £5 million Brilliant Basics tourism fund for 2023 to 2025.
Brilliant Basics is a capital fund to deliver small-scale tourism infrastructure improvements across Wales and is open to local authorities and national park authorities.
Previous projects funded by Brilliant Basics have included electric vehicle charging points, improved toilet and car parking facilities, accessible changing places facilities and improved signage and interpretation panels.
Brilliant Basics will also support projects that improve accessibility at sites and those that make their destinations more environmentally sustainable.
2023 is Wales’ Year of Trails which presents the tourism sector with an opportunity to showcase attractions, landscapes and coastline through routes and trails. Brilliant Basics will encourage local authorities and national parks to consider the entire visitor experience and the essential infrastructure that makes a trail experience complete, from pathways, to parking to making facilities accessible for all.
On her first visit since assuming responsibility for Tourism policy within the Welsh Government, the Deputy Minister, Dawn Bowden visited Cosmeston Country Park which has previously received Brilliant Basics funding. The Vale of Glamorgan received £122,124 during the first round of Brilliant Basics 2021 to 2022 to develop the Visitor Gateway project which improved access and pathways to Cosmeston Lake and jetty, including adding seating and shelter, new road access and entrance and resurfacing the jetty and slipway.
The Welsh Government’s Brilliant Basics project was the catalyst for further on site improvements from the Vale of Glamorgan including a new play area, site for concessions, round house and learning facilities, and new branding, interpretation and signage throughout.
Since project completion the park has experienced an increase in visitor numbers and its new additions have proven very popular with visitors.
Deputy Minister, Dawn Bowden said: “The projects supported through the Brilliant Basics fund make a real difference. For this funding round, we’re seeking proposals that add value to the visitor experience and that help to build a quality destination.
“Local tourism amenities have a big part to play in making a trip a memorable one. These facilities often go unnoticed, but they are an important part of a visitor’s experience and also benefit those who live in the area.”
Leader of the Vale of Glamorgan Council, Cllr Lis Burnett said: “The Council is very proud of its country parks, which offer residents and visitors the opportunity to enjoy a large and varied outdoor space.
“There are range of features to enjoy at Cosmeston, including diverse wildlife and open spaces, picnic areas and a brand new play area.
“This funding has allowed us to improve the park further through the Visitor Gateway Project. That has seen access routes upgraded and new facilities added or refurbished throughout the site.”
The closing date for expressions of interest is 16 March. Further information is available on Finance: Business Wales.
The Lasting Impressions: Gregynog Prints exhibition at The National Library of Wales.
A selection of prints from the famous Gregynog Collection is now available for the public to see for the first time in 30 years at The National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth.
The exhibition, Lasting Impressions: Gregynog Prints opened on Saturday and celebrates sisters Gwendoline and Margaret Davies’ art collection and the work of the Gwasg Gregynog at Gregynog Hall, Tregynon, near Newtown.
The sisters, who were generous supporters of the library, amassed one of Britain's most important art collections in the 20th century.
Amongst the treasures in the exhibition, which runs until September 23, are 40 etchings by Augustus John, an iconic Rembrandt self-portrait and a set of rare and early proofs from James Whistler’s famous Thames Set.
In 1951, thanks to the sisters’ generosity, the Gregynog Gallery was completed and decorated at the library. The following year, following Gwendoline’s death, Margaret donated a collection of valuable prints to the library.
Pedr ap Llwyd, library chief executive and librarian, said: “Thanks to the Davies sisters’ generosity, the National Library of Wales has a beautiful space in the Gregynog Gallery to share the National Art Collection with the people of Wales.
“We are very pleased therefore to be able to share some of the treasures that they collected, which reflect their sublime tastes, with all who visit this special exhibition.”
Mari Elin Jones, the library’s interpretation officer, said: “Just over 70 years since Margaret Davies bequeathed the print collection to the library, and nearly 30 years since the works were last exhibited, we’re thrilled to share this unique collection with the public one again.
“I hope that these beautiful objects will be enjoyed by visitors of all ages.”
As well as collecting art and their charity work, the Davies sisters’ intention was to create a centre for Arts and Crafts in Wales. This led to the establishment of the Gwasg Gregynog , a private press that produced a limited number of high quality books.
A number of the best printmakers of the 20th century were commissioned to illustrate these books - artists such as Kyffin Williams, Hilary Paynter and Colin See-Paynton – and examples of these illustrations are also on display in the exhibition.
Temporary exhibitions at The Narrow Gauge Railway Museum in Tywyn mark three sets of anniversaries in 2023.
The first section marks 150 years since the opening in 1873 of the Glyn Valley Tramway, which was initially horse drawn before conversion to steam in 1888.
This year also marks the centenary of 120 independent railway companies being grouped into four “main line” companies. This exhibition considers the impact of the grouping on narrow gauge railways.
The centenary of the completion and opening of the Welsh Highland (Light Railway) Company is also celebrated in 2023. The Dinas Junction to Rhyd Ddu line reopened on July 31, 1922, followed by Rhyd Ddu to Portmadoc, through Beddgelert and the Aberglaslyn Pass, on June 1, 1923.
The third section of the exhibition records events that took place on Talyllyn Railway 70 years ago They include assistance provided by a Territorial Army unit and the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II on June 2, 1953, when the Talyllyn was the world’s only railway run by preservation society volunteers.
This year also marks the 70th anniversary of the premiere of ‘The Titfield Thunderbolt’, a film inspired by volunteers who saved and ran Talyllyn Railway, at the Leicester Square Theatre on March, 1953.
Located at Tywyn Wharf Station, The Narrow Gauge Railway Museum is open daily when trains are running on Talyllyn Railway. Admission is free although donations are encouraged. More information at about opening times at www.ngrm.org.uk and www.talyllyn.co.uk .
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