Cyfle i ymweld ag Abereiddi, Carreg Samson, Rhos y Clegyrn, Eglwys Llanwnda a Chastell Pictwn. A visit to Abereiddi, Carreg Samson, Rhos y Clegyrn, Llanwnda Church and Picton Ca...
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-Pembrokeshire's coastal path
-stretches for more than 186 miles.
-Beginning in Amroth in the south...
-..it will guide me
-to St Dogmaels in the north.
-are naturalist Elinor Gwynn...
-..and poet and lecturer
-Damian Walford Davies.
-This week, we explore the area
-between Abereiddy and Dinas Cross.
-Pembrokeshire's coastal path...
-..leads people to picturesque
-and historical places...
-..such as this old quarry...
-..a few miles north
-of St David's.
-The quarry opened in 1840.
-It supplied slate,
-both locally and further afield.
-By 1904, the industry was in decline
-and the quarry closed down.
-Local fishermen blasted a channel
-through to the sea...
-..in order to create a safe haven.
-Between the grey of the rocks
-and the reflected blue of the sky...
-..it's no wonder the place
-has been nicknamed the Blue Lagoon.
-The slate started out as fine silt.
-It slowly sank into a tropical sea
-millions of years ago.
-But Abereiddy slate
-was of poor quality.
-Abereiddy slate used for roof tiles
-only lasted 40 years.
-lasted for more than 100 years.
-However, the slate was still used
-locally and was also exported...
-..to the south-west of England
-and to cities like Bristol.
-These seven cottages...
-..were built by quarry owners
-for the quarrymen in 1840.
-They were simple,
-According to the 1851 census,
-16 people lived here...
-..mainly men in their 20s and 30s.
-Interestingly, most of them
-came from North Wales.
-This row of cottages
-was referred to as The Street.
-But during a prosperous period
-in the quarry's history...
-..the street was known
-as Little Brighton...
-a much more impressive name.
-But The Street's history
-came to an end in 1938...
-..when a torrential storm
-tore through the village.
-It flooded this entire street.
-Around the same time, the village
-suffered an outbreak of typhoid.
-Abereiddy has seen a lot of comings
-and goings over the years...
-..as a direct result of industry.
-But the place
-is still popular with tourists...
-..who walk along the many paths
-of this wonderful coastline.
-As a National Park warden...
-..have you noticed increased use
-of the path over the years?
-Yes, it has been used much more
-over the past 10-15 years...
-..with people enjoying the open air.
-We've also noticed
-an increase in outdoor pursuits.
-Do these new activities
-have a damaging effect?
-Some of these activities
-can pose an adverse risk...
-..but we work closely
-with outdoor pursuits companies...
-..in partnership with the National
-Trust and the Countryside Council.
-We regularly hold
-Outdoor Charter Group meetings...
-..to discuss pursuits and sites.
-What sort of numbers do pursuits
-such as coasteering attract?
-Interest in coasteering
-At one time, there were 200 people
-here on any given day.
-Because of that, a licence system
-has since been introduced.
-Now the companies book a slot...
-..so that we can cap the numbers...
-..on a given day.
-In terms of increased footfall
-on the path...
-..are there signs of erosion?
-Yes, there is some erosion...
-..due to the high increase
-in visitor numbers and the weather.
-We assess the path once a year.
-One person walks the path to compare
-the erosion in different places.
-We assess the worst affected areas
-so that they can be addressed...
-..and resources put in place.
-I like the sound
-of walking the path once a year!
-Sadly, that's not down to me.
-If you're looking for someone,
-I'd like to volunteer.
-OK, I'll let them know!
-Cromlechs and standing stones
-are features of the landscape...
-..signifying the mystery of birth,
-marriage and death...
-..of the coast's old inhabitants
-from 5,000 years ago.
-I've always been fascinated
-by cromlechs and standing stones.
-Friends don't understand
-Why am I so fond of them?
-Because each has its own
-unique character and presence.
-Some are like clumsy dinosaurs
-clambering out of the sea.
-Others are more elegant
-there are those
-that have deteriorated over time.
-Carreg Samson near Abercastle...
-..on the coastal path
-is one of the dinosaurs.
-The deceased's ashes would be
-scattered in this burial chamber.
-Notice the enormous capstone.
-it would have been hidden...
-..covered by a mound
-of earth and stones.
-The site is extremely significant.
-A cromlech was located
-to mark a tribe's territory.
-How did Neolithic engineers
-lift this capstone?
-Even now, no-one is sure.
-Local legend has it that a saint
-called Samson erected it.
-He broke his little finger
-in the process.
-It was placed
-underneath this huge stone.
-Carreg Samson is known locally
-as the Grave Of Samson's Finger.
-It was quite a little finger!
-Cromlechs aren't the only stones
-visible in Pembrokeshire.
-They share the land with cousins
-who are 2,000 years younger.
-The standing stones.
-At 2.7 metres high, Rhos-y-Clegyrn
-standing stone is quite a sight...
-..and even more so
-with a covering of lichen.
-It's believed there were
-two stones here at one time...
-..with a pavement
-of circular stones between them.
-Charred human remains were found
-beneath the supposed pavement.
-Whatever its architectural design...
-..it's obvious that Rhos-y-Clegyrn
-was an auspicious ceremonial site.
-It's easy to get a feel
-for the past here.
-Imagine the scene -
-flames burning, chanting...
-within a stone circle.
-And a final farewell
-to a member of the tribe.
-This is St Gwyndaf's Church
-in Llanwnda on Strumble Head.
-When the church
-was restored in 1881...
-..six stones from the ninth century
-Five of them
-were in the church's exterior wall.
-Four of them were decorated
-with simple crosses.
-Each of these stones
-acts like a small window...
-..on the rich history of this site.
-The fifth stone
-may be the most interesting.
-It was carved
-for the monks who lived here.
-A face is visible here.
-Here are the eyes,
-the nose and mouth.
-Four lines for the hair,
-falling over the cheeks and ears.
-At the top
-is the Cross of St Andrew.
-The question is, whose face is it?
-A woman's face? A monk's face?
-Or the face of Christ?
-As well as outside, this church
-also has ancient stones inside.
-There's one on each window sill.
-The old monk still watches
-over his flock from the beam.
-To me, these stones
-aren't cold and morbid slabs.
-They represent living presences
-that are rooted, unlike ourselves...
-..in their homeland.
-Despite every effort
-..historians and writers
-to demystify them...
-..the mysticism remains.
-So I say, long live
-the language of the stones!
-As our journey
-along the coastal path continues...
-..Elinor explores the architecture
-of the county's cottages.
-There's a diversity of buildings
-on the Pembrokeshire coast.
-Some are renowned,
-such as Pembroke Castle...
-..St David's Cathedral
-and the Bishop's Palace.
-But the buildings
-that capture the county's spirit...
-..are simpler structures...
-..such as lime kilns, mills,
-farmhouses and cottages.
-This example sits comfortably
-in its surroundings.
-It's perfectly situated
-in this part of north Pembrokeshire.
-Building and restoring houses
-sympathetically is a challenge...
-..and can be a contentious issue
-within a national park.
-Edward and Hedydd
-are a couple who have succeeded.
-Edward is a builder...
-..and Hedydd is a teacher
-with an interest in local history.
-looks as if it's been here...
-..in this landscape for centuries.
-But it didn't look like this at all
-when you bought the place.
-It's an old building,
-maybe 200 years old...
-..but it was vacant
-before we bought it.
-Someone may have lived here once,
-but they were outhouses by then.
-I know you explored
-traditional houses in the area...
-..to decide on features you liked.
-Which features did you decide
-to incorporate into your home?
-It was a ruin when we started...
-the stone was here.
-As a builder, I was aware
-that it could have been a problem...
-..to find stones
-to match the existing stonework.
-We wanted the correct windows too.
-We went to see cottages
-The windows had to suit the style
-of the cottage and the landscape.
-We wanted to make sure
-we didn't make a mistake.
-I like the way
-you've kept the buildings...
-..at a low level
-so that they blend in.
-We didn't want a cottage of this
-length because they didn't exist.
-So we decided to keep one part
-that looked like a cottage...
-..and the other part
-to look like outhouses...
-..that were still used as such.
-in the cement roofs...
-..that can be seen
-throughout this region.
-They're so typical
-of north Pembrokeshire.
-But why aren't they found
-elsewhere in Wales?
-They had good quality slate
-in North Wales.
-Here in Pembrokeshire...
-..the slate became brittle...
-..and porous after a few years...
-..so roofs would leak.
-That's when cement roofs
-What kind of substances
-are used in the cement?
-We use sand, cement...
-We also use more modern materials
-to help it stick to the slate.
-In old houses,
-each time the roof was grouted...
-..more weight was added to it.
-Around 1.5 tonnes of sand was needed
-to build a roof of this size.
-Over the years,
-the roofs started to bow.
-The timber trusses in old houses
-weren't strong enough...
-..so roofs began to dip.
-After all the hard work and effort,
-are you happy with the result?
-Is it exactly
-as you imagined it to be?
-I'm quite happy with it.
-I don't want to leave the place.
-If she's happy,
-that's good enough for me.
-Thinking of Pembrokeshire's
-and its towns and villages...
-..it's hard to believe that if you
-scraped beneath the surface...
-..you'd find something
-gave this place its name.
-Fishguard literally means
-They were very industrious here.
-They invaded and attacked viciously
-as they searched for treasure.
-They kidnapped people
-and used them as slaves.
-In the nearby village
-of Little Newcastle...
-..lived a boy
-named Bartholomew Roberts.
-Aged ten, he went to sea
-aboard a ship transporting slaves.
-In time, he became captain
-of his own ship.
-A pirate ship.
-He became known as Black Bart...
-..arguably the most successful
-and vicious pirate in history.
-He attacked 200 ships in two years.
-Many mansions were built
-..with the money made
-from buying and selling slaves...
-..and from slave labour
-on Caribbean sugar plantations.
-Some of the county's families
-became very wealthy.
-Some of Pembrokeshire's
-..have been involved
-in the slave trade.
-Among them was Black Bart, no less.
-Yes, one of his first jobs
-was on a ship transporting slaves.
-Ships used to transport slaves
-..not only for the slaves
-but also for the crew.
-You could smell a slave ship
-from miles away at sea.
-In Black Bart's case...
-..his ship was attacked
-and he was taken hostage.
-He then joined his captors
-as a pirate.
-In a strange way,
-his history is associated...
-..with the burgeoning slave trade.
-Following Black Bart's death
-..the golden age of the pirates
-came to an end.
-The pirates, of course,
-attacked the slave ships.
-But once the pirates
-had been overpowered...
-..the slave trade grew unhindered.
-The trade grew significantly
-in the 18th century.
-was linked to the slave trade.
-Mansions were built
-and wealth was generated...
-..as a result of slavery.
-Yes, landowners in Pembrokeshire...
-..owned land and slaves
-in the Caribbean.
-The Caribbean was incredibly
-important to the slave trade.
-The Caribbean was more important
-to Britain's economy...
-..than the North American mainland
-in that period.
-You could argue that much of Wales's
-..in the late 18th century
-and early 19th century...
-..was funded by money from slavery.
-There is a special example
-of slavery in this house.
-Yes, it involves a slave boy
-named Cesar Picton.
-He was a gift to John Philipps...
-..who was one
-of the estate's owners.
-This house was given to Cesar
-when he was five or six years old...
-..along with a parakeet.
-It was fashionable at the time...
-..to have young black boys
-as travelling companions.
-But in Cesar's case,
-he became part of the family.
-He became a wealthy man.
-John Philipps's daughters
-left him money in their wills...
-..and he became far wealthier...
-..than many who were born and bred
-in south-east England.
-But Wales became instrumental...
-..in ending this abhorrent trade.
-But there are still traces
-in the large estates...
-..of wealth derived from slavery...
-..during a horrendous period
-in our history.
-Next week, Damian explores the
-derivation of county place names...
-..Elinor roams in Ty Canol woods...
-..and I get the chance to visit
-one of the path's hidden gems...
-..the Witch's Cauldron.
-S4C Subtitles by Adnod Cyf.
Cyfle i ymweld ag Abereiddi, Carreg Samson, Rhos y Clegyrn, Eglwys Llanwnda a Chastell Pictwn. A visit to Abereiddi, Carreg Samson, Rhos y Clegyrn, Llanwnda Church and Picton Castle.