Bala is a market town and community in Gwynedd, Wales. An urban district, Bala lies within the historic county of Merionethshire, it lies at the north end of Llyn Tegid, 17 miles north-east of Dolgellau, with a population taken in the United Kingdom Census 2011 of 1,974. It is little more than this being Stryd Fawr; the High Street and its shops can be quite busy in the summer months with many tourists. Bala was ranked as having the 20th highest percentage of Welsh language speakers in Wales by electoral division, in the United Kingdom Census 2011. According to the census, 78.5% of Bala's population can speak Welsh. The Tower of Bala is a tumulus or "moat-hill" thought to mark the site of a Roman camp. In the 18th century, the town was well known for the manufacture of flannel, stockings and hosiery; the large stone-built theological college, Coleg Y Bala, of the Calvinistic Methodists and the grammar school, founded in 1712, are the chief features, together with the statue of the Rev. Thomas Charles, the theological writer, to whom was due the foundation of the British and Foreign Bible Society.
In 1800 a 15-year-old girl, Mary Jones, walked the 25 miles from her home village Llanfihangel-y-Pennant to purchase a bible in Bala. The scarcity of the Bible, along with the determination of Mary to get one, was a major factor in the foundation of the British and Foreign Bible Society in 1804. Betsi Cadwaladr, who worked with Florence Nightingale in the Crimea, who gave her name to the Health Board, came from Bala. Other famous people from the Bala area include Michael D. Jones, Christopher Timothy, Owen Morgan Edwards, born in Llanuwchllyn, T. E. Ellis, born in Cefnddwysarn. Bala hosted the National Eisteddfod in 1967, 1997 and 2009; the 2009 Eisteddfod was notable because the chair was not awarded to any of the entrants as the standard was deemed to be too low. Bala hosted the Eisteddfod Genedlaethol yr Urdd Gobaith Cymru, National Eisteddfod for the Welsh League of Youth, in 2014. On 16 June 2016, Bala's name was changed to Bale temporarily in honour of Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale; this was only for the duration of UEFA Euro 2016.
The Welsh word bala refers to the outflow of a lake. Bala, Canada, was named after the town in 1868, they have become twin towns. Set within the Bala Fault, Bala Lake is the largest natural lake in Wales at 4 miles in length and half a mile wide. At 138 feet, its depths could hide the tower of St Giles Church in Wrexham and still have 3 feet of water above; the lake has been known to freeze over—most in the severe winters of 1947 and 1963. The rare Gwyniad fish — trapped in the lake at the end of the last Ice Age, some 10,000 years ago — is in danger because its natural home is unsuitable. A member of the whitefish family, it is found only in Bala Lake. Cwm Hirnant, a valley running south from Bala, gives its name to the Hirnantian Age in the Ordovician Period of geological time; the town lies on the A494, a major trunk road that leads to Dolgellau, 18 miles to the southwest, to Ruthin and Queensferry to the northwest. The closest major urban areas to Bala are Wrexham at 30 miles, Chester at 40 miles, Liverpool, 52 miles to the northeast.
Nearby villages include Llanfor, Llanycil, Llangywer and Rhos-y-gwaliau. The Afon Tryweryn, a river fed from Llyn Celyn which runs through Bala, is world-famous for its white water kayaking. International governing bodies, the International Canoe Federation, the European Canoe Union and the British Canoe Union all hold national and international events there; the Canolfan Tryweryn National Whitewater Centre has its home in Bala. There are at least three local campsites that cater for the influx of canoeists from many parts of the world. An annual music festival known as'Wa Bala' is held in the town; the venue is similar in format to Dolgellau's Sesiwn Fawr. Nearby are the mountains Aran Fawddwy and Arenig Fawr. Coleg y Bala is at the top of the hill on the road towards Llyn Celyn; the Victoria Hall is a small old cinema, a community hall. There are several chapels: notably Capel Capel Bach; the livestock market on Arenig Street is still going strong. Bro Eryl estate was built just after World War II.
Mary Jones World, a heritage centre about Mary Jones and her Bible is located just outside the village. Bala has been served by various railway stations on the Great Western Railway: Bala Lake Halt railway station was Bala's first station, on the Bala and Dolgelly Railway Bala railway station - Bala's second station, on the Festiniog and Blaenau Railway Bala Junction railway station - The meeting point of the Bala and Dolgellau Railway and Bala Railway and the Bala and Festiniog Railway The Bala Lake Railway runs for 4.5 miles from Llanuwchllyn to the edge of the town, along a section of the former trackbed of the Great Western Railway line between Ruabon and Barmouth. It terminates at Bala railway station, which opened in 1976 on the site of the former Lake Halt station. Bala is home to Welsh Premier League football club Bala Town F. C. who play at Maes Tegid. Bala's local rugby club is Bala RFC. Michael D. Jones, a Welsh Congregationalist minister, principal of Bala theological college, a founder of the Welsh settlement in Patagonia and one of the fathers of modern Welsh nationalism, was born in Llanuwchlyn.
Christopher Timothy, born in Bala. As with the rest of the UK, Bala benefi
Mynydd Mawr is a mountain in Snowdonia, North Wales, situated 7 km west of Snowdon itself, overlooking Llyn Cwellyn and being the northern outlier of the Moel Hebog group. A popular ascent starts from Rhyd Ddu. On its western flank are the remains of ancient settlements and field systems; the profile of Mynydd Mawr from the north is thought to resemble an elephant lying down, the mountain is colloquially called "Yr Eliffant", or "Elephant Mountain" to non-Welsh speakers. Walking guide and photographs here and here. Www.geograph.co.uk: photos of Mynydd Mawr and surrounding area
The Nantlle Valley is an area in Gwynedd, north Wales, characterised by its large number of small settlements. The area is historically important geologically, featured in one of the most contentious disputes of the 19th century, between the'Diluvialists' who believed in the Biblical flood, the ‘Glacialists’, who supported the Glacial Theory, established by studies of the drift sediments on Moel Tryfan. Between 85-90% of the population of the Nantlle Valley speak Welsh as their first language; some of the communities came into being as a result of slate quarrying in the late eighteenth or early nineteenth centuries and some have a history stretching back to antiquity. There are Iron Age forts at Caer Engan in Pen-y-groes and on the coast at Dinas Dinlle and evidence of Bronze Age settlement on the higher ground; the valley was important during the Middle Ages - with a clas or ecclesiastical college developed at Clynnog Fawr. The Glynllifon estate can trace its foundation to the 8th century and there is evidence of occupation on the site going back to the Iron Age.
There were a number of quarries in the valley, the largest being the Dorothea and Pen yr Orsedd quarries. Although the major quarries are worked out, there remains demand for slate waste for garden decoration. In 1991 Antur Nantlle Cyf was established as a community enterprise to work for the benefit of the Nantlle Valley and its surrounding area. Dyffryn Nantlle was one of the major slate quarrying regions of Wales during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, having at least 37 operating slate quarries at one given time, it was an innovative region in the development of the slate industry. The Cilgwyn quarry on the north side of the valley is the oldest in Wales and one of the oldest in Europe, dating from the 12th century; the first steam engine to be used in the slate industry was a pump installed at the Hafodlas quarry in the valley in 1807. Slate roofing tiles have been excavated at Segontium Roman camp in Caernarfon and are thought to have originated in the Nantlle Valley; the quarries of the area are being considered as a World Heritage site.
Unlike most of the other slate producing regions in Wales the Nantlle Valley developed a large number of small, independent quarries because most of the land in the valley was owned by a number of small landowners rather than a single large landowner. At the height of the industry there were over 50 quarries being worked in the valley; because of this the quarries were never managed as a large single concern as they were in the Penrhyn and Ffestiniog quarries and this led to the industry in the area being much more vulnerable to any downturns in the economy. This led to the development of an industrial landscape, quite different from the other slate quarrying regions in that there are a large number of small waste slate heaps around the valley. There were considerable difficulties involved in raising slate from the pits and in keeping them free from water, the ingenious ways which were found to solve these problems, including blondins, chain inclines and vast revetments, are some of the principal reasons why the slate quarrying remains in this area, many of which are unique, are so important.
Some of the principal features include the 1906 Cornish beam-engine at Dorothea, a unique survival in Wales, the mill and a number of pyramids unique, the blondins at Pen-yr-Orsedd. There were two lakes on the valley floor but one has now disappeared and the water is contained by the Dorothea quarry pit. A dispute between local crofter-quarrymen and the local large landowner, Lord Newborough of the Wynn family from Glynllifon became an important legal landmark in the early 19th century. In 1823, Lord Newborough tried to have a law passed to give him control of all the Moel Tryfan Commons, including recent encroachments, to extinguish the rights of common use; this move was met with fearsome opposition, not least from one John Evans, concerned that enclosure around the Cilgwyn quarries would affect his own interests over a dam and watercourse that he had constructed on Crown land in 1816. He organised a commoners' petition with seven hundred signatures; the petitioners claimed that their cottages had been built over forty years earlier, that the land had been too wild for cultivation, that they had improved it by hard work.
This led to a change in the land enclosure law in the United Kingdom. Another dispute much celebrated in the area took place a generation centred on the largest quarry in the valley. Dorothea Quarry was bought in 1835 by an Englishman called Muskett, he spent on new equipment to raise the wagons from the quarry bottom. But he overspent, was declared bankrupt a few years later; the quarry was closed with three months wages owing to most of the workers. They revolted and demolished the new house Muskett had built for himself - Plas y Cilgwyn. A ballad was written about the occasion by a local poet called Richard Owen who did not support the action taken by the men; the horse-drawn 3' 6" gauge Nantlle Railway served the quarries from 1828 to 1963, although from 1865 the line was cut back to Tyddyn Bengam, in 1871 only the portion from the standard gauge railhead at Nantlle station in Tal-y-sarn was in use. The Nantlle railway has a long history as an industrial and passenger line; the line received its Act of Parliament in 1825 and was constructed underthe supervision of Robert Stephenson, brother of George Stephenson.
It was operated using horse power. Although built for the transport of slate, the line is known to have carried passengers at various times between Caernarfon and Pen-y-groes, it is the last rec
A general merchant store is a rural or small town store that carries a general line of merchandise. It carries a broad selection of merchandise, sometimes in a small space, where people from the town and surrounding rural areas come to purchase all their general goods; the store obtains special orders from warehouses. It differs from a convenience store or corner shop in that it will be the main shop for the community rather than a convenient supplement. General stores sell staple food items such as milk and bread, various household goods such as hardware and electrical supplies; the concept of the general store is old, although some still exist, there are far fewer than there once were, due to urbanization, urban sprawl, the recent phenomenon of big-box stores. The term "general merchandise store" is used to describe a hybrid of a department store, with a wide selection of goods, a discount store, with low prices. Examples include Sears. General dealers were established in the 18th and 19th century in many remote populated places where mobility was limited and a single shop was sufficient to service the entire community.
Due to its close connection and confinement to its customers, general dealers adjusted their sales offerings to the specific preferences of their community. General dealers existed, apart from mainland England and North America, in all colonies and in areas where settlers encroached communities that did not trade with money. In the colonies trade in local produce had existed; the growing need for imported goods, both from European settlers and the indigenous population, led to the establishment of a network of merchants, subsequently to the creation of a money economy. While a large number of general stores still exist in Australia, as in other parts of the world their numbers were reduced by the advent of supermarkets; the oldest continually run general store in Canada is Trousdale's, located in Sydenham, operated by the Trousdale family since 1836. Socialbility has always been a feature. Gray Creek Store in Gray Creek, Kootenay Bay, Canada is the largest and oldest general dealer in the Kootenay Lake region Enniskillen General Store in Clarington, Ontario has been in operation since 1840 and still continues today.
Robinson's General Store in Dorset, voted "Canada's Best Country Store", has been owned and operated by the same family since 1921. In the Dominican Republic, a colmado is the country's equivalent to a general store. Colmado literal translation is'full to the brim' implying its great density of goods in a small space; the colmado is much more than just a general store, for it offers a social gathering point for the residents of the town or neighborhood. The colmado is an important institution in the Dominican Republic serving as an economic and political center for every small community, it is common for colmados to have loud Dominican music such as bachata, or salsa playing. A common pastime for Dominican men is to play dominoes and drink a beer at their local colmado on Sundays. Another particularity of the colmado is that they provide delivery services of their products straight to your house door. Products go from beers, toilet paper to a flash light or canned food; the Greek merchants in Egypt were called bakal.
In India, a tapri is a regional version of a general store. It stores all home, personal and hygienic daily used products. Many Kirana shops sell products other from food, such as clothing or household items, toys and medicines. Small Kirna stores, which are located on the corner of streets and known as katta or tapri, sell cigarettes and tea. Due to its sparse population there are still a number of general dealers in Namibia, for instance the Solitaire General Dealer in Solitaire, an important stopover for tourists through Namibia's Namib-Naukluft Park. In Puerto Rico, a U. S. territory, several general stores have proliferated since the 1970s. Supermercados Selectos Supermercados Econo There are still many general dealers in South Africa. Oepverkoop is the oldest general dealer in Western Cape. Goodwood Museum in Cape Town displays the operation of a general dealer shop. Bodeguita comes from the Spanish language as a diminutive of bodega which means "small store" or "small warehouse". Traditionally, Bodeguita existed selling general merchandise they were replaced by the chain store, the same way large US chains have eliminated the "mom and pop" store.
Village shops are becoming less common in the densely populated parts of the country, although they remain common in remote rural areas. Their rarity in England is due to several factors, such as the rise in car ownership, competition from large chain supermarkets, the rising cost of village properties, the increasing trend of the wealthy to own holiday homes in picturesque villages these houses which used to be occupied full-time by potential customers are vacant for long periods. Of those villages in England who still have shops, these days they are a combination of services under one roof to increase the likelihood of profit and survival. Extra services may include a post office, private business services such as tearooms and bed and breakfast accommodation.
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life is a 2003 action-adventure film based on the Tomb Raider video game series. Angelina Jolie stars as the titular Lara Croft character with supporting performances from Gerard Butler, Ciarán Hinds, Chris Barrie, Noah Taylor, Til Schweiger, Djimon Hounsou and Simon Yam. An international co-production between the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan, the film was directed by Jan de Bont and is a sequel to the 2001 film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider; the Cradle of Life received negative reviews, though critics noted it as an improvement on its predecessor in the action sequences, continued to praise Jolie's performance as Lara Croft. Despite this, it did not repeat its box office performance, grossing $156 million compared to the previous installment's $275 million, it was still a financial success, plans were made for a sequel, which were cancelled when Jolie declined to reprise her role as Croft. The series was rebooted in 2018 with Alicia Vikander taking over the title role.
On Santorini island, Greece, a strong earthquake uncovers the Luna Temple. The temple was built by Alexander the Great to house his most prized treasures. Among these treasures is a glowing orb with a pattern resembling a code etched into it. Lara Croft finds this orb. Lara escapes with a strange medallion. MI6 approaches Lara with information about Pandora's box, an object from ancient legends that contains a deadly plague; the box, hidden in the mysterious Cradle of Life, can only be found with a magical sphere that serves as a map. The sphere is the same orb, stolen by Chen Lo, who plans to sell it to Jonathan Reiss - a Nobel Prize winning scientist turned bio-terrorist. After the MI6 reveals that the sphere must be kept away from Reiss, Lara agrees to help them, with the condition that they release her old flame Terry Sheridan, familiar with Chen Lo's criminal operation. Together and Lara infiltrate Chen Lo's lair, where he is smuggling the Terracotta Soldiers. Lara learns that the orb is in Hong Kong.
Retrieving the orb in a laboratory housed in a Hong Kong mall and Terry take refuge in a yacht. The next day, Lara learns the location of the mysterious Cradle of Life. After Lara sends returns information to Bryce back at Croft Manor and his men infiltrated the mansion and capture him and Hillary. Lara and Terry travel to Tanzania meet up with Kosa, the former's longtime African friend, they question a local tribe about the Cradle of Life, wherein the chief states that the Cradle of Life is in a crater protected by the "Bigfoots". As they set out on an expedition, Reiss' men kill the tribesmen. Outnumbered, Lara surrenders. Using her companions as hostages, Reiss forces Lara to lead him to the Cradle of Life. At the crater, they encounter the Bigfoots, cryptid apes that appear in and out of wet patches on dead trees; the creatures kill most of Reiss' men. Lara drops the Orb in it; the Bigfoots melt and the entrance to the Cradle of Life opens. Lara and Reiss are drawn into the Cradle, a labyrinth made of a strange crystalline substance where normal laws of physics do not apply.
Inside, they find a pool of corrosive black acid, in which the box floats. Terry frees the hostages and catches up to Lara. Lara fights Reiss, knocks him into the acid pool, which kills and dissolves him. Terry announces the intention to take the box for himself; when he refuses to back down, Lara regretfully shoots him dead, replaces the box in the pool and leaves. Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft Gerard Butler as Terry Sheridan Ciarán Hinds as Jonathan Reiss Chris Barrie as Hillary Noah Taylor as Bryce Djimon Hounsou as Kosa Til Schweiger as Sean Simon Yam as Chen Lo Terence Yin as Xien The budget for the film was $95 million, like the first film, it was financed through Tele München Gruppe; the picture was distributed internationally by Japanese company Toho-Towa. Filming lasted for three and a half months, which included six-day shoots on location in Hong Kong, Llyn Gwynant in North Wales, a two-week stint in Kenya for shooting at Amboseli and Hell's Gate, with the remainder of the picture filmed on soundstages in the United Kingdom.
One scene in the film was set in Shanghai. The film featured the new 2003 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, first seen when Lara parachutes into the moving vehicle in Africa and takes over the wheel from Kosa; as part of Jeep's advertising campaign, it was specially customised for the film by Jeep's design team along with the film's production designers, with three copies constructed for filming. 1,001 limited-run Tomb Raider models were produced—available only in silver like the film version and minus its special customisations—and put on the market to coincide with the release of the film. Jeep vice president Jeff Bell explained, " is more than just a product placement... the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon is the most capable Jeep built, so the heroic and extreme environment in which Lara Croft uses her custom Wrangler Rubicon in Tomb Raider is accurate." In the end, Lara's Rubicon had less than two total minutes of screen time in the finished film. Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life holds a 25% rating out of 171 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, a 43/100 rating on Metacritic based on 34 reviews.
Llandwrog is a village and community in Gwynedd, north-west Wales, most notable for the presence of the headquarters of Welsh record label Sain and the site of Caernarfon Airport. It has a population of 2,466, increasing to 2,539 at the 2011 Census; the community includes the villages of Groeslon, Gwynedd, Y Fron, Dinas Dinlle, Cilgwyn. As suggested by the village name, the parish church is dedicated St Twrog, it was the base of the first Sea and Mountain Rescue team, includes the estate of Glynllifon. RAF Llandwrog was a training airfield during World War II, was used as a weapons storage facility, it had a key role in Operation Sandcastle, where a large quantity of Nazi Tabun weapons were stored prior to eventual disposal at sea. There is a local legend told about a midwife from Llandwrog, it is said that the she was once summoned by a stranger to an underground palace where she helped a queen give birth to a child. The stranger gave the midwife some ointment for the baby's eyes; when the midwife accidentally touched it to her own eyes, the queen changed into the midwife's former serving-maid, Eilian.
Weeks when the midwife recognised the mysterious stranger at the local fair, she enquired about Eilian. The stranger replied that Eilian was well, asked the midwife which eye she saw him with; when she indicated the eye, he poked it out. Council website - English language version
The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K