A year later than planned the South East Fers headed to the M4, that grey ribbon that leads straight to Wales. Some of the group met up at Severn View Services intending to drive into Wales together – that lasted across the Severn Bridge…and not much further. Half went one way up towards the Wye Valley and the others headed to Newport. Ah well, that is fairly typical of the Fers!
The journey in Wales takes the A40 from Abergavenny to Llandovery and don’t you just know the difference in road quality! Much better in Wales than the bumpy pothole excuses you find in Surrey. It makes driving in this part of Wales so much more pleasurable – that and the lack of any other cars of course.
Through Llandovery and veer left into the edge of the Cambrian mountains, under the impressive Cynghordy Viaduct, and up the hill to arrive at Llanerchndda and the usual warm welcome from Martin and his family. This is the group’s fourth visit and the hospitality is as great as usual. Tea and cakes followed by a Pimms reception and three-course dinner. That was the start of the foodie extravaganza which lasted all weekend – we were so full of tea and cake by Monday morning that the suspension had t be pumped up!
The weekend is about having fun in your MGs and it begins early Saturday morning by leaving Llanerchindda via the back route. It wasn’t long before the roads got smaller and the sight of some impressive ruins hoved into view at Careg Cennen. They were on top of a steep hill and looked great from the comfort of the tea rooms at the base for more coffee and cake. The fitter amongst us climbed to the top, the majority headed back on the route as lunch was calling from the Brecon Beacons Mountain Centre. After lunch it was a great part of the weekend – the Epynt Ranges, beloved of Top Gear and much loved by the army – the whole place is marked “Danger Area” on the maps but provides some fantastic views and driving
Back or tea, cakes, chat and dinner. You get the idea by the end I suspect?
Next morning up early again and the narrow lanes and desolate moors have been replaced by some nice fast twisty wider roads as we headed out towards the Victorian town of Llandrindod Wells. A short distance outside was Thomas’s shop – a time warp full of everyday memorabilia from the last century – haberdashers, laundry and general shop – plus some more tea and cake by the river.
The next stage headed back to England and Hergest Ridge, yes it is the place where Mike Oldfield wrote the follow-up to Tubular Bells. Here lay Hergest Croft Gardens, time for lunch and a wander through the woods. The final leg was straight back to Lalnerchindda just in time for more tea and cake.
The whole weekend was graced with great weather for Wales and the rains didn’t come until t was time to go home on Monday morning. Back down the A40 and on to the M4 and back to the South East…and the traffic!