I, my wife Sue, and daughter Gwen had occasion to visit ' Y Dre' last week and I must confess it was reminiscence par excellence. The last time that my daughter had visited was in 1977 she was then twelve years of age. It really is quite remarkable how the old town leaves it's indelible impression on all that pass through. Gwen remembered the walks we had in the park, crossing the bridge to walk the sea shore, having tea and cake with Nain in People's Cafe, the old market hall where Nain used to 'rummage' and of course our frequent walks to Cae Top and then on down to Llun Criw (this I remember as being pronounced as Llan Crew following the river past the Peblic works, Llun Du, and beyond to the Seiont Brickwork. We would cross a slate style walk into the park then swing right to take us back on a circuitous route towards Cefn Hendre, the cemetery and back to Cae Top. We tried it again during the weekend but alas it was in parts too overgrown or inaccessible because of fences or walls. Time and change waits for no man!
The town I thought looked very clean but rather tired, what a difference a lick of colorful paint could do to the shop fronts. The marina looks terrific, as does the whole area of the old quay. What I found quite amazing was the upbeat attitude of the youngsters, taking into considerations that the town is an employment wasteland and the prospects for future prosperity must be bleak. Incredibly people were outwardly buoyant, happy and at ease with themselves I felt very proud of them. There was this feeling of what ever may come about you cannot keep a Cofi down, wonderful and rubs off so easily on those they come in contact with. The only sad experience for me was to see the beginning of demolition work on dear old Ysgol Segontium, sadly an era ends. I do hope that some momento is kept if not of the school but at least of the site of the school. It was really quite, quite sad to watch the destruction of such a fine old building.
Such has been the impact of the visit upon wife and daughter that we plan to make a longer return visit in the summer. It is my intention to research some more of the more forgotten wonders of the old town. I will return to print when I have heart-rending materiel to pass on.
Fondest wishes to every Cofi.
Lawrence (Larry) Bohana