We might have shorter opening hours, however our online shop is always open!
On Monday, November 25th, the doors will be open at the Offa’s Dyke Centre in Knighton, to welcome the community in to a “Festival Community Planning Day” to help us plan the Living History Festival for 2020!
After successful festivals in 2018 and 2019, the organisers want to make the 2020 Festival even more exciting, engaging, fun, and most importantly – develop the event with the community in Knighton and surrounding towns and villages. As well as the return of expert reenactors bringing their encampment onto site again this July, this year the organisers will be bringing music and performance to the site for a weekend packed with activities and entertainment for all ages.
The “Festival Community Planning Day” at the Offa’s Dyke Centre will be a drop in session, running from 1pm to 6pm, on Monday November 25th. Refreshments will be provided, as well as craft and archaeology activities suitable for all ages. There will be the opportunity to learn more about and sign up for volunteer roles, make suggestions for activities, suggest local musicians and performers, sign up for one of our free charity stall spaces, or sign up to be one of our crafts stalls.
The free Festival attracts hundreds of visitors from across Wales, the Marches, and beyond. It is jointly organised by the Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust (with funding from Cadw) and the Offa’s Dyke Association, and held in July as part of the Festival of British Archaeology, an annual celebration of heritage, history, and archaeology run by the Council for British Archaeology.
The 2020 Living History Festival will be held from Friday July 3rd to Sunday July 5th, 2020.
For any queries about the Festival, please contact the Community Archaeologist at Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust , Penelope Foreman – email@example.com 07956 585023 // 01938 553670
Do you have accommodation or are you a business, (shop/taxi/refreshments), that can offer services to walkers along Offa’s Dyke Path? We are collating information for our 2020 guide, ‘Essential Guide to Planning your Walk on Offa’s Dyke Path’, which will be available in booklet and PDF via our website shop, www.offasdyke.org.uk/shop We also offer advertising on our website and in our 3 x per year Newsletter. Advertising starts from £25. Email us on firstname.lastname@example.org for full details.
Offa’s Dyke Centre welcomes Trefonen school display
We are delighted to exhibit at the Centre an Offa’s Dyke display by pupils from Trefonen primary school. The display was originally curated for the Trefonen Exhibition and Heritage Walk in September, dedicated by the Trefonen Heritage Protection Group to the ODA’s 50th Anniversary.
The village is immensely proud of its location on the Dyke and it is heart warming and reassuring to see the school encourage this young generation to take such an interest in its local heritage. Presenting the display at the Centre enables us to acknowledge publicly the strong links now cemented between Knighton and Trefonen.
Offa’s Dyke Association call for volunteers
Do you have a few hours to spare and interested in discovering what goes on behind the scenes at one of the leading heritage organisations along the Welsh borders? We might be what you are looking for. If you can spare a few hours, just once a week, to help us with day-to-day running of the Offa’s Dyke Centre then please get in touch. Either call in, email email@example.com or ‘phone 01547 528753.
We are a membership-based charity and entirely self-funding. We do not receive any financial assistance from either central or local government.
The dust never settles
In its long history the past couple of months were without doubt the busiest that the ODA has ever witnessed. Our 50th anniversary year as the friends’ group for Offa’s Dyke and Offa’s Dyke Path has ushered in many changes, and firsts, as we continue to grow and evolve into a leading conservation orientated heritage organisation. The remainder of the year promises to be just as eventful.
In March the walkers’ Passports arrived from the printers and the finishing touches made to the stamping boxes before their delivery to the 12 stamping stations ready for the slightly early start this year of 15th April. Trailblazer delayed going to press in order to include the Passport in its new edition guidebook to the Trail, so becoming the first publisher to do so. Remember that income from the Passport supports the Offa’s Dyke Conservation Fund; they cost £5 + 99p p&p from our on-line shop.
March and April saw visits to our printers and designers, WPG Group of Welshpool, to commission four pieces of design work. Our new dual purpose Offa’s Dyke Centre / membership leaflet and walkers’ certificates both use the eye catching painting of Offa’s Dyke on Springhill by Knighton artist Elaine Morgan. The certificate costs £3.00 and is now available from the Centre and via our on-line shop.
A new interpretation panel explaining the making of ‘Offa’s Throne’, unveiled at last year’s AGM, was installed only the day before this year’s meeting on 4th May. The fourth design project was a permanent tribute plaque, unveiled at the meeting, to four of our founder members: Frank and June Noble and Ernie and Kathy Kay, all sadly no longer with us.
In April we said goodbye and gave our best wishes to our long serving member of staff Catherine before welcoming Harriet and Rhian to the Centre. Handovers are always busy times but not a moment has been wasted as we begin to work up ideas for taking the Centre forward.
The Kington Spring Walking Festival over the weekend of 13th & 14th April dedicated four walks to the our 50th anniversary and it was a pleasure to talk to a 100+ audience at their buffet on the Saturday evening. Organisers Kington Walks are members of the ODA and I sold a couple of 50th anniversary mugs and they have just announced that their September wakking festival will dedicate another walk, from Kington to Knighton, finishing at the Centre for coffee and cakes. Thanks Kington, looking forward to seeing you again!
The 50th anniversary AGM weekend was a great success with four guest speakers over two days. The proceedings kicked off with the official launch of the walkers’ Passport with keynote speaker Professor Howard Williams from the University of Chester and guest professional singer Emily Boulton stamping their Passports to launch the scheme.
Preparations for our ‘Living History’ Saxon re-enactment event on 13th & 14th July at the Centre, in partnership with Clwyd Powys Archaeological Trust, are in full flow. Now that is a date for your diary! Keep an eye on our events page for more details.
Only the week after the AGM two or our trustees, Ian Mackey and Mel Roxby-Mackey, both archaeologists, travelled to Conwy to talk to a primary school about King Offa and the Saxons. Mel is the ODA’s ‘Resident Archaeologist’ and Ian is in charge of our Outreach work. More about their their trip to follow soon.
The offer to talk last week to BBC Radio Shropshire’s Adam Green about the ODA and Centre was too good to miss. Adam said no preparation time, just start talking, as he toured the Centre and park. As soon as we stepped outside the heavens opened but that didn’t dampen our spirits. Adam also interviewed a couple of willing walkers who afterwards visited the Centre, enjoyed some cake refreshments and then bought two Passports. Altogether a good day with two five minute slots on Adam’s evening programme to look forward to.
We couldn’t let the 50th anniversary pass by without a dedicated souvenir and we are proud to announce our limited edition mug. Its design, very kindly donated by artist Mike Middleton (Twitter @wulfgarthebard) features ‘Offa’s Throne’. A must for everyone who loves Offa’s Dyke it costs £6.99 + £3.00 p&p from our on-line shop.
Keep an eye on the new ‘ODA at 50’ page and remember, if you live in a village or town along the Dyke or National Trail and would like to organise and affiliate an event to our 50th birthday celebrations then pleas get in touch. So far we can report that walks are planned for next year in Chepstow and Kington.
Donations are now more important to us then ever before. If you have enjoyed your visit to the Offa’s Dyke Centre then please consider making a donation. The Centre has a donation box but you can also make a donation via this website.
At our AGM in May we simplified our membership categories. We now offer ‘Individual’ membership at £20 per year and ‘Joint / Family’ membership at £25 per year. We very much value our loyal membership who enable us to carry out our educational work here at the Centre and to maintain our Conservation Fund. In the past two years we have grant aided four conservation projects with one more in the pipeline for later this year.
We also have a new membership category for charity / not-or-profit / community groups at £20 per year. Contact the Centre on 01547 528753 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a pdf application form. If a group runs an amenity useful to walkers, for example a community shop or café, then the membership fee entitles the group to a website advertisement. See the Llandegla community shop advert at https://offasdyke.org.uk/where-to-stay/accommodation-on-offas-dyke/
Small shops and tea room / cafés can join for £25 per year and have the same advertisement.
We have one of the original Offa’s Dyke Path signs for sale. With the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Path just a year or so away this is an unique opportunity to own a piece of National Trail heritage. We are inviting donations of £500 and above with the proceeds going towards the manufacture of a pair of eye catching street signs to replace the originals currently outside the Centre. We need to raise £950 and £500 will go a long way towards achieving that.
Contact email@example.com or call 01547 528753.