Category Archives: Support

Publicity about AREP trip to Uganda

The St Helens Star publicised the 2015 AREP trip to Uganda.  Well done to Erin and friends and your Head of Year for enthusing students in Year 8 at Rainford High.

As a result of this article, Wish FM called and sent a reporter round.

Schools can play a huge part in raising awareness for charities working locally and in other countries.  If anyone would like our more detailed pack of information about any of the sponsored children, or what we’re hoping to achieve during the trip, please get in touch.

Sponsored walk around Anglesey part 2

Red line shows the walk!

This 60-mile sponsored walk (Puffin Island to Holyhead) raised funds for school fees. Part 1 was a similar distance along the Northern Coast of Anglesey from Holyhead to Puffin Island (the blue line).

The Southern (red) route completed a circuit of the island.

Each child we sponsor is known to us personally from our visits to Africa. Most of them have lost a parent or a sibling due to civil war.

The walk was completed and £2.2k was raised. Fantastic! Thanks to one and all.

How to make Green Tomato Chutney

First your neighbour kindly gives you 9 lbs of Green Tomatoes:

Green Tomatoes from George, Alder Hey Allotments

Green Tomatoes from George, Alder Hey Allotments

Put through the mincer, they produce a bright green, sour-smelling mush!

Through the mincer

Through the mincer

Add a batch of cooking apples from another neighbour

Cooking apples before peeling

Cooking apples before peeling!

Then onions and malt vinegar:

Make sure it's good-quality malt!

Make sure it’s good-quality malt!

And through the mincer, the mixture looks very unappetizing!:

Onions and apples through the mincer

Add Vinegar, plus minced Onions and apples.

Add ginger, cayenne pepper and sugar, then simmer!

Start simmering

Finally tie in sachets of pickling spice, and after a while the colour changes to a beautiful dark brown.

Pickling spice adds a pungent aroma in depth

Garlic and Pickling spice add a pungent aroma

And eventually, 38 jars of finished product!

Finished jars, some hours later!

Finished jars, some hours later!

Quite a few people, on hearing about Green Tomato Chutney, have said “Yuk! I won’t try that!”  But on being persuaded to try it, have loved it and come back for more.

Quite a few jars still available, price £2.  50p covers the cost of ingredients, and £1.50 goes to the project.  An ideal and very tasty gift!

 

Day 5 of the walk: Red Wharf Bay to Puffin Island, 11 miles approx

Day 5: Friday 9th August 2012

Forgetting my camera on this the final day of the walk means that there are only a few pictures, taken at the end!

Dan, Gill, John, Meg and Ollie with Puffin island behind

Dan, Gill, John, Meg and Ollie with Puffin island behind

Definite relief1

Definite relief1

Genuinely tired feet!

Genuinely tired feet!

Trwyn Penmon

Trwyn Penmon

We celebrated with strawberries, cream and brown sugar

We celebrated with strawberries, cream and brown sugar.

Phew!  It was a great experience to have walked these 60 miles from one side of Anglesey to the other, via the North Coast.

A massive thank-you to everyone who has sponsored. At the time of writing this, Saturday 17th August, the total raised is £2027.13 with one or two people still away on holiday who have said they would like to contribute.  I am staggered at all the donations we have received, and pray that each giver would know a blessing in return.

David Sheppard, former Bishop of Liverpool, would often talk about ‘real wealth’ and I have certainly thought about that on this journey.  What price can you put on some of the vistas of the Anglesey Coast?  How much money are all the bees worth?  They are genuinely price-less for without them we’d be gone.

Day 4 of the walk: Pont Llinas to Red Wharf Bay, 15 miles approx

Day4: Thursday 8th August 2013

Psychologically, it was good to be heading ‘down’ the map, running South from the top right hand corner of the island.  It was also a relief to be on softer, smoother ground. Gill and the dogs accompanied me for the first mile or so:

Pont Llinas in the background

Pont Llinas in the background

A field of thistles - and bees

A field of thistles – and bees

Ynys Dulas, the submarine-like island in the foreground

Ynys Dulas, the submarine-like island in the foreground

Ynys Dulas

Ynys Dulas

Grouse hiding and very hard to spot!

Grouse hiding and very hard to spot!

Missed him!  Those grouse can move!

Missed him! Those grouse can move!

Swallows - or swifts?

Swallows – or swifts?

Wetland flowers

Wetland flowers

Traeth Dulas

Traeth Dulas

Sedimentary Rock layers near Bryntirion

Sedimentary Rock layers near Bryntirion

Ynys Moelfre

Ynys Moelfre, Llandudno and Great Orme in distance

Puffin Island still a very distant prospect

Puffin Island still a very distant prospect

Moelfre inshore lifeboat launching

Moelfre inshore lifeboat launching

Gulls ubiquitous

Gulls ubiquitous

Sea King despatched for Air Sea rescue.

Sea King despatched for Air Sea rescue.

Lords and Ladies

Lords and Ladies

Benllech Sand with Red Wharf Bay beyond

Benllech Sand with Red Wharf Bay beyond

Ponies on Benllech beach

Ponies on Benllech beach

Looking towards the end of the walk

Looking towards the end of the walk, Puffin island 10 miles off

Day 3 of the walk: Wylfa power station to Pont Llinas, 11 miles approx

Day 3: Wednesday 7th August 2013.

The rugged North cost of Anglesey is very beautiful but also slow going to walk along.
Hundreds of steps up and down the steep paths mean that your knees get hammered!
But overall it was still worth it.
The vast bulk of Wylfa power station was my starting point.

Wylfa Nuclear Power Station

Wylfa Nuclear Power Station

Wylfa nuclear power station: closer in

Wylfa nuclear power station: closer in

Wylfa nuclear power station and humans!

Wylfa nuclear power station and humans!

Wylfa: overhead cables leaving the power station

Wylfa: overhead cables leaving the power station

Note the “Emergency plume gamma monitoring station” cabinet in the foreground.
These are sprinkled around the site, presumably to track any gamma radiation releases.
It was a little disconcerting to find that there was a basic spelling error on the labelling of each box, see below.

Is 'monoriting' a new word?

Is ‘monoriting’ a new word?

Nuclear power stations are some of the most complex machines ever constructed.
It’s worth remembering that they are built by fallible humans, and multiple fail-safe mechanisms will always be needed (except perhaps in checking the accuracy of labels!).

A whole field of meadowsweet

A whole field of meadowsweet

I had not realised that Anglesey contained such a huge variety of rocks:

Anglesey's world-famous rock formations

Anglesey’s world-famous rock formations

Pre-Cambrian rocks: 860 to 542 million years old

Pre-Cambrian rocks: 860 to 542 million years old

Small copper butterfly

Small copper butterfly

St Patrick's church, near Cemaes

St Patrick’s church, near Cemaes

St Patrick's church, near Cemaes: interior

St Patrick’s church, near Cemaes: interior

Hard to imagine 1600 years ago when Patrick was apparently in a ship-wreck on this coast and founded the church.  Would he be puzzled at the fuss we make of the Celtic saints today?

Middle mouse, Ynys Badrig

Middle mouse, Ynys Badrig, by Llanbadrig church

Middle mouse, showing sea currents

Middle mouse, showing sea currents

Looking back: Cemaes bay and Wylfa power station

Looking back: Cemaes bay and Wylfa power station

Near Trwynbychan

Near Trwynbychan

Old mine workings

Old mine workings

Above Porth Wen

Above Porth Wen, ruins in background

Sheer cliffs near Bull Bay

Sheer cliffs near Bull Bay

Bull Bay, chemical works and Pont Llinas in the far distance

Bull Bay, chemical works and Pont Llinas in the far distance

Stream near Amlwch polluted by leachate from old mineworking?

Stream near Amlwch polluted by leachate from old mineworking?

Polluted stream

Polluted stream near Amlwch

Warning message about adders!

Warning message about adders!

Last few miles to Pont Llinas

Last few miles to Pont Llinas

Pont Llinas - getting closer

Pont Llinas – getting closer

Almost there!

Pont Llinas: Almost there! (it’s for sale!)

Journey's end: well, Day 3 at least!

Journey’s end: well, Day 3 of the walk at least!  Thanks to the back-up crew for meeting me!

Cloud formations above Snowdonia

Cloud formations above Snowdonia

Later that evening, near Dwyran we were having a meal at my brother’s place and I noticed these two striking pillar-shaped cloud formations above Snowdonia in the distance.  Almost certainly they were due to thermals rising above the hot rocks and subsequent condensation of moisture droplets.

Day 2 of the walk: Llanfachraeth to Wylfa power station, 15 miles approx

Day 2: Tuesday 6th August 2013.
An early start from our camp-site near Benllech. We drove back to Llanfachraeth, then posed on this superb footbridge built to cross Afon Alaw.  European Union funding does do some good!

Footbridge across Afon Alaw

Footbridge across Afon Alaw

Once more, the tide was stealing in up the river.  As we watched from the bridge, shivering ripples in the water were accompanied on occasion by flashes of silver.  Sprats were coming in with the tide, looking for food.  And then we saw them, bigger swirls and splashes – grey mullet chasing the sprats.  And all the while, the water flowing up on either bank.  It was a magical moment, early morning, still, silent, a pure gift.

Gill with Ollie and Meg

Gill with Ollie and Meg, Afon Alaw in the background

Gill accompanied me for a short way, and then it was time for a fast walk down the estuary to the coast.  I met other walkers and it’s hard not to feel a slight tinge of competition, “No, I don’t want to be overtaken!”  Walking Northwards up the shore I was struck by the huge wide-open skies.

Looking back towards Holyhead

Looking back towards Holyhead

Looking North along the coast

Looking North along the coast

Seaweed and headland

Seaweed and headland

Wildflowers in profusion and everywhere the sound of bees

Wildflowers in profusion, and everywhere the sound of bees

Funnel web spider

Funnel web spider

Fireweed and meadowsweet

Fireweed and meadowsweet

Church Bay

Church Bay

Red Admiral Butterfly

Red Admiral Butterfly

Cliff path looking back to Holyhead

On cliff path looking back to Holyhead

Horses above Church Bay

Horses above Church Bay

Cinnabar moth caterpillar on ragwort

Cinnabar moth caterpillar on ragwort

Barley white unto harvest

Barley white unto harvest

Ground flowers - species?

Ground flowers – species?

Ynys y Fydlyn

Ynys y Fydlyn: amazing confluence of landscapes

The Skerries

The Skerries in the distance

Eroded arch near Carmel Head

Eroded arch near Carmel Head

Beached creature near Carmel Head

Beached creature near Carmel Head

IMG_5159_1_1

Who paints the sky into glorious day?

Old mine workings, and Wylfa nuclear power station

Old mine workings, and Wylfa nuclear power station

Grass and sheep!

Grass and sheep!

Peacock butterfly: glowing , glorious, graceful

Peacock butterfly: glowing, glorious, graceful

Wylfa nuclear power station, 90,000 tonnes on solid rock

Wylfa nuclear power station, 90,000 tonnes on solid rock

Day 2 ended in sheer exhaustion at the Wylfa power station visitor centre. About 15 miles walked, making a total of some 23 miles for Days 1 and 2.

 

 

Day 1 of the walk: Holyhead to Llanfrachaeth: 8 miles approx

Monday August 5th 2013.
The walk began at 5.30pm at Holyhead railway station, close to the docks where the massive ferries arrive and depart on their journeys across the Irish Sea.  Like the bass guitar notes of a vast rock concert, the deep reverberating throb of ships’ engines accompanied the first few miles of the walk!  I wanted to cover 7 miles before nightfall.

Ferry traffic dominates Holyhead bay

Ferry traffic dominates Holyhead bay

A short walk around the beautiful rocky coast brought me to Holyhead causeway:

Holyhead causeway

Holyhead causeway: 3 miles from the town

After crossing the causeway, walking North up the coast brought me to the Afon Alaw estuary as the sun was setting.  Ferries continued to loom large on the horizon, adding another dimension of journey.

Holyhead from Afon Alaw estuary

Holyhead from Afon Alaw estuary

The smokestack from Anglesey Aluminium marked its silent reflection in the waters of Afon Alaw.

Anglesey Aluminium and Holyhead mountain

Anglesey Aluminium and Holyhead mountain

A solitary walk, quiet enough to hear the bubbling sound of birds in the estuary.

Not too sweaty or smelly yet!

Not too sweaty or smelly yet!

The incoming tide followed me up the river to Llanfachraeth and a welcome rendezvous with Gill and the back-up crew!