Letters are the subject of this week’s photo challenge. I’m always taking photos of signs, graffiti and directions that interest me when I’m travelling. However, I thought that for this challenge I would stay right here in Wales. The Wales Millennium Centre is one of the most iconic buildings in Cardiff. Built from all Welsh wood, slate, steel and glass, the centre was designed as part of the Cardiff Bay regeneration project. It took over 20 years for the idea for a Welsh home for the arts to be realised.
The English inscription reads ‘In these stones horizons sing’. Just as poetic, the Welsh inscription says ‘Creu Gwir Fel Gwydr o Ffwrnais Awen’, which translates into English as ‘Creating truth like glass from the furnace of inspiration’. The letter themselves are actually windows into the building, making it a bright and sociable place that is loved by both visitors and residents. If you go into the 1st floor bar, you can sit in the letters and look out over Mermaid Quay.
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Where I come from in Lancashire, we used the term ‘grand’ a lot. There, it generally means ‘good’. However, I think for this challenge I need to think on a much bigger and more impressive scale.
We have a lot of grand buildings here in Cardiff, including the Wales Millennium Centre.
The Parker Dam is architecture on a grand scale.
Possibly the biggest show of grandeur I have ever seen, though, is the Christina O, a 99.06 metre long ex-frigate that Aristotle Onassis converted into a luxury yacht and named after his daughter. If you’re interested, you can hire the yacht from 455,000 euros a week, crew not included.
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After telling you about the Cardiff Bay Barrage, I thought I’d better show you all some of the things that it was built for, as well as some of the older buildings in the area that are important parts of the local history and culture.
The Wales Millennium Centre is famous as the home of the Welsh National Opera, but there are actually a lot more events and activities that go on there. The carvings on the front of the building, which are also the windows, reads ‘In these stones horizons sing’.
Probably the most noticeable building due to it’s bright red colour, the Pierhead Building was built in 1897 and is the former headquarters of the Bute Dock Company.
The Senedd is where it all happens. It’s the building of the National Assembly for Wales and houses the debating chamber and committee rooms.
As the name suggests, the Norwegian Church was built as a place of worship for the Norwegian community that once supported the docks. Cardiff’s most famous Norwegian resident was the author Roald Dahl.
One of my favourite facts about Cardiff is that this is where Captain Scott departed from on his last voyage in the SS Terra Nova on 15th June 1910.