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Searching for roots in Wales and England

9 Jul 2008  A group of us from the Appalachians are finding connections with the culture and emigration patterns of the Welch to Appalachia..
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We visited Cardiff, Swansea, Aberystwyth (the University of Wales), Big Pit Coal Exhibit, the Brecon Beacons, and Snowdonia in Wales. In England we visited London, Oxford, Stonehenge, Winchester, Bath, Stratford on Avon, and Chester. We visited several castles, abbeys, cathedrals and the Wales Folk Life Museum. We had a great time learning about the culture and history of Wales and England.

  • 1. Hilton London Metropole
    Hilton London Metropole, London, England

    Breakfast was excellent. I loved the fresh fruit, yogurt, several cereals. Hot dishes were enjoyed: eggs, several meats, toppings, and cheeses available. I was impressed with the organic foods and many choices. They brought a cot for our triple room. This hotel is near many interesting activities and shopping.

  • 2. Winchester Cathedral
    Winchester Cathedral, Winchester, Hampshire

    This was an impressive first stop outside London. The Cathedral was begun in 1079. We had a great guide and were able to see the crypt, even though it was flooded. The guide told us about having to have a diver go below the foundation and the peat layer to drop bags of cement in order to stabilize the Cathedral. There was an exhibit about this part of the Cathedral's history, but we didn't have time to see it.

  • 3. Glastonbury
    Glastonbury, Somerset

    We visited the Abbey and the Somerset Rural Life Museum. The Museum was very well done. I really enjoyed the iron works cottages from different time periods. I wonder if my ancestors could have lived in a home like theirs. A big festival was held just after our visit, 25,000 people in that tiny town! According to legend, Joseph of Aramathea landed here and may have brought his nephew Jesus with him. Joseph stuck his staff into the ground and it rooted. The holy thorn blooms 3 times a year, once near Christmas.

  • 4. Cheddar Caves & Gorge
    Cheddar Caves & Gorge, Cheddar, Somerset

    It is the largest gorge in the UK. Cheddar cheese made here.

  • 5. Bath
    Bath, Somerset

    In addition to the Roman Baths, this is a beautiful town with all the buildings made from the same honey colored limestone.

  • 6. Hillfigures in UK

    We saw a large white horse figure on the side of a hill near Bath. It is made by digging through the soil to the white chalk layer below.

  • 7. Stonehenge
    Stonehenge, Amesbury, Wiltshire

    We saw Stonehenge one day after the summer solstice. It is an amazing holy place for millions of visitors from many centuries. Several ley lines may cross here.

  • 8. Hilton Bristol
    DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol North, Bradley Stoke, Gloucestershire

    We had nice rooms and good meals here.