Sunday 17 July 2011


My PC went on strike early last week (the chips got "chippy") but industrial relations have now been reestablished so I can catch up...

The "Taking the Wheel" campaign reached Gwynedd last week as the microbus and simulator van rolled up to lay siege to Caernarfon Castle. Hafal's Practice Leader Lesley Jones said: "We've had a good discussion on how people with a serious mental illness can take control of their lives." Some comments from clients who attended:-

"The most important factor in my recovery has been gaining independent housing. It has meant that I have been able to leave my parents' house and have more time for myself. I moved in just before Christmas. It's the first time I‘ve lived on my own since I was in college. I've learnt new housekeeping skills and I'm really enjoying it"

"The most empowering thing for me has been the friendship I have gained at Hafal's service. The feeling of community has saved my life a few times. Stigma and isolation have been a problem for me. Listening to and talking to the staff and meeting service users have helped me a lot"

"Learning IT and photography has helped me believe that I have the ability to do things I never thought I'd be able to do again"


Everybody is familiar with Edward I's most formidable castle in Wales. Its design - in particular the hexagonal walls and sandwiched layers of coloured stone - made a clear nod towards the legendary walls of Constantinople (previously Byzantium, latterly Istanbul). Respect is implied to the locals that keeping them in order required defences similar to those employed to defend the greatest city of the Middle Ages and the final flourishing of the Roman Empire whose walls were only finally breached in 1453 by the Ottomans - over 100 years after the Welsh castle was completed.