Tag Archives: outings

Christmas shopping in Exeter!

(Gail’s report on the shopping trip to Exeter)

Yesterday’s ‘not-just-Christmas-shopping’ trip to Exeter was a great day out.

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We had an easy trip up and arrived earlier than expected. The weather was extremely kind to us and in between shopping we were able to sit around the cathedral green and do some people-watching.

Look at all those full shopping bags!

Look at all those full shopping bags!

The Christmas market was as enticing as ever, with the cooking smells of a world of foods wafting in the air.

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Even if you aren’t a keen shopper, you’d enjoy Exeter. The city is steeped in history and you can discover all sorts of interesting buildings.

We were able to meet up with former member Maureen Fordham who was on good form and who sends her best wishes to all the Crowlas & Ludgvan members.

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A good day was had by all!

(Thanks for the photos as well, Gail!)

A Visit to the Newlyn Copper Works

On Thursday, 10 of us visited Mike Johnson’s Copper Works in Newlyn.

Tucked away not far from Newlyn Harbour is Mike’s fascinating studio. The business was established in 2005, appropriately in the same workshop space as the original copper works set up in 1890!

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Mike talked to us about copper’s important role in Newlyn’s artistic heritage, along with painting, pottery and textiles. Unfortunately, many of the skills, tools and facilities associated with a coppersmith’s workshop have been lost over the years. Mike and his colleage Shelley are now working to revive this wonderful craft.

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The Copper Works has created pieces for Hampton Court Flower Show, Harrod’s, Claridge’s and, recently, Eton College. The project at Eton is an acroterion (a large roof ornament) at the College’s new lecture theatre, and has received quite a bit of press lately. Mike has also done work for film – the copper-studded belts worn by Johnny Depp et al in the Pirates of the Caribbean films were created in the Newlyn workshop!

06Mike showed us some of his smaller pieces – beautiful copper leaves, little dishes, etc. – as well as some more sizeable projects – the beginnings of a water feature for a recent private commission.

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We all left the workshop with an appreciation for the beauty of copper and a renewed respect for the skill and artistry of the coppersmith. And Val already has her ‘workshop organiser’ hat on and is planning to arrange some hands-on copper work for us!

Thank you so much to Kathy for setting up this wonderful day. You can some more photos here.

 

Our Visit to the Isles of Scilly

This week, a lucky 13 of us took a day trip to Scilly to meet up with the ladies of St Mary’s WI. What a splendid day it was!

Ruth and Kathy enjoying some sunshine on the Scillonian.

Ruth and Kathy enjoying some sunshine on the Scillonian.

The trip over on the Scillonian was beautifully smooth and we all sunned ourselves on the decks. When we arrived, we were met by Sue and Heather, two members of St Mary’s WI, who greeted us with a welcome sign. We then piled into two minibuses and were given a tour of the island – including the Garrison and Old Town, as well as the chapel hall where St Mary’s holds their WI meetings.

After our whirlwind tour, we were taken to Juliet’s Garden, a fabulous restaurant with enormous terraces overlooking the harbour. There, the rest of the St Mary’s WI members were waiting to meet us. I think there were about 25 of us altogether, all at a lovely long table!

Lunch at Juliet's Garden.

Lunch at Juliet’s Garden.

I can’t put into words how wonderfully warm and friendly they all were. The conversations were noisy and full of laughter and it was as if we’d all known each other for years! Or perhaps that was the wine. 😉

After a delicious meal and more laughs, we set off on foot to return to the ferry. On the way, we stopped on the Strand for ice cream. There aren’t many things nicer than ice cream on a hot summer day, looking out at beautiful sea views!

Karrie, Lis and Hazel enjoying a pre-ferry ice cream.

Karrie, Lis and Hazel enjoying a pre-ferry ice cream.

We cornered a stranger and asked him to take a big group photo!

We cornered a stranger and asked him to take a big group photo!

After saying our goodbyes, we all boarded the ferry – and had a slightly chillier trip home!

The trip back home was a little chilly!

The trip back home was a little chilly!

What a fantastic day it was. Those of us who went certainly had a day to remember. We are so grateful to Sue, Heather, Peggy and the rest of the St Mary’s ladies for their generosity and kindness. They even put on some late summer sunshine for us! Best of all, I think we all made some really good friends.

Two of the St Mary’s WI members will be in Truro for the Autumn Council Meeting next month, so make sure you say hello!

And now we must put on our thinking caps and come up with a way to repay the ladies when they visit the mainland next year.

Click here to see more pictures of our wonderful day out.

A day out to Bodmin Plant & Herb Nursery

On Friday, Charlotte, Gail, Pam R and Julie set off for a CFWI day out to Bodmin Plant and Herb Nursery.

They were welcomed by the owners Karen and Mark and served lovely fresh coffee and homemade biscuits. They then split into two groups and went to the potting shed where there was a beautiful display of herbs with which Karen and Claire (the young woman in charge of the herbs section) described a variety of potting options, explaining the herbs’ uses and how to keep them at their best.

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Off to lunch now where they were served homemade soup and homemade cake!

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Along the way, the ladies made a gorgeous new friend!

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The afternoon was spent on a tour of the operation explaining how they water, propagate and care for the plants from beginning to sale.

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It was a fabulous day with some super discounted shopping – it looks as though the ladies came home with a boot full of goodies!

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Thanks to Gail for the report and fab photos!

 

A CFWI Walking Tour and Boat Trip in Fowey

On Thursday, a group from Crowlas & Ludgvan WI joined in the County Trip to Fowey. The weather was mostly kind so ice creams were enjoyed by those who braved the seagulls!

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The day started with a meander around this ancient town which, thanks to its deep harbour, is still a commercial port as well as a safe mooring for many yachts. Along the way we saw the homes of Daphne Du Maurier (where she wrote Rebecca) and Kenneth Grahame. The Wind in the Willows started as a series of letters sent to his children while he and his wife enjoyed an extended holiday in Fowey.

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The narrow, steep streets wind around the grounds of Place House, home for many centuries to the Treffry family. Although very little of Tudor Fowey survives, there are many old buildings which give the town charm and character. Fishermen’s cottages (well, originally) line the riverbank with their own moorings running down to the water.

After a picnic lunch for some, and a pub lunch for others, off we went on our 45-minute boat trip up the river, down again to its mouth and then back to the harbour. The boatman’s commentary added to our pleasure, reinforcing what we had learned either during our walk or on the trip on the land train.

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A few of us finished the day by having a rollicking good time scoffing scones and cream in a tea garden.

We all had a great day; Fowey has a laid-back atmosphere, lots of cafes and interesting shops, wonderful views and lots of history. Definitely a day out to be recommended, so thank you to Pat Gloyn for arranging this wonderful outing!

Click here to see some more of Ruth’s fantastic photos of the day.

A Visit to the Monkey Sanctuary with Camelford WI

This year’s annual Twinning event with Camelford WI was hosted by them, and they gave us an absolutely wonderful day out to Wild Futures, the monkey sanctuary in Looe.

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We arrived in the morning and all had coffee together (Camelford’s treat) in the Rainforest Cafe.

After that, our trusty guide Paul took us all over the sanctuary, telling us about the history of the place, as well as about the monkeys and their lives and habits.

We were all smitten with little Lily – a seven-month-old woolly monkey – and watching her clinging to mum Maya was a joy. However, Paul made sure that we understood that the sanctuary does not intentionally breed monkeys and that Lily was the result of contraceptive failure. The sanctuary doesn’t have room to take all the monkeys in need of a safe place as it is.

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Paul explained the sanctuary’s efforts to campaign to change the pet trade laws which currently allow people to keep wild animals, such as monkeys, in their homes. People who keep monkeys as pets often hold them in cages, usually on their own, resulting in both physical and psychological damages to the monkeys.

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In spite of some of the sad stories we heard, we all saw how happy and healthy the monkeys were in the sanctuary. It was great to know that they’ll live out their lives in such a good place.

After our tour, we had a delicious lunch, after which some of us sat in the sun eating ice cream while others walked down to see the gardens at the sanctuary.

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On top of all that, it was lovely to spend time with our Camelford friends. Next year is our turn to host, and we have a tough act to follow!

Click here to see more photos of our day at the monkey sanctuary.

 

The day we went to Ex’ter

Twenty-eight Crowlas & Ludgvan WI members and friends travelled to Exeter last Thursday for some Christmas cheer and retail therapy.

The weather was mostly kind, despite some heavy rain in the early afternoon. Serendipity played a part; some members met old friends by chance and lunched with them; others of us had a clearly mapped-out plan which included (surprise, surprise) a visit to John Lewis. I think all of us strolled around the Christmas Market, held on the Cathedral Green. On offer were saucissons from France and bratwurst from Germany, pastries, mulled wine and crafts ranging from ironwork, woodwork and leatherwork to beads and candles.

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Visits were paid to the library and the Cathedral itself, these provided a welcome physical respite as well as a bit of mental stimulation!

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After a late afternoon departure from Exeter, we had a speedy journey home, thanks to Robin Tweed, our able driver.

It was a splendid day. “Didn’t we have a lovely time, the day we went to Ex’ter?” Although there was no cuddling with Jack on the way back and cider consumption just didn’t happen – we are the WI, after all!