The sun came out and over 60 enthusiastic climbers and volunteers turned up on Saturday 17 May to give the cliffs at Tremadog a good spring clean and make TremFest 2014 a great success.
9am at Eric Jones’s Cafe at Tremadog and the action was just starting as dedicated BMC volunteers Jim and Julia Kelly emerged from their tent and started arranging the tools, paperwork and banners for the day's activiities. Thankfully the sun was shining and over 60 volunteers (including a surprise visit from the BMC’s president Scott Titt and a great team of students from Aberystwyth University Climbing club) registered to carry out essential maintenance and improvement works at Craig Bwlch y Moch and Craig Pant Ifan.
Major tasks were accomplished, including some very delicate and sensitive work to clear encroaching vegetation from the rocks adjacent to the Pant Ifan approach paths in order to protect the nationally scarce Rock (or Welsh) Stonecrop. This yellow flowering plant is only found at less than four other locations in Wales and the site at Pant Ifan is by far the most important site. The work here (which is on a Site of Special Scientific Interest) was supervised by National Resources Wales’ site manager Doug Oliver, who commented:
“The work done by climbers at the annual TremFest Climbing Festival to protect this scarce plant is invaluable and has undoubtedly helped in the long term conservation of this flower. It is a really good example of how climbing and conservation can positively co-exist on such a sensitive site”.
Elsewhere many routes were recovered from the undergrowth, paths were cleared of invading brambles, fallen branches and trees from the winter storms were removed, fences repaired and people even went climbing! After the all the hard work the participants were treated to free teas and cake from Eric Jones himself and then Jim Kelly held a prize draw of a huge range of goodies ranging including climbing books, karabiners, maps, videos, climbing ropes, chalk balls and fingerboards…in fact thanks to the tremendous generosity of the sponsors and supporters everyone went away with a prize (or three!).
A brief visit from BMC CEO Dave Turnbull was also welcomed, especially as he used the opportunity to announce that Eric Jones had been made an Honorary Member of the BMC for his work in supporting climbers and the BMC at Tremadog.
After all that, Jim Perrin entertained the gathered audience with an “alternative history” of climbing at Tremadog, that had people both in stitches and enraged (often at the same time!). Many thanks to Jim for freely volunteering his time with such an informative and entertaining talk.
The BMC wants to thanks all who turned up to make this a great event and in particular special thanks to the hosts Eric Jones and his wife Anne and to the husband and wife team of Jim and Julia Kelly who yet again put in a huge effort to organise the event.
Tools were kindly provided by National Trust Wales and the BMC, while the list of supporters and sponsors includes the following :
Beacon Climbing Walls
Crib Goch Outdoor World
Joe Brown Shops
Lyon Equipment / Petzl
Pete's Eats Cafe
Purple Moose Brewery
The Mountain Boot Company / Scarpa
Ultimate Descent Ltd
Watch a film of TremFest 2014 on BMC TV:
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