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Friends of St Mary's Church at Caerau

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Spring Update

Results of CAER Heritage Questionnaire

Caerau Hillfort, St. Mary's Church, and the Roman Villa/Ely Racecourse are high in a survey of local people that asked:

"What are the most important heritage places in Caerau and Ely for you personally?"

Also popular: Plymouth Great Wood/Ely Valley, social housing estates, The Dusty Forge, and Michaelston Church & Village.

Full details of this comprehensive survey will be shown on CAER's website when all results are in. If you have not yet had your say about what heritage site matters most to you, it may not be too late.

Comments lodged so far on 'What makes these places important to you?' include (abbreviated for reasons of space):

"The hillfort because of personal involvement in the digs and interest in its evolving history......"

"Because St. Mary's has watched over Caerau & Ely for eight centuries...... the ruin is of great commemorative value to local people. It should be preserved for the social cohesion of the community."

Architectural Stone Mason carrying out repairs, summer 2015.
".....the Roman villa because it is a landmark and because of universal interest in Roman heritage."

"The biodiversity in Plymouth Great Wood and the Ely Valley......"

"The importance of local heritage to many community members, particularly the hillfort and St. Mary's."

There is much more, so do check regularly the CAER website and watch out for this wide-ranging survey of Ely and Caerau heritage sites.

St. Mary's Repairs

The St. Mary's Repair Meeting that was held on 23rd February 2016 concluded that about £20,500 was needed to complete the rest of the repointing to the higher reaches of the tower.

The reason cost is so high is that scaffolding will need to be left in place for the duration of the repairs, about 2-3 weeks, and the scaffolding cost plus overnight security and associated welfare costs will add a further £14,500 to the £6,000 needed for repointing itself. A further meeting will be held in July to discuss funding progress.

A recent visit to the hill by a government minister and council officials was reported as being 'very positive' and we await an official announcement regarding this.

Taskforce volunteers did a great job litter-picking in readiness for the Minister's visit.

A Date for your Diary: The Big Picnic Event!

Please note the date: Saturday 7th May from 12noon to 3pm.

ACE/CAER/Friends will be inviting people to bring a picnic to share in the beautiful surroundings of St. Mary's and Caerau hillfort. Tea and cakes will be provided, and, we hope, activities for all the family to enjoy. So please do look out for more details to be announced after Easter.

Friendly Visiting

Meanwhile, many thanks to all who have been visiting the church site. There are reports that many of you are doing this, so please keep going as often as you can, it really does seem to be making a difference!

Photography by Paul & Tony

Repaired buttress. Task Force Volunteers at work.