It's time to clean up this town

Montgomery Library now has litter picking grabbers, refuse bags, bag hoops and hi-vis jackets available for community use.

James Thompson, Powys County Council Waste Awareness and Enforcement Manager, officially handed the equipment to Lesley Williams of Montgomery Library and Cllr Rob Harper of the Montgomery Town Tidy Team.

Powys County Council is working in partnership with Keep Wales Tidy to provide litter-picking kits from designated hubs across Powys, including several of the county’s libraries.

Cllr Rob Harper said: “I believe that this will further help and encourage residents to help keep our beautiful town looking clean and litter free.”

Freeman of Monty

Paul Hodgson was awarded an Honorary Freemanship of the town at the annual meeting of the Freemen of Montgomery this month.

Paul is well known for his meticulous organisation of the Remembrance Day ceremonies each November but the Freemen particularly wished to recognise his work in masterminding the installation of the War Memorial and restoring the Garden of Remembrance for the Fallen at The Pound.

Accepting the Honour, Paul noted how nearly all villages, towns and cities in the United Kingdom had a memorial unless they were a ‘Thankful Village’ where every serviceman returned safely to their community in both World Wars.

Montgomery did not fall within the category of a Thankful Village and so planning and fundraising commenced in 2010 and research was begun into tracing names for the Roll of Honour including eight forgotten Montgomery servicemen.

The construction of the memorial was finally completed in 2014.

Mayor Jill Kibble, raised the toast to Paul and expressed the gratitude of the town and Freeman and Secretary, Lionel Weaver, presented the certificate of Freemanship.

The Freemen of Montgomery can trace their history back to the Civil War and the Restoration of the Monarchy when families whose men had fought loyally for the king were rewarded by the gift of the Ffloss lands. These lands now provide good agricultural areas and remain held by the Freemen in perpetuity.

Cross Wales Walk returns

The first Rotary Cross Wales Walk for three years saw walkers caught in an early morning downpour on the hills above Machynlleth as they set off on the 48 mile challenge on Saturday morning.

This year the route was revised to start shortly after 2am in Machynlleth and work its way over to Offa’s Dyke and the short walk back into Montgomery.

Montgomery did not fall short in its welcome despite a damp and chilly June day.

The bell of the Town Crier, a cheer from the Mayor, some lively music from Monty Folk and a warm welcome from the ladies of the Newtown Rotary with a table groaning with cakes, biscuits and fruit, made the walk worthwhile.

The first walker home was Lee Reynolds who received a special welcome from Town Crier, Sue Blower.

A similar welcome awaited local beef farmer Ifor Humphreys who came in not long afterwards, having just completed his 23rd Cross Wales Walk.

Walkers are Welcome Montgomery assisted with arrangements for the day.

Volunteer leader, Brett Kibble said: “We way-marked the route from Abermule to Montgomery which offered a good opportunity to get some infrastructure maintenance done and also clear vegetation so the footpaths will now be much easier to access for all walkers. It was encouraging to hear that everyone was finding their way easily in the Montgomery area.”

“Some 240 walkers took part this year and we look forward to seeing many of them again next year. Montgomeryshire is a truly beautiful place to come for a walk, long or short.”

Charity walker completes trek

After calling into Montgomery around the halfway point, charity challenge walker Clive Knapman has completed his 1,200km journey on foot raising money for Médecins Sans Frontières, by reaching the end of the Pennine Way at Kirk Yetholm in Scotland.

After a 6am start on June 12, Clive was expecting to camp and reach the finish point the following day, but made better progress than expected and completed the final 26.5 miles that same day.

The hardy walker said: “At the end of a pretty long, hard day, I arrived in Kirk Yetholm to a great welcome at the Borders Hotel.

“Somewhat broken but very pleased to have done it.

“Thank you again for the wonderful support and encouragement.”