Abergavenny Food Festival is expecting a very special guest. Martha and David Holman from local charity, Love Zimbabwe have managed to secure a visa for the Chief of their area in Zimbabwe to come to the U.K. for two weeks. Chief Chinamhora arrives in Wales on the 13 th . September and his first engagement will be to launch the March for Africa on Saturday 15 th . at the Food Festival. The Mayor of Abergavenny, Councillor Teslin Davies will officially start the march at 1pm which will depart from the
Methodist Church in Castle Street. Also speaking before the march sets off will be the A.M. for Monmouthshire, Nick Ramsay.
Pupils from Llantillio Pertholey C.V. Primary School and Ysgol Gymraeg Y Fenni have been practising African songs especially for the march under the tutelage of music teacher Simon Oram.
Martha commented, ‘The Chief coming to the U.K is a huge privilege for us. He administers the whole of Chinamhora, which has a population similar to that of Monmouthshire. The adult population is about 110,000. There are seven wards and 177 villages. He holds regular court sessions and presides over domestic and other local issues. We are also delighted that he will be here for the Food Festival. It will be a great opportunity for him to try out some lovely examples of good Welsh fare!’
The Chief will have a full programme of events and talks during his two week visit. Amongst these will be a trip to The Senedd to view the workings of the Welsh Assembly, and talks at Abergavenny Methodist Church, Ysgol Gymraeg Y Fenni, Abergavenny Rotary Club and Abergavenny Town Council.
He will also visit the constituency offices of David Davies MP and Lampeter University to discuss the Love Zimbabwe Student Programme. The charity plan to take at least 16 students to Zimbabwe in 2019. The April trip will also see Newport East AM, John Griffiths visiting the community centre in Domboshawa.
It is the first time that the Chief has visited Europe, but he has travelled extensively throughout Africa in his job as a mining engineer. David said, ‘We are delighted that the Chief will be staying with us, and we will endeavour to introduce him to as many people as possible. I am sure that he will be overwhelmed by a typical warm welcome to Wales.’
Further good news for the charity came last week as they found out that they had won a grant from the Wales Council for Voluntary Action to enable them to go back to Zimbabwe next year to undertake a conservation project on new land nearby their original site. Amongst other things, the project will entail planting 3,000 trees, engaging 100 local women and installing alternative technology such as solar panels and rocket stoves. Altogether, it looks like another very busy 12 months for Martha and David.