Geography Field Trip to Aberystwyth


By M.J. Bohling

There once assembled a large pink coach, a thirty strong group of geography pupils and two geography masters, and early on a Thursday morning they set off for that 'green and pleasant land' of Wales. Seven hours and several 'noted observations' later, the weary travellers arrived at Aberystwyth University and the Penrhyn Halls of Residence, our quarters for the week. Needless to say tood and accommodation were both of high standard; those of our number facing the sea front had a spectacular view of Aberystwyth town and its bay.

The geographical works of the field trip began on the following day. After a hearty breakfast we visited Borth spit, some five miles farther along the coast. Borth is noted for an extensive spit stretching across the old Dovey estuary and some striking local features of coastal erosion. The suggestion that we walked down the coastline back to Aberystwyth met with groans and little support after a tiring day. What support there was struggled up Aberystwyth hill several hours later, went to their rooms and retired for the evening, exhausted.

Notes were copied up, and we went to Aberystwyth to sample the nightlife, but soon we returned to the University's student Union building destined to become our regular haunt for the week.

The following day was nominated as "land and survey day''. Groups were deposited in a number of areas surrounding Aberystwyth. Fighting off attacks from swams of bees and marauding dogs, we ploughed our way through fields, noting type and extent. It quickly became necessary to interview some of the local people (which is best accomplished in the local pub) enabling us to complete our assigned task.

Sunday was spent climbing the heights of CaderIdris to view some spectacular glacial scenery. The back wall of Cwm Cau proved to be a great obstacle, so rock underfoot quickly deteriorated to mud, though we were spurred on at the sight of Mr. Cox running up near vertical rock faces. However, the effort was well worth it, for the summit afforded an excellent view of almost the entire Welsh uplands. The descent was carried out at a somewhat faster rate, and, though equally tiring, was not marred by incident and we arrived at base camp hot, tired and in need of refreshment.

Monday was the day for our urban surveys. The weather had slowly been deteriorating since our arrival, and now there came a gale and heavy rains as we surveyed the town.

Our final day was spent in the Rheidal valley, investigating river capture and glaciation, and in particular stopping for the spectacular Mynach Falls at Devil's Bridge. Sadly it rained all day and the geography suffered in consequence. We returned to our hall of residence thoroughly drenched. Leaving Aberystwyth behind us, the following morning, we sped homeward, only to come to a sudden halt outside Leominster where a bit fell off the engine. Messrs. Bryant and Cox were despatched to search for the missing link. Despite this and thanks to some impeccable driving by Fred, we arrived back in Northwood on schedule.

The field course was highly enjoyable and proved to be of great benefit to our studies and we returned home to make a rapid summary of the week's work.

M.J. Bohling

1974 School Magazine


Mr David Lewis Owen (1961)

School Fair (Magazines)

The Old Boys' Association
(1961-62 Magazine)

The Future of the School
(1956 Summer Magazine)