Hi Everybody,

I visited the small town of Llantrisant this week with a Cardiff History Group. This included the most interesting tour and talk about the history of the town. Although no excavations were ever done on the hill top itself, the surrounding area has evidence of habitation going back over 1000 years. The church was really interesting: Apart from fantastic views around the surrounding countryside, it has a font that dates from the 10th century and a stained glass window, which depicts Christ on the Cross without a beard. Now I have never given Christ’s appearance on the cross that much thought, thinking the crucifixion being the point here, but apparently this window is one of  only three known in the whole world that show Christ cleanly shaven, making this a very special window.

Dare I mention, that the upright piano in the church also hosts the gin bar, yes, gin bar, installed by the local vicar. Don’t ask. Apparently, it used to have a sign as well, that read: Dear God, please forgive us, for we have ginned.  The man has a sense of humour.

The whole visit just gave another amazing glimpse into how people used to (and still) live and made you appreciate the importance of history, by looking at objects from various artistic movements and wondering what was the artist or craftsman trying to say.

The talk was conducted by a volunteer manager of the Guildhall, which sits right beside what little is left of the castle that once stood on this hill. His knowledgeable and humorous delivery was a delight. The history of the Guildhall and castle were equally interesting, particularly the customs of the Freemen of Llantrisant. Sadly, there is not enough space for all of this on this blog, but why not google it, or better still come and visit the town, after booking yourself onto a tour. You will not be disappointed. Then to finish off the day, visit the Butchers Arms Gallery and Tea shop, which has an excellent gift shop upstairs, and a fantastic café below, which does the most amazing sandwiches.

And how does this all tie into pottery? The Tea Shop sells great pottery, too – vases, mugs, plates – which could give you ideas for your own work. So it’s worth visiting, just to get ideas for your own work.

Until next time. Thanks for looking in – diolch!