Thursday, 1 March 2012

Valle Crucis Abbey and other local views.

It was a toss up, Castel Dinas Bran

or Valle Crucis Abbey.

A look at the contour lines made the decision, the abbey it was. We decided to include Horseshoe Falls and Llantysilio Church on the way and girding our loins we set off up the top end of the canal.

Up here it is no more than an unnavigable leat although originally it was navigable up to Pentrefelin where there was a wharf where slate from quarries around the Horseshoe Pass was brought by a tramway for onward movement by boat.

At Berwyn you have the Chain Bridge, although I wouldn't trust it to bear my weight it is in such poor condition. There is also the most amazing collection of bridges,

the railway runs across the back, the road comes under that bridge and over the river while the stream comes in from the rear.

Spaghetti Junction?

Horseshoe Falls, an artificial weir, built by Telford about 1806 to divert the water of the Dee into the canal. It now runs through a metering house into the cut.

About 12,000,000 gallons a day.

Llantysilio church nestles in the valley, founded by St. Tysilio about 550 A.D. He was the son of Ysgythrog, a local prince. That information is totally irrelevant but I couldn't resist the chance to put Ysgythrog in the blog.

A stained glass window from about 1460 A.D. and a

medieval roof. Too many other features to mention but we were intrigued by this gravestone,

below the inscription to John Parry who died in 1784 the stone has, faintly cut, 1664 D running vertically.

As we climbed up from the church we got a view that explains why it is called Horseshoe Falls and it was here that we were misled. The map showed a footpath circling Coedd Hyrddyn (Velvet Hill), what it didn't show was that it went up and down and in places was worn away. It did give some wonderful views though.

Valle Crucis Abbey comes in to view.

A splendid ruin.
When you eventually clamber down a nearly vertical path and cross the main road, the A542, you approach the remains of the abbey, suppressed by Henry VIII.

Needless to say we have numerous pictures,

this is me being arty; and failing.
There is the last remaining monastic fish pond in Wales and in it we found

frogspawn, gallons of it.

Finally, Jill in the Chapter House.

We climbed this lot back up to the footpath that runs along the old slate tramway, how about that for bringing the story back to the beginning?

O.K., what are they? Posh dog kennels? No, they are camping pods, no I don't know what that means either.
Making it back to to the basin we found

a lonely Armadillo.
I have never known anywhere with such noisy ducks, all night, quack, quack, quack. They use the pontoons as roosts,

you can imagine the state of the pontoons.

Tomorrow we start to make our way to the Montgomery Canal.

Watch this space...........

1 comment:

Julia & Mark said...

The ducks are just as noisy on the online moorings, it's one thing we won't miss, I found,in the early hours, that I was thinking a catapult would be a good idea ;)
We are now in the basin whilst I wait for a prescription, hopefully it'll be here today so we can move on.
Nice to say hello this morning.