16 January 2015,
Hello Bulb Buddies,
Thank you for sending in last weeks readings. The weather has definitely been getting colder – and some of you have even reported snow! For this reason I want to talk to you about how Meteorologists (weather scientists) measure snow.
It is a lot trickier to measure the amount of snow that falls than it is to measure the amount of rain. This is because snow misbehaves! Snow is often blown by the wind into drifts, which causes some areas of deep snow and less snow in the areas around it. Because the snow fall is uneven the measurements from these places will be wrong! This is why we have to measure snow on flat surfaces, in the open and away from areas where drifts happen! Snow also likes to play games with Meteorologists who want to measure it, it melts into water and re-freezes into ice! This means that the snow measured on the ground isn’t always the same as the amount of snow that has fallen. Another problem is that new snow settles on old snow, so it is difficult to tell how much snow has fallen in one day from the snow that fell the day before!
Meteorologists have to take all these tricks the snow plays, and work around them to discover how much snow has fallen. They look at snow fall (the amount of snow that falls in one day) and snow depth (how deep the total snow level is, old snow and new snow). One way that Meteorologists measure snow fall is to use a piece of ply wood. They place the wood in an open location away from areas where snow drifts occur, and measure the snow on the board at 6hr intervals, clearing the snow from the board each time they measure it. This means they are only measuring the snow from that day, which will tell them how much snow has fallen on that day in that area!
Snow fall can also be measured in its melted state, as water. This means that you can use your rain gauge to measure the water equivalent of snow fall! If you only get a bit of snow then it should melt in your rain gauge anyway. But if you get a lot of snow, take your rain gauge inside to the warm and wait for the snow to melt into water. Then measure the water in the same way as you have done each week and report this as rain fall in your weather logs.
If you have snow and enough time for an extra experiment – why not have a go at measuring snow depth? To do this all you need is a ruler (also known as a snow stick!). Place the snow stick into the snow until it touches the surface underneath, and read the depth of the snow.You need to take these measurements from flat surfaces (benches work well) in open areas and away from snow drifts! You need to take at least three separate measurements to work out the average snow depth in your area. You work out the average measurement by adding the different readings together and dividing them by the number of measurements. So, if I measured the snow depth of three surfaces at 7cm, 9cm and 6cm, I would add these together (7+9+6 =22) and divide that by three, because there are three readings (22÷3=7.33). So 7.33 would be my average reading for snow depth on that date.
Weather stations such as the MET Office have come up with new ways of measuring snow depth, using new technologies. The picture below shows one of the MET Offices snow stations. These use laser sensors to measure how deep the snow is on the flat surface placed below it. This means that Meteorologists can collect readings from all over the country at the push of a button – which is far more reliable and a lot easier than sending people out into the cold with snow sticks! The map below shows how many snow stations the MET office has and where these are, is there one close to you?
This is what the METOffice’s Snow Depth sensors look like!
(MET Office website)
Map showing the MET Office’s Snow Depth sensors – is there one near you?
(Image courtesy of MET Office website)
If you have snow and measure the snow fall with your rain gauge or the snow depth with a snow stick, then please tell me in the ‘comments’ section when you are logging your weekly records! I would be very interested to know what the snow depth is compared to the snow fall collected in your rain gauge!
Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies,
15 January 2015,
In between Christmas and New Year our girls came in from the fields for pregnancy scans.
The St Fagans flock
And the scores on the doors are……
scan results for St fagans ewes
We have three breeds of sheep at St Fagans and they’re all on the Rare Breeds List:
A Hill Radnor ewe
[image: a group of mixed ewes on a frosty morning]
sheep at St Fagans
and Black Welsh Mountain.
We’re expecting our babies to start arriving in March,
so keep an eye on the website for more details nearer the time.
13 January 2015,
Diolch yn fawr i’r 166 ohonoch sy’n dilyn @DyddiadurKate. Mae’r ymateb wedi bod yn gret hyd yn hyn, er gwaetha’r faith mai dechre reit undonog sydd i’r dyddiadur – un cyfarfod gweddi ar ôl y llall! Diolch arbennig i un dilynwr sydd wedi cysylltu i ddweud ei fod yn perthyn i Kate Rowlands. Fel ddedodd @erddin, dim bob dydd mae rhywun yn croesawu ei hen nain i fyd y trydar.
’Da ni’n edrych ’mlaen i glywed mwy am hanes Kate gan aelodau’r teulu cyn bo hir. Ond yn y cyfamser, mae’n hen bryd i ni rannu mwy o fanylion amdani, a rhai o’r enwau sy’n cael eu crybwyll yn y dyddiadur. Yn ffodus iawn, yma yn Sain Ffagan mae gennym dapiau sain o Kate Rowlands yn trafod arferion ei milltir sgwar – coginio, golchi dillad ac ati. Nôl yn 1969, aeth Lynn Davies o'r Amgueddfa i'w chyfweld er mwyn cofnodi tafodiaith ei hardal. Yna, yn 1970 aeth Minwel Tibbott i’w recordio fel rhan o’i gwaith maes arloesol ar fywyd cartref yng Nghymru. Ar ddechre’r cyfweliad cyntaf, mae Kate yn rhoi ychydig o’i chefndir teuluol, ac o fan hyn ’da ni wedi llwyddo i ddarganfod mwy am ei bywyd a phwy ’di pwy yn y dyddiadur.
Ganed Kate yn y Brymbo, ger Wrecsam, yn 1892. Roedd ei mam (Alice Jane) yn wreiddiol o’r Hendre, Cefnddwysarn. Bu farw ei thad – gweithiwr yn y diwydiant dur – pan roedd hi’n naw mis oed. Wedi hynny, dychwelodd ei mam weddw at ei theulu yng Nghefnddwysarn. Mae’n amlwg i rieni ei mam ddylanwadu’n fawr arni. Mewn un cyfweliad mae’n dweud mai “y nhw oedd y canllawie gathon ni gychwyn arnyn nhw.”
Tair blynedd yn ddiweddarach, mae’i mam yn ailbriodi ag Ellis Roberts Ellis. Hyd y gwn i, dyma’r Ellis sy’n cael ei grybwyll yn y dyddiadur. Tua 1887, pan roedd Kate yn bum mlwydd oed, symudodd y teulu bach i ffermio i ardal Llantisilio, ger Llangollen. Dychwelodd y tri i’r Sarnau tua chwe mlynedd yn ddiweddarach – i fferm Tyhen. Dyma leoliad y dyddiadur.
A hithe’n unig blentyn, gadawodd Kate yr ysgol yn 14 mlwydd oed i helpu ei rhieni wrth eu gwaith. Mae’n debyg mai fferm fach oedd Tyhen – rhy fach i gyflogi dynion:
“Mi gollodd nhad a mam eu iechyd i radde. Buodd hynny’n groes fawr i mi gael gyrru mlaen efo addysg ynde. Rhaid i mi fod adre ynde, ’da chi’n gweld… Dipyn o bopeth, jack of all trade ynde. O’n i’n gorfod helpu llawer iawn allan ynde, efo ceffyle a rwbeth felly ynde. Twmo’r popdy mawr i grasu bara, a chorddi fel bydde amser yno ynde, ryw ddwywaith yr wsos ynde.”
Penyffordd, Derwgoed, yr Hendre, Fedwarian – mae enwau’r ffermydd hyn yn cael eu crybwyll gan Kate bron yn ddyddiol. ’Da ni’n gwybod mai cartref ei mam oedd yr Hendre, ond byddwn ar drywydd y ffermydd eraill cyn hir.
Cyn gorffen, cadwch lygad am enw Bob Price, neu B.P, yn y dyddiadur. Ar 11 Chwefror 1916, priododd Kate â Robert Price Rowlands yng Nghapel Cefnddwysarn. Felly roedd 1915 yn flwyddyn arwyddocaol i Kate. Roedd hi ar drothwy pennod newydd yn ei bywyd.
[image: Minwel Tibbott holding an audio recording device while conducting oral history fieldwork in 1970]
Minwell Tibbott conducting oral history field work, 1970.
[image: Kate Rowlands standing outside her home, 1969.]
Kate Rowlands in 1969.
[image: The 1911 census showing the inhabitants of Tyhen, Sarnau. © Crown Copyright Images, The National Archives.]
The 1911 census showing the inhabitants of Tyhen, Sarnau. © Crown Copyright Images, The National Archives.
9 January 2015,
Welcome back Bulb Buddies,
I hope you enjoyed your holidays! How are your daffodils and crocuses? Before we broke-up for Christmas a number of schools had written to tell me that their daffodils and mystery bulbs had begun to show above the soil! How are yours getting along? You can update me on how much your plants have grown by adding to the ‘comment’ section when you send in your data. C from Ysgol Y Plas has been very good at this, informing me that “13 bulbs have started to show in pots and 3 in the garden”. It’s always exciting when you see the first shoots begin to show!
Last year the first daffodil flowered on the 10th of February, although the average date for flowering was 12th March. So keep an eye on them – it won’t be long now! Remember to measure the height of your flowers on the day they bloom. We will then look at all the dates and heights recorded to find an average date and height and this will help us to spot any changing patterns when we compare our findings to those of previous and future years!
[image: (Picture courtesy of Doug Green’s Garden)]
Stages of a Daffodil bulb growing
(Picture courtesy of Doug Green’s Garden)
Remember, flowers need sunlight, warmth and water to grow. Last year was the third warmest year since the project began in 2006, with an average temperature of 6.0°. 2013-2014 also saw the highest rainfall at 187mm, but was the second lowest year in terms of sunlight hours with an average of 69 hours. This meant that our plants bloomed earlier than they did in 2012-2013, which had been much colder with slightly less rain and less sunlight hours. What has the weather been like where you live? Do you think our flowers will bloom earlier or later than they did last year?
I look forward to seeing your data this week!
Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies,
Your comments, my answers:
Morningside Primary School: It was very cold and very very wet this week at Morningside! There was also a little bit of snow on the ground, that would have perhaps melted in our rain gauge! Prof P: Snow, how exciting! You are right about the snow melting in the rain gauge. This is because the ground will have been colder than the plastic of the rain gauge, especially if there was already rain water in the gauge when the snow fell. Your rain gauge can be used to measure snow fall the same as rain fall, and I will talk more about this in my next blog!
Newport Primary School: On Tuesday 2nd Dec we moved the thermometer because we believed there wasn't enough variation in temperature being shown on the thermometer where it was positioned. It was in a slightly sheltered spot. When we moved it the recorded temperatures dropped considerably backing up our impressions. Prof P: Well done for spotting this Newport Primary! It’s surprising how much difference location can make to the readings. Ideally, your thermometer should be placed in an open, shaded area, to the North of the school and some distance from the building. This is because direct sunlight, shelter from the wind and heat reflected from surfaces or emitted from buildings can cause higher, inaccurate readings.
Glyncollen Primary School: Thank you for the new thermometer. We think one of our bulbs is starting to grow because the weather has been quite mild. We are going to be watching it carefully. Has this happened in any other school? Prof P: Hi Glyncollen Primary School, I’m glad the new thermometer arrived safely! Well done on noting how the weather has effected your plants. I have looked through your weather records and can see that the temperature only really dipped in your area in weeks 49 and 50. The rainfall early on after planting and the mild temperatures will definitely have helped your Baby Bulbs to grow! Some other schools have also reported seeing their first shoots, these include The Blessed Sacrament Catholic Primary School and Silverdale St. John's CE School.
Bickerstaffe CE Primary School: We have noticed that some daffodils planted some years ago have grown new leaves to a height of about 150mm. They are in a quite sheltered spot close to the school buildings, if we remember we will take a photo and send it. The children wonder if these bulbs may be a different type or have come from a different country. Prof P: Hi Bickerstaffe CE Primary School! It’s nice to hear that plants have started growing! These Daffodils are probably a different variety to the ones we are growing. There are many different types, and some have been known to flower as early as November! If you send me a photo once the daffodils have bloomed I will see if I can identify it for you!
Glencoats Primary School: Glencoats primary are enjoying looking after their bulbs. It will make our Eco garden nice and colourful. Thank you for choosing us to be part of this project. Prof P: Thank you for taking part in the project Glencoats Primary School. I would very much like to see a photo of the Eco garden once all the flowers have bloomed!
9 January 2015,
Following on from Elen’s blog on the First World War catalogue, I’d like to share with you a remarkable story from the collection. Here at St Fagans, we have a collection of letters and telegrams sent to and from Eli Evans of Cardiff. They relate to the wartime experiences of his son, Arthur Wellesley Rees Evans, and it’s from these correspondence that I have managed to piece together their story.
Arthur Wellesley Rees Evans was born on 18 June 1898 in St Mellons, Cardiff. He lived with his parents – Eli and Laura Evans – at 204 Newport Road, Cardiff and was employed by Mr D. P. Barnett, a ship owner, based at the Baltic Buildings, Cardiff Docks.
In December 1916 Wellesley was accepted for the Officers Training Course, but was medically rejected at Whitehall due to Tuberculosis in both lungs. He was eventually accepted into the British Army and was passed fit for the Royal Flying Corps on 22 August 1917. A week later he was posted to the R.F.C. no 2 Cadet Wing in Winchester, before being transferred to no 25 Training Squadron in Thetford, Norfolk.
On 9 January 1918, Wellesley began his basic flying and fighter training at Old Sarum Training Base in Salisbury and graduated with the 103rd Squadron Royal Air Force on 5 April 1918, four days after the formation of the R.A.F. He was then transferred to No 1 School of Aerial Navigation and Bomb Dropping in Stonehenge, before leaving for London on 24 September to embark on his journey to France.
Wellesley arrived in Paris on 28 September 1918, and from there transferred to ‘somewhere in France’ where he joined up with the 110th Squadron R.A.F on 15 October. He took part in his first mission six days later on 21 October when his squadron flew to bomb Cologne, but Wellesley did not return. He and his observer, Lieutenant Thompson, had been shot down.
Eli and Laura Evans received official information from the Air Ministry that their son had been reported missing on 21 October. Eli sent letters and telegrams to the Air Ministry and the International Prisoner's Agency in Geneva requesting news of his son. To their relief, they finally received word that Wellesley was alive and well and being held as a prisoner of war in Limburg, Germany.
Luckily for Wellesley his time as a prisoner of war was brief. The armistice signed on 11 November effectively brought the First World War to an end. He’d been a prisoner for less than a month. On 3 December, he left Germany for home via Switzerland and France and finally to Dover on 10 December. On 7 February 1919, Wellesley went to the Air Ministry to be demobilized, and a week later he resumed work with Mr D. P. Barnett in Cardiff Docks. A few months after his son returned from the war, Eli Evans passed away at the age of 52. Perhaps the stress and anxiety suffered by him during those weeks may have contributed to his early death.
After the war Wellesley remained in Cardiff working as a Marketing Officer for the National Coal Board. He married Gladys Gwendolyn Mitchell and they had a daughter. Arthur Wellesley Rees Evans died on the 5 January 1965 aged 66 in Cyncoed, Cardiff. He is buried alongside his wife at St Edeyrns Parish Church in Llanedeyrn, Cardiff.
Various newspaper clippings reporting that Second Lieutenant Arthur Wellesley Rees Evans is missing in action.