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Some Highlights from the 2008 programme

On a sunny 9th October members and partners enjoyed a visit to the new Coach House visitor centre at St Dogmael’s Abbey, which had been opened the previous month by Wales’s First Minister. We thoroughly enjoyed guided tours of the Coach House, the Abbey ruins and the nearby Water Mill, after which some of us had lunch in the Coach House. The photo shows a few of us absorbed in tales of mediaeval monks!


The Cardigan and District Probus Club ended 2008 on a high note with a fascinating lecture and their traditional Christmas Lunch with the ladies.

Mr Carl Davies, Project Manager at the West Wales UAV Centre, left his audience in no doubt that there is a large and varied future for unmanned aerial vehicles. They are usually thought of, he said, as having military or “spying” purposes and while these are the uses to which most have been put so far they are, in fact, suited to any flying jobs that are “Dirty, Dull or Dangerous”. He showed examples of existing aircraft varying in size from airliners down to three that can be held in the palm of the hand, with power plants ranging from large jet engines down to small battery-powered or solar-powered electric motors. Current uses already include crop surveillance and the delivery of drugs to remote farms in South Africa. There are many problems to be overcome before such vehicles can be used world-wide, but Mr Davies looked forward to the day when the inspection of overhead power lines, maritime search and rescue, and the delivery of high-importance goods, amongst other things, would be undertaken swiftly, safely, and in almost all weathers by UAVs.

Aberporth is unique in the world in having clearance for the proving of these vehicles and it is expected that the scope of this clearance will shortly be greatly extended. The club thanked Mr Davies for a thoroughly absorbing talk and wished him and the project well for the future.

The Christmas Lunch took place at Rhosygilwen in the Neuadd y Dderwen and all enjoyed a pleasant afternoon in good company. The Chairman, Ron Knowlton, took the opportunity to thank all who had contributed in any way to the successful year which the club is having. Two days before Christmas members and their ladies gathered again at the Castell Malgwyn hotel for informal drinks and a rare chance to relax before the great day.

Our Chairman, Ron Knowlton, has been in touch with the Commanding Officer of RFA CARDIGAN BAY, Capt. N. A. Jones.

Cardigan Bay is now based off Bahrein, where they are training Iraqi personnel to defend their waters and the oil exporting platforms on which Iraq depends for over 80% of its GDP. They also provide logistic support to British, American, Iraqi and other units in the area. They keep in touch by e-mail and post many pictures on their web site, . We look forward to hearing more of their activities and hope to arrange a talk about the ship some time in the future.

Bill Thompson, Chairman for 2007 - 2008 congratulates Ron Knowlton on his installation as Chairman for 2008 - 2009 at the AGM in May 2008.

PROGRAMME FOR 2008 / 2009

Unless otherwise stated meetings started at 10.30 am.

28th June  “Safety Camera Partnership”  Jim Moore

24th July  “Construction of the Channel Tunnel” Jim Cooper, MBE, C Eng, FIMechE

6th. August Lunch at Trewern Arms ▲(12 noon) followed by visit to Nevern Show.

28th August  “Aberystwyth Museum”   Michael Freeman

4th September Short Mat Bowls▲ (7 pm) @ Cilgerran Hall

25th September “The work of the Assembly”  Derek Corfield

23rd October  “Physiotherapy”▲    Andrew Toft

27th November “Unmanned Aviation”   Carl Davies

18th December Christmas Lunch ▲ (12 noon) (Rhos y Gilwen)

23rd December Christmas drinks in bar ▲ (11 am)

22nd January  “Facts, Fiction and Folklore” ▲  Towyn Jones

26th February  “The Red Kite and the Welsh Kite Trust”▲ T. Cross

26th February  St David’s Day lunch ▲ (12 noon)

26th March  “My journey through the Panama Canal”▲ Peter Woolley

23rd April  “Conservation in Cardigan Bay”  Sarah Perry

28th May  AGM (11.30) (Venue TBC) followed by Celebrations for the Club’s 20th birthday. ▲

▲= Ladies welcome