Dai's walk around Wales blog - October 2023

5 October 2023 - Source of the River Neath

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My second walk after recovering from my last trip up Snowdon, this one was off piste mainly following the River Neath to its source. I did some video recording of the walk but seem to have lost the second half which included the visit to the source itself on the Pontneddfechan side of the river.


7 October 2023 - sunset on Baglan Beach

waiting for a bite

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A big thanks to Gareth Lewis of Tondu for allowing me to take photos of him while he was fishing on Baglan Beach, not that I asked his permission mind.  

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10 October 2023 - Max Boyce mural - Dinas Rock pub, Glynneath

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I came across Steve Jenks Art painting a Happy 80th birthday Max Boyce mural on the side of the Dinas Rock pub in Glynneath. The video below contains an interview with Steve about his work and the history of his message to Max. 



13 October 2023 - video release

https://youtu.be/xnZkzskxDlE 69.jpg (512992 bytes) MAX BOYCE STATUE GLYNNEATH - RUBIN EYNON SCULPTOR INTERVIEW - An interview with the Glynneath sculptor Rubin Eynon about the Max Boyce statue and the process involved with his work on the statue and other projects he has been involved with.




14 October 2023


A big thank you to the Sunshine Sanctuary Yoga Group led by Emma Tamplin for acting as tonight's sunset foreground on Baglan Beach.


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21 October 2023 - 57th Anniversary

Donít hide the tears - Aberfan Disaster, October 21st 1966 by Derek Davies (published to the Neath Poetry FB page)

Donít hide the tears
Just remember that day
When our cherished little babies 
Were taken away.

For they now play games in heaven 
They laugh, they joke, they sing 
Our little choir of Welsh angels
School bells in heaven ring.

How can we comprehend it all
How shall we count the cost?
The day the sky turned darkened grey
The day those lives were lost.

Though every year the tears we cry
Those memories filled with pain
Are reminders of that fateful day
When we relive it all once again.

So donít hide those tears 
Itís really hard now not to cry
Remember those little angels
On that day we said goodbye.

by Derek Davies


Today is imprinted in Wales - Cofiwch Aberfan - by Debbie James  (published to the Neath Poetry FB page)

ďTime to get up my bachgen bachĒ
I hear my mammy say. 
I can see my breath as I breath out,
Against the cold of the day.

ĎCímon get up youíll be late for schoolí
I hear my mammy yell.
I throw back my eiderdown
As breakfast I can smell.

They day is cold but I want to go,
I love my days in school.
Here down in the valley,
It is a wondrous jewel.

My da he works down in the mine,
Itís a hard and dangerous job.
But itís the only place in the valley, 
To earn a good few bob.

My da he says Iím clever,
He wants so much more for me,
He doesnít want me to go to the mine,
Said to aim for university. 

My ma puts lunch into my bag,
I skip out through the door.
I call For friends along the way,
I couldnít ask for more.

My life here in the valley,
Itís wonderful you see,
I love the beautiful valley,
And the valley looks out for me.

Me and my friends we run into school,
Itís raining and we are wet,
But we really love our school,
And the teachers are then best you can get.

We mime our songs in assembly, 
Although all of us can sing.
We just donít want to show it,
We are boys, itís not our thing.

When itís done we all rush out,
The teacher yells Ďslow downí
We sit in our class excited,
No time to moan or frown.

I put my books upon my desk,
The thunder is sounding so loud,
I turn to my friend and give a smile,
But we are covered in a cloud?

It all gone dark - where am I?
I canít see itís all gone black.
Where are you my butty bach?
He didnít answer back.

I cannot see around me,
I cannot feel my legs, 
Iíd cry out for my mammy,
But I think I might be dead.

All is quiet but not for long,
In the distance I hear a cry.
ĎWe must help to get them out,
Itís hard but we must tryí

All is black around me,
I cannot move at all,
I really want to get out of here,
But I cannot even crawl.

My chest is hardly moving,
But I can hear the men above,
Digging with their strong black hands,
I can feel how much theiy love.

I know that they are digging,
But I know it is in vain,
I want to see the daylight,
But I also feel the pain.

I know they want to reach me,
But I canít hold on to life,
The black is all around me, 
I have lost my strife.

I see the hole that they have dug,
Their eyes are full of hope,
But they see my eyes are dead,
Their hearts they cannot cope. 

I so donít want to leave you,
But it was too hard to stay,
The coal it came so quickly, 
Upon that fateful day.

We know how hard you tried to save us,
You must not feel the guilt,
It really was not your fault,
The blood that had been spilt.

Your strong kind arms they held me,
I felt your heart was heaving,
Your warm salty tears ran down my face,
You knew I wasnít breathing. 

Although we could not show it,
We felt your love that day,
As you carried our bodies to the morgue,
Although we wanted to to stay.

The pull between life and death,
Itís hard for both you see,
I miss my daddy and my ma,
I wanted home for tea.

We all watched as you broke your hearts,
Some were silent and some they cried,
But we all held hands together,
We were sad that we had died.

But we knew that it was a lesson,
A price that we had all to pay,
Those bloody mines were dangerous things,
They needed to be taken away.

The valley now is more lovely,
The hills are a beautiful green,
The children are safe in their school now,
And the air that they breath is so clean. 

When you visit please notice white arches,
Thatís where our small bodies they lay,
We have gone but we wonít be forgotten, 
Cofiwch Aberfan every day. 

by Debbie James

22 October 2023 - sunset walk on Aberavon Beach - I'm taking photos in the shallows, photo courtesy of Carolyn Burden

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24 October 2023 - video upload


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Nigel Taylor - resident Brynhyfryd, Glynneath - resident evidence in relation to the tipping of barrels in the Heol y Glyn landfill site, an interview conducted from his place of observation (bedroom). 


28 October 2023 - videos uoloaded


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Dai Richards appearance on Flog It with Simon Thomas circa 1999. This part of the episode was filmed on the St Helens ground, home of Swansea RFC. Following the showing of this episode I was contacted by the granddaughter of Elsie Bradford who informed me that Lillenhall was the name of a house in the Uplands, Swansea, less than a mile away from St Helens. I had purchased the book from a dealer in Durham so this was a massive co-incidence. An even bigger one was that Elsie's granddaughter lived about 2 miles away from me in Neath.


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Game of the Century, Wales v New Zealand 1905 which includes Gareth Edwards visting Rugby Relics in Leonard Street to view the 1905 Wales v New Zealand collection, includes Edwards adding his Thumbograph to the book as the first modern player. Complete programme. 


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Total Rugby appearance circa 2012. In this episode of the World Rugby programme Total Rugby I show off the top 5 items in my collection. 

31 October 2023 - Mumbles from Swansea prom, it was too nice a day not to take a picture





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