The Lord-Lieutenant attended the opening ceremony of the Veterans Hub in Newport on Friday 3rd May and planted a tree to commemorate the occasion. Mr. Lee Williams (Director) and guests showed The Lord-Lieutenant around the allotment of the Veterans Hub, which is a vital part of their food bank project for the community.



Tree planting at St Peter’s to mark King’s coronation

Tree planting at St Peter’s to mark King’s coronation

In a significant and commemorative gesture, the Lord-Lieutenant of Gwent, Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE, recently led a special event in the serene churchyard of St Peter's in Goytre, marking the coronation of King Charles III. An oak tree, symbolizing strength and endurance, was planted amidst the historic ambiance of this site, which has been a spiritual haven since the early 1500s. The ceremony, held on February 28, attracted a considerable gathering of community members, all eager to be part of this momentous occasion. Plans are underway to install a commemorative plaque near the newly planted oak, further honoring this new chapter in the monarchy's history.

The event was a collaborative effort, with Brigadier Aitken and The Reverend Sally Ingle-Gillis leading the ceremony, accompanied by the warm presence of parishioners. The churchyard, with its deep historical roots, served as a fitting backdrop for this celebration. Originally established with a Gothic structure, the church underwent significant transformation in the mid-1800s, adopting the Early English architectural style. Despite these changes, remnants of the medieval era persist, including the chancel roof, a Norman baptismal font, and an ancient oak chest, contributing to the site's rich tapestry of history.

The recorded history of a church presence in Goytre traces back to 1348, though the medieval architecture has largely been replaced or modified. Notably, some medieval stonework survives within the south porch, hinting at the church's storied past. The current structure, conceived by architects TH Wyatt and D Brandon under the guidance of Rector Thomas Evans in 1846, stands as a testament to Victorian Gothic architectural finesse, largely unaltered since its erection.

The church's interior features, including a gallery supported by cast iron columns and a Victorian-era organ, blend harmoniously with elements like the Norman font, showcasing the amalgamation of various historical periods. The relocation of the medieval vestry and the preservation of its carved mouldings and stone reflect a respectful nod to the past. The churchyard itself, home to an ancient yew tree and rare alms dishes believed to originate from a millennia-old yew, encapsulates the enduring legacy of this spiritual site.

This tree planting ceremony not only commemorates a significant national event but also enriches the historical and cultural fabric of Goytre, weaving together the community, its heritage, and the monarchy in a celebration of continuity and hope for the future.

On Wednesday 17th January 2024 HM The Lord-Lieutenant attendee Pontypool Civic Centre to present the Torfean residents recognised on the Birthday Honours 2023 with their medals.

Glyn Caron is awarded the British Empire Medal for services to the community of Llanyravon, Cwmbran.

Ian Jeffrey Cross is awarded the British Empire Medal for customer for services to the Welsh Ambulance Service Trust.

Christine Anne Culleton is awarded the British Empire Medal for services to the NHS in Southeast Wales.

Pictured: Council Leader Anthony Hunt, Glyn Caron BEM, Ian Jeffrey Cross BEM, Buddy the Hearing dog, HM The Lord-Lieutenant of Gwent, Cadet Sergeant Alexander Lee, Christine Anne Culleton BEM.

At Newport Cathedral earlier this month, the local community hosted their own ‘Together at Christmas’ Carol Service with @earlychildhood.

Watch our short film from the Service:

It was an evening that celebrated the diversity of the city and the people…

— The Prince and Princess of Wales (@KensingtonRoyal) December 16, 2023

MV Severn Princess has successfully qualified for listing on the National Register of Historic Vessels (NRHV), making it officially of UK national interest, as well as receiving a visit by his Majesty’s The Lord-Lieutenant of Gwent, Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE. The Princess now joins a prestigious list of over 1,000 historic vessels, such as the Cutty Sark and SS Great Britain. To be considered for listing, the vessel must be at least 50 years old, have demonstrable and significant UK associations, be based in the UK, be moe than 33ft in length and the hull must be substantially intact. The NRHV database, which can be viewed online, includes detailed information about each vessel, such as: designer, builder, dimensions, construction, propulsion, service history, current location and ownership, as well as images of the registered vessels.

The Severn Princess and her counterparts, the Severn King and Queen, used to carry vehicles and passengers across the River Severn between Aust and Beachley. The service was used by many, saving them a 60-mile round trip via Gloucester. Having only been launched in 1959, the Princess was sold to a company in Ireland in 1966, when the Severn Bridge opened and the ferries were no longer required. Many years later, MV Princess was found abandoned and in a dreadful state but subsequently rescued and returned to Chepstow, South Wales by enthusiastic volunteers in 1999. When the Severn Bridge had opened, the Severn Queen was immediately cut up for scrap and the Severn King followed the same fate in 1970, following irreparable damage sustained during her work on the Sharpness River Severn railway bridge. The volunteers of the Severn Princess Preservation Trust (SPPT, now a registered charity 1179131), continue to work hard to preserve her as an important part of the history of transport in the area and as the last remaining vessel of the Severn ferries, which had been operating since the 1930s. The Trust were visited this week by the Lord-Lieutenant of Gwent and County Councillor, Paul Pavia.

Said the Trustees of SPPT, “we are absolutely delighted that the Princess has made it to the National Register of Historic Vessels and especially to be listed alongside such prestigious vessels. Of course, we were thrilled to receive a visit by Brigadier Aitken to learn more about the Princess and the work that we’ve been doing.”

The Vice Lord-Lieutenant, Dame Claire Clancy, recently opened a wonderful Flower Festival at All Saints Church, Llanfrechfa.

The Festival was a celebration of the Coronation and life of King Charles III who is well-known for his love of flowers, gardening, and nature.

Considerable thought and attention to detail had gone into the floral displays which were inspired by and reflected the life and interests of His Majesty.

In formally opening the Flower Festival, Claire offered her congratulations on a spectacular, beautiful and fitting tribute.

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