The great thing about our useful, spacious, comfortable house is that we can re-arrange things to suit what we are working on at the time.
Recently we have moved the wood-workshop equipment down stairs and put the large robotic CNC (still in progress!) and the electronics equipment that needs to stay dust-free into our storage room to make two more lovely bright bedrooms with plenty of table-space for projects.
We are going bring in other practitioners to provide residential Workshops in Arts, Crafts and Role-play Games. I will run more sculpture Workshops too.
The big electric ceramics kiln is refurbished, a small one next on the list and the glass kiln wired in. Our display/shop area is greatly improved and a new tiled floor goes in soon!
The Sculpture and Wildlife Garden is really mature now with lots fruit and residents including hedgehogs.
There are guitars you can use, a Singer sewing machine and a random collection of sewing, arts and crafts materials on hand to share in case you forget something when you pack.
And you and your family or group can book to holiday, work or do your creative projects in Osprey Studios House on Airbnb. The site is very helpful and secure. The house has 2 double rooms and a single room and they are set up so that you can do your own work if you would like to. The Internet is good and reliable and it’s quiet here on this pleasant, easy to access street with plenty of parking. There are 3 award winning pubs within walking distance and lots of wonderful walks and places to visit near-by.
To book the house and see more info about it go to our airbnb page. To see info w/ links about the area go to Visit the Studio (which includes an interactive map) or scroll down for the info sheet that has links.
– The whole garden is for all wild creatures. The brush/woodpile behind the cabin is for wildlife and a huge hedgehog lives in there! Him and the toads eat the prize-sized slugs and snails. The pond has frogs, toads, newts, dragonflies and all sorts of other fellows. No one gets killed by humans. Please be kind to any visitors that join you.
– Osprey Studios is signed up to the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Development Charter so we are frugal with electricity and heat, re-use and recycle where ever we can.
– Ynyswen is very quiet and peaceful, especially at night. My neighbors are lovely people and many work early shifts. Head-phones with devices/no loud conversations/etc out-side please and keep volumes low in the house.
– Park off road, in front of the house when possible, leaving room for my silver van. Ynyswen is a very safe, friendly place but can run short of parking.
My Airbnb guests can have a bespoke Workshop. Check out the step-by-step posts on ospreystudios.org/blog-contents/ and contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to talk through what will suit you best.
The Local Area.
Local GP Practice in Abercrave: 01639 730225
Visit the Studio: photos, links and info on this gorgeous area.
Leaflets in basket on TV shelves. Please leave for future guests and add any from your favourite days out.
The Ancient Briton, 1/2 mile, go left at the main road.
The Penycae Inn, 1.25miles, go left at main road. Or over the fields- there are several lovely routes.
The Abercrave Inn, 1.5miles. Go right at main road, 1st right after church. Or foot-paths. Nearest place that also serves food on Sunday evenings.
Changing Seasons Tea Rooms (great breakfasts!), 3 miles, go left at main road. Or over the mountain. Visitor Centre, leaflets, beautiful walks.
The Spar, Ynyswen, 100 metres, go left at main road.
Post office/ cafe/ small shop: The Hub, 1 1/2 miles, go right at main road, 1st right after church, follow road.
Supermarkets/shops/take-aways/friendly cafes in Ystradgynlais, 5 miles, go right at main road.
Petrol station (w/ small shop), 3miles, go right at main road. Continental Services mechanic: 01639 731000
-Go right on the street, about 6 houses along there is a bridle-path on your right that will take you to various routes up Cribarth, the Sleeping Giant mountain, (https://singinghead.wordpress.com/2015/12/02/the-sleeping-giant-of-cribarth/) into the silent, stunning Beacons. Cribarth is part of the Geo-park,
– Cross main road + go right. 50 yards, on left, footpath to the Tawe River and on to the Primate Sanctuary (http://www.ape-monkey-rescue.org.uk/) or Henrhyd Falls
The Henrhyd Falls walk is the only sheep free one so a dog with good recall can run free. There is a river beach 10 mins along from Osprey Studios where your dog and kids can swim and paddle. (unless the water is high- don’t under-estimate the current for a second)
Artists in the area:
Tuition, workshops, studios to visit.
Julia Harris, wonderful landscape and animal paintings and courses in Abercrave just a mile away. Julia Harris and Marion Wilder recently opened the eclectic treasure-trove that is the Artist and Maker’s Emporium here on the main road in Ynyswen!!
Leanne Vaughnan Phillipps M.A., excellent tuition in life drawing.
Arts in the Tawe Valley, a collection of wonderful local artists from many disciplines with the beautiful Lliw Gallery in Pontardawe Arts Centre.
SA9 1GJ . +44 (0)1639 730639 Mobile Phone Number: +44 (0)7813 604955
left at main road, 3 miles, opposite Craig y Nos Castle.
The most fantastic day out for anyone!
left at main road, 3.5 miles.
Buses: Timetable and services
Great news! Bus travel in Wales is FREE at weekends (This link takes you to the site w/ route planner) Please double check time-tables at the bus-stop or online as they change without notice.
Enjoy FREE travel every weekend on the TrawsCymru network! ( 2019- I believe this is still in effect but please ALWAYS check their website/timetables)
TrawsCymru long distance buses are an ideal way of exploring Wales. From Saturday 8th July 2017 the Welsh Government is introducing free weekend travel for all on the TrawsCymru network.
The offer will allow you to travel for free on Saturdays and Sundays, with no need to book in advance.
As TrawsCymru services are likely to be busier than normal on the days of the free travel promotion we may provide additional buses. Please be sure to check the destination display clearly or ask a member of staff to ensure you board the correct bus.
If you are in possession of valid Welsh Concessionary Travel pass we ask that you continue to show this to the driver as normal on the days of the promotion.
Whether you are going for a picnic, a hike, to visit a castle or go on a shopping trip, we hope you enjoy our free travel offer. Happy Weekend!
National Parks Week is the National Parks family’s annual celebration of everything that is unique and wonderful about Britain’s breathing spaces. It runs from Monday 24 to Sunday 30 July 2017. With diverse landscapes, activities and events there’s an adventure waiting for you here in the Brecon Beacons!
Here our some of our top facts you may not know about the Brecon Beacons National Park…
- Established in 1957, the Brecon Beacons National Park is the youngest of the three national parks in Wales. The other two Welsh national parks, Snowdonia and the Pembrokeshire Coast, were created earlier in the 1950s, along with important English national parks such as the Peak District, the Lake District and the Yorkshire Dales.
- The Brecon Beacons National Park covers a staggering 520 square miles!
- The BBNP is home to the worlds largest single span glasshouse-The National Botanic Gardens of Wales
- …and a 11mile long cave system-Dan Yr Ogof Caves
- Pen Y Fan is the highest point in Southern Britain
- Hiring a car, bike or twizy (electric car) is the best way to get around-details on how to hire here
- There really are sheep everywhere-with around 1250 farms within the park
- Prince Charles has his Wales residence at the western edge of the park near Myddfai
- The SAS hold selection training excersises including the Fan Dance-a
gruelling 24km non-navigational race over two sides of Pen Y Fan
- Britain’s largest breeding population of lesser horseshoe bats can be found in the Usk Valley.
- Eight places on Cadw’s Register of Landscapes of Outstanding and Special Historic Interest in Wales lie, at least partly, within the Brecon Beacons National Park. These include the Black Mountain and Mynydd Myddfai, the Middle Wye Valley, East Fforest Fawr and Mynydd-y-Glog and the Middle Usk Valley.
- In 2005 the Fforest Fawr Geopark was established, the first European Geopark in Wales. The area has been proudly recognised for its scientific quality, spectacular landscapes, educational value and historical and cultural interest. The geology tells the story of ancient climate change, mountain building as well as sea level changes. Impressively the hills and valleys are marked by glaciers from the Ice Ages
- The batcave in the 2012 Batman film The Dark Knight Rises, was hidden behind Henrhyd Falls, the tallest of dozens of cascades in the western Brecons Beacons, the bit of Wales known as ‘Waterfall Country’.
- There are so many popular events held in the Brecon Beacons-such as Green Man Festival, Abergavenny Food Festival and Hay Literary Festival- this years Royal Welsh Show attracted tens and thousands of people. Events listings here
Conquered Pen y Fan? Did you know we have 1,200 miles of public rights of way for you to explore? Here are our favourite walks in the Brecon Beacons which have equally beautiful views to enjoy and have plenty of Epic selfie opportunities.
– Pen Yr Crug-one of the most impressive hillforts in the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Standing on the summit of a prominent hill above the Usk Valley, this is one of the most impressive hillforts in the Brecon Beacons National Park.
The remains of Pen-y-Crug hillfort can be found on The Crug, a hill 1.5 miles northwest of Brecon, at a height of 331m. Its ramparts, which today are rounded earthwork banks and ditches, would once have been impressive stone and earth revetments with a wooden defensive palisade built on top. They allowed those who occupied the hillfort to defend themselves and proved a formidable obstacle to anyone attempting to attack the settlement. Entry to the interior of the hillfort was gained through a single well-guarded entrance on the southeast side of the hillfort. The hill has extensive views of the central Brecon Beacons, and also views to a number of neighbouring hillforts including Coed Fenni Fach on the adjacent (now wooded) hill and to Twyn-y-Gaer on Mynydd Illtud on the other side of the valley. More info here.
– Allt Yr Esgair-Panoramic views of the Usk Valley to the west and south and across Llangorse Lake to the Black Mountains to the northeast.
Allt-yr-Esgair is a hill with panoramic views of the Usk Valley to the west and south and across Llangorse Lake to the Black Mountains to the northeast. In Welsh, Allt-yr-Esgair means wooded slope of the ridge. Locally, the hill is known as The Allt. The summit (393m) is crowned by a hillfort presumed to be of Iron Age origin, one of several in the Usk Valley. The Roman road that links the Roman fort of CICVCIVM at Y Gaer, Brecon and Gobannium at Abergavenny runs along the ridge. More info on the hill here.
– Mynydd Troed-Great Views of Llangorse Lake with it’s name meaning “foot mountain” based on how it appears when viewed from the Allt Mawr ridge.
The hill is designated as open country and therefore is freely accessible to walkers, with great views even when the Black Mountains are in cloud due to its lower altitude.
– Sugar Loaf-Panoramic Views of the Brecon Beacons and beyond.
This big, bold, bald hill, at 596m, has a magnetic quality – everyone who visits Abergavenny just has to climb it. They’re rewarded with one of the finest views on the planet, as mountain ranges roll away for 360 degrees in great waves of green. Look west to the flat-topped central Beacons, north-west to Pen Cerrig-calch, north to the Black Mountains, north-east to Hatterall Hill, east to Skirrid Fawr and south across the Usk valley to the Blorenge. What a panorama!
– Table Mountain-Satisfying climb through streams and woodland with epic views of Crickhowell and Usk Valley
Looming over Crickhowell, it’s easy to see why this 451m peak was thus named. Sloping at a slightly tipsy angle, its flat top is an iconic Brecon Beacons feature. Etymologists will be interested to learn that Crickhowell’s name derives from this lofty spot. It’s an Anglicization of Crug Hywel, or Hywel’s Fort, a reference to the Iron Age hillfort that crowns Table Mountain. Despite the exposed, weatherbeaten location, extensive remnants of this ancient Celtic stronghold still survive in the form of ditches and ruined stone defences. The views are sensational. At your feet gazing westwards you have the lovely Usk valley rising into the central Brecon Beacons and industrial valleys of South Wales, while the brooding Black Mountains look over your shoulder. Click here for a walk up the mountain.
– Carmarthenshire Fans-atmospheric surroundings and truly stunning views.
Highest Peak: Fan Foel with Picws Du being the second highest peak.
The Legend: The place is steeped in legend, and has a close association with the Physicians of Myddfai, the true history of whom has become inextricably linked with the legend of the Lady of Llyn y Fan Fach, a famous Welsh folk tale. According to the legend, the Physicians of Myddfai were descended from a beautiful fairy who lived in the lake. This fairy was wooed by a local shepherd boy, and they eventually married and set up home at Esgair Llaethdy, a farm near the village of Myddfai, where they raised three sons. Following three “unjust blows”, the Lady left her husband and returned to the depths of the Lake, but before she went she taught her three sons the arts of healing and showed them where to find the necessary herbs, all of which grew in profusion in the area. According to one version of the legend, her eldest son was named Rhiwallon.
What is certain is that, in the early 13th century, a man named Rhiwallon Feddyg was the personal physician of Rhys Gryg, Lord of Dinefwr and the warrior son of the Welsh Prince, Rhys ap Gruffydd. Rhiwallon had three sons, Cadwgan, Gruffydd and Einion, and they and all their descendants became famous for their skill as doctors, not only in Wales, but throughout the UK and Europe. Their medical wisdom is recorded in the Red Book of Hergest, which dates back to the 13th century, and several of their original manuscripts are held in the British Museum. These show that their healing powers were based upon a materia medica of about 175 herbs, all of which grew locally, and many of which still thrive in the area. The last named “Physician of Myddfai” died in 1842, and his tombstone lies in the porch of the village church.
We hope you enjoy these walks and make sure you share your Epic photos with us on Instagram using the hashtag #visitbreconbeacons. Click here to discover more walks in the Brecon Beacons!
You can have plenty of Legendary Days Out in the Brecon Beacons! Discover the magic and myths hidden in the rolling hills of the Brecon Beacons by going on an adventure with some of the best tour guides and activity providers around…
Kevin Walker Mountain Activities
Kevin Walker Mountain Activities is a small, long-established mountain activities training business based in the Brecon Beacons National Park, but working all over Wales. They pride themselves in providing the highest quality instruction and guiding delivered by friendly, experienced, enthusiastic, qualified, mature instructors.
They work with very small groups, that are never more than 4 people per instructor (often less), allowing for personal attention and flexible, effective training. You can come by yourself, with friends, or join a group. More here. Perfect For: Keen Walkers
Muddy Boots Guided Hiking
Offering gentle, moderate and challenging routes, you can pick and choose your routes with Muddy Boots! Walks are tailored especially for your day out with some of our the routes including The Fan Dance, The Canadian War Memorial and Fan Y Big. Click here for more info. Perfect for: Exploring Wales’ Hidden Gems
Welsh Overland Safari
Almost every region in Mid Wales has something interesting to discover – quiet villages, stunning scenery, historical buildings lost in the countryside…so before rushing to visit the most popular regions why not think about somewhere else for a change? You can avoid the crowds and still have a great time discovering the ‘real’ Mid Wales!
Welsh Overland Safari is an independent guided tour company offering unique overland guided tours of some of the most beautiful, unspoilt landscapes in Europe, as well as rare natural habitats for wildlife. One of Wales’s best kept secrets, the region has a rich and diverse history dating back to well before Roman times. Explore the rugged mountains, lakes, waterfalls and forests of the area with Welsh Overland Safari. Perfect for: Authentic Guided Tours in Spectacular Scenery
Good Day Out
Based in the beautiful Brecon Beacons, Good Day out has an emphasis on local good causes and projects, particularly with an environmental, wildlife or animal sanctuary emphasis. You can choose from a variety of small group activities that engage you with the farming, the landscape, rural skills and wildlife. Experiences include, Pig Walking with a “Pig-Nic, Sheep Trekking trips as seen on BBC Countryfile, Lambing on an Organic Farm, Hedgehog Helper Morning and Red Kite Photography Day! More Legendary adventures here. Perfect for: A Unique Adventure for a Good Cause
Exploring Mid Wales
Exploring Mid Wales offer bespoke, exclusive, guided tours – by car, on foot or by bike. We meet you, drive you and guide you through our homeland. Every tour is tailored for you. So
whether you want to exercise the body, the mind, or both, they can offer you a unique service to get the most out of your time here. They even offer folk tale tours where you can find out about Twm Sion Cati, The Brecon Elves, The Physicians of Myddfai and many other tales! You can explore locations of great tales and experience a sense of wonder at the beautiful places that you’ll visit. More on the folk tale tours here. Perfect for: Discovering the Legends of the Brecon Beacons
Brecon Beacons Tours
Brecon Beacons Tours offers Sightseeing Tours and Walking Tours in the Brecon Beacons National Park in Wales. Our tours start either at Abergavenny station, the gateway to the National Park, or your Brecon Beacons based accommodation.
Abergavenny station is only 40 minutes from Cardiff and 2 hours from London, so our tours can be done as day trips from many UK locations. You can even combine your tours with stays in our B&B accommodation to make a complete break. Additionally they also offer bespoke, geology and fishing tours. Learn about the legends of 7 castles and 2 medieval houses on their Castle tour, or learn about the history of the Park on a fascinating tour that explores how the area was central to the Industrial Revolution with tramroads and canals criss-crossing the landscape. They offer plenty more tours, click here for more info.
Perfect for: New Discoveries
Brecon Beacons Foraging
Brecon Beacons Foraging offers courses through all seasons of the year, adapting the course to what nature provides at that time. A Spring Forage is all about leaves, flowers, buds and shoots, as well as the joy of getting out into the open after the dark months of Winter, whereas the promising shoots of Spring are all grown up in the Summertime Forage, with the meadows, lanes and riverbanks teeming with beautiful sights, sounds and scents. The Autumn forageoffers fruits, nuts and berries, that fill the hedgerows with their colourful, generous harvest. Brecon Beacons Foraging also offers foraging for kids and even Hedgerow Cocktail making! Perfect for: Nature Lovers
Go on a self-guided and escorted cycling and walking holiday with Drover Holidays! They cover the length and breadth of Wales and the Welsh Borders and vary in length from two nights to two weeks. Hire a bike from their base in Hay On Wye-they have a well-maintained fleet of over 60 high quality bicycles – from mountain bikes to baby seats! Click here for more. Perfect for: A Sporty Adventure
Wings of Wales
Located at Crag Y Nos Country Park, Wings of Wales offers outstanding scenery where you are able to fly birds on a one to one basis or as a family. The Brecon Beacons are the backdrop to their unique flying experience days, where their eagle soars thousands of feet, the woodland is superb for hawk walks, and our open valley pastures suit the flights of our owls and falcons. Perfect for: Animal Lovers
Take a walk on the wild side with Walkabout Wales on one of their guided walks! Their walking programes cover anything from a half day, gentle strolls, to longer, multi-day trekking with accommodation and meals. We tailor make a program to suit your requirements and budget.They cater for both individuals and groups of all abilities and fitness levels and operate trips throughout the year. They can arrange to collect you from your hotel or guest house in our people carrier or minibus, depending on size of group and transport you to the walk start or outdoor activity centres and return you following the walk. Perfect for: A Fun Experience Walking in the Brecon Beacons
Creative Photography Wales
Creative Photography Wales undertakes work throughout Wales and the UK and is owned by professional photographer Nigel Forster. Nigel specialises in fine art landscape photography, with an expertise in understanding composition and light and translating these into strikingly simple images. He offers Photography courses, as well as Photograpy holidays, where Nigel acts as your guide to your choice of destination! What more can you ask for! Perfect for: Transforming your Photography
Click here to discover the stories and legends of the Brecon Beacons National Park or click here if you need somewhere to stay!