Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Brummie »

Global Admin wrote: 26 May 2024 08:11
Brummie wrote: 26 May 2024 07:31
Glad you got there safe and sound. Hope we get to share your castle adventure ie happy snaps?

Cardiff Castle was largely built by the 3rd Earl Of Bute, using the vast profits he made from coal mining in the 1800s - he was literally one of the world's wealthiest man in the 1860s.

It was original a Roman Fort settlement, and later a Norman one. 'Everyone' invaded this place - the Vikings in between of course. :lol: :lol:

I took these photos of the 'over the top' Bute inspired interiors!

Gigantic expense involved - allegedly the second place in the UK to get electricity - ahead of Queen Victoria even. :idea:

It was given to the City of Cardiff in 1950, as it was 'seldom used by the Butes! It is smack in the centre of Cardiff on huge grounds.

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Oh wow, just stunning. I didn't get to Cardiff on any of my trips to the UK, so much to see. :?
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

norvic wrote: 26 May 2024 08:15

When in foreign countries - Europe, Japan, USA, etc. - I try to learn enough basic language to be polite and show that I'm trying, but not so much as to be out of my depth when they reply (as happened on Madeira!).

This is not something I would recommend in Wales; although you will hear a good number of people speaking Welsh, it is better to speak to them in English than to try and wrap your tongue round a lack and surplus of vowels (yes, you can have both).

We are staying tonight in 'Newport'. In Welsh it is 'Casnewydd'. After 4 pints I did try to say it. Never again. Newport it is. :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Brummie »

Just never try to say Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch even after no beers.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by peterh »

It was great to meet you both today, and I’m glad you enjoyed your day.

Beer and sunshine - that’s Wales :D
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

Thanks for fining the time Peter in a busy family weekend - great meeting up, and thanks for showing us around. :lol:

Off to the nearby Roman Ruins today, and to catch up with DavyJo this afternoon.

Margo applied for a job here below - but was advised she was far too pickled already! :lol:

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Luigi »

Hi

If you get to the Harlech area try and visit the Italianate village of Portmeiron. You won't be disappointed.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by JonEboy »

Thought we’d do a quick recce today just to make sure. Good news. Conwy castle is still there!
Conwy castle
Conwy castle
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Philexx »

Luigi wrote: 26 May 2024 22:33 Hi

If you get to the Harlech area try and visit the Italianate village of Portmeiron. You won't be disappointed.
I've been there. Really enjoyed it.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by norvic »

Luigi wrote: 26 May 2024 22:33 Hi

If you get to the Harlech area try and visit the Italianate village of Portmeiron. You won't be disappointed.
Where The Prisoner was set.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by FairyFoot »

Though the green dome isn't so green these days.

I wonder, do I still have P for Portmeirion, and H for Harlech, from those 2 issues making up A-to-Z RM issued a while back?
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by norvic »

FairyFoot wrote: 27 May 2024 03:17 Though the green dome isn't so green these days.

I wonder, do I still have P for Portmeirion, and H for Harlech, from those 2 issues making up A-to-Z RM issued a while back?
I probably do! Meanwhile ere are some maximum cards.

First the Harlech Castle from the Maximaphily thread.

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And the Portmeirion which doesn't seem to have made it there.
Portmeirion Maximum Card 2011. (Postmarked Caernarfon because there was no special postmark for Portmeirion.)
Portmeirion Maximum Card 2011. (Postmarked Caernarfon because there was no special postmark for Portmeirion.)
Also one for Pont Grog Y Borth
Menai Suspension Bridge maximum card 2015.
Menai Suspension Bridge maximum card 2015.
Last view, Llandudno Pier
Llandudno Pier maximum card 2014.
Llandudno Pier maximum card 2014.
But don;t forget the Little Trains of Wales
'The Earl' on the Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway.  https://wllr.org.uk/information/locomotives/
'The Earl' on the Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway. https://wllr.org.uk/information/locomotives/
Loco 'Blanche' on the Ffestiniog Railway.<br />https://www.festrail.co.uk/locomotives/
Loco 'Blanche' on the Ffestiniog Railway.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

met up with DavyJo today, who kindly took us on a tour of the 800 year old Caerphilly Castle - the largest in the UK after Windsor Castle - on 30 acres.

Excuse the blurry pic above -- needed to ask a local to take it. :)

Also had some pints of BRAIN BEER, and Margo ordered a cider named after a REAL Prime Minister. :lol:

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by goof »

Glen, Margo

Great timing the Laburnum arch at Bodnant Gardens in the North is just out at its most impressive so well worth a visit,
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Brummie »

Just looked up Caerphilly Castle, what a beauty that is, just so much to see. Looks like your having fun and drinking plenty of that Brain beer, should help. :lol:
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

Yes, if it were not for DavyJoe suggesting visiting Caerphilly Castle we'd have not visited.

Another 'spare' mega castle that was donated to the nation by the Marquis of Bute in 1940, along with Cardiff Castle etc.

Huge place -
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

JonEboy wrote: 27 May 2024 01:02
Thought we’d do a quick recce today just to make sure. Good news. Conwy castle is still there!

Image

Jon

That's a relief. :lol:

Did you get the weekends mixed up - aren't we catching up NEXT weekend at Conwy? 8-)

Glen
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by MargoZ »

Thanks to everyone for all the great travel suggestion and especially to PeterH and Davyjo for being our tour guides and cultural advisors in Newport.

My personal discovery...two beautiful parks close by our airbnb here in Christchurch

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I've been enjoying a long walk every morning taking in the beauty (and patting all the local doggies doing their constitutionals).

Much as I love my home in New South Wales I do wonder how anyone could see any resemblance to the real South Wales. Poor old Captain Cook must have been knocking back the rum that day 8-)
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Brummie »

The green is beautiful isn't it, I always called it "true green" as opposed to our more khaki green. Did you see any cheeky squirrels?
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by lesbootman »

Those are lovely photos.

The green-ness is one of the benefits of our climate.

We've had a bucket load of rain these past few days in Greater Manchester to freshen things up and make everything appear even greener!
Our days are happier when we give people a bit of our heart rather than a piece of our mind!
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by norvic »

Will someone in Wales please take our visitors to one of the many wide sandy beaches in the country? :D

There are plenty to choose from especially in Pembrokeshire.
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Post by Global Admin »

norvic wrote: 27 May 2024 17:31 Will someone in Wales please take our visitors to one of the many wide sandy beaches in the country? :D

There are plenty to choose from especially in Pembrokeshire.

No need - Royal Mail scoured the place, and came up with the BEST there is.

Added these Welsh Beach scenes to stock this week. :mrgreen:

I understand there is a pier down there and donkey rides and all the other goodies. And lots of rocks and grit. Can't vouch for that tho.

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Bill H UK »

Best beach in south Wales:
Rhossilli Beach, Gower.
Rhossilli Beach, Gower.
And best in North Wales:
Newborough, Anglesey (what a backdrop!)
Newborough, Anglesey (what a backdrop!)
Glad you're enjoying Wales, Glen & Margo.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by MargoZ »

Brummie wrote: 27 May 2024 17:24 The green is beautiful isn't it, I always called it "true green" as opposed to our more khaki green. Did you see any cheeky squirrels?
Plenty of squirrels, Brummie, and the fattest pigeons I have ever seen 😳
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Post by Brummie »

I know they feed them too well. :lol:
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Post by The Pom »

Talking of animals, if you're driving around Wales you need to watch out for the indigenous araf. They have a habit of wandering out in front of traffic without warning.

Luckily, places where they're known to cross have warning signs on the road.
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Post by gavin-h »

The Pom wrote: 28 May 2024 00:00 Talking of animals, if you're driving around Wales you need to watch out for the indigenous araf. They have a habit of wandering out in front of traffic without warning.
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Post by MargoZ »

I think we narrowly missed one today :o
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Post by MargoZ »

Today we visited the National Botanical Garden of Wales....stunning!
Apologies in advance for so many pictures.
I could live there forever ❤️
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by DavyJo »

Glad you both got there! On a dry day with some blue sky as well.

I was there a few years ago and found the pharmacy museum fascinating …and of course all the plants and flowers which are stunning.

Fantastic photos Margo👍

Keep them coming 😀
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by FairyFoot »

Great place... Did you feed / see the postbox there?

I remember being quite stunned by the Protea - maybe I thought these were fantasy flora when I first saw on the RSA postage stamps...
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Post by gavin-h »

MargoZ wrote: 28 May 2024 04:39 Today we visited the National Botanical Garden of Wales....stunning!
Apologies in advance for so many pictures.
I could live there forever ❤️
You've picked a great time to visit the UK.

A mild wet winter followed by an, erm, mild wet spring means everything's growing like crazy. It truly is a "green and pleasant" land just now.

I'm sorry I can't get over to Wales for a catch-up but things are crazy here and just got even crazier since they called the general election.

Safe travels both of you, and enjoy the rest of your visit!!!
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

At the excellent suggestion of PeterH we today visited the Royal Mint - largest coinage mint in Europe, who produce coins for loads of countries - today they were doing ECUADOR! Phtos totally prohibited on coining floor sadly - and oddly.

Amazingly, open on a Bank Holiday like today - and all Sundays. Well worth a visit for both locals or anyone passing this area near Cardiff.

Was like entering a high security prison, with rolls of razor wire over outer fences, and inner fences as extra security. Security guards crawling all over the place as mega millions of quid inside at any time. :lol: :lol: :lol:

In a past life I owned, edited and published the Australian Coin and Banknote Magazine, so of special interest to me, this place.

I hand struck a special new 50p coin from a polished blank, which depicted a dinosaur of some kind on one side and another dinosaur called Charles on the other! They placed it in a special folder if anyone collects those. Apparently only obtainable there, and at 8 quid, I hope so. :D
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Post by Global Admin »

We also made a visit to the excellent British Bird Of Prey exhibit, that has various types of very large eagles, huge Owls, Osprey, Buzzard, Red Kite, Peregrine Falcons, and other raptors. Also well worth seeing.

No idea why these birds freely fly about the skies, and then cheerfully go back to their 'homes' but they do.

Well the Peregrine Falcon didn't, and at 6pm was still flying about in the distance! No amount of food enticements were working. :mrgreen:

Fastest bird in the world, and boy did he move. 8-)

Another great place to visit.

Glen

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by lesbootman »

Red Kites are beautiful birds. They were reintroduced in Mid Wales some years back. We have often seen them when in South Shropshire over quite a few years and they've spread a lot further.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Brummie »

Thanks for sharing your holiday with us, really enjoying it. :D
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Post by FairyFoot »

You may well see some red kites on your way up to Harlech.
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Post by Global Admin »

An interesting data point - we are regularly advised by some on this board that staff in small UK Post Offices do not possess date stamp cancels any more these days, and even if they do, they will refuse to use them on mail, and instead toss them into a mail sack to be done at a mail centre. Which of course seldom occurs, hence costing Royal Mail a fortune on re-used franking. Stupidity reigns supreme in there. :roll:

I’ve travelled an awful lot, and have mailed an awful lot of foreign mail with nice stamps, and never once – NEVER - has there been an issue.

As always the two keys, are a SMILE, and picking a QUIET time at the PO. Maybe an ozzie accent also helps, but it should not matter. 8-)

A member here wanted some heavy new ACSC catalogues that would have cost him £40 post if sent from Sydney, and that takes 3 weeks, and he’d just as likely get clobbered for VAT and/or the parcel held up whilst the drones in there decided what to do.

He told me that to mail ‘Signed For’ from UK was about £10. So I affixed these sheetlets of Victoria Cross Medals and Brunel Railway back home, with just over £10 face – worth FAR more than £10 course when lightly postally used. Added my custom-made 'SIGNATURE REQUIRED' Flouro Yellow and red labels, and metallic tamperproof stickers, and taped up tight for the 10,000 mile plan trip.

ALL members of this board in all countries, should send ALL mail franked like this, where possible, to other collectors of course.

Anyway, as proof of this methodology, went into a tiny PO counter in a supermarket next to our B&B in Wales where we are holidaying now. Asked the nice lady in there if she could please neatly CANCEL these valuable commemorative stamps after she lodged it.

First she said ‘why on earth do you want them cancelled’?? I explained some genius with a marker pen will destroy the stamps otherwise, in transit. This did not seem to bother her of course, but I persisted cheerfully and politely.

Then she said she had never seen these stamps before, and ‘was I quite sure they were genuine?’. Assured her they were all fine and genuine, and from a stamp collection.

Then she held up a half book of old Machins and said those stamps were no longer legal to use, and showed me the Charlie issues with QR codes that she said were all that was current. I advised I was aware of that, but that these were special issue QE2 stamps, and indeed even though all had the QE2 head, were not the outlawed ones. So she seemed happy with that.

When weighed, she told me it cost only £5.99, and that I’d overpaid it by over 4 quid – did I want to peel some stamps off? Knowing this would thin and ruin them, I politely declined. Buyer told me the domestic cost was 10 quid, so that was his affair. She looked askance that anyone would happily OVERPAY anything by over 4 quid! :D

Then I asked if she might cancel them LIGHTLY. She looked very worried she’d mess it up, and asked if I preferred to do it - and handed me the desk canceller (that we are often told, do not exist generally) and when done, and she checked all had cancels, and she affixed the orange ‘Signed For’ label, and they arrived fast.

All very pleasant, and a lovely staffer to deal with. Happy buyer, as the VFU franking is clearly worth more than he paid, so he got his parcel VAT free, and post free basically – and many weeks faster! 8-)

Glen

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by norvic »

Parcels are supposed to be cancelled at the counter.

2007 PO instruction of separation of mailstreams and cancellation of packets and parcels.
2007 PO instruction of separation of mailstreams and cancellation of packets and parcels.

It's ordinary letters that they have no obligation to cancel.

But when you get one of these newcomers who doesn't know which way is north, then anything can happen.

You could be lucky as you were, or you could get a jobsworth who downright refuses.

And I can direct you to one over the border in Shrewsbury who professes just that. She didn't sell the stamps, she's not getting any money, so you get no favours from her!
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

Gee, a PO instruction from 2007 - SEVENTEEN YEARS BACK .. I bet all staffers keep a copy of that handy at all times. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Way back then, near all letters ALSO got cancelled, before the PO got lazy and sloppy. A 1st class letter cost 34p in 2007. Today it is FOUR times that at £1.35. Things change. :!:

I have zero doubt if I walked into your friend at Shrewsbury PO, with the same pre-franked parcel, it would also have been delivered - neatly cancelled. :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by norvic »

Global Admin wrote: 29 May 2024 06:52 Gee, a PO instruction from 2007 - SEVENTEEN YEARS BACK .. I bet all staffers keep a copy of that handy at all times. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Way back then, near all letters ALSO got cancelled, before the PO got lazy and sloppy. A 1st class letter cost 34p in 2007. Today it is FOUR times that at £1.35. Things change. :!:

I have zero doubt if I walked into your friend at Shrewsbury PO, with the same pre-franked parcel, it would also have been delivered - neatly cancelled. :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Glen
Of course she should.

But prestamped letters she would not, and parcels she would make a fuss about.
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by FairyFoot »

The last time I had something cancelled at the counter... Jan 2023.... but my penpal said the year on the postmark was 2022!!
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by FairyFoot »

Harlech weather forecast, units metric!:
harlechweather.png
I am a Penpaller and Stamp User. I send therefore I receive. I have a snail mail forum, A World of Snail Mail. I may need help to postally use RM postage stamps - does anyone want to get into letter writing or up for occasional missives?
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by faro »

Global Admin wrote: 29 May 2024 06:36When weighed, she told me it cost only £5.99, and that I’d overpaid it by over 4 quid – did I want to peel some stamps off? Knowing this would thin and ruin them, I politely declined. Buyer told me the domestic cost was 10 quid, so that was his affair. She looked askance that anyone would happily OVERPAY anything by over 4 quid! :D
But she bit her lip and didn't say anything about the cost for a label rather than stamps being barely half the price (£3.39) and insured for £150 rather than £20 (recently reduced from £50) for the service you paid for.
How many different tariffs does a postal service need...? ;)

Appreciating the Wales updates, thank you, and enjoy the rest of the holiday, y'both!
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

We wanted to get to the further WEST part of Wales, and the closest we could get to and find accommodation was St. David's - officially "Britain's Smallest City' (population today 1,800) where we stayed last night, and tonight.

Lovely little place, with a very large well-preserved 12th Century Cathedral, built on the site of much older religious buildings, and the Bishop's Palace.

An early Pope declared that Pilgrims decreed that making TWO trips to here, counted the same as ONE Pilgrimage to Rome!

Margo took these great pix below early this morning, with not another person on the site. 8-)

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Today we are taking a very small boat to the REAL Westernmost point, Ramsay Island and the even better Skomer Island. Skomer Island is home to thousands of nesting seabirds including 42,000 puffins and 350,000 breeding pairs of Manx Shearwaters, between the months of April and July.

As well as hosting many other sea birds including Razorbills, Guillemots and Kittiwakes - also we hope to glimpse grey seals, harbour porpoises, and even pods of common dolphins on the boat trip.

We love Puffins, and will see endless numbers here today. We flew right up to the Faroe Islands a couple of years back from Copenhagen, to see them, and NADA! We needed to go to the most northern tip of Scotland to see some on the way back! - our photos of them here -

https://www.stampboards.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=77446


They were right up here -

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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by KevinHedley »

MargoZ wrote: 28 May 2024 04:39
Today we visited the National Botanical Garden of Wales....stunning!

Apologies in advance for so many pictures.

I could live there forever ❤️

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No apologies required! And I decided that before you got to the birds. :D
Here to learn
Here to enjoy
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Ubobo.R.O. »

:D
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by lesbootman »

Skomer Island is great for seeing puffins up close. We were lucky enough to go a few years ago and were wowed by them.

We did see puffins last year in the Faeroe Islands and in Iceland and hope to return to Flamborough before they head off again from there.

:D
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by norvic »

You should also see Choughs on the islands.

Screenshot 2024-05-29 at 10.58.47.png
Not a brilliant picture but it is cropped from one I took in 2011!
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by lesbootman »

Yes, we did spot choughs - and marsh harriers (don't tell Ubobo.R.O. about them though).
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Re: Any members in WALES UK up for a coffee or beer etc in the next weeks?

Post by Global Admin »

Some feel I am being harsh here on popular UK 'beaches'. :)

I guess it is what one gets used to.

Yesterday near here, I took photos of a very popular beach, and the 'fine white sand'. - with the 'Pirate Cafe' overlooking it.

Just to prove I did not photoshop this, I took off my size 10 shoe, and some of the 'sand grains' as can be seen were LARGER than my shoe! :D :D

We had lunch at a cafe nearby, and I swear this is the business card they gave me - these 'sand grain' boulders feature prominently on it!

Glen

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