The Brecon Beacons National Park is a place of great beauty and great people.To celebrate 60 years since the parks designation in 1957 the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority commissioned local photographer Billie Charity to take the portraits of some of those people that make the park the special place it is today.
The Roderick’s at Newton Farm: Helen Roderick, pictured, and husband Richard have worked with Brecon Beacons National Park Authority & CADW to bring 10 highland cattle onto Allt yr Esgair as conservation grazers. The aim is to restore the site of an iron age hill fort which overlooks the Usk valley.
Touring Dates and venues in 2017
All are free to enter but please check opening times before visiting. Photography by Billie Charity.
4th July-28th August Brecon Library Gallery, LD3 9AE 01874 623346.
1st September-27th September Black Mountain Centre, Upper Brynaman, Ammanford, SA18 1BU 01269 823400
30th September-29th October, Welfare Hall, Brecon Road Ystradgynlais, SA9 1JJ, 01639 415885 (viewing by appointment only)
30th September-29th October Riverside Gallery, Ysgol House, Ystradgynlais, SA9 1EU. 01639 415885
2nd November-19th November Theatr Brycheiniog, LD3 7EW. 01874 611622
Featured in the Diamond People Exhibition are:
The Nepalese Community Footpath Group
Moved by the response to the Nepali earthquake from residents the Gurkha community of Brecon decided to give something back and contacted the National Park Authority. They worked with wardens to restore a popular footpath, now renamed the Gurkha path.
Horatio Claire -Author
Author Horatio Clare pictured in the exhibition at the Hay Literary Festival in Hay. Horatio’s book, ‘Myths & Legends of the Brecon Beacons’, launched with a sell-out event at the Festival. Horatio grew up in the Black Mountains and Beacons. The author of Down to the Sea in Ships, Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot, A Single Swallow, Running for the Hills and others, Horatio is a journalist, lecturer and travel writer.
Education Officers -Brecon Beacons National Park Authority
Teacher Alison Davies together with Hayley Sharp & Mark Tiernen, Brecon Beacons National Park education officers with pupils from the National Park Ambassador School Crickhowell primary – one of the first schools to embrace the Ambassador schools programme – doing what they love and learning outside.
Joe Daggett and Rob Reith -National Trust
The central Beacons including Pen y fan are owned and cared for by the National Trust. Seen left to right in the exhibition are Joe Daggett, Countryside Manager and Rob Reith, Lead Ranger. Rob has been working on the central Brecon Beacons for nearly 30 years repairing footpaths: Joe trails at 25 years – first working with Rob in the early 1990’s.
Elizabeth Daniel – Brecon Beacons Holiday Cottages
Elizabeth Daniel with her dog, Willoughby. The owner of Brecon Beacons Holiday Cottages, Elizabeth started with just one cottage in 1978. Over the last 35 years, Elizabeth has grown the business and now has over 400 cottages on its books and is run from the centre of the National Park by a team of 10 people.
Jo and Jonathan Carthew – Black Mountains Smokery
Husband Wife team, Jo and Jonathan Carthew, started Black Mountains Smokery in 1996. A chance encounter, whilst fishing in Scotland, led them to the idea of mail order smoked foods. Their produce, traditionally cured and gently smoked over Welsh oak, has won award after award and they deliver wonderful hampers and food gifts nationwide.
Andrew Morgan –Welsh Venison Centre
Andrew Morgan with the deer he farms. Established as a venison farm since 1985 run by husband and wife Andrew and Elaine Morgan, and their daughter Rachel. You can see the family’s well-cared-for animals roaming the land around the Beacons Farm Shop.
Harry Legge-Bourke – The Glanusk Estate
Harry Legge-Bourke fishing his favourite ‘Bridge Pool’ on the River Usk at his family home on the Glanusk Estate. Harry is Chairman of the Usk Fishing Association and now runs the day to day management of the Estate with his wife Iona. Harry is actively involved as a Partner on the ‘Black Mountains Land Use Partnership’ Project Board; a unique and exciting group of land managers, graziers and conservationists that cover all of The Black Mountains. He is a very active countryman and businessmen promoting of Wales and The Black Mountains. He is also a former Board Member of Natural Resources Wales and Welsh Guardsman.
The Roderick’s – Newton Farm
Helen Roderick, pictured, and husband Richard of Newton Farm have worked with Brecon Beacons National Park Authority & CADW to bring 10 high- land cattle onto Allt yr Esgair as conservation grazers. The aim is to restore the site of an iron age hill fort which over-looks the Usk valley.
Brecon Mountain Rescue Team
Regularly in the news, the Brecon Mountain Rescue Team in fact operate throughout mid-Wales. Entirely run by volunteers they are a vital part of the emergency services network here in the National Park. Seen in the exhibition on a training exercise on Mynydd Illtyd in the central area of the Brecon Beacons with the coastguard helicopter which works with them when it is needed.
Colin Evans – Cantref Adventure Farm
Colin Evans, winner of National Farm Attractions Network, farm attraction of the year 2016 an inspirational entrepreneur who each year develops some quirky new attraction for families to enjoy at Cantref adventure farm on the outskirts of Brecon. The business started in 2003 with 12000 visitors and now enjoy over 35,000 visitors annually.
Laura Davies – Penderyn Distillery
Pictured working with the whisky is Laura Davies, the Distillery Manager at Penderyn Distillery. Laura mentioned that some visitors expect distillers to be a bearded elderly gentlemen, and therefore she has confounded a few expectations. Since opening in 2000 Penderyn Distillery has gone from strength to strength and now exports whisky across the globe.
Ashford Price – Dan yrOgof Showcaves of Wales
Ashford Price, a local celebrity in his own right, sitting in front of one of the impressive under-ground formations at the famous Dan yr Ogof Showcaves of Wales, a family run business since 1912 in the Upper Swansea Valley.
Rob Davies MBE -British Paralympic Athlete
Talgarth boy, Rob Davies MBE British Paralym- pic table tennis player who competed in the 2012 London Paralympics and went on to win the 2013 European Championship title in both singles and team events. Rob was named world number 1 in the class-1 category, and then went on to win Paralympic gold in the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. He currently retains the title of world number one.
John Morris – Grazier, the Black Mountains
John Morris started sheep farming in 1968 just outside Crickhowell, he has been involved with the local graziers for over 25 years and helped to set up the Glastir Commons element in the Black Mountains. More recently in 2015 John became a founding member of the Black Mountains Land use partnership which aims to address bracken management, peatland management and visitor management.
Jim Wilson -Chair of the Brecon Beacons Park Society
Jim Wilson, Chair of the Brecon Beacons Park Society was the lynchpin of the team who gained the Brecon Beacons International Dark Skies Reserve status back in 2013 becoming the first reserve in Wales at the time. Achieved in conjunction with Brecon Beacons National Park Authority to increase awareness in other areas of the multiple benefits of controlling light pollution. The result of this is that Wales now leads the world in percentage of land area where the Dark Skies are protected.
Paul Dann – Natural Resources Wales
Paul Dann, official title local area manager for Gower and East Carmarthenshire for Natural Resources Wales, in fact Paul looks after the forestry and works with the National Park Authority’s warden team foot paths round the popular Waterfalls area.
Charlie Phillips -Volunteer Lock Keeper
The Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal winds its way through the National Park. Charlie is a volunteer lock keeper for the Canal and Rivers Trust working the locks at Llangynidr. Charlie will help you navigate your boat through the locks and tell you about the 200 year history of the canal, its heritage and wildlife as well as places to visit along its route.
Dr Norman Lowe OBE
Dr Norman Lowe OBE is a legend in his own right here in the National Park. He runs the Moth Group for the Brecknock Wildlife Trust and regularly shares his enormous fund of moth knowledge with fascinated audiences and other volunteers. Here he is on the left in action by Llangorse Lake.
Ryan Thomas – Llangorse Multi Activity Centre
Ryan Thomas a young, local entrepreneur who has taken over running Llangorse multi-activity centre the family business which overlooks Llangorse Lake- offering horse riding, climbing and zip wires.
Sincere thanks to all the individuals groups and organisations who agreed to be our Diamond People and to the venues who have accommodated the exhibition.