Selling Welsh Ice Cream by the Sea | Gwerthu Hufen Iâ Cymru ar lan y Môr

Mike Munro opened his ice cream van in Holyhead as the town emerged from pandemic lockdown. | Agorodd Mike Munro ei fan hufen iâ yng Nghaergybi wrth i'r dref ddod allan o gyfnod clo’r pandemig.

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I’ve been a truck driver for 30 years. In recent years I've been delivering food to supermarket main depots, so I worked all through lockdown.

I've lived in Anglesey for nine years, but for the last three years, after my divorce, I was travelling back to Manchester for work. And as the father of three kids who I have for 50% of the time, it was the only way to make life work. But after three years of travelling to Manchester, I knew I needed to do something different.

I saw an ice cream business for sale and this inspired me to set up my own business. I took out a personal loan and had a lot of help and guidance from Business Wales, and the people at Anglesey County Council were really helpful too. It took me seven months to set up the business, which I opened just as we came out of total lockdown in April 2021.

I wanted everything to do with the business to be from Anglesey or Wales, and I used local firms as much as possible. From Seren Embroidery for my shirts, to Môn Ar Lwy island-made ice cream, to Harlech food supplies and Môn Fire Management for my extinguishers. I did a Welsh language course at my kids' school in the past, and enjoy trying out my Welsh on some of my customers.

There was a lady who used to run the ice cream vans down on Newry Beach for many years - she came to see me when I started. She wished me well and gave me some bits to help me on the van. That meant a lot to me and was really nice of her.

The response from the local community and holiday-makers has been really positive: the ice cream seems to be going down really well! I love my new lifestyle; I have a cracking view from my van looking out over the harbour down on Newry Beach Holyhead, and I get to chat to nice happy people through the day.

Dwi wedi bod yn gyrru lorïau ers 30 mlynedd. Yn y blynyddoedd dwetha dwi wedi bod yn dosbarthu bwyd i brif ganolfannau’r archfarchnadoedd, felly mi fues i’n gweithio drwy'r cyfnod clo i gyd.

Dwi’n byw yn Ynys Môn ers naw mlynedd, ond yn y tair blynedd dwetha, ar ôl ysgaru, roeddwn i’n teithio'n ôl i Fanceinion i weithio. Ac fel tad i dri o blant sydd efo mi am 50% o'r amser, dyna oedd yr unig ffordd o wneud i fywyd weithio. Ond ar ôl tair blynedd o deithio i Fanceinion, roeddwn i'n gwybod bod angen imi wneud rhywbeth gwahanol.

Gweles i fusnes hufen iâ ar werth ac fe wnaeth hynny fy ysbrydoli i sefydlu fy musnes fy hun. Codes i fenthyciad personol a ches i lawer o help ac arweiniad gan Busnes Cymru, ac roedd pobl Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn yn barod iawn eu cymorth hefyd. Cymerodd hi saith mis imi sefydlu'r busnes, a dyma fi’n agor ar yr union adeg y daethon ni allan o’r cyfnod clo llwyr ym mis Ebrill 2021.

Roeddwn i am i bopeth ynglŷn â'r busnes ddod o Ynys Môn neu Gymru, a defnyddies i gwmnïau lleol gymaint â phosibl. O Seren Embroidery ar gyfer fy nghrysau, i hufen iâ Môn Ar Lwy,  i  gyflenwadau bwyd Harlech ac offer diffodd tân gan Môn Fire Management. Dwi wedi gwneud cwrs Cymraeg yn ysgol fy mhlant yn y gorffennol, a dwi’n mwynhau rhoi cynnig ar fy Nghymraeg efo rhai o'r cwsmeriaid.

Roedd yna ddynes oedd yn arfer rhedeg y faniau hufen iâ lawr ar Draeth Newry am flynyddoedd - daeth hi i'm gweld i pan ddechreues i. Mi ddymunodd yn dda i mi a rhoi ambell i beth i mi i'm helpu ar y fan. Roedd hynny'n golygu llawer i mi ac yn garedig iawn.

Mae'r ymateb gan y gymuned leol a phobl ar eu gwyliau wedi bod yn gadarnhaol iawn: mae'n ymddangos bod yr hufen iâ yn mynd i lawr yn dda iawn! Dwi wrth fy modd efo’r ffordd newydd o fyw; mae gen i olygfa wych o'r fan yn edrych allan dros yr harbwr i lawr ar Draeth Newry yng Nghaergybi, a dwi’n cael sgwrsio â phobl hapus braf drwy'r dydd.

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