In mid-July the Ramblers’ board of trustees had an away-weekend in Cardiff. We stayed close to Cardiff Bay and I managed, in a day and a half, to squeeze in four walks there. Two were before breakfast (with Chris Hodgson, Ramblers’ trustee and chair of Ramblers Cymru who is always game for a walk), and the other two were to Penarth and back, for supper.
As I described last year, Cardiff Bay is on the Wales Coast Path, with plenty of artistic interest.
There is the statue of Ivor Novello by Peter Nicholas in Roald Dahl Plass,
the Merchant Seafarers’ war memorial by Brian Fell near the Senedd
and People Like Us, by John Clinch, celebrating the people who lived and worked in Tiger Bay.
There are also sculptures on nearby buildings, such as Equity, by J A Stevenson, on the old National Westminster bank on Portland House, West Bute Street.
There is a useful list of many of the artworks here.
On the way across the barrage to and from Penarth there are splendid views over the Bristol Channel, to Brean Down, Steep Holm and Flat Holm.
We passed the new swift tower, from which emanated some screaming from the inhabitants (or was it a recording?), and I hope this will help to increase Cardiff’s swift population.
My greatest joy was, once again, to see so many sand martins. They were swooping among the rocks on the barrage, and they seemed to be nesting in holes in the concrete walls of Mermaid Quay at Tiger Bay.
On our Sunday morning walk Chris and I walked past Mermaid Quay and on round the bay to the wetland reserve,
with a grassy patch where we had probably missed the bee orchids for this year.
We came to the sculpture of Cader Idris by William Pye (which used to stand outside Cardiff station).
The jetty, with a view west across the bay, was our (reluctant) turning-round point.
There’s plenty more to see. I’ll be back.