The F Jones Initiative has announced its latest round of winners!
Chris Roberts – Woodcrafter
Chris is a Year 11 pupil Ysgol Bryn Alyn and is one of the Deputy Head pupils. He showed an interest in woodwork from an early age, often tinkering in the workshop and using the wood-turning lathe he received on his 10th birthday. Since then, he has made some beautiful items, including letter openers, bowls, candle holders and bottle openers.
In year 9, Chris designed and made a paddle for a Duke of Edinburgh (DoE) canoeing expedition. Using hand-carving tools, two different types of wood, sourced suitable glue and varnish. He produced a stunning piece of work that he used for his Bronze and Silver DofE. Chris is currently hand carving a traditional Welsh love spoon as part of the skills challenge for his Gold DofE award.
In 2019, Chris meticulously restored the draughts set of a blind and deaf expert draughts player who had passed away some years ago. The gentleman’s nephew who commissioned the work only had one piece of the set remaining. Chris had to remake the set copying the design to make the 24 pieces, each with the original decoration. Mr Williams, who commissioned Chris, was delighted with his work. He contacted BBC Wales, and they ran the story on BBC Welsh News on New Year’s Day, 2019.
Chris hopes to raise funds for the World Scout Jamboree in South Korea in 2023, which he is attending, by selling his work at local Christmas markets.
Julie Pomford – Artist
Julie lives in Isycoed and has had a love of art from an early age. After running a successful business for many years, she retired to pursue her passion for art and painting. Julie has worked with many local art groups, such as Wrexham Art Group and Bangor-On-Dee Art Group. She has also been involved with and exhibited in The Wrexham Independent Gallery and The Drawing Board Gallery, which promotes local artists’ work.
In 1988, Julie was presented to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for an exhibition celebrating the centenary of Lever Brothers, Port Sunlight. Julie passes on her knowledge to other budding artists, providing free art classes and demonstrations in Wrexham to local clubs.
Matt Jones – Lifesaver
Matt, a driver for Arriva on the No 1 Wrexham to Chester route, had just arrived at King Street bus station when his son-in-law came running over. He told him that Steve, one of the other drivers on duty that day, was having a heart attack.
They found Steve on the floor of his bus, sweating, clutching his chest and struggling to breathe. After checking his pulse, which was racing, Matt had colleagues phone for an ambulance. He was told it would be an hour’s wait.
Remembering the training he had received due to his son Archie having cardiac heart problems, Matt instructed Steve to keep coughing. However, he soon realised that Steve could not wait any longer, so Matt drove him to Maelor A&E on his bus!
Steve’s heart stopped four times during treatment and he had two stents inserted. Undoubtedly, he owes his life to Matt’s quick thinking that day.
After the emergency, Matt went straight back to work, driving the Arriva No 1 bus route to Chester!
Osian Powell Jones – Musician
Osian lost his dad Gareth in April last year. Rather than having lots of flowers at the funeral, his family set up a GoFundMe page in aid of the Wrexham Foodbank. His father, Gareth, a passionate Wrexham AFC supporter, had been a member of Capel Y Groes and was actively involved in feeding the homeless. Osian had an idea and wrote “See You Again” as a tribute to his dad.
With the help of his guitar teacher, Dale Irving, and a few of his friends, he released a CD of the song, with the proceeds going towards supporting the Wrexham Food Bank. Moreover, Osian played lead guitar and Luke Gallagher sang lead vocals.
Osian’s family have also set up “Gareth’s Holiday Hunger Club”, which, in conjunction with The Venture, provides meals for needy children out of term time. Gareths Hunger Club has raised enough money to fund meals for children living in deprived areas of Caia Park for this year’s Easter, summer holiday, October half-term and Christmas periods.
Osian is the lead singer in the band Catalyst, along with James on drums, Cai on lead guitar and Harry on the cello and bass guitar. The band opened the Wrexham Lager Summer Festival earlier this year. They also play at gigs in local pubs in Wrexham, so look out for them!
Congratulations to the four of you!
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