Local Events

Bishton Past and Present Day 29th January 2017

The Bishton Project Group and other local residents organised this exhibition in the Village Hall, which attracted about 100 visitors. The event is part of plans under the National Heritage Fund - Living Levels Project to establish a permanent historical exhibit in St Cadwaladr's Church, Bishton. Here are some photographs of the exhibits :

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Active Underwood - Partners of the Community Council

Bishton Community Council are undertaking a large community project in partnership with Active Underwood. The project has 2 key stages which will bring about a final outcome aimed at improving the organisation of local community services and strengthening their impact on the community. The first stage of the project is a large capital investment to increase the capacity of Underwood Community Centre and move Underwood Barbell into a new facility. This will create room for the service to expand and meet its growing demands in the community. The extension will also allow storage capacity to be improved which has become a big issue, especially for the Mum's and Tots group. The project will then move into the second stage which will see Underwood Barbell become the first "Community Business Enterprise" managed by Active Underwood. Put simply, the facility will be run at a small profit after overheads and this money will be used to invest in other local services. It is a community model which we hope will give the community ownership of the services in the area and allow them to have a big say in how services are used. In the future we hope to create a number of "Community Business Enterprises" through Active Underwood which will provide a service to the community and stream investment from profits back into it. 

We are working on updating the website to create a dedicated area for this project with regular updates and a more detailed description. Below are the plans for the extension to the Community Centre:

 

plans for extended gym facility at the community centre

Go Outdoors

We are lucky to have the countryside on our door step. For the sake of our physical and mental health not to mention the sheer enjoyment of being outside in the fresh air, we should try to take advantage of our environment.

Country Walking

There are many Public Footpaths which crisscross the area, they give the opportunity to get way from the public roads and see our community from a different perspective. Public Footpaths are well signposted.

Newport City Council provide a wealth of information on

  1. National walks. (Usk Valley Walk and the Wales Coastal path)
  2. Local walks
The information will suit all ages and all abilities.

 

Cycling

The Gwent levels offer easy cycling over miles of flat and quiet rural roads ( I realise it is back up hill to Underwood). This is an opportunity for family friends and individuals to get out of the house and explore the local countryside.

Newport City Council provide a wealth of information on Cycle routes.

The Gwent Levels (Magor Marsh)

This is an area of a unique landscape of fields and reens which is of huge environmental importance. Hence most of the area has been designated a SSSI (A Site of Special Scientific interest). There are a huge range of opportunities available at Magor Marsh far too many to mention.

The National Heritage Memorial Fund - Living Levels Landscape Partnership Project

A partnership of 12 organisations and local authorities in Wales, was awarded £321,100, with a further £2.5 million ‘ringfenced’, from the Heritage Lottery Fund to help recapture, enhance and tell the story of the unique Gwent Levels landscape – a patchwork of tranquil fertile fields and historic watercourses sweeping the Severn Estuary coastline between Cardiff and Chepstow.
Bishton and Wilcrick villages are within the project area.

Unlike most of Wales, this is a place of big skies and wide horizons. The landscape is one of the finest examples of a landscape crafted by man and is the largest area of coastal and floodplain grazing marsh in Wales. Reclaimed from the sea in Roman times, the maintenance of this ancient drainage system of field ditches is vital to protect communities from flooding - a threat which is becoming ever more pertinent with climate change and rising tides.

Including seven Sites of Special Scientific Interest, the mosaic of ditches supports aquatic plants and insects unique to Wales which boasts populations of lapwing, otter, water vole, the great diving beetle, dragonflies (picture below) and one of the UK’s rarest bumblebees, the shrill carder bee. The area also hosts a number of specialist plants including frogbit (picture below), arrowhead and Wolffia arrhiza – the smallest flowering plant in the world.

All photos by Nigel Pugh 

frogbit plant

Dragonfly

The project aims to reconnect the communities and visitors to the landscape by working with volunteers, farmers, local groups, businesses and communities to collectively showcase the historical heritage. It aims to bring the stories from this fascinating landscape to life, many of which are yet untold and promises to engage and captivate both old and new visitors to the Gwent Levels.

The Project wants to make sure that we celebrate all that the Levels has to offer; its wildlife, its people and its economy. In late August 2017, the Partnership submitted an application for the second phase of funding for the delivery of 24 different projects across a variety of themes, scheduled to commence in 2018 if successful. This includes a permanent exhibition proposed for Bishton church.

If you would like to find out more about the programme or relate a story about the Gwent Levels, please contact the the Partnership via their Twitter page or Facebook page, or telephone on 01633 292982.

Programme Partners: Buglife Cymru, Bumblebee Conservation Trust, Cardiff Story Museum ,City of Cardiff Council, Newport City Council, Gwent Archives, Gwent Wildlife Trust, Monmouthshire County Council, National Trust, Natural Resources Wales, RSPB Cymru, Sustrans.

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