Last weekend approximately 30 members of the congregation enjoyed a weekend with Brian and Mary Dixon and family at their farm set in the Olchon Valley underneath the Black Mountains near the Welsh boarder. We were all warmly welcomed and made to feel very much at home. Unfortunately the weather did not want to cooperate and although we were all wet and muddy it did not dampen our spirits or our enthusiasm!
Activities on the Saturday included a mill wheel demonstration (there was certainly plenty of water to drive the wheel!) and some of the younger members of the congregation enjoyed packaging up the freshly milled wholemeal flour. We also walked (or drove) to the nearby Angora Goat Company, where the owners gave us a short talk about how the yarns are produced. The goats live as a family group (including two very cute kids) but the farmer explained how they all have very distinct personalities.
A group of us then undertook a visit to Longtown Castle, where Brian had arranged for a local historian to come and give us a talk. The castle has one of the finest round stone keeps in England, although the muddy puddles proved more of an attraction for one of the youngest visitors! Back at the farm there was supper and an enjoyable evening of games, including a quiz which was won by the Petley family.
The next morning the intrepid campers and those staying at the local pub were reunited at the morning service at Llanveynoe Church. We very much boosted the numbers of the local congregation who were very welcoming. As the weather had improved we enjoyed a walk down to the river and through to the field for Quad biking and buggies.
We are all very grateful to the Dixon family for organising such a lovely weekend and their warm hospitality – we look forward to the next one.