Autumn Conference - Weekend 24th - 25th September 2016 Based at Mellington Hall - Country House Hotel, Church Stoke, Powys
Organisers : David Roe & Rob Vernon (talks programme)
[ Current OS Maps : Landranger 1:50,000 Sht.137, 'Church Stretton and Ludlow' Explorer 1:25,000 Sht.216'Montgomery (Trefaldwyn) and
Welshpool (Trallwng)' ]
THE FASCINATION THAT IS IN ALL MINING
Saturday 24th September - Conference/Talks at Mellington Hall Hotel
The conference, entitled ‘The Fascination that is in all Mining’,
celebrated the late George Hall’s life and mining interests and
was held in the William Morris Conference Room at Mellington Hall.
The quoted title for the Conference is attributed to the
late David Bick who once remarked that it was his friend George Hall who
introduced him to, 'the fascination that is in all mining'.
The agenda for the day started around 9:30 am for coffee,
with the conference starting at 10:30 am and finishing at 5:30
pm. Rob Vernon arranged the speakers, such that the
talks covered the many aspects of George's life, from his early introduction
to mining, his achievements, the people he touched and inspired, his humour,
his interests, and his family.
Speakers included George's son, Tom who reflected
on his father's life; Terry Evans on his early adventures into Wales
with George; Ivor Brown provided details of George's interests in
Shropshire; Simon Dominy spoke about gold mining that was
a significant passion for George.
There were also talks from researchers on various aspects of
Welsh mining, who George helped or inspired, and from those who knew George from his
involvement in the Welsh Mines Society and the Welsh Mines Preservation Trust.
Finally, David James detailed aspects of George's own research
on mining, and its frustrations. It was David who put other
un-finished business of George's into words, and edited the publication "Metal
Mining in Mid-Wales: 1822-1921", (published by the WMS as 'Welsh Mines and Mining Vol.3'),
an account of George's uncompleted thesis for a Master of Philosophy
degree from Aberystwyth University.
cost of £35.00 per attendee for the conference included unlimited coffee, tea
and biscuits during the day, a two course hot and cold buffet lunch, plus
afternoon tea with homemade cakes.
Delegates numbers were limited by the capacity of the conference room
to a maximum of 50.
For partners and friends who were less interested
in mining history, the hotel is in a beautiful and
secluded situation, with its own gardens and extensive grounds (through
which the Offa’s Dyke path passes), with particularly fine trees, and
views of the South Shropshire hills. The Stiperstones and the
Longmynd are nearby. Ironbridge, Ludlow
and Powis Castle are easy drives.
The conference venue, Mellington Hall, Church Stoke, Powys, SY15 6HX,
is on the border of South Shropshire and Montgomeryshire (Powys),
and provides a range of Bed & Breakfast accommodation.
The NGR of the entrance to the hotel drive is : SO 253 930.
View road atlas, or 1:25,000 OS Map (arrow indicates entrance gates).
In the evening there was a dinner at the conference venue at 7:00 for 7:30 pm. Delegates were
able to choose from an à la carte menu with main courses around £15.00
Sunday 25th September - Field trip to Bryntail and Pen y Clyn mines
Met for a prompt start at 11.00 am at the Bryntail Mine carpark at SN 913
(View 1:25,000 OS map or road atlas)
This is signposted from the B4518 Llanidloes - Machynlleth road, about
two miles NW of Llanidloes.
The route started at the Bryntail barytes mill, and then over the
hill to the Pen y Clyn lead mine (where the WMPT did so much to ensure
the repair of the 19th century engine-house, almost 10 years ago) and then
returning to the "new" Bryntail lead works.