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Anglesey Ramble

August 23, 2012



Maybe one of these days we’ll have another caravan; we certainly hope so.  In the meantime it’s nice to look back on our Talacre years.  We loved our familiar stretch of coast up to Llandudno and Conwy but would often venture inland as well: we especially enjoyed a visit to Bodnant Gardens.  The Welsh dragon meant so much to us – freedom, time to chill and explore, a simple sense of ease and wellbeing.


On one occasion I popped over to Anglesey, as recorded in the following extract from my diary.


Tuesday 19/07/07


A day on Anglesey with thoughts of Charles Frederick Tunnicliffe (1901-1979), the wildlife artist.  He moved from Macclesfield to Malltraeth on Anglesey in 1947 (the year of my birth).  I have a copy of his Shorelands Summer Diary, a wonderful book in which he recorded in words and pictures his first summer on the Isle.

The heavens opened as I came through Bangor but once over the Menai Bridge all was bright and balmy again.  My first call was the Oriel Ynys Môn gallery at Llangefni to view the Tunnicliffe exhibition.  It gave me a strange feeling to view his original work, especially his sketchbooks with drawings done in the field.  I admired his deftness of line, his ability to capture a fleeting moment, the rough strokes and trial lines as he worked towards a true image, his accuracy of observation and sheer dedication to his art; I could almost feel him hovering somewhere over my right shoulder with pencil poised!

Benllech next, then Traeth Bychan – a narrow lane between towering hedges interlaced with bindweed and cow-parsley leading to a shop and a small sandy beach with boat house.  I struck out on foot up the rising fields opposite.  Such a sense of peace with that view over the blue bay below, the scent of cut grass, gulls mewling, butterflies everywhere… Passing a farm I saw a young calf in a shippen and held my breath in case a dog came bounding out with teeth bared, but none did.  The tang of the sea, and a rock table coated in orange slime, which I had to cross in order to mount the cliff on the other side.  Terns diving for fish, a solitary oystercatcher wading rather disconsolately. 

A small cove, wavelets wistfully dragging on shingle… Moelfre ahead, picturesque with small craft scudding in the harbour.  I passed a pie shop, a wool shop, a saddler’s, then wandered down to the lifeboat station and paused at a statue of Dic Evans (1905-2001), a lifeboat coxswain twice awarded the RNLI gold medal for bravery.  A half of lager and packet of crisps at a trestle-table outside The Kinmel Arms, then I began the walk back, a hero of the wild seas and a wildlife artist pleasantly conversing in my mind…




Copyright © Paul Beech 2012


From → Diary

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