Freddie on Newgale Beach

I just can’t believe that it was 40 years ago, 1976, when I bought the hotel – it was in November, so keep your diaries free for a couple of parties near the end of the year to celebrate the occasion.  Of course, I hope to have finished my recipe book by then.  It will include humorous anecdotes from my life in the business, the story of my family (so my 2 youngest boys will know all that I know about the Stirling tree) and will also include dishes that I have enjoyed in my life with recipes to match.

Speaking of 40 years ago, back then, I had my dog, Mutley, an adorable Golden Labrador that a local man, Jim Harold (or Jimmy Cider, as he was called when he worked on the railway!) took under his wing – Mutley followed him everywhere.  We changed Jim’s name to Jim the Guinness, on account of the fact he drank 18 pints of Guinness every single day!  When he was sixty, his doctor told him he only had 2 years to live if he drank so much, but he would live 5 years if he stopped drinking.  So he decided if he only had 5 years not drinking, he might as well live 2 and enjoy them, so that’s when he changed his drink to Guinness.  He died 12 years later of a heart attack carrying his Christmas present (a crate of Guinness) across the village green to his house!

Mutley was a bit of a nuisance to this village, more of that in a later newsletter, as he was when we lived in St. Davids – Sgt Trevor Davies became quite a good friend of mine because of Mutley, and what a lovely man he is.  I remember being rung up once by Sgt Davies – he told me that Mutley was in Solva, and had been put on the bus, would I meet him in St. David’s and control him!!  – No hope there!!!!

Freddie, our newest acquisition on the dog front – a cocker spaniel, and I love walking across Newgale Beach when the tide is out.  What a vast expanse of sand it becomes, and, at this time of year it is devoid of people.  Well, if my takings are anything to go by, pretty devoid of people the whole year!!!
- Andrew Stirling

 

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FreddieMeet Freddie, the cocker spaniel.  Freddie is a recent addition to the Wolfscastle family and loves his walks with owners Andrew and Mandy Stirling!  Below are few of Freddie’s favourite walks that originate from the hotel.

1. “A Field with a View” this only takes 30 minutes and is a great walk for a dog, as he can charge around two fields of grass whilst you wistfully gaze across the valley at the beautiful Treffgarne rocks.
Exit the front of the hotel, turn left and then right across the village green – rough grass with a bench and a couple of small trees on it – go left past the very dilapidated cottage with an equally dilapidated caravan to its side. On your right you will see 2 gates which ever field doesn’t have the sheep in it, enter. At the top of this field you will find another larger field to walk around.

2. Sealyham Woods – takes up to 1 hour 15 mins, but can be less, dependant on if you take the diversions and how far you walk. In the winter and after rain this is a muddy walk so wellies are advised.
Out of the hotel; left down the hill; round the bend; straight on; Spot the dogunder the main A40 and before you cross the bridge turn into the woods via the kissing gate – feel free to oblige!. Follow the path until you reach its highest point – you can just keep going and this will eventually reach Sealyham Mansion – or at any point turn down through the wood to the river. After you cross the next bridge, again you can walk through the pine trees down to the river – basically – explore the woods, Freddie and I find a new spot every time we walk through the woods – it’s like an enchanted forest – a great walk.

3. Treffgarne Rocks – walk or drive 500 or so yards towards Haverfordwest – then walk up the little valley to the right on Nant–Y–Coy-Mill, this will take you all the way up to Treffgarne Rocks. Take a camera with you it’s a great view. If you walk from the hotel, this walk can take anything up to 2 hours, but of course you can tailor the walk to suit your selves.
Happy Walking!
Andrew Stirling (Proprietor)

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WORLD DIABETES DAY MARKED WITH HEALTHY BREAKFAST EVENT AT WOLFSCASTLE COUNTRY HOTEL

November was diabetes awareness month and the organisers of an event at Wolfscastle to mark World Diabetes Day (November 14th) say that people in Pembrokeshire should start their day with a healthy breakfast to avoid high blood sugar levels.  

Organised by the Wolfscastle Country Hotel and Restaurant in partnership with Pembrokeshire-based insulin cooling company FRIO UK, the aim is encourage people to eat healthier breakfasts, avoiding foods containing carbohydrates and sugars which can cause blood sugar levels to rise.  

Healthy Breakfasts is the theme of World Diabetes Day 2015, organised by the International Diabetes Federation. This year’s awareness day sees 236 events taking place in 62 countries. 

To mark the day, the hotel has added the healthy breakfasts to its breakfast menu for World Diabetes Day. Guests can enjoy a selection of healthy breakfast options including a very berry porridge, crostinis, teacakes, and even bacon and eggs. 

Chris Wolsey, Managing Director of Wolfscastle-based family company FRIO UK, makers of the world’s first patented insulin cooling wallets, said: “According to recent figures from Diabetes UK, the number of people with diabetes in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire has reached an all-time high of 22,877. 

Working with Andrew Stirling and his team at the Wolfscastle Country Hotel we wanted to play our part in helping people to manage their diabetes by eating healthily. We also want to encourage more food businesses to add healthy breakfast dishes options to their menus to cater for diabetic customers.” 

According to specialist website diabetes.co.uk, people can avoid carbohydrates and sugars which may cause blood sugar levels to rise by starting their day with healthier options such as low sugar, high fibre cereals and wholegrain bread, fish or eggs. 

Andrew Stirling, Wolfscastle Country Hotel owner, said: “We pride ourselves on serving home-cooked food at it’s best using only the freshest ingredients and producing everything in house, so you know exactly what you’re eating and there is nothing hidden. We’re happy that we can support World Diabetes Day with our healthy dishes and hopefully we’ll inspire other businesses to do the same.”  

Melanie Stephenson, an elite athlete and health and lifestyle blogger from Cardiff who attended the event, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 13.  

Melanie said: “A healthy, balanced breakfast is integral for people with and without diabetes. It is something which is so easy to achieve and a great way to start the day. It can make a big difference to someone with diabetes and can help prevent low blood sugar levels and help you feel full to lunchtime. 

For me World Diabetes Day is incredibly important because it puts the spotlight on diabetes, not just locally but globally and brings us together as a community to talk about important issues such as healthy diets and it really is a pleasure to be part of the initiative.” 

Established in 1996 FRIO UK exports its insulin cooling products to 70 countries worldwide. It’s coolant technology uses crystals which transform into cooling gel when activated by water to give diabetics freedom to travel without reliance on refrigeration.

Wolfscastle Country Hotel and FRIO World Diabetes Day Breakfast Menu Dishes 

Fruit Tea Loaf -http://www.diabetes.co.uk/recipes/fruit-tea-loaf.html

Breakfast Crostini-https://www.diabetes.org.uk/Guide-to-diabetes/Recipes/Breakfast-crostini/

Very Berry Porridge-https://www.diabetes.org.uk/Guide-to-diabetes/Recipes/Very-berry-porridge/

Oaty Bran Breakfast-http://www.diabetes.co.uk/recipes/oaty-bran-breakfast.html

Bacon Eggs and Tomatoes-http://www.diabetes.co.uk/recipes/bacon-eggs-and-tomatoes.html

 Visit: www.friouk.com

            www.wolfscastle.com

 - END - 

Editor’s Notes 

World Diabetes Day was created in 1991 by IDF and the World Health Organization in response to growing concerns about the escalating health threat posed by diabetes. World Diabetes Day became an official United Nations Day in 2006 with the passage of United Nation Resolution 61/225.  

WDD is the world’s largest diabetes awareness campaign reaching a global audience of over 1 billion people in more than 160 countries. The campaign draws attention to issues of paramount importance to the diabetes world and keeps diabetes firmly in the public and political spotlight.

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SONY DSCGarn Turne Rocks is the site of a hugely important megalithic complex, within easy reach of the hotel – one of the most important archaeological sites anywhere in Wales, and older than the pyramids of ancient Egypt. 

At its centre lies a huge megalithic tomb, which dates back to Neolithic times, some 5,000 years ago – the highlights include:

  • The huge capstone on the megalithic tomb, which is the largest anywhere in Wales – even larger than the enormous capstone at Pentre Ifan
  • “Cupmark” rock carvings on the natural rock outcrops, or crags, around 150m beyond the monument, with 2 cup and ring markings on the main capstone, too – see: http://www.rock-art-in-wales.co.uk/database/welsh-rock-art-garn-turne.html
  • Two standing stones in the vicinity of the site
  • Stunning views across the local landscape.

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h-west2

From medieval churches to riverside rambles, you might like to go and explore our county town when you come and stay

Haverfordwest is only 8 miles south of our hotel, and is often overlooked by visitors – yet it’s a fascinating place if you know where to look:

1) Queen of the castle
Haverfordwest Castle dominates the town centre skyline, together with the town’s three medieval churches – this towering fortress guards what was the highest navigable point on the Western Cleddau.
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Lower Fishguard 02Fishguard and Goodwick are welcoming Pembrokeshire communities, only a 10 minute drive (7.5 miles) from Wolfscastle Country Hotel.

Rich in history and character, and surrounded by breathtaking scenery, we’d recommend a visit – here are a few local highlights to enjoy when you come and stay with us:

1) Discover Pencaer

This beautiful peninsula juts out into the sea west of Goodwick, and is known for its stunning landscapes and seascapes, and fascinating archaeology – including ancient hill forts and numerous ancient burial chambers.

Go whale watching on Strumble Head, climb the rocky volcanic outcrop of Garn Fawr for its Iron Age fort and breathtaking vistas, or drive down to the coastal beauty spot of Pwll Deri.

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WhitesandsNo matter which direction you head from the hotel, you’re going to end up somewhere fabulous… north east into the heart of the Preseli Mountains, north to Fishguard and Pencaer, south to Haverfordwest and the stunning Cleddau estuary, and west to the rugged beauty of the St. Davids Peninsula – you choose.

St. Davids is a popular day-trip destination for our guests, so we dedicate the first of our “Insider’s Guides” to this tiny city – the ancient spiritual capital of Wales, only a 20-30 minutes drive from Wolfscastle:

 

1) Wild and roaring waters
A jawdroppingly immense tidal torrent surges through the stretch of water known as Ramsey Sound, between the mainland and Ramsey Island – think of a roaring river then multiply by a thousand! Stand at Penmaen Melyn on the Treginnis Peninsula (walk south along the coast, from St. Justinians) and watch this awesome spectacle… kayakers come from all over the world to shoot these rapids at The Bitches.

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Puffin stretches wings in Wales

The puffin is one of Britain’s favourite birds. With its big, colourful bill and soulful eyes, it’s one that just about everybody recognises – and wants to see.

And Pembrokeshire is one of the best places to see puffins in Wales, or anywhere around the British coast – it’s all about timing and location…

To see Pembrokeshire’s remarkable range of seabirds – including puffins – you have to visit the coast during their breeding seasons. For a couple of months colonies are buzzing with birds, but once the season’s youngsters have flown the nest, the cliffs and islands get much quieter.

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Treffgarne Rocks in Pembrokeshire

Cas-blaidd, or Castle of the Wolf; such a ringing and evocative name. The origins of it are immaterial, really – mysteries explained cease to be mysteries. Better to immerse yourself in the magic of Pembrokeshire than seek explication. You don’t bring your desk with you, when you come to this place.

The castle is of the motte-and-bailey type, a bracken-captured hump standing some six metres high. The building of the nearby A40 in the 1920s destroyed some sections of the bailey but the antiquity of the place is unquestionable, and palpable; potsherds found in the paler soil of the site indicate an earlier Iron Age structure, built on to strengthen the Landsker line, a string of fortifications erected by the Anglo-Normans to protect their south Pembrokeshire colony from the native Welsh.

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Recently, we had the pleasure of hosting travel bloggers Erin and Josh Bender and their two children during their time in Wales:

“Little did I know but we were about to visit one of the best restaurants we’ve dined at in the last 3 years. We’ve eaten at close to 1000 restaurants across 50+ countries in recent years and this one ranks in my favourite 5. So when I heap praise on this fine establishment, please understand it’s no small feat and certainly not something I do every day.”

Follow this link to read more! http://travelwithbender.com/travel-blog/united_kingdom/dont-read-post-about-wolfscastle-country-hotel-wales-unless-you-want-ruin-your-keyboard

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