ABERYSTWYTH UNIVERSITY is delighted to invite local people and visitors alike to discover more about the Old College as part of Open Doors 2016 on Thursday (Sept 8).
Part of the European Heritage Days programme, which takes place in 50 countries across Europe, Open Doors is the largest volunteer event in the heritage sector in Wales.
The Old College is a Grade I listed building located on the seafront in Aberystwyth. With castellated towers and gargoyled parapets, this iconic building is the birthplace of university scholarship in Wales and one of the UK’s most significant 19th century buildings.
Originally built as a hotel by railway contractor Thomas Savin, the Old College was purchased by the Welsh University committee for £10,000 in 1867, a fraction of the amount it had cost to build. The first students arrived in October 1872.
The University is currently planning to transform the building into an integrated centre of heritage, culture, learning and knowledge exchange at the heart of a new cultural quarter in the historic centre of the town. It will provide unique opportunities and benefits for the university, the local community, the region of Mid Wales and Wales.
Plans include a museum, art gallery space, shop and restaurant/cafe. Artist tenancies, functions and room hire for community groups are also intended to form a part of the new life of Old College. The total project could mean a multi-million pound investment phased over the years up to an official opening during the University’s 150th anniversary in 2022.
Dr Rhodri Llwyd Morgan, Pro Vice Chancellor at Aberystwyth University, said: “We are delighted to be involved in Open Doors 2016, which is co-ordinated in Wales by CADW. This is a fantastic opportunity to explore and enjoy the stories behind Old College, to learn about history of the building and discover more about the exciting proposals for the regeneration.
“The subject of one of this year’s fascinating talks will be ‘The Stones of the Old College Aberystwyth’ when Dr Tim Palmer from the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences will discuss the different varieties of natural stone used to build the Old College. So come along and find out more about this wonderful aspect of our town’s heritage. The other good news is that entry is free and all are welcome.”
Christmas gift fair returns
NEXT Friday (Oct 20), the annual craft and gifts extravaganza will return to Aberystwyth Arts Centre to get the locals in the mood for Christmas.
The Winter Craft & Gift Fair is sure to get visitors feeling festive in the run up to Christmas with over 80 stalls selling a wonderful array of crafts and gifts, many produced by local makers from Ceredigion and mid Wales.
This year will feature many regular stalls, as well as some who will be selling at the fair for the first time, so prepare to discover the unusual and unexpected at this year’s fair with it’s new layout and products for 2017.
The fair will be open from 10am to 8pm, Monday to Saturday and 12 to 5.30pm on Sundays all the way up until December 23.
On Saturday, November 25, the Arts Centre’s Christmas Food Fair will take over the Great Hall for the day. There will be the very best of Welsh produce with cheese, meats, fish, wine, cider, pastries, puddings, jams and much, much more from many local producers. The Food Fair is the perfect place to stock up on a few gastronomic goodies in the run up to Christmas. There will also be live musical entertainment to get you in the Christmassy mood! The fair will be on 10am-4pm and entry is free!
‘It’s ok to say’
ON WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY, farmers across Wales are being reminded that ‘it’s ok to say’ and the Farmers’ Union of Wales is urging them not to hide problems from themselves, their families and friends and to talk about their personal feelings.
The FUW made a commitment at the Royal Welsh Agricultural Show in July to continue raising awareness of mental health problems in rural communities and is therefore renewing the call for those who might be suffering from mental health problems to seek help.
“The focus of this year’s World Mental Health day is on mental health in the workplace and farms are just that. In our places of work we’ve faced some pretty low-points in the last few years. Bovine TB, price volatility and uncertainty about our future post-Brexit, this all puts a strain on our resolve and will have many feeling stressed and under immense pressure,” said Union President Glyn Roberts.
“But we must break the stigma attached to mental health, so if you’re feeling vulnerable, please open-up and speak to someone. That doesn’t just mean today, but always. Farmers and farming families need to continue talking openly about what they are experiencing and the FUW strongly encourages anyone who is worried about their own mental health or a loved-one, to seek help from the Farming Community Network, Tir Dewi, The DPJ Foundation, Mind Cymru or Call Helpline Wales,” added Glyn Roberts.
Scholarship scheme funds student’s Masters
A TALYBONT native is one of just 28 people in the UK to be awarded a scholarship granted by energy company ScottishPower.
Stella Foster, 32, gratefully received the grant from the Scottish Power Foundation for the 2017/18 academic year.
Having just completed an undergraduate degree in Chemistry at the University of York, Stella will begin her Masters in Environmental Sciences this week at the University of East Anglia. Environmental science degrees integrate biology, physical science and information sciences to examine environmental systems (air, water, etc.) and how they interact.
The sought-after scholarship covers full enrolment costs as well as a living allowance. On top of this, the scholars will receive unique opportunities including meeting leading industry professionals.
“Travelling around the world and living in China before I started my undergraduate studies made me aware of the astounding change of pace in urbanisation; the two-hour bus ride from where I lived to Shanghai, there wasn’t a moment where you couldn’t see a construction site,” Stella said.
“This fast and dramatic development creates issues with the environment, and I’m really excited to learn about the creative and fascinating solutions out there, and hopefully come up with some of my own,” she added.
Since it was launched in 2010, the ScottishPower Foundation scholarships programme has provided £1.5m in grants towards training the next generation in their chosen field.
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