Posts Tagged ‘Wye Valley’

St Patrick’s Day Dance & Fundraiser

Friday, December 6th, 2019

St Patrick's Dance Chepstow

An Irish Dance performance at the National Diving & Activity Centre in celebration of Ireland and St Patrick to raise funds for the Wye Valley Shared Use Path.

The St Patrick’s Day Dance event takes place on Saturday 14th March 2020 from 7pm at Chepstow’s National Diving & Activity Centre.

Includes authentic food and drink, dance and singing performances, raffle and auction.

An evening not to be missed!

Join the Facebook event »

Tickets are £15-£25 and available here »

Find out more about the Wye Valley Shared Use Path here »

Wye Valley Greenway Workcamp 13 to 21 September 2019

Friday, December 6th, 2019





Words by Jennifer Goslin BA BSc OCDEA
A-B Connecting Communities
Images from Chepstow to Tintern Shared Use Path Facebook post

Greenways and Cycleroutes Limited organised a volunteer work camp from 13 to 22 September 2019 based at the National Diving and Activity Centre at Tidenham, near Chepstow.

Their aim was to repair a bridge and to install and replace boundary fencing on the former railway line between Chepstow and Tintern to sustain momentum while they await planning permission and full funding to complete a walking and cycling route between the National Diving & Activity Centre and Tintern. This will form part of the overall safe route; the Wander Wye from the Severn Bridge to Monmouth proposed by A-B Connecting Communities who provided a grant in June of £5000 to Greenways.

• 91 volunteers put in 235 working days. 61 were day visitors, and 30 stayed overnight in tents and vans and chalets. And what a difference was made.

• Refurbishing the Bishton Lane bridge over the railway line – relocating the piers on newly cast concrete foundations transforming the structure.

• The fallen rocks were collected and rebuilt the wingwalls, repointing them with lime putty and with much help from BT, wire brushed and repainted the piers.

• The field fence was repaired between the railway land and the Gloucestershire Way and replaced the railway fences above the sheer drop of the retaining walls in the Wye Valley gorge.

• The vegetation was cut through at the former Tidenham station to create a laurel arbour with windows, and safety parapets installed to the bridge over the A48, where others had hacked back the brambles.

• The First Shirenewton Scouts helped to clear roots and branches from the track bed.

• A route was cut through to Sedbury Lane so we can survey the route for future planning applications, and work out how best Dean Forest Railway can recover the track.

• The Ecologists were in attendance to check that we were complying with the regulations.

No work was completed in the tunnel at all – as their Bat licence did not come through in time, so unfortunately the repairs to the walls and the planned installation of new gates will have to wait. The temporary fences were simply covered with tarpaulins to reduce airflow through the tunnel.

What happens next?

Greenways are working with Forest of Dean Council to secure the planning permission we need. The process will not be quick, as Natural England need to be sure about environmental issues. When they have planning permission we will be able to apply for grants.

There is still some finishing off to do to the pointing of the wing walls, and they are planning to set up a local volunteering group to help us to complete this.

If all goes well Greenways hope to have a further work camp in the spring for the labour intensive activities of installing lighting and bat shelters in the tunnel, installing seats and sculpture, and tidying back vegetation. In a perfect world there would have at least a mountain bike quality route open to Tintern by the summer.

 

Wye Valley Greenway Public Meeting

Monday, March 18th, 2019

Chepstow to Tintern Shared use path. Image by Alan Hayward December 2014

We are hosting a public meeting for the Wye Valley Greenway Project at 7.00pm on Wednesday 27th March at the National Diving & Activity Centre’s View Cafe Bar.

The project’s aim is to restore the disused railway line from Chepstow to Tintern as a shared use path.

The View Café Bar will be open from 6.30pm and project engineer, John Grimshaw, will run over the details of the scheme and answer any queries you may have.

All are welcome to attend.

Join the event on Facebook here»

Illustration derived from original artwork by Alan Hayward December 2014

24 Hour Scuba Dive – Underwater Marathon in Aid of Headway Brain Injury Charity (16th & 17th September 2017)

Friday, September 1st, 2017

24 Hour Scuba

Two scuba divers who survived devastating brain injuries are to lead a 24-hour underwater scubathon to raise funds for a charity which helps people who have suffered a brain injury.

Members of Cheltenham Sub-Aqua Club, regular visitors to the National Diving & Activity Centre, will work as a relay team to spend a full day underwater led by divers James Neal and Neal Breeden.

Over the weekend 16th & 17th September we will also be holding a demonstration day and raffle with prizes from Apeks, Suunto, Fourth Element, Maxshow, Sea & Sea and Fathom Outdoors. We also have 3 dive computers donated to the NDAC Shop by Suunto where all the money from the sale will go towards the fundraising. There are more prizes to follow and tickets are available from the NDAC shop.

On the demo days we have Liquid SportsMares, SSI , Sea & Sea, TDI, Fourth Element and Maxshow.

Headway Brain Injury CharityJames, 47, a technical diver and instructor from Symonds Yat, in the Wye Valley, suffered a devastating subarachnoid haemorrhage following the rupture of an undiagnosed aneurysm, which led to a grade four bleed on the brain.

Neal, 48, Cheltenham SAC’s secretary also survived a brain injury, after suffering a major stroke nearly ten years ago, in 2008, which left him needing to use a wheelchair.

Now the pair are organising the scubathon in aid of UK brain injury charity Headway, which supported James during his initial recovery. They hope to raise in excess of £5000.

The dive will begin on Saturday 16th September and finish at midday on Sunday 17th September, at the National Diving and Activity Centre in Chepstow.

James says, as well as supporting Headway, he wants to raise awareness of brain injuries and highlight some of the prejudices that go hand in hand with what is described as an ‘invisible disability’.

After he was treated, James, who ran his own business, says all he wanted to do was get back in the water and enjoy scuba diving again. That desire drove his initial rehabilitation.

24 hour scuba challengeHe said: “I was able to return to some level of fitness and get back in the water but I had a great deal of support from my scuba diving friends. Without Cheltenham Sub Aqua Club my life would have become very lonely. I owe them an enormous debt of gratitude.


“I suffered a subarachnoid haemorrhage and whilst I might appear completely recovered on the outside, you can’t and don’t see what I have to deal with, or understand the problems I face, on a daily basis.


“I’m learning to manage my condition but it’s still difficult and I have suffered some horrendous discrimination as a result of people not understanding my disability. But Cheltenham Sub Aqua Club has remained a constant in my post injury life. I don’t know what I would have done without them.


“I suffer terribly from fatigue. Immediately after the injury I was able to stay conscious for perhaps 20 minutes at a time. Now as the day goes on I get more and more fatigued. And there is a huge difference between tiredness and fatigue.


“If you are tired you can keep going. With fatigue you can’t and your body starts to shut down. You become irritable and lose the ability to think straight. Eventually you will lose consciousness. That’s not falling asleep!”

He added: “Brain injuries not only change your life but also your personality. You wake up a different person.”


“If you suffer a head or brain injury it can take a long, long time to recover and in fact you might never recover, at least not fully.

Neal, who worked as an upholsterer before suffering his major stroke when he was just 39, says Headway is an amazing organisation that few people will have heard of.

He said: “When James had his haemorrhage he did experience some real issues from people who just didn’t understand because of their ignorance. People who he thought were his friends turned on him and blatantly discriminated against him. It was horrible to witness, I can’t begin to imagine how it made him feel. Look at a person with crutches or a wheelchair and the disability is obvious. But you can’t easily see a subarachnoid haemorrhage.”


“James and I dive together a great deal and understand each other and our respective limitations in a way perhaps other people don’t. We know what makes each other tick. It’s a very special bond that only  people that have been through what we have could ever really understand.”

He added: “Hopefully we will raise a good deal of money for Headway; the whole club is behind the event. And divers from across the country are supporting us.

Ali Hendley, Manager at Headway Gloucestershire, said the money raised by the underwater scubathon would be very valuable and said: “Giving brain injury survivors the chance to re-learn old skills and develop new ones is what Headway is all about.

To sponsor Cheltenham Sub Aqua Club visit:

https://mydonate.bt.com/teams/csac24

Further Details

Cheltenham Sub Aqua Club
Cheltenham SAC Website
Cheltenham SAC Facebook

Headway
Headway Twitter
Headway Website
Headway Facebook

 



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