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Andy Smith is a former Police Motorcyclist with years of experience in motorcycle training at all levels. He offers training through 1stClassRider.co.uk, and ride outs through his newsletter blog right here. To contact Andy click here.

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Next Ride Out. A little bit of History. 12th of October

Yes, we made it to ‘The Ace’ but my yellow jacket was distinctly out of place. Black leather was clearly the order of the day.

This was my first visit and it was certainly worth the trip. So if you are ever up that way then call in. Good food, good atmosphere and a gift shop that will sell absolutely anything that ‘The Ace’ logo would fit on.

So now for the next ride out. After two jaunts over the border into England we are definitely staying ‘home’ in Wales for the next one.

Meeting at MacDonald’s at junction 32 M4 Coryton Interchange for a 9am departure. Sunday the 12th of October.

In keeping with the Welsh historical theme that has crept in to the ride outs of late our ride will take in the former mining village of Aberfan, near Merthyr Tydfil.

It was on the 21st of October 1966 that the village and in particular Pant Glas School was engulfed by a unstable coal tip sliding down the mountain side and burying the school. On that morning the children in the school had just finished their morning assembly and had just sung ‘All things Bright and Beautiful’ when at 9.15am the landslide struck.

In the village it was a foggy misty morning but up on the mountain top it was bright and sunny. Members of the ‘Tip Inspection Team’ saw the slide start but were powerless to raise the alarm. Moments later the slurry buried the school killing 144 people, 116 of which were children.

The school foundations are still visible and the site has been turned into a lasting memorial garden.

The mass graves, topped by marble white headstones stand in a line at the nearby Aberfan Cemetery.

The A470 dual carriageway now travels across the mountain side where the coal slurry slipped and hundreds of motorists traverse the route each day, many without a thought for the tragedy which unfolded on that site on that last day of term in 1966.

Our ride out will take us over the A470 and then we will visit the site of the school before travelling further afield.

Surely we have all heard of ‘The Aberfan Disaster’ so why not come and pay a respectful visit. My memory of it was coming home from school for dinner that day and finding my Mother crying having just heard the story on the News.

Come and join us for a bit of history, a bit of food and a bit of a ride.

There Are 3 Responses So Far. »

  1. Hi Chums, Some of you have reported to me that you have had some difficulty in posting a comment on the blog. You will be asked to either enter or sign up for a google mail account BUT you do not need to do this as you can add a comment by clicking the ‘Anonymous’ box and then telling me who you are in the text of your comment (if you want to that is- you can still remain anonymous if you wish).

    So please don’t be put off. Place a comment. Have your say and it also tells me that I’m not talking to myself and that you are out there somewhere.

    Cheers. Andy

  2. Just so you know that the blog is working ok I thought you look cool in your new dayglo jacket.In fact as I wandered amongst the crowds and boppers near the stage I heard whispers and rumblings “who’s the dude in the dayglo” ” oh! thats Andy “Foody” Smith from Cardiff,he’s a cutting edge trend setter”.News of this has reached the Ace Cafe marketing team and to fill a gap in their range you can now buy an Andy style dayglo with the Ace Cafe logo on the back, underneath which is depicted a boulder with Andy’s image in silhouete and the inscription “The legend ride’s on”

  3. Stu, You do make me smile…… a dayglo smile that is!

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